One day, after Moses had grown up, he went out to where his own people were and watched them at their hard labor. He saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his own people. 12 Looking this way and that and seeing no one, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. 13 The next day he went out and saw two Hebrews fighting. He asked the one in the wrong, “Why are you hitting your fellow Hebrew?”14 The man said, “Who made you ruler and judge over us? Are you thinking of killing me as you killed the Egyptian?” Then Moses was afraid and thought, “What I did must have become known.”
15 When Pharaoh heard of this, he tried to kill Moses, but Moses fled from Pharaoh and went to live in Midian, where he sat down by a well.
Moses makes the right decision to turn his back on the world and all it offers to join God at work. But he got just a little ahead of God…
Leadership takes preparation! We have to stay in the Potter’s hand. Sometimes we hear and we move…before we have instructions from God. We use the world’s methods in Kingdom work and it simply will not work and most times brings grievous results instead of the display of God’s glory.
Moses saw the harsh, cruel treatment and beating of a Hebrew slave by an Egyptian. He killed the Egyptian and buried him in the sand. Now, you have to wonder what did Moses think? Was it God’s plan to have him go and kill all of the Egyptians one by one?
No, he did not think or pray…he just reacted. I personally believe that Moses’ heart spilled over on this one Egyptian. This murder was the result of the pain, resentment, and silent suffering Moses had endured for years as he learned and watched the killing and cruelty of His people. He has made his choice to go with God because he cannot suffer to see his people in this misery any longer. He is ready to be used by God to make an impact and bring deliverance. The problem was that Moses had not learned that Gods ways are higher than man’s ways (Isaiah 55:9).
Moses realized that he was called by God but he failed to wait for God’s plan to be revealed. Moses acts on his own and first lesson in is ‘apart from God you can nothing (John 15:5). “I am the vine, you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” I learned years ago to receive this as: apart from God, I can do no thing of eternal value.
Deceit, remember how Moses looked around before killing the Egyptian; murder…hidden body in the sand…not exactly the fruit of the Spirit. Moses’ actions were not the fruit of the God who called him but the works of the flesh from a man called by God. There is a difference. They are not one and the same.
Moses first step in service to God and the deliverance of the Hebrews was a huge failure and caused his rejection as a leader. We all know about failure as we have all experienced our own. Most of them for the same reason, believing we are well equipped for the assignment without the Lord…and we fail miserably.
God allows our failures so we will come to know, understand and practice that it is “not by might, nor by power, but by the “Spirit of the Lord” that Kingdom work is done (Zechariah 4:6). Remember, nothing apart from the Spirit of the Lord. No spiritual thing, apart from the Spirit.
Another lesson for us in this passage is the need for us to be on guard. Moses made the right decision to walk with God and then very quickly made the wrong one, to operate outside of the ways of God! The Bible warns us to be alert and of sober mind for our enemy prowls around LIKE a roaring lion looking for some to devour (1 Peter 5:8). He is looking the opportunity of our wrong choices so he can take advantage.
I know, I know, I know…not me, but careful…be on guard…walk in the Spirit…pray…put your war clothes on. Moses proves that man out of the will of God is capable of doing things according to the world’s way and standards. Others proved it as well. How about David’s adultery, Peter’s denial, Abraham’s lying, and Jonah’s rebellion. It is good to pray, Lord, “keep your servant from willful sins; may they not rule over me (Psalm 19:13). Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting (Psalm 139:23-24).”
The good news is that our God does know our hearts and “that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).” Moses will come to know and experience this truth.
Pharaoh sees Moses as a threat and tries to kill him. The spirit of fear causes Moses to flee from Egypt BUT GOD has called Moses as His own and there is work to do. God allows it because Moses’ season of preparation as a leader for the deliverance of the people God has chosen and called has now started.
This gives us our final thought for today…God is the God of second chances. Moses’ choice had consequences but God has not cast him aside. It will be 40 years but God will fulfill His promise to the Hebrews and his call on Moses’ life. In the meantime, Moses will learn to wait on the Lord. God will remember Moses’ faith and not his failures when He includes his name and service in the book of Hebrews, chapter 11.