Day 3

God Equips Moses

from the The Life of Moses reading plan


Exodus 4:1-17, Hebrews 5:1-6

Then Moses answered, “But behold, they will not believe me or listen to my voice, for they will say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you.’”  

The Lord said to him, “What is that in your hand?

Moses replied, “My smartphone, Lord.”

And God said unto Moses, “Good. Begin working on increasing your platform immediately. It is true that the people will not believe you now, but if you can double your Twitter following and increase the reach of your Instagram account, then the people will respect you as a leader. If you can angle your way into a better job with a more important title, then my people will hear your voice and respond. If you can make just a little more money, or be seen as the most powerful man in the room, then the people of Israel will follow you. If you buy better clothes and wear nicer shoes, then my people will know you are called to be their leader.”

This is a paraphrase not so much of the Bible, but of the human heart.

Sometimes if feels more natural to seek leadership and influence not by the power of God, but by our own strength and will. Clearly, God would never say something like this; but I think the desire to make our own name great runs deep. It can trick us into thinking that the pursuit of glory in the name of God is the same thing as glorifying God. It can also trick us into becoming much more comfortable with relying on our talents and strengths than on the supernatural power of God.

One of my favorite professors in seminary always challenged us to search our hearts and think clearly about our motives and methods for approaching leadership positions. His basic premise was this: if you feel like you’ve smooth-talked or influenced (or platform-ed) your way into a position of leadership, then it’s hard to know if you weaseled your way into power or if God has actually called you to that place. Working your way to leadership through your own strength could actually pay off in the short run, but when the going gets tough, it’s highly likely that you’ll waver.

The best positions of leadership are the ones you know you couldn’t have attained without the intervention of the Most High.

Moses was in such a place. There was no way that he could have confronted Pharaoh and triumphed because of his bravado. There was no way the Israelites would’ve have followed him on account of his clever speeches or military prowess. The only way Moses could account for progress was by the hand of God.

It was the same for Aaron! “No one takes this honor for himself, but only when called by God, just as Aaron was” (Hebrews 5.4).

Moses succeeded because he knew that it was really God who was paving the way for change and redemption. The signs of the staff and the leprous hand were proof not just to Pharaoh’s court, but also to Moses, that God was doing this work.

We can’t force God’s hand. We can only follow His lead. With that in mind, we should examine our own hearts and motivations. A good thing done for the wrong reasons or in the wrong way can have disastrous results. How are you caring for your family? Your co-workers? Your friends? Are you operating out of a place of self-contrived power? Or do you seek divinely given influence?

Man may be impressed by the outward appearance, but remember—God looks at the heart (1 Samuel 16:7).

Written By Andrew Stoddard 

Post Comments (69)

69 thoughts on "God Equips Moses"

  1. Josh Woods says:

    He calls us to places where He can showcase His strength, not to where we can show off ours.

  2. Josh Woods says:

    I will stop trying to prove my own prowess, and instead I will listen first and respond to Him.

  3. Josh Woods says:

    God calls us in spite of ourselves, and for His glory (not ours), He invites us into the redemption of the world in ways that are beyond our own strength and abilities.

  4. Josh Woods says:

    Men want to show off–to showboat–to make themselves look good.

  5. Josh Woods says:

    Lord,
    You know my heart–and the pride that drives me to rely on my own strength. But this is way beyond me. And I don’t want my life to be something I can manage. I want to live into Your life–not my own. Make me more like You; more like love.
    Amen.

  6. Mark McNeff says:

    I will respond with patience. A greater understand of my own tendencies to misuse the gifts God has given me and I will allow Him to be the guiding force of leadership in my life. Not my own desires

  7. Mark McNeff says:

    That He uses people for His purposes as He see fit. His choice will often not look like the right man for the job so that when He says he is acting by the power of the Lord it will be more evident that is true.

  8. Mark McNeff says:

    We often will work and control and manipulate our lives to where we feel like we are in the drivers seat and we have earned what we have. We are inherently thinking about what the next step is or next move and trying to plot our success path instead of allowing God to move and work through us

  9. Mark McNeff says:

    Even Jesus being perfect, waited until the Father gave him the charge of High Priest, He didn’t scheme or smooth talk or sneak his way into a leadership position. This shows the God wants to use us but in His context and timing. If we are to model Jesus and look to His work we will find that He was patient for the Father to raise Him up in the right time during the right situation. So when things in life aren’t adding up the way we want them to we ought to rest easy know the the Father may be saving us from ourselves

  10. Mark McNeff says:

    I will pray for God to satisfy my heart and to protect from the temptations of thoughts like, if I had this thing or job or situation then God could use me. And allow his power to speak through me in the times and places he has me in now

  11. Graham says:

    I will confess and repent of my sin of control and self-willed determination. I will pray and ask the Lord to equip me for His purposes this day. I will seek the Holy Spirit to check my inward motivations.

  12. Graham says:

    That God in His mercy and grace equips those He has chosen. Leadership is given, not earned or contrived.

  13. Graham says:

    The Gospel of Jesus Christ and the power of His blood and the victory of His resurrection are the only things that can free us from our doubts and our worries. The gospel equips us with truth.

  14. Graham says:

    Man is powerless without God’s divine intervention. Will always look to shift the responsibility to someone else. I’m a doubter and worrier just like Moses.

  15. Graham says:

    For right motivations with others and with myself.

  16. Richard Duncalfe says:

    Lord, give me the heart and ears to hear your voice, and know your calling in my life. Give me the eyes to see the grace in my life, that shows me that you are trustworthy. Please give me the courage to obey you in what I hear.

  17. Richard Duncalfe says:

    God asks us to obey in spite of our weaknesses, and to trust in him to bridge the skill deficit. His wrath is kindled if we protest too much or resist his calling – but still he is gracious to provide what we ask for!

  18. Richard Duncalfe says:

    When I hear God’s promoting to speak, or give, to someone I would not normally / easily speak to, I will – and rely on him for the words.

  19. Richard Duncalfe says:

    Man doesn’t like to step out of a comfort zone! We don’t like to trust in other people. But I can’t blame Moses – he didn’t know this God, why should he trust Him? He needed the supernatural signs. What signs do I have to trust God? Well the evidence is in the gift the Bible, the story of Jesus, the grace of the church community. I have just as much reason to trust and obey God as Moses did.

  20. Richard Duncalfe says:

    God appears to us when we are not looking for him.
    God promises to provide for us for the things he calls us to.

  21. Bryson McGuire says:

    Man is fearful. One of the first things I noticed in this passage was that Moses ran in fear when he saw the staff turned into a snake. Then, even after seeing the power of God in front of him, he still questions God and finds excuses to not do as he has been told. Why? Probably because he’s afraid.

    I don’t easily get spooked during a scary movie or by ghost stories, but I am afraid of doing things I’m uncomfortable with. I can imagine Moses was probably pretty uncomfortable with the situation God was calling him to. I mean, he was about to have a face off with the most powerful man in the world, Pharaoh of Egypt, for the freedom of his people.

    What Moses was asked to do was no small undertaking; it was a huge responsibility. As a Christian, I have also been given a great responsibility: to take the gospel with me and share it. Sharing the gospel can be nerve-wrecking at times. Never knowing what someone will say or how they will respond, but God has called me to be a messenger and help deliver the news that people do not have to live in bondage to this world but that they can have freedom, by grace through faith, in Christ alone.

  22. Bryson McGuire says:

    This passage personally reminded me of God’s power with the staff and Moses’ hand, but it also reminded me of his control as creator. When Moses uses his speech as an excuse to not be sent, God responds by saying, “Who made man’s mouth? Who makes him deaf, or mute, or seeing or blind? Is it not I, the LORD?”

    Everything is the way it is because the Lord has created it that way. He has the ultimate control and authority over his creation; how it works, flows, creates and flourishes. Creation is not greater than its creator.

    God uses mankind, as his creation, and calls us to places of leadership and uses our gifts, talents, abilities and weaknesses to accomplish his goals. The Lord is not ignorant to my shortcomings and yet he still desires to use me. God is great and gracious, kind and long-suffering to sinners who do not deserve it.

  23. Bryson McGuire says:

    I respond by remembering that I am not just a Christian, but that God has called me and can use me to accomplish his goals, but I have to be willing to obey what he’s commanded me in scripture.

  24. Bryson McGuire says:

    Pray for opportunities to share the gospel; with family, with friends, with people I meet. Pray that God would use me and that any leadership position I acquire, or whatever I do with my life, is because the Lord has placed me there. I pray I would be where he wants me and that I would fully obey his commandment to go and make disciples.

  25. Bryson McGuire says:

    The gospel is my responsibility to share with others. I would love to think we live in a culture where people just notice a “difference” in you, and hopefully that’s true, but Christian T-shirts and gospel bracelets may not be enough anymore. I have to open my mouth and share the gospel.

    Just as Moses had to speak the message that God had given to him, I need to speak the message of the gospel to others.

  26. Calvin says:

    Jesus is the ultimate focus of our glory, not our own.

  27. Calvin says:

    Not be so self focused and self minded.

  28. Calvin says:

    We look at what we want. We think having a better title, more money, or more things will make us happy.

  29. Calvin says:

    God is ultimately the one in charge and in control.

  30. Calvin says:

    With trust and boldness that God is the one paving my life- not me.

  31. Ryan Miller says:

    God provides strength to accomplish things we could never accomplish in our weakened state.

  32. Ryan Miller says:

    Naturally man can either be overly aware of his failures (insecure) or overly aware of his strengths (cocky). Neither of these two heart attitudes are the best for being used by God in leadership. God wants us to trust Him in His power as we lead in ways that we know He has called us to!

  33. Ryan Miller says:

    God used Moses who was a murderer to be the main leader of His people. God doesn’t have a morality code in order for Him to use is. He has a faith code. Either we believe Him or we don’t!

  34. Shelby Beckworth says:

    We need self reliance beaten out of us. Often times I have had wrong motives behind why I was “serving the Lord”. And Yahweh quickly put me in my place.

    I needed to recognize that I CAN’T DO ANYTHING without Yahweh.

  35. Shelby Beckworth says:

    I will deliberately acknowledge the power of God in my life on a daily basis. When I wake up, the first thing I’m going say is “thank you” and the second is “Father, I can’t do today without you, so if you don’t go before me I’m just gonna stay in bed”.

  36. Shelby Beckworth says:

    The Lord wants us to know him and trust him.

  37. Shelby Beckworth says:

    God is in control! I follow his lead, which takes a lot of pressure off me to be honest! He is good.

  38. Shelby Beckworth says:

    In partnership with God. He is in control, and he is good. Sometimes I don’t even recognize my wrong motivations, so I will come to fellowship and agree with Yahweh with what he is doing.

  39. Scott Schulman says:

    God wants all the glory for my efforts.

  40. Scott Schulman says:

    Choose to be humble.

  41. Scott Schulman says:

    The Gospel saves me from my own ambition and to humility in Christ. He’s the only one who can do anything through me.

  42. Scott Schulman says:

    I can do no good thing apart from God.

  43. Scott Schulman says:

    Lord, give me humility in my soul. Help me not to be proud about what I do, but about who you are.

  44. Enjuju says:

    Am I really pursuing glory in the name of God, or am I truly glorifying God?

    Maybe whee I am now in SCDA is not because of how my abilities are not because of Gods grace and purpose?

    Am I joining RCS for the wrong reasons? Or am I truly wanting to seek the mission field?

  45. Enjuju says:

    Search myself to know my motives.

  46. Enjuju says:

    God’s glory belongs to him. And not for me.

  47. Enjuju says:

    God is powerful God, able to do amazing things beyond the imagination.

  48. Enjuju says:

    The i truly understand my motives.

  49. Braden Condray says:

    God is abundantly gracious, merciful, and patient with us. Even someone who we lift up as a paragon of the faith, Moses, was stubborn, sinful, selfish, and distrusting of God, but God, in His infinite wisdom and grace, chooses to use broken and sinful people and is committed to His plan to redeem and restore us!

  50. Braden Condray says:

    We are so hesitant, even unwilling, to place our faith in the only One who is truly faithful, our trust in the only One who is perfectly worthy of it. We, like Moses, are far more prone to excuse ourselves for one reason or another than to trust what God says, because we are so prone to rely on ourselves and our own ability rather than His. But if we would just believe God and step out in faith, we would find that He is ready and willing to abundantly provide for what He has called us to do.

  51. Braden Condray says:

    I will stop seeing things from the perspective of my own power and my own ability. If we’re honey with ourselves, even what power and ability we think we have is an illusion. I will trust that what God says is true, and will rely on His power and depend on Him completely.

  52. Braden Condray says:

    Believing the Gospel means coming to the end of ourselves and understanding that we can never do it on our own. It brings us to the end of self-reliance and makes us totally dependent on God, as we were designed to be in the first place. We recognize that we come up short every time, and so it brings us to a place of total reliance on what God has done for us through Jesus Christ.

  53. Braden Condray says:

    Father, I thank you that you are sufficient for us. I thank you that, even when we don’t see it, you are pursuing us and bringing us to a place of desperation for and dependence on you. I pray that you would increase our faith, that you would show us again our own inability and bring us to a place of relying completely on yours. All power and glory and honor belong to you and you alone. Help us to trust you enough to answer your call even when we can’t see the means by which you will accomplish what you are calling us to. In Jesus name I pray, amen.

  54. Dalton says:

    this teaches me that God is the leader whether or not i put Him there. i just need to be better at respecting His authority because the trueness of God is that He is power and will make His desires without help. my desire is to serve Him and if i actually follow His will, He can use me!

  55. Dalton says:

    this teaches me that our whole story, the story of history is a part of the Gospel and it is simple that we NEED God and what only He can do for us.

  56. Dalton says:

    this ‘teaches’ me about the selfishness and pridefulness that we carry with us. and our fear of what may happen if we are in control of all we do

  57. Dalton says:

    i will step forward in knowing i cannot do it in my own power and if it feels like i am, i need to step down and let God lead

  58. Dalton says:

    i will pray to be humble, and that God would show me the way to go and what to say

  59. Aaron says:

    Man seems to rely more on proof than on faith.

  60. Aaron says:

    I will be open to receive wisdom and let the Lord work through me.

  61. Aaron says:

    That God will give us the tools needed to do his will.

  62. Aaron says:

    That God knows the issues you will face while doing his work. He will be with you and guide you through the task he gives you.

  63. Aaron says:

    I will pray that I have the strength to do Gods work and let him work through me that others can see Christ in my life.

  64. Josh Campbell says:

    It’s God who saves. God did not say to Moses, “Go save the Israelites” He said, “Tell them I sent you.” The Gospel ALWAYS points to God. Any “Good News” that doesn’t is not the gospel.

  65. Josh Campbell says:

    God is more interested in obedience than in our own qualifications as humans. He is also fully capable of using what’s in our hands already… or putting something in our hands that we need to use. In Moses case, God said, “what’s in your hand?” God knows what we need to accomplish the tasks that He sets before us, and He can use whatever He needs to so that His goals might be accomplished. Because the point of what God was teaching Moses was not that God was giving him an all powerful staff, but rather that the all powerful God was backing Moses. God gives us what we need to accomplish the things that he calls to, because we have all the things that we need in Christ already. It is God who appoints the “Priests“ for the people. God is the one who appoints and He is the one who empowers.

  66. Josh Campbell says:

    Man is not easily trusting. Man is fearful. Man is self-seeking. When Moses said, “Lord, please choose someone else,” he was only considering himself. He did not trust that God chose him FOR his weakness, so that God’s power alone might shine through him. We as humans need to have the same mind as Christ Jesus, who didn’t hold tight to His position and place but humbled Himself in OBEDIENCE to God. It is God who appoints, it is God who qualifies; we are simply to obey.

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