Summary: Commission and responses of Moses, Isaiah, Jesus, and the modern Christian.
Whom shall I send?
Have you ever received one of those phone calls congratulating you on some fabulous vacation that you have won? They usually go something like this: “Congratulations, you have won a cruise, or a Disney vacation, or a 3-day getaway to beautiful Gatlinburg, Tennessee”, or maybe it is a free stay at some beach resort, but whatever it is, we understand that there is a catch somewhere. Maybe we will have to sit through a sales pitch, or maybe we will have to pay a small reservations fee to lock in our vacation, but we know that there is always a catch. Because we know that the trip will not be all it is cracked up to be, we usually don’t go.
God has sent people to one place or another, and sometimes their journeys weren’t easy, but God always went with them on their journeys.
1 Moses answered, "What if they do not believe me or listen to me and say, `The LORD did not appear to you’?"
2 Then the LORD said to him, "What is that in your hand?" "A staff," he replied.
3 The LORD said, "Throw it on the ground.
"Moses threw it on the ground and it became a snake,
and he ran from it.
4 Then the LORD said to him, "Reach out your hand and take it by the tail." So Moses reached out and took hold of the snake and it turned back into a staff in his hand.
5 "This," said the LORD, "is so that they may believe that the LORD, the God of their fathers--the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob--has appeared to you."
6 Then the LORD said, "Put your hand inside your cloak." So Moses put his hand into his cloak, and when he took it out, it was leprous, like snow.
7 "Now put it back into your cloak," he said. So Moses put his hand back into his cloak, and when he took it out, it was restored, like the rest of his flesh.
8 Then the LORD said, "If they do not believe you or pay attention to the first miraculous sign, they may believe the second.
9 But if they do not believe these two signs or listen to you, take some water from the Nile and pour it on the dry ground. The water you take from the river will become blood on the ground."
10 Moses said to the LORD, "O Lord, I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue."
11 The LORD said to him, "Who gave man his mouth? Who makes him deaf or mute? Who gives him sight or makes him blind? Is it not I, the LORD?
12 Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say."
13 But Moses said, "O Lord, please send someone else to do it."
14 a) Then the LORD’s anger burned against Moses…
Moses had every reason to go where God sent him, and every excuse why he didn’t want to go. In Exodus chapter 13, we read about Moses out tending his father-in-law’s sheep when he saw the burning bush. When God called to him and said, “Moses! Moses!” he replied, “Here I am”.
God then explains that He has seen the misery of the Israelites in Egypt and plans to free them. He tells Moses that He is sending him to Pharaoh to lead the people out. Moses then replies, “Who am I…”
God then reassures Moses by telling him, “I will be with you.” He even explains to Moses that the elders will listen to him, that God will use his mighty hand against the Egyptians, and that the Israelites will plunder the Egyptians on their way out.
In chapter 14, we pick up where God tells Moses that He would work miraculous signs to show that Moses was indeed from God. Even after all of this, from the burning bush to the miraculous signs and God’s reassurance, Moses says, “O Lord, please send someone else to do it."
Now look at God’s reaction.
Then the LORD’s anger burned against Moses.
Even though Moses did go on to serve God, what we see here is a bad example. Moses was face-to face with God and said, “Not me, Lord. Send someone else.” And when he did, God’s anger burned against him.
Turn with me to Isaiah chapter 6. We are going to read verses 1-8 together.
1 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple.