The way in which God brought the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt and into the beautiful Promised Land has gone down in history as a demonstration of God’s great power, love and compassion for his people (e.g. Deut. 4:34, Ps. 105:37-45).
The story starts with something miraculous: a bush that was on fire but wasn’t destroyed. You can easily imagine Moses’ surprise when this burning bush not only continued to stay undamaged but also spoke to him, calling his name: “Moses, Moses!”. The voice from the bush then revealed himself to be God, and went on to tell Moses that it was his plan to save the Israelites from slavery in Egypt with Moses as their leader (Ex. 3:1-10).
Moses’ weaknesses, both in his perceived lack of ability and his doubts, only served to demonstrate God’s glory and sovereignty in all the proceeding events.
Moses certainly couldn’t believe it. “Who am I”, he says in Exodus 3:11, “that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?”. It’s only the first of several objections Moses presents to the idea. He worries that his authority will be questioned by the Israelites (Ex. 3:13) and he protests that he isn’t eloquent enough to do the job (Ex. 4:10). But God did not choose someone with an established authoritative presence in the Israelite community, he chose Moses according to his sovereign will. He was able to then equip Moses for the tasks ahead by providing miracles to persuade (Ex. 4:1-9), Aaron to speak (Ex. 4:10-12) and God’s own presence to support and guide (Ex. 3:12, 4:12, 15). Moses need not have worried that he lacked anything necessary for the mission God had provided him with.
In God’s grace, Moses was also forgiven for questioning God’s choice of him as a leader. While it made God angry, it was not sufficient to make him reconsider. Moses’ weaknesses, both in his perceived lack of ability and his doubts, only served to demonstrate God’s glory and sovereignty in all the proceeding events. It is reassuring to know that, in the same way, God does not reconsider those he has chosen today (Rom. 8:30). We are also equipped for our service (Heb. 13:21) and God’s grace is also sufficient for us as He says, “my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Cor. 12:9).
Amy Doel, The Church of God in Birmingham