Friday, March 13, 2009

"I am the Lord...."

22 Moses returned to the LORD and said, "O Lord, why have you brought trouble upon this people? Is this why you sent me? 23 Ever since I went to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has brought trouble upon this people, and you have not rescued your people at all."

1 Then the LORD said to Moses, "Now you will see what I will do to Pharaoh: Because of my mighty hand he will let them go; because of my mighty hand he will drive them out of his country."
2 God also said to Moses, "I am the LORD. 3 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. 4 I also established my covenant with them to give them the land of Canaan, where they lived as aliens. 5 Moreover, I have heard the groaning of the Israelites, whom the Egyptians are enslaving, and I have remembered my covenant.

6 "Therefore, say to the Israelites: 'I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. I will free you from being slaves to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with mighty acts of judgment. 7 I will take you as my own people, and I will be your God. Then you will know that I am the LORD your God, who brought you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. 8 And I will bring you to the land I swore with uplifted hand to give to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob. I will give it to you as a possession. I am the LORD.' " Exodus 5:22-6:1-8.

Moses had just approached Pharoah and asked him to release the Israelites from their labor so they could leave Egypt and go worship. In response, Pharoah scoffed at Moses’ request and reasoned that the Israelites were being too idle in their work. So rather than release them from their work, he increased its difficulty, and required them to gather their own straw to make bricks.

While the Israelites were scattered by the Egyptians to gather stubble, the Israelite officers, who were appointed over the people, were beaten because the people could not meet their daily quota of bricks.

So the Officers went before Pharoah to discuss the matter, but were met with hostility, and were warned to fulfill their quota of bricks.

On their way out from their meeting with Pharoah, they met Moses and Aaron and basically blamed them for bringing trouble on the people.

After being rebuked, Moses questions his calling and expresses his doubts about God’s plan. Things were not going the way he thought they should. Apparently, he thought Pharoah was going to let the people go because God had sent him to ask Pharoah to do just that. Instead, Pharoah made the Israelites suffer.

Many of us have been there—you set out to do what you believe the Lord has called you to do, only to be disillusioned because things didn’t turn out the way you had envisioned. It is at that point that we tend to sulk and question God’s ability.

But as Moses found out, the point of going to Pharoah was not so he could accomplish a great work for the Lord; it was so the Lord could be revealed. The Lord wanted Moses to know that He (God) is the Lord, that He is compassionate, and that He remembers His promises and intends to keep them. The Lord wanted Moses to know that it would be by His mighty hand that the people would be delivered.

Are you facing disappointment? Have you been disillusioned? Do you question God’s ability to work in your situation? The Lord is God. He is compassionate and remembers His promises. He wants you to see what He will do—not by might, nor by power, but by His Spirit (Zech 4:6). Humble yourself before the Lord, and He will lift you up (1 Peter 5:5-7).


Jess said...

This was a great post Jen! Very encouraging!