Today was an intense day in Bible study, the subject of Patience – at one point Beth Moore pointed out in the video, that those who most challenge your patience might be put there by God to help form our character. God is sovereign, and can use a situation to grow both people involved.
God does not waste motions, and I think that as we look at the Israelites in Exodus we will see situations that do the exact same thing. God wants us maturing as Christians, and often it is the challenges that cause the most spiritual growth.
Moses has received his commission, has brought God’s message to the Israelites. While they first received the message with great joy and worship, their circumstances caused them to change their focus from God back to Pharaoh. Pharaoh told the people that they would have to gather stubble to make bricks, and that their quota of bricks could not diminish. The workload was heavy, and the Israelites murmured. First they went to Pharaoh to complain – instead of going to God, then they went to their pastor(Moses) to complain. Moses, instead of answering back, dropped to the floor and spoke with God for instructions. It is this humility that makes him a great leader. So Moses asked God about what was happening to his people, and tells God that it doesn’t seem that He has delivered the people at all. God replies:
Exodus 6:1 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh. For with a strong hand he will let them go, and with a strong hand he will drive them out of his land.
God reminds Moses that He is in control – that Pharaoh will end up doing what God promised Moses and the people that Pharaoh will do.
Exodus 6:2-3 And God spoke to Moses and said to him: “I am the LORD. I appeared to Abraham , to Isaac, and to Jacob, as God Almighty, but by My name LORD! I was not known to them.
So God appeared to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as God Almighty, but He was not known by name – God gave Moses His name – I AM THAT I AM (LORD). Every time you see LORD spelled out in capital letters it is this YHWH – Jehovah. The name that God gave Moses because Moses was sure that the people would ask, and they didn’t ask. Remember it is I AM THAT I AM, not I was, or I will be.
Exodus 6:4-5 I have also established My covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage, in which they were strangers. And I have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel, whom the Egyptians keep in bondage, and I have remembered My covenant.
God does not lie – He told Abraham that that land would belong to his descendants. While a famine drove the people to Egypt, the people have grown as God had said they would. God knew the timing of when He would deliver the people, and used that time to develop the people into a nation. God now remembered His covenant. Please know that God did not slap his forehead and say “Oh, I forgot…” Now it means that NOW is the time for God to act on that covenant promise. He will fulfill all the covenant promises, and some are being fulfilled today.
Exodus 6:6-9 Therefore say to the children of Israel: “I am the LORD; I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, I will rescue you from their bondage, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments. I will take you as My people, and I will be your God. Then you shall know that I am the LORD your God who brings you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. And I will bring you into the land which I swore to give to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and I will give it to you as a heritage. I am the LORD.”
This is an important passage. Count the number of “I wills” in the passage – there are seven. God doesn’t say, “I might,” or “Maybe” or “If possible.” This is a given fact that God WILL. And also notice that God doesn’t say, “I will do this if you do that.” This is one of the unconditional promises of God.
What are the “I wills”? 1. Salvation – I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. For us, Egypt is the world, and when God saved us, he saved us from our own personal Egypts. 2. Liberation from bondage – God will redeem us with great judgments and an outstretched arm. When we bring God into our lives, healing occurs, and we are freed from things that hold us back from Him. Our lives undergo a profound change and we find liberty in Christ. 3. Redemption and freedom from being an outcast. Jesus has canceled the debt of our sins, and has redeemed us from death and destruction. 4. Adoption. God adopts us when we come to Him In Christ. We will see that it is through Him, and only through Him that we are freed from burdens. 5. Revelation. As He acts in our lives we see the truth of how it is God and God alone that has freed us from our burdens, it is not something we do in our own strength. 6. Direction. God will lead us to our promised lands, He will lead the Israelites to their promised land. If we listen and obey God, He will take us to where He knows is best for us. 7. Provision. He will give us this for a heritage – it will be passed down through the generations. God provided for the people in the wilderness, and did not stop the provision of manna until they ate from the fullness of the promised land.
Exodus 6:9 So Moses spoke thus to the children of Israel: but they did not heed Moses, because of anguish of spirit and cruel bondage.
May I tell you that this verse hits at the core of my being. I did not heed people who tried to tell me about Jesus for many years because of anguish of spirit and cruel bondage. See the past abuse I received colored my perception of God, and all the yammering about how loving God was did not touch me, I was in too much anguish. Fortunately we are to just spread the seed, and God will water the seed and grow truth in a person. God patiently waited until I could let Him in. See I had mistakenly thought that I had to sort things out in my own power, but I didn’t realize that it took God to help to ease my anguish permanently. I beg of you that when people reject your comments about God and Jesus that you do not give up on them, just keep loving them with a Godly love, until you love them into the Kingdom. Pray for them and God will reach them.
Exodus 6:10-12 And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying: “Go in, tell Pharaoh king of Egypt to let the children of Israel go out of his land. And Moses spoke, before the LORD saying, “The children of Israel have not heeded me. How then shall Pharaoh heed me, for I am of uncircumcised lips.
I have to tell you that I can relate to Moses. I know my limitations and often bring them up to God. Moses, who probably had a stuttering problem, did not think that he could do what God wanted him to do. He also knew that he had uncircumcised lips. I suspect he knew that he was not perfect, and how could God use such an imperfect vessel? And then, if the Israelites rejected him, why would Pharaoh listen? These are such logical arguments about why God could not use him, but Moses forgot that God is God, and that it isn’t Moses doing the thing, but God working through Moses.
Exodus 6:13 Then the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, and gave them a command for the children of Israel and for Pharaoh king of Egypt, to bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt.
Well, God certainly wasn’t impressed with Moses’ arguments. He just kept patiently reiterating the command. It kind of reminds me of how we sometimes have to keep patiently saying the same thing over and over to our kids. I used to think that I needed a tape recorder with numbered messages, #1. Pick up your toys, #2 do not hit your brother or sister #3 because I told you so. etc. and then I wouldn’t have to say the things over and over and over and over again. I think God could use one of those tape recorders in my life – Oh, I sincerely want to change, but there are times when strongholds are present and I keep revisiting them. God patiently gives me the same messages and lessons over and over until I “get it.” He is such a loving Father.
Exodus 6:14-25 is another genealogy. Since Moses and Aaron are God’s ambassadors for the Kingdom, God gives their credentials to show that they are in the line that God wanted them to be. We will see that they are from the tribe of Levi (just as Paul was from the tribe of Levi), and there are a few names that are very important. Verse 16 gives the descendants of the tribe of Levi, verse 20 points out that Amram and Jochebed are Aaron and Moses’ parents. Verse 23 mentions some names of Aaron’s descendants through Elisheba- we will see these names later on, Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar.
Exodus 6:26-27 These are the same Aaron and Moses to whom the LORD said, “Bring out the children of Israel from the land of Egypt according to their armies. These are the ones who spoke to Pharaoh king of Egypt, to bring out the children of Israel from Egypt. These are the same Moses and Aaron.
God wants to make sure that we know who Moses and Aaron are – and when God repeats something more than once it is for emphasis. Remember the parchment that was used to record the scriptures was very costly, so God would not have wasted words. Each word was very valuable.
Exodus 6:28-30 And it came to pass, on the day the LORD spoke to Moses in the land of Egypt, that the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “I am the LORD. Speak to Pharaoh king of Egypt all that I say to you. But Moses said before the LORD, “Behold I am of uncircumcised lips, and how shall Pharaoh heed me?”
What remarkable patience God has with us. If I were God I probably would have moved on to someone who would not be so argumentative, but God doesn’t do that. We will see in Chapter 7 that God gives Aaron to be Moses’ mouthpiece. But I am certain that if Moses had said, OK God, that God would have made sure that the important speeches were clearly enunciated. God so often will scale down things so that we can do the most that we can do and participate with Him. I am reminded of the disciples who were asked about feeding the multitude (the second time after Jesus did the great feeding) and they did not know what to do. I bet Jesus was hoping that they would bless the food and feed the multitude, when that was not forthcoming, he gave the disciples the task of sitting the people down in order. God will use us to the proportion that we are yielded to Him. The more we are yielded, the greater He can use us. I pray for yieldedness.
Hope you have a blessed night!
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