Please Send Someone Else
“But Moses said, “Pardon your servant, Lord. Please send someone else.””(Ex. 4:13 NIV11)
Do we know this feeling? Yes, God, I know that You have great plans and that somehow You’ve chosen to involve people in bringing them about. But when You say ‘people’ You can’t possibly mean me can you? I mean really, do You know my flaws? Do You know my lack of courage? Do You know that I feel utterly unable?
This is a conversation that I’ve had with literally hundreds of garden variety Christians as we’ve talked through the idea of sharing our faith. Guilt – we know that we should be doing it. Fear – we’re afraid of what might happen. Ill-equipped – we don’t really know what we need to do. Lonely – it seems like we’d be very exposed if we stepped up to do.. well anything bold for Jesus.
It’s interesting to me how God deals with Moses here in Exodus 4.
Firstly God equips him and addresses the fear. He works with what’s in Moses’s hand. I heard it put like this in a talk once – you don’t need to become someone else – you just need to put what’s in your hand in to God’s hand. In God’s hand a staff can become a snake, water can become blood. The sign and the miracle are designed to assure Moses of God’s presence with him.
God also tells Moses that his enemies are dead and even gives him words to speak.
We can’t really give an account of these verses without in some way addressing the very unusual part with Zipporah. It appears that even as he’s being commissioned by God there is a matter of faith and allegiance that Moses hasn’t addressed. His son is not circumcised.
Whilst this is all a bit icky the reality is that circumcision was *the* sign of the covenant – and Moses hadn’t done it. Was it because Zipporah had a different religious tradition and had been holding Moses back? Whatever the reason she sees that Moses’s life is in danger without fulfilling this act and she takes the initiative to do it. I think this is showing that now Zipporah and his son are united in the covenant religion of Israel and Moses can go into God’s plan with a spiritually untied family.
In a final act of mercy God graciously addresses Moses’s loneliness – his brother Aaron will accompany him.
When it comes to speaking for Jesus, God doesn’t want to send someone else. He wants you. And He will equip you. Listen to these extraordinary words from Paul;
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.”(2 Cor. 5:17–20 NIV11)
Dear Heavenly Father, we thank You for Jesus. We thank You that He died to reconcile us to You. We can see that You want us to be your ambassadors – however unworthy we feel. Please Lord, forgive our timid-ness. Encourage our hearts. Equip us for the task of speaking for You. Help us to work together in Your harvest field so that many more may name you as Saviour and Lord.
P.S. I’m planning to run a very practical short course designed to help us give the message of new life in Jesus in the coming weeks. Drop us a note below if you’d like to know the details.