Summary: Does God care about family relationships?

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How important are family relationships with God? Not only does God answers this question in our passage today, God also provides biblical principles in dealing with our own family members.

Open your Bibles to Exodus 4….. Let us be reminded what happened in the beginning of Exodus 4:

Exodus 4:1-17 – Moses came up with more excuses not to go back to Egypt but God again provided for Moses.

Read along with me now Exodus 4:18-31………….

And so after the scolding from God, Moses was ready to go back to Egypt to lead the Israelites. But what was the first thing that Moses did before going to Egypt??

v18: Moses asked for permission from his father-in-law (also the head of the Midian Tribe)!

Let us remember that God wrote this for us to learn from. Moses could have just left Midian without telling anybody; after all, Moses was responding to a job given to him by God! We note respect here from Moses to his elder!

What can we note in v19-20?

a. God was concerned about Moses’ life and family!

b. With God’s promises and power (the staff), Moses did not leave his family.


- God sees Israel (Chosen People) as his family!

- God will deal with family members of His enemies

Now, v24-26? can be confusing; so let’s first note what is said directly:

- As Moses and his family were traveling towards Egypt, God decided to end Moses’ life!

- Moses’ wife circumcised one of the sons.

- God responded by letting Moses live!

We read in v19 that God was concerned with Moses’ life, but now in v24 God wanted to kill Moses. The text does not tell us directly why God wanted to end Moses’ life, when Moses is in God’s family! But if we look in context, we can try and figure it out. We note that Moses had a family with sons and Zipporah had to do the circumcision.

In Genesis 17, God made a covenant with the Chosen People through circumcision! And so likely, Moses was disobeying God by not circumcising his son, therefore God’s covenant would had been broken in Moses’ family (Genesis 17). Let us note that Moses’ wife saved his life and God’s covenant with the family! If Zipporah didn’t do what she did, God would have chosen someone else to lead Israel rather than Moses!

v27-28: after about 80 years, the 2 brothers reconciled to work together! But again, let us note the reconciliation involved God and faith in God.

v29-31: What made the Israelites bow down and worship God??

- They believed God’s messengers!

- They believed God Himself!

- They understood God’s love for them!

What are the biblical principles for us to apply?

First of all, what should we consider based on Moses’ action in v18??

We don’t hear God telling Moses to get permission; it seems that Moses took this action on his own and God honored it! What is Commandment #5 of the 10 Commandments?? - Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you!

1. We must always be considerate of our Elders and those who have authority over us.

Secondly, we noted last week that God loves us with an everlasting love but God gives each one of us duties to do. Moses was taking action in doing God’s work to go back to Egypt but Moses did not forget his responsibility as a husband and an a father. God loves families! And so…

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