Summary: Events in the Bible that took place on a mountain
Mountain Moving Faith
“The Call of Moses”
Moses is one of the most interesting characters in all the Word of God. I think one of the reasons we can all relate to Moses is because Moses was called to God and gifted by God, yet he was very reluctant to serve God. That is the case for most of us. Although we are going to be talking about God calling Moses, we are also talking about God calling you and God calling me to some kind of special ministry. To keep with the theme of Mountain Moving Faith we are going to see that Moses’ call to the ministry took place on Mt. Horeb (Caleb), which is also known as the Mt. of God. Read Exodus 3:1-6.
I. GOD APPEARS TO MOSES
The first thing I want us to talk about is how God appears to Moses. God literally appears to Moses using what we call a theophany. The word theophany means a visible manifestation of the invisible God. Now God was not a fire, but God was in the fire and he was using the fire. In the Old Testament, fire is one of the most popular theophanies God employs. In fact, he says, “I am like a refiner’s fire.” God is a consuming fire and Jesus said in Luke 12:49, “I have come to bring fire on the earth.” and the word Jesus uses there is the Greek word ballo, which means, “I came to throw fire on the earth” as if he was saying, “I came to cast into this dirty, rotten planet the very presence, the fiery presence of God.” So, fire is one of the theophanies God employs.
Moses is walking along and he sees this bush and it’s burning. The amazing thing about this to Moses is that it doesn’t burn up! I’m sure Moses had seen bushes burning before, maybe lightning struck an old, dry bush or something, but the amazing thing about this was that it kept on burning kept on burning kept on burning. God appeared to Moses through the burning bush. This is the only time in the Bible God ever used a burning bush to talk to somebody. Sometimes people want to say, “Well, God must not be calling me, because God has never used a burning bush with me. Well it doesn’t take a burning bush for God to get your attention. He used it with Moses but he may use something entirely different for you. So don’t demand some kind of supernatural sign like a burning bush.
If you have the book, “Experiencing God,” next time you get a chance look at the cover, because it’s obviously a picture of Moses. Just take a moment and peer into that face that’s so weathered. What you are going to see is that Moses is looking at that bush and you can tell by the way the shading on the side of his face is that he has sort of turned aside and is trying to decide, “Do I need to go over there and investigate that or do I need to keep on going on my merry way?” A lot of times we have to face that same decision. “Am I going to go over and am I going to do what God is calling me to do or am I going to go on my way and do what I want to do the rest of my life?” If Moses had turned away from the burning bush and said, “Forget it! I’m not going to investigate it.” he would have died in obscurity. Because he was willing to go and at least listen to what God was saying, he’s one of the great heroes of the faith.
There may be some of you who are at that very crossroad in your Christian life–you’re just on the verge. “I know God is doing something He’s wanting to talk to me but I’ve got all these other things pulling at me my job my friends my future my promotion in life. Which one am I going to choose?” Just remember God is eternal and everything else in life is sadly temporary. So Moses goes over and God speaks to him out of the bush and says, “Moses, take off your sandals. This is holy ground.” I want you to know that there was nothing holy about the area around the mountain of Horeb. Wherever God is, that is holy ground. Today God is here. This is holy ground. Taking off the sandals was a picture of approaching God in a spirit of humility. The lesson we learn here is you never strut into the presence of the holy, almighty God. You always approach God with humility and with brokenness. That was something Moses wasn’t too used to in his life and we’ll see that a little bit later but he approaches him and God says, “Moses, I have a job for you!”