Sunday, January 19, 2014

Exodus 4-6 How to kindle the LORD’s anger

From Exodus 4-6

Q. What makes you angry?

Ex 4.1-17 Story; Moses tries to get out of Gods request
Ex 4.18-23 Story; Moses is to return and command the release of Israel God’s firstborn son
Ex 4.24-26 Story; The LORD tries to kill Moses because his son was uncircumcised
Ex 4.27-31 Story; Moses and Aaron tell Israel and the people believe
Ex 5.1-23 Story; Pharaoh rejects the LORDs demands and places greater burdens on Israel
Ex 6.1-13 Story; The LORD promises deliverance and sends Moses in again
Ex 6.14-27 Genealogy; The family record of Moses and Aaron
Ex 6.28-30 Story; Recounting the LORD’s commission of Moses and Moses protest

Passage and Comments
Moses is blessed with the incredible job of being God’s instrument in saving his people from slavery and he tries to refuse Gods request. I'm sure given the chance again he would not repeat the same mistake. None the less read what happens.
[10] But Moses said to the LORD, “Oh, my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue.” [11] Then the LORD said to him, “Who has made man's mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the LORD? [12] Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall speak.” [13] But he said, “Oh, my Lord, please send someone else.” [14] Then the anger of the LORD was kindled against Moses and he said, “Is there not Aaron, your brother, the Levite? I know that he can speak well. Behold, he is coming out to meet you, and when he sees you, he will be glad in his heart. [15] You shall speak to him and put the words in his mouth, and I will be with your mouth and with his mouth and will teach you both what to do. [16] He shall speak for you to the people, and he shall be your mouth, and you shall be as God to him. [17] And take in your hand this staff, with which you shall do the signs.” (Exodus 4:10-17)
When presented with the command of God Moses denies his ability to perform it. 'I cant do it' is his protest. I have a stutter, I'm not ready, they won't believe me, please choose someone else. In scripture this attitude only kindles the LORD's anger. Why? Because Moses here should have had trust in God, that despite his weaknesses God would overcome them. At the heart of the protest, 'I can't do it', is unbelief. Not only of oneself, but of God. When Gods people hear the voice of God, do they listen and obey, or reject and do nothing?

Now I would like to switch stance. How many times does God refer to himself in the singular? Check this out.

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 the LORD
I did not make myself known to them.
I also established my covenant with them to give them the land of Canaan, the land in which they lived as sojourners.


I have heard the groaning of the people of Israel whom the Egyptians hold as slaves, and
I have remembered my covenant.

Say therefore to the people of Israel,

‘I am the LORD, and
I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and
I will deliver you from slavery to them, and
I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great acts of judgment.
I will take you to be my people, and
I will be your God, and you shall know that
I am the LORD your God, who has brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians.
I will bring you into the land that
I swore to give to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.
I will give it to you for a possession.
I am the LORD.’” (Exodus 6:2-8)

Such an impressive demonstration of the single sidedness of Gods work in salvation. So how shall we hold together these two scriptures? This way - when God commands his people, we need to remember that they are already saved and assured of future salvation. So simply, personal salvation isn't the issue. The issue for us is, do you want to be used by God in the salvation of others? Do you want to please God? The God who saved you is asking. Unbelief is not the only thing at the heart of the protest, so was selfishness.

Story of Israel
Throughout all Israel’s history, time and time again we see God being faithful to his promises. God is righteous. But Israel fails to live up to her calling. It seems Israel needed rescuing as well.

Story of Jesus

Jesus didn't spend his time on earth worrying how he could be saved. When God commanded he obeyed. Even at the garden of Gethsemane his attitude wasn't I can't do it, I can't do it. When presented with the choice to be tortured unto death and separated from God so that others may be joined to God, he willingly obeyed. Now he is risen from the dead and he asks that we follow him.