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Exodus 4:1-5:21

A couple of days back, to be precise, yesterday (my how time flies), I mentioned that I thought Moses’ reluctance to be sent by God wasn’t based on his Public Speaking talent or lack there of, but on the knowledge that he had committed a crime, he was a murderer. Guilt has a way of always sitting in the back our minds and coloring all our reasons we disguise as excuses, hmmm.

I have taken note of how many people, myself included, don’t really ask the question or state the true problem but the issue is couched in terms of, “I know somebody who …” or, we play ring-a-round-the-rosy in our attempt to avoid the true problem or question and hid behind our “stuff.” God has not of that and all though He doesn’t come right out and say what Moses’ issues are (Moses would probably deny them), He does not let Moses escape from His purpose. Think God is still doing that today?

I think we in the Western Cultures escape into new technologies, cell phones, blackberries, the got to stay in touch stuff, as an attempt to drown out the calling, the purpose God has assigned to each and every individual. We create our own ministries (our vocations/employment/careers) to run from our assigned ministry. I’m using ministry here in terms of service to the greater population. Everyone ministers in some way, even if that ministry is dedicated to serve evil it still is a ministry, a service to the fleshly nature or dedicated to the spiritual. “God I don’t want to do that so I’ll do this instead.”

Grace and peace,
Ramona

"For the SON OF MAN has come to find that which was lost."

Exodus 4
Signs for Moses

Why did the Lord's anger burn against Moses?

Well, in yesterday's readings, Moses asked - why him? In these verses Moses lied and said please send someone else.

God who Moses believed in had promised to give Moses: a backbone, words in Moses' mouth, and signs to perform to verify His story. God would do the work, and Moses would be his vessel. (same thing for us today as Christians)

Moses responds by saying - 'well you can give me the words, but I don't speak well'. Not according to Josephus at yesterday's link. Josephus says Moses was trained in Pharaoh's court and was a great orator. Moses lied to God, because He does not want to accept the task God has layed before Moses.

Then Moses flat out says it - "O Lord, please send someone else to do it."

God has a lot of changes to do in Moses. did Isaiah refuse, Did Christ refuse God's Will. No, and Moses is still a lump of clay on the potter's wheel - he is not now the great leader that he will be known for in later years. Right now he is like a stubborn mule being dragged along by his master.

God provided him with Aaron as the spokesperson, and Moses finally went along with God's plan. Funny how we as Christians have a hard time depending on god for help, but if another human being comes along - we are willing to go to work for God.

The development of Moses now begins - Pharoah will resist him, and Moses' people will hate and reject Him again, but God's plan is in motion.
======================================================Exodus 5

Remember what was done here and how the Hebrews felt about the new work orders.

We will need to remember this for the time upcoming of Moses and his people in the wilderness.

Hebrews seem to love to play the "blame" game without really trusting "Yahweh".

Moses Skill as a Speaker

Acts 7:22 "And Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words and in deeds." (KJV)

Stephen verifys Josephus' observation that Moses was indeed skilled in words (oratory).

Matthew 18
Reading on lost sheep can be delayed until LUKE. Church discipline is pretty self-evident. Remember "you" in verse 18 is "plural". While the child illustration is also in Luke and Mark (hence I think it is very important), it is important enough to go over tonight here in Matthew as a quick hit.
======================================================
The Greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven

Matt 18:1 At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, "Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?" NIV

This question has been raised and discussed (sometimes heatedly) amongst the apostles more than once. The issue here is PRIDE. Apostles, having not yet received Holy Spirit at Pentecost, know Jesus is going to die but they are not very clear (if at all) on the ressurection part. Perhaps the issue is: who is going to take over after Jesus' death, or simply who will be closest to God in heaven? I don't know, but it is pride that makes them discuss and argue this point.

Jesus says, 'Wait a minute guys - with that kind of attitude you had better be concerned first with if you are EVEN going to be in heaven. With this attitude of pride you are walking a slippery slope.

Now a child is brought forth, and there are some KEY things here.

1) I disagree with commentators who think this was an infant or a little child 2+ years or less. While the Greek word for "child" could be anything from infant to much older, it is clear, in the Greek, that the child was placed in the midst of the apostles by setting or standing. how many babies or two year olds would stay still for long in this setting. So, I believe, it is a child three and up.

2) Remmeber the culture of the time. Even more so than today, a young child near kindergarden age in the Jewish culture: spoke when spoken to, looked to their parents for everything, normally would have great respect for the parental authority, and hopefully loved their parents. The child knew who ran the show, and was humble and deferring to parents when it came to life lessons.

3) So what? Christ already said they were humble. THIS IS SO IMPORTANT: It is not just you have to be humble. The word "change" in the NIV literally means "turn". Unless you turn away from this attitude of pride and turn to humility - you will not even get to heaven. You cannot be proud and humble. God wants all of you, if you come to Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior it must be with a humble repentant heart giving all of yourself to Christ. God knows your heart, and only you and God know if that is how you accepted Christ.
======================================================
Matt18:4
"Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven."

How in the world does this answer the question? Jesus - which child is greatest?

This is my belief:
All of you (believers). You are all going to be the greatest, because we will all be there eventually in perfect glorified bodies. We will all be the same. All of us the "greatest". Jesus point is get rid of the pride, become humble, believe and recieve Christ, and just get there.

We will have rewards and losses in heaven depending on our Christian walk, but that is not the point. This just determines what jobs or responsibilities we will have in the kingdom. It will still be equally perfect glorified saints just doing different things in the kingdom. Will address rewards and losses later in NT.

Hi Mike,

Thank you so much for posting the video on the church in Haiti. It was so moving and it will certainly help me as I pray for my bothers and sisters in Christ in Haiti.

When I saw that it was over an hour long, I wondered if I would have the time, but decided to watch it completely, and I am very grateful that I did.

I would encourage everyone to take the time and watch this video. Give as you can and pray diligently for Haiti.

Chris D.

"So whom did Zipporah circumcise? Verse 4:20 says Moses took "his wife and sons" [plural sons]. Verse 25 says Zipporah circumcised her son [singular ... at least in the NLT]. And v26 says, "After that, the LORD left him alone," which would seem to indicate that they were now being obedient. So was it Gershom, the first born? Or maybe Eliezer? Or am I missing something?"

There is nothing wrong with the translation, but some experts think it is fragmentary and something is missing. Regardless, there is nothing that is important about these verses regarding a picture of redemption or salvation.

However, there is something important about obedience. I am going to put a link so you can read a relatively short answer to your question.
http://www.biblestudy.org/question/before-the-exodus-why-did-god-want-to-kill-moses.html

for those that just want the above link in a nutshell:
Moses was going back to lead Israel, and apparently one of His boys was not circumcised.

(Genesis 17:11-14)
Indicates the seriousness of not circumcising a child to God.

Speculation seems to run:
Moses may have circumcised first boy, Gershom, and Zipporah was so disgusted at the deal, that she said never again. Moses put it off or thought God would overlook the matter, but not the God of great details.
Decision time for Moses: Circumcise the boy Eliezer or die. Maybe Moses was dying, and wife realized it, and circumcised the son, apparently throwing the foreskin at Moses' feet with an epithet of disgust.

Importance here is the need to be obedient to the Lord, especially if you are in a leadership position. As to Zipporah and sons, they went back with father-in-law (Jethro) in Exodus 18 and no one knows anymore about their lives.

there are some other intersting views of the story in the midrash and Book of Jubilees? - but I am trying to stick with Scripture here when possible.

Thanks, John. Love your ability to provide answers/thoughts/links to my questions and the questions of others. Very helpful.

Interestingly, God's original plan was for Moses to go it alone.

RR

Hi Mike,
I recommend "Love, Sex, and Lasting Relationships" by Chip Ingram. This is a great book written on biblical principles of doing relationships God's way, and help with learning how to remain sexually pure in our sex-saturated society.

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