Summary: When Moses saw the burning bush he was immediately attracted to it; not because the bush was burning but because it was burning and could not be consumed. A fire that never burns out and a bush that is never consumed…led Moses to realize that this fire

“Here’s your Sign!”

Exodus 4:1-17

When Moses saw the burning bush he was immediately attracted to it; not because the bush was burning but because it was burning and could not be consumed. A fire that never burns out and a bush that is never consumed…led Moses to realize that this fire was special…it was from God. It was the fire of God and God was about to speak to him. When he spoke he was on holy ground. He said, remove your sandals…. I don’t want anything standing between you and me.

God then said to Moses these 3 things (1) I have seen the misery of my people. I have heard them crying out because of the slave drivers and I am concerned (2) so I have come down to rescue them and bring them out of slavery and take them into a new land, the promised land (3) I am sending you to free the people.

So Moses now has a calling on his life. A calling to become a leader. And God has made the calling very clear. To recap he said I have seen their misery, I have come down to free them and I am sending you on my behalf. Moses understood exactly what God wanted him to do . When God places a calling on our lives; when he makes His will known to us and it is absolutely crystal clear, what do we usually do? Simple. We ask questions. Lord I know you said this but what about this? Or Lord I know you want me to do this but what if something happens.

It is the age old problem every one of us have as believers of wanting to walk by sight instead of walking by faith. So we ask question after question until many times we talk ourselves completely out of making a commitment. Like the little boy whose mother ask him, why is it you always answer a question with a question. He said do I do that? We all do when it comes to spiritual matters.

This happens for a variety of reasons. (1) Our faith is God is lacking. Perhaps we are new in the faith or perhaps we have been a follower of Christ for a long time but our faith has not grown to the point where we can lead. (2) Our faith in ourselves is lacking. Simply put, we lack confidence. Sometimes we suffer from low self esteem and as a result we have a very hard time believing we are actually capable of leadership. For others it may have to do with their personality. You’re quiet, you prefer to be alone. Maybe you are an introvert instead of an extrovert. Or it may be due to your family history. Members of your family put you down for so long that you have trouble believing you can do anything; certainly you can’t lead. So you take a seat in life and you stay on the bench. Or (3) Our faith in our talents and our gifts is lacking. Let’s face it. None of us are gifted for everything. That’s why it takes all of us to do God’s work. So don’t try to do everything, just do something. Some of us have gifts in certain areas that we have never used. They’re like birthday or Christmas gifts and we have never bothered to unwrap them and use them.

Now this is the big truth I want you to take with you today. When God speaks it is our job to listen. We do not need to interrogate God. We do not need to question his motives. We just need to trust and obey. Why? Because there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus but to trust and obey. That could be a song!

So his job here is to trust and obey. Our job is the same. So what does he do? Same thing. He asks questions. Lord, what if they don’t believe me? What if they won’t listen to me and what if they say the Lord did not appear to me? In summary what he was asking was this…..what if people doubt my ability to lead? Perhaps a better question to ask is not if, but when. When people doubt my ability what do I do?

God has this amazing ability to see right through us. He knows our every thought even before we express it so one thing we should know is this…you can’t fool God. And God knew at this point that Moses was experiencing doubts about his ability to lead. So God says OK Moses how can you know if you can lead?

Here’s your sign. He gives him 3.

Look at the first one. Vv. 2-5. This is the sign of the shepherd’s/leader’s staff. Over and over in the Bible and in the church today the shepherd’s staff is seen as a sign of leadership. Moses, David and many others who became leaders started as shepherds. Shepherds have a following. Sheep. All of us are like sheep. You may not like that designation because sheep aren’t always the brightest of animals but consider this….in another passage God refers to man not as sheep but as mules. Because we’re stubborn. So the term “sheep” begins to sound better. So shepherds have a following. They use a staff and the staff was used in at least two ways (1) to gently prod the sheep along when they needed it; sometimes leaders have to do that and (2) to rescue sheep when they get into trouble. To bring them home.

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