Read Exodus 1-3
Reflect The Israelites have fallen into slavery under a new Egyptian king. God continued to grow the nation of Israel in this season of waiting. In Exodus 2 we are introduced to Moses. Moses was a Levite and was born at a time when Israelite male babies were put to death. His life is spared by a unique set of circumstances.
Exodus 2:11-13 11 One day, after Moses had grown up, he went out to where his own people were and watched them at their hard labor. He saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his own people. 12 Looking this way and that and seeing no one, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. 13 The next day he went out and saw two Hebrews fighting. He asked the one in the wrong, “Why are you hitting your fellow Hebrew?”
So Moses knew he was a Hebrew. I’m sure his features were a giveaway. His instinct was to protect his fellow Hebrews. Moses flees Egypt when his life is threatened and marries Zipporah and they have a son. Moses has settled into the life of a shepherd when an amazing thing happens. Exodus 2:23-3:6
23 During that long period, the king of Egypt died. The Israelites groaned in their slavery and cried out, and their cry for help because of their slavery went up to God. 24 God heard their groaning and he remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac and with Jacob. 25 So God looked on the Israelites and was concerned about them. Genesis 3:1 Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. 2 There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. 3 So Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.” 4 When the Lord saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!”And Moses said, “Here I am.” 5 “Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” 6 Then he said, “I am the God of your father,[a] the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.” At this, Moses hid his face, because he was afraid to look at God.
Don’t miss this point! God heard the Israelites and acted but they were not aware of his actions.
Moses is in the wilderness living life according to 3:1 and God makes it very clear he has something big for Moses. I think it’s really interesting that God causes a bush to burn, an angel to appear and speak to Moses and Moses still doubts. There is a clear plan, specific instructions, and even the ending is revealed. Moses still questions God. What if they don’t believe me?
For me, this is such a clear picture of human faith.We see a miracle in front of us and for some reason, we don’t think God is big enough for the next step. He heals us, but will he provide financially for medicine? He blesses us with children, but will he give us the strength to raise them? Moses didn’t doubt God’s presence or who God said he was. At the same time, he questioned if God was big enough to rescue the Israelites.
Record How do you think Moses felt growing up knowing he was an Israelite?
When is a time when (in hindsight) you know God was moving, but you didn’t realize it?
What are your limits in faith? How can you push past them?
Review: When we moved from the cornfields we felt a bit like Moses, being called out of a season of waiting, being called to the unknown. I wondered how things would go, how people would treat us, would our boys be ok, would we find a church etc.
I trusted that God was calling us to the mountains of Virginia, but I wavered when it came to trusting God in the details. The biggest of these details was the sale of our house. As I watched professional who had called me friend after professional fail us I couldn’t keep myself from attaching that to God’s failing us. Why call us someplace without tying up lose ends? Why call us to trust when prayers would go unanswered? Moses was wrestling with the details and I get it.