Summary: Moses tried to excuse himself from God's mission at the burning bush. Can you relate to the excuses he offered?
The Use of the Excuse – Exodus 3:1-4:17
This story about Moses and his conversation with God at the burning bush (that wasn’t really burning) offers some insights into how we relate to God like Moses, when we offer excuses for why we can’t serve Him as His Word tells us to. Look at these excuses that Moses gave God for why he wasn’t the one to speak to Pharaoh on behalf of God’s people, and see if you relate to any of them.
Moses Excuse #1: I’m not important enough (Exodus 3:11)
God’s Response: I’m with You
It was essential for Moses to understand that God felt he was the man for the task. How important do you think you are to God? If He promises that He’s with you, doesn’t that help you to understand how important you are?
Matthew 1:23 – Emmanuel (hello! It's the very definition of His name!)
Luke 1:37 – Nothing is impossible with God
Matt 28:19-20 - Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
John 14:26 -But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you.
Acts 18:9-11 –One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision and told him, “Don’t be afraid! Speak out! Don’t be silent! 10 For I am with you, and no one will attack and harm you, for many people in this city belong to me.” 11 So Paul stayed there for the next year and a half, teaching the word of God.
Moses Excuse #2: I don’t know enough (Exodus 3:13)
God’s response: I’ll provide you with the knowledge
Our knowledge comes from God’s Word, the Bible. God provides what we need to know. Do you accept the truth that God is the I AM?
Matthew 13:12 - To those who listen to my teaching, more understanding will be given, and they will have an abundance of knowledge. But for those who are not listening, even what little understanding they have will be taken away from them.
2 Corinthians 11:6 - I may be unskilled as a speaker, but I’m not lacking in knowledge. We have made this clear to you in every possible way.
Philippians 1:9 - I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding.
2 Peter 1:3-11- By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence. 4 And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires. In view of all this, make every effort to respond to God’s promises. Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, 6 and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone. The more you grow like this, the more productive and useful you will be in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 But those who fail to develop in this way are shortsighted or blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their old sins. So, dear brothers and sisters, work hard to prove that you really are among those God has called and chosen. Do these things, and you will never fall away. 11 Then God will give you a grand entrance into the eternal Kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Moses Excuse #3: people won’t accept or listen to me (Exodus 4:1)
God’s response: I’ll be what you need
God provides us with the resources we need including the strength, and the confidence, to do what He tells us. Have you ever used this excuse? Are you able to speak boldly of your faith in God and His Son Jesus Christ? Why or why not?
2 Corinthians 9:8-10 - And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others. 9 As the Scriptures say, They share freely and give generously to the poor. Their good deeds will be remembered forever.” For God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will provide and increase your resources and then produce a great harvest of generosity in you.