Why did God choose Moses to deliver the Israelites?

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By BibleAsk Team


Moses, one of the most significant figures in the Bible, played a pivotal role in the deliverance of the Israelites from bondage in Egypt and the establishment of the Mosaic covenant. His life and calling are an important part of Israelite history and the unfolding plan of God’s redemption for His people. To understand why God chose this man for this monumental task, we must delve into the biblical narrative, examine Moses’ character and circumstances, and consider the theological significance of his mission.

Moses’ Early Life: Divine Providence and Calling

Exodus 2:1-10: Birth and Rescue

Moses’ journey begins with his miraculous birth and preservation in the face of Pharaoh’s decree to kill all Hebrew male infants. In Exodus 2:1-10, we read how Moses’ mother, Jochebed, hid him in a basket among the reeds of the Nile River, where he was discovered by Pharaoh’s daughter and raised as her own son. This providential rescue sets the stage for his future role as a deliverer of his people.

Exodus 2:11-15: Murder and Exile

Despite his privileged upbringing in Pharaoh’s court, his identity as a Hebrew was not forgotten. In Exodus 2:11-15, we read how he, witnessing an Egyptian taskmaster mistreating a Hebrew slave, intervened and ultimately killed the Egyptian. Fearing retribution, Moses fled to the land of Midian, where he lived as a shepherd and married Zipporah, the daughter of Jethro.

The Burning Bush: Divine Encounter and Commission

Exodus 3:1-14: The Call of God’s Servant

Moses’ encounter with God at the burning bush marks a pivotal moment in his life and the history of Israel. In Exodus 3:1-14, we read how God appeared to this man in the form of a burning bush and called him to deliver the Israelites from slavery in Egypt. Despite the man’s initial reluctance and feelings of inadequacy, God assured him of His presence, power, and provision.

Exodus 4:10-17: God’s Provision and Assistance

In response to Moses’ protests and doubts, God provided signs and assurances of His support. He gave him miraculous signs to perform before Pharaoh and promised to be with him every step of the way. Additionally, God appointed Aaron, his brother, to serve as his spokesman and companion, easing Moses’ concerns about his ability to communicate effectively.

Moses’ Qualities and Attributes: A Chosen Instrument of God

Exodus 3:11-12: Humility and Dependence

One of Moses’ defining qualities was his humility and recognition of his own limitations. When God called him to lead the Israelites out of Egypt, he responded, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?” (Exodus 3:11). Despite his doubts and insecurities, Moses relied on God’s strength and guidance to fulfill his mission.

The Bible tells us that “Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth” (Numbers 12:3). The quality of character here described as meekness is essential to leadership in the cause of God. The Lord can’t use people that lack that trait.

But Moses was not born naturally meek as shown in (Exodus 2:11–14). That trait, he acquired as the result of 40 years spent in the hard school of the wilderness of Midian. God trained him to be a good leader there. Only a meek man knows how to be submissive to God and to his subordinates and at the same time be a courageous and strong leader. There is no place in the ministry of the Lord for a leader who makes it his job to boss his fellow workers and control them.

Moses resembled Jesus in character. Christ spoke of Himself as “meek and lowly in heart” (Matthew 11:29), and because He is, all “that labour and are heavy laden” may come to Him and find rest for their souls (verse 28). Jesus taught, “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth” (Matthew 5:5).

Meekness is the attitude of heart and mind that prepares the way for holiness. Therefore, a “meek” spirit “is in the sight of God of great price” (1 Peter 3:4). “Meekness” is often mentioned by New Testament writers as a Christian virtue (Galatians 5:23; 1 Timothy 6:11). The word meek appears also in the Messianic passage of Isaiah 61:1–3 and in Psalms 37:11.

“Meekness” toward God means that we submit to His dealing with us and accept His will as good, without complaining. Also a  “meek” person has full self control. Through self-exaltation our first parents lost paradise and through meekness it may be regained by God’s grace. The Bible teaches, “He has shown you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:8).

Exodus 4:10-12: Faith and Obedience

Moses’ faithfulness to God’s call is evident in his willingness to obey and follow God’s instructions, even when they seemed daunting or impossible. When God commanded him to confront Pharaoh and demand the release of the Israelites, Moses obeyed without hesitation, trusting in God’s power to deliver His people.

Theological Significance of Moses’ Calling

Exodus 3:14: “I AM WHO I AM”

In Exodus 3:14, God reveals His divine name to Moses as “I AM WHO I AM,” signifying His eternal self-existence and sovereignty. This revelation underscores the transcendent nature of God and His authority to fulfill His promises and purposes through human agents like Moses.

Exodus 6:6-8: The Promise of Deliverance

Throughout the Exodus narrative, God reaffirms His covenant with the Israelites and promises to deliver them from bondage in Egypt. In Exodus 6:6-8, God declares His intention to rescue His people, bring them out of Egypt with mighty acts of judgment, and establish them as His chosen people in the land of Canaan.

Deuteronomy 34:10-12: Moses’ Legacy

In Deuteronomy 34:10-12, Moses is eulogized as a prophet without equal, who spoke with God face to face and performed miraculous signs and wonders in the sight of the people. Moses’ legacy as a faithful servant of God and a leader of His people endures as a testament to God’s faithfulness and the power of His redemption.

Conclusion

In conclusion, God chose Moses to deliver the Israelites from bondage in Egypt and lead them to the Promised Land as a demonstration of His sovereign power and faithfulness to His covenant promises. Despite Moses’ initial doubts and insecurities, God equipped and empowered him to fulfill his calling as a leader, prophet, and deliverer of his people.

Moses’ life and ministry serve as a reminder of God’s ability to work through imperfect and fallible human beings to accomplish His purposes. Through Moses’ obedience, faith, and dependence on God, we see the transformative power of God’s grace and the fulfillment of His redemptive plan for His people.

As we reflect on the story of Moses, we are challenged to trust in God’s faithfulness, to heed His call with humility and obedience, and to rely on His strength and guidance to fulfill the tasks He sets before us. Like Moses, may we be willing vessels of God’s grace and instruments of His kingdom in the world.

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In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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