Scripture: Come, I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring my people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt.” But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?” He said, “But I will be with you, and this shall be the sign for you, that I have sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall serve God on this mountain.” Exodus 3:10-12 ESV
Observation: As the story of Moses’ encounter with Yahweh continues, the author provides us with a breathtaking perspective of our Father’s pursuit and attentive care for his children. Reiterating that he fully knows Israel’s suffering, the Lord states to Moses that he has come down to deliver his covenant people from the Egyptians and bring them to a land flowing with milk and honey (3:7-9). And how has the infinite Creator of the universe stooped into his creation? In a fire that does not consume and with a voice that demands attention. And in this epiphany, he commands Moses to “come” (verse 10 above), implying that he will continue to guide his people each step of the way.
But Moses, the same man who just minutes earlier said, “Here I am,” succumbs to self-doubt and questions whether he has what it takes to confront Pharaoh and lead a nation to freedom (verse 11). And our gracious Lord does not chastise Moses at this point, and instead, he reassures Moses that he will be with him and will confirm that Moses has been “sent” by God when he and his kin return to this same mountain and serve Yahweh (verse 12). Here, the Hebrew word for “serve” also includes an element of worship.
Takeaway: It’s fascinating that the sign God promises to Moses to verify that he is the chosen human vessel to lead God’s people to the Promised Land is not a staff that turns into a serpent or any of the ten plagues. Instead, confirmation will come when they exercise their freedom to love their God through worship and service, and it will begin when they arrive at Mount Sinai (Horeb), where it all began for Moses.
What does this mean for you and me? Who of us doesn’t want the assurance of a miraculous sign when God calls us to step out in faith and carry on with our mission? And who among us would rather wait to receive a confirmation when we are well on our way? But our life journeys are not by sight but by faith. And is there any more meaningful encounter with the presence of God than when we worship and serve him by faith? Sure, supernatural, external signs would certainly quick-start are confidence. Still, what will sustain us when we face hardship is the confirmation of our transformation: from self-serving to God-serving, from self-worship to God-worship. Indeed, Christ himself, who came into our world to serve us and give away his life as a ransom for us (Mark 10:45), confirmed his mission at Calvary. So let us follow in his footsteps and worship and serve him! Here, we find confirmation.
Prayer: Father God, we thank you for the gift of your Son, whose mission is the sign of our calling. Would you please help us draw near you and your Son and wholeheartedly worship and faithfully serve you, knowing that you will instill confidence in us of our calling in due time? Amen.
Rev. Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling