Summary: Moses faces the past and the king. (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email:

Reading: Exodus chapter 4 verse 18 to chapter 5 verse 23.


• Why is it that to stop computers, you have to click on "Start"?

• Why is the third hand on the watch called a second hand?

• Why isn't there mouse-flavoured cat food?

• Why does the sun lighten our hair, but darken our skin?

• Why doesn't glue stick to the inside of the bottle?

• Why don't you ever see the headline "Psychic Wins Lottery"?

• Why is "abbreviated" such a long word?

• Why is a boxing ring square?

• Why is it considered necessary to nail down the lid of a coffin?

• Why is it that doctors call what they do "practice"?

• Why is it that rain drops but snow falls?

• You know that little indestructible black box that is used on planes?

• Why can't they make the whole plane out of the same substance?

In life we soon learn that often there are more questions than answers:

• The more I study the Bible; the less I realise I actually know!

• And passages like the one this evening may well throw up more questions than answers.


• For forty years he has been hiding in the desert;

• Last time he tried to do something for God he failed miserably – he killed someone!

• Afraid for his own safety he ran away and hid in the desert.

• For forty years he has heard nothing from God.

• Then one ordinary day, God met with him – via a burning bush.

• Moses then came up with a list of excuses why he could not serve God anymore.

• But God answered each of his excuses;

• And God basically told Moses to trust him and go;

• And God would use HIM to set his people free!

• And that’s where we are picking up the story.

(1). Commissioned (verse 19-23):

Verse 19:

“Now the LORD had said to Moses in Midian, "Go back to Egypt, for all the men who wanted to kill you are dead."”

God knows our hearts, he knows our thoughts and he knows our fears.

• Remember when Moses had left Egypt forty years earlier;

• He left with a price on his head. He was a murderer on the run!

• He was probably listed;

• At the top of the Egyptians version of the top 10 most wanted list!

• And Moses had not forgotten that fact;

• And I think it must have been weighing heavy on his mind.

To go back on his own would have been dangerous enough:

• But Moses is now a family man headin’ west with his wife and kids;

• It was a dangerous situation to put himself, his wife and kids in!

• So God in his wisdom & grace relieves Moses of any fear from his past mistakes.

• Before he steps outside the borders of Midian,

• God informs Moses that way ahead is clear!

• The past will not endanger him; “All the men who wanted to kill you are dead."”

Verse 20:

20”So Moses took his wife and sons, put them on a donkey and started back to Egypt. And he took the staff of God in his hand”.


• An elderly man stopped at a hearing aid centre and asked about prices.

• “We have them from £25,000 down to £1.50,” the salesman said.

• “What’s the £25,000 one like?”

• “Well it translates three languages.”

• “And what about the one for £1.50?”

• “It’s this button attached to a string,” said the salesman, pushing it across the counter.

• “How does it work?”

• “It doesn’t”. Said the salesman,

• But if you put the button in your ear and the string in your pocket,

• You’ll be surprised how loud people will talk.”

God did not have to talk any louder or clearer to Moses than he had done:

• In obedience to God’s word:

• Moses stepped out in faith.

• Midian was not much, but it still took some leaving:

• He had family there, he had a steady job, familiar surroundings, it was SAFE!

• Now ‘Faith’ in the Bible is always spelt ‘R.I.S.K.’

• God calls us to leave the familiar and safe and go into the unknown!

• And Moses and his family were about to go into the unknown.

• In obedience to God’s command Moses loaded up the donkey & headed out towards Egypt.


• Make this challenge:

• Is God calling someone here to service but you are holding back?

• Maybe it is a family ties, your employment, your familiar surroundings, or because it’s SAFE!

• Faith in the Bible is always spelt ‘R.I.S.K.’

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