1Then the Lord said to Moses, “Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh; for under compulsion he will let them go, and under compulsion he will drive them out of his land.”
The foremen as well as Moses have already given up all hope of success of their mission. Relax, your duty is only to realize God’s purposes not your own. The timeframe is God’s timeframe not your own. The reaction of the others does not belong to you, so please relax and just do what the Lord asks you to do. The results are his, the people are his, you are his. Pharaoh’s resistance was necessary for a time, but God will crash Pharaoh’s power. Count on the Lord, observe the what and the when. These must not be your own.
2God spoke further to Moses and said to him, “I am the Lord;
3and I appeared to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, as God Almighty, but by My name, Lord, I did not make Myself known to them.
Success of the realization of God’s purposes is built on God’s being, not on the strength of the opponents, who are no match for God. Further it is built on our peace relationship with God so that we can collaborate with the Spirit in order to be an active part of the realization of God’s purposes.
4“I also established My covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land in which they sojourned.
5“Furthermore I have heard the groaning of the sons of Israel, because the Egyptians are holding them in bondage, and I have remembered My covenant.
6“Say, therefore, to the sons 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 their bondage. I will also redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments.
The Lord has planned three things:
1. To set his people free from the burdens
2. To deliver them from their bondage
3. To redeem them
This is not outdated. The Lord still wants to free you from your burdens, no matter what they are. The power of the Holy Spirit is there to set you free from whatever may be a burden in your life. The Lord wants to deliver you from your bondage. What is it that holds you in chains? What or who does not allow you to rejoice in the freedom of the Holy Spirit? The Lord is there to deliver you. Redemption is there from any sin, from any unhealthy custom, from any wrong pattern of behaviour. Redemption is there so that we are no longer slaves of someone else except for being slaves of Christ. Servants of the Lord, empowered by the Holy Spirit to do his will. Redemption has drawn close. Embrace it, say “yes” to it and rejoice.
7‘Then I will take you for My people, and I will be your God; and you shall know that I am the Lord your God, who brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians.
8‘I will bring you to the land which I swore to give to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and I will give it to you for a possession; I am the Lord.’ ”
9So Moses spoke thus to the sons of Israel, but they did not listen to Moses on account of their despondency and cruel bondage.
People have to make their own choices. This is their responsibility. God knew how they would react. However, God did not determine their reaction. This was their own choice. Moses’ mission was not in vain. He had to persevere. God also knew that finally the people would listen to Moses. Barriers, opposition and rejection are not a sign for not having a mission or of being outside of God’s plan. We must know for sure what our mission is and we must carry it out with perseverance. Hindrances are part of the game that we need in order to draw closer to God and learn to depend on him and to be determined to do his will.
10Now the Lord spoke to Moses, saying,
11“Go, tell Pharaoh king of Egypt to let the sons of Israel go out of his land.”
12But Moses spoke before the Lord, saying, “Behold, the sons of Israel have not listened to me; how then will Pharaoh listen to me, for I am unskilled in speech?”
13Then the Lord spoke to Moses and to Aaron, and gave them a charge to the sons of Israel and to Pharaoh king of Egypt, to bring the sons of Israel out of the land of Egypt.
God is very patient. Could we not make it a little easier for him, just by trusting him a little more? Moses argues with God as if God did not know how people are and how they would react. Moses’ logics was not God’s logics. Moses’ speculation was a qal wahomer, what is true for a lighter case must be true for a heavier case. If even God’s own people would not listen to Moses, how in the world could a pagan listen to him?
Well, many servants of God after Moses made the same surprising experience. Jesus would be widely rejected by his own people and more readily accepted by other people. Paul’s message was widely rejected by God’s own people and more widely accepted by heathens. Let’s just do God’s mission and he’s taking care of the rest. The reaction of the people is not our responsibility, only to be faithful in the fulfilment of God’s mission and how we accomplish it, without raising artificial barriers to the gospel.
14These are the heads of their fathers’ households. The sons of Reuben, Israel’s firstborn: Hanoch and Pallu, Hezron and Carmi; these are the families of Reuben.
15The sons of Simeon: Jemuel and Jamin and Ohad and Jachin and Zohar and Shaul the son of a Canaanite woman; these are the families of Simeon.
16These are the names of the sons of Levi according to their generations: Gershon and Kohath and Merari; and the length of Levi’s life was one hundred and thirty-seven years.
17The sons of Gershon: Libni and Shimei, according to their families.
18The sons of Kohath: Amram and Izhar and Hebron and Uzziel; and the length of Kohath’s life was one hundred and thirty-three years.
19The sons of Merari: Mahli and Mushi. These are the families of the Levites according to their generations.
20Amram married his father’s sister Jochebed, and she bore him Aaron and Moses; and the length of Amram’s life was one hundred and thirty-seven years.
21The sons of Izhar: Korah and Nepheg and Zichri.
22The sons of Uzziel: Mishael and Elzaphan and Sithri.
23Aaron married Elisheba, the daughter of Amminadab, the sister of Nahshon, and she bore him Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar.
24The sons of Korah: Assir and Elkanah and Abiasaph; these are the families of the Korahites.
25Aaron’s son Eleazar married one of the daughters of Putiel, and she bore him Phinehas. These are the heads of the fathers’ households of the Levites according to their families.
26It was the same Aaron and Moses to whom the Lord said, “Bring out the sons of Israel from the land of Egypt according to their hosts.”
27They were the ones who spoke to Pharaoh king of Egypt about bringing out the sons of Israel from Egypt; it was the same Moses and Aaron.
Both Moses and Aaron were Levites. This tribe was later dedicated to the service of the Lord as priests. Besides that, Moses and Aaron were also prophets and not precisely kings, but the heads of the political leadership with Moses standing above Aaron and their sister Mirijam, the prophetess, coming right after them.
28Now it came about on the day when the Lord spoke to Moses in the land of Egypt,
29that the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “I am the Lord; speak to Pharaoh king of Egypt all that I speak to you.”
30But Moses said before the Lord, “Behold, I am unskilled in speech; how then will Pharaoh listen to me?”
Moses continued to be weak and full of doubts. We need to learn perseverance from this. Whenever the mission seems impossible, it is still possible for God. Whenever people seem to resist, God is still sovereign and knows what he does.