“Accomplish great things – me?” You say, “I’m not Moses. He was a great man of the Bible, and I’m just ordinary.”
Accomplish God’s Plan For Your Life
You can accomplish great things with God’s help. It might surprise you to discover that Moses, too, was just an ordinary man. Reading about him in Exodus will shine a light on just how ordinary he was. He was not a great man. He was just a man who God used to accomplish His will. It is always God we look to, not man. We need God, in all we do and in all we are.
Moses was born after Joseph died and a new king ruled over Egypt. The king decided that the population of Israelites (God’s children) was growing too fast and he feared that they would become greater than the Egyptians. He also feared that if they became too great they would join the enemies of Egypt and fight against them.
In order to get more control over them, the King decided to set hard taskmaskers over them. God’s people became even more afflicted, but the Israelites were still multiplying. (God has promised to Abraham that his descendants would multiply greatly, and God always keeps His promises.)
The King came up with another plan. He instructed the Hebrew midwives to kill any male child born to the Hebrew women, but to let the daughters live. The midwives feared God and did not do as the king had commanded them. They told the king that the Hebrew women were “lively and gave birth before the midwives could get to them.”
Since the midwives were obedient to God, He multiplied their numbers even more. So, the Egyptian people were instructed to throw every baby boy born into the river and drown them.
Moses was born at this time in history. His mother hid him successfully as long as she could but the time came when she could no longer keep him hidden. She feared for his life. She placed him in a basket and sent his sister, Miriam, to place the basket in the river, and to keep an eye on it so she could report back as to what happened to Moses.
In God’s divine plan, the daughter of the Pharaoh was bathing in that very same river at the very same time that little basket floated by. (God’s timing is always perfect and miraculous!) She sent one of her maids to see what was in the basket. When she saw the baby she knew it was one of the Hebrew children, and she had compassion on him because he was crying.
As another great part of this miracle, Miriam asked the Princess if she would like for her to find someone to nurse the baby. Guess who Miriam took the baby to? – You guessed it – back to Moses’ mother! And, to make that even greater, she paid Moses’ mother to feed him and take care of him until he was old enough to return to the King’s palace. God is just so good. His ways are truly amazing.
Moses Returned To The Palace
The day came when Moses was returned to the Pharaoh’s daughter, and she named him “Moses” saying, “Because I drew him out of the water.”
I find it so interesting that God had a plan for Moses before he was even born. Even though everything man could do to stop that work from taking place, God would not and could not be stopped. His perfect will for Moses and the children of Israel was set in motion. They needed someone to deliver them from captivity. God heard their prayers and Moses was sent to accomplish that task.
God sent Moses to live in the palace of the King who did all he could to destroy him! What’s even more spectacular to me is that Moses was raised in the King’s palace and learned all of the Egyptian ways. He experienced all the earthly material things of the King himself.
Moses Lacked Faith
Moses had received a great education and all the King had to offer, but he lacked what was most important to a child of God – faith. As he grew older and discovered more about his heritage. One day he made a big mistake – (interestingly, this mistake was used by God to make Moses into the man God wanted him to be from the beginning).
Moses saw an Egyptian man beating one of his Hebrew brothers. He checked to make sure no one was watching, then killed the Egyptian and buried his body in the sand. The next day Moses discovered that his secret had been found out and he fled from the palace in fear that he, too, would be killed when the Pharaoh discovered what he had done.
Moses fled into the desert and dwelt in the land of Midian. There he became a shepherd and took a wife. This was the new life of Moses. He no longer enjoyed the fine life of the king’s palace and his royal duties. He made a big mistake and traded his kingly robes for a shepherd’s robe in the desert.
A tree in the desert
One hot day in the desert, Moses saw a fire burning in the middle of a bush, but the bush was not consumed. He decided to take a closer look. He went closer to the bush, burning – but not burning up. When he got close to the bush, and God spoke to him from the middle of that fire! He told Moses to remove his sandals because he was standing on holy ground.
Do you ever take a closer look when something gets your attention? Or, do you let it pass and continue on your way? As disciples of Christ, it is extremely important for us to acknowledge the whispers of God – the small signs He places in our path to get our attention. Lots of times we just go on our way, oblivious to what God is saying to us. Know this, God is always with us and many times His Spirit gives us signs along the way as encouragement and warnings as to His will for our lives.
This is the part I like best – God begins to tell Moses that he is now ready – he’s been prepared to do the work he was prepared for. God had taken all of Moses’ rights and wrongs – all of his mistakes. Every event of his life up to that point had prepared him to be the answer of thousands of prayers being sent up from the people of Israel for deliverance.
I don’t think Moses intended to be stubborn. Mostly, he doubted himself. He gave in to doubt, fear, and even unbelief. He doubted whether God could accomplish such a great task using a man like him. He was focusing on himself and what he could do rather than on God and what HE could do.
He questioned God about many things. I don’t think God minds our questions. I believe He would rather us ask Him in prayer and seek His answers in the Bible than to run to friends or other sources. After all, He IS The Way!
Moses offered up to God every excuse he could think of as to why he was the wrong person for the job. God answered his questions. Moses even asked God, “Who am I, that I should go to the Pharaoh and bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?” It makes sense to me that he would ask that question. I certainly would have, and most of you probably would, too.
In the midst of the argument against his assignment, Moses challenged God by asking Him what he would do if the people did not believe him. God assured Moses that He would be with him every step of the way. He also told Moses something key to how God works in us. He asked Moses what it was he held in his hand. Moses had “only” a staff.
God can use what we have, whatever it might be, for His glory. Even if we don’t know how to do what He asks of us, He will see to it that we are prepared for what He calls us to do.
In the next blog, I will continue with how God used an ordinary man to do a great work – not a work to bring honor to Moses, but a work to bring honor to God. When God gives us direction – He is responsible for the outcome, if we are obedient.
What is in your hand? Will you argue with God about what He wants from you? Even if you have nothing in your hand and God calls out to you, He will provide what you need.
It’s okay to ask questions, we are instructed to do that in the Bible. Initial doubt and fear are understandable. Give it back to God though. That’s part of His plan for you – not to carry the burden, but to let Him carry it.
Exodus 1-4 The Essential Everyday Bible Commentary NKJV
Check out https://www.biblegateway.com/