Through the Bible with Les Feldick
LESSON 2 * PART 2 * BOOK 7
BIRTH AND REJECTION OF MOSES
Genesis 46 – Exodus 4
Let’s begin this program in Exodus Chapter 2. Israel is now exploding in population. God is now ready to step into the picture to deliver His Covenant People. But it’s going to take a deliverer. In Chapter 2 we have the birth of the deliverer:
“And there went a man of the house of Levi, and took to wife a daughter of Levi.”
“And the woman conceived, and bare a son: and when she saw him that he was a goodly child,… she hid him three months.”
Underline goodly because that simply means in the Hebrew, they by faith, saw that he was not just a pretty baby physically, but here was someone that God was going to use. He was special, so they took extra pains to keep him alive. Now, verse 3:
“And when she could no longer hide him, she took for him an ark of bulrushes (remember that an ark is an ark and I taught you way back in Genesis that the Hebrew word “ark” is also translated in the last verse of Genesis as a coffin. So it was just simply a box. When we get to the Ark of the Covenant, behind the veil, what was it? A rectangular box that was very special. Just like Noah’s instruction with the ark at flood time, God gives the same instruction here.), and daubed it with slime and with pitch (Now, remember back in Genesis 6 when the ark was made? Remember what the Hebrew word for pitch was? Atonement. And atonement is in the blood. So, here again we have that same picture, that this little box she built for Moses, is a place of safety, but more than that God is in all of this. So she seals it with pitch. Note carefully everything here is pointing to the work of the Cross. Everything in the Old Testament is looking forward to the time when Christ would become the Savior of mankind, when He would bring in the true atonement) and put the child therein; and she laid it in the flags by the river’s brink.”
“And his sister (probably Miriam) stood afar off, to wit what would be done to him.”
Do you think it was just an accident that Pharaoh’s daughter came along at this time? No, it’s not an accident. Here again is the work of a Sovereign God, using even a pagan young woman to carry out His work. She comes along the river, and just at the moment she spies the ark, what happened? The baby cries. And no doubt it was a cry that just tore at her heart string. Now, verse 5:
“And the daughter of Pharaoh came down to wash herself at the river; and her maidens walked along by the riverside; and when she saw the ark among the flags, she sent her maid to fetch it.”
“And when she had opened it, she saw the child: and, behold, the babe wept (that’s not in there just to fill space. That little weeping child, at the exact right moment, tugged at the heart strings.). And she had compassion on him, and said, This is one of the Hebrews’ children.” She wasn’t fooled, she knew who it was. And then came Miriam on the scene.
“Then said his sister to Pharaoh’s daughter, Shall I go and call to thee a nurse of the Hebrew women, that she may nurse the child for thee?
Did Pharaoh’s daughter know who she was referring to? In other words, “Can I take it back to its mother?” And Pharaoh’s daughter condescends. She doesn’t say, “Well, daddy says all the Hebrew boys must be put to death.” She said you go ahead and take him back and nurse him for me.
“And Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, ‘Go.’ And the maid went and called the child’s mother.”
“And Pharaoh’s daughter said unto her (Moses mother) ‘Take this child away, and nurse it for me, and I will give thee thy wages.’ And the woman took the child, and nursed it.”
“And the child grew, and she brought him unto Pharaoh’s daughter, and he became her son. And she called his name Moses: and she said, ‘Because I drew him out of the water.'”
To prove my point, let’s go back to Hebrews again. We’ll be using this great faith chapter of Hebrew 11 quite a bit in the next few lessons.
“By faith Moses, when he was born, was hid three months of his parents, because they saw he was a proper child; and they were not afraid of the king’s commandment.”
“By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter; “
Let’s turn to Acts 7, you must use the Scripture for all of these things. Over the years I have tried to make it so plain, that all can see. Not what I think, but what the Scriptures say. If it’s my idea, I’ll tell you. So remember everything must be substantiated from Scripture. It says here in Hebrews: “… Moses, when he was come to years…” well, how old was he? We don’t know that till we come to Acts 7. This is Stephen, reviewing the Old Testament.
“The same (The King who knew not Joseph) dealt subtly with our kindred, and evil entreated our fathers, so that they cast out their young children, to the end they might not live.”
“In which time Moses was born, and was exceeding fair…”
There’s that same analogy that he was a special child. He was designated by God Himself for a special role. “and nourished up in his father’s house three months:“
“And when he was cast out (Placed in the little Ark), Pharaoh’s daughter took him up, and nourished him for her own son.”
“And Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians,…”
When Moses received his education in Egypt he received it from the idolaters; mythological priests. And he was saturated with it. That’s why I wanted us to come to Acts 7, because Hebrews said that when he comes to years, it was faith that prompted him to chose the Hebrews rather than the Egyptians. How old was he?
“And when he was full forty years old,…”
He been saturated now for thirty-five years with Egyptian teachings and away from his kinfolk. So how did he know that he would choose to be with the people of God? Well, we said by faith. But faith must come from a word. Where did he get it? Those first Five years! Remember mothers did not wean their children from the breast until they were five or six years old. I think all of you know what our Catholic friends say, especially in the Priesthood: “Give me a young lad until he is six years old, and he’s a Catholic forever.” Why? Psychiatrists now tell us that what a child learns the first six years are going to be the biggest influence for the rest of his life.
So Moses, while he was nursing on his mother’s breast those first five years, not only gained physical substances, but faith. His parents were people of faith, and they had revealed to Moses that someday the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob would take them out of Egypt, and put them in the land of Canaan again. So Moses has that locked in by the time he is five, and he never forgot. I always remind parents, when they are distraught over their wayward children, that the Book of Proverbs tells us if you will “Train up a child in the way that he should go…” It doesn’t say he will always stay with it. But it does say “When he is old (or older) he will not depart from it.”
So I tell parents never give up, because even though your children have been trained and they’re in the Word; they know the Word; and they may stray from it during those youthful years; I think God will bring them back. I’ve seen this happen over and over again. Normally, when these kids reach maturity, they suddenly realize mom and dad weren’t so dumb after all. And they’ll come back to it. Always keep the line of communication opened. So now back to Exodus, Moses now becomes the greatest man in Egypt; Moses had it all. He was in charge of everything in Egypt, and had great power and influence.
“And it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown, that he went out unto his brethren, and looked on their burdens: and he spied an Egyptian smiting an Hebrew, one of his brethren.”
“And he looked this way and that way (In other words to make sure no one would see),… and when he saw that there was no man, he slew the Egyptian, and hid him in the sand.”
Evidently Moses wasn’t a puny little individual. I think with one blow he put this Egyptian away. It was that easy for him. Then when he realized what he had done, that he had slain the Egyptian, he buried him in the sand. Now verse 13:
“And when he went out the second day, behold, two men of the Hebrews (two Jews) strove together: and he said to him that did the wrong, ‘Wherefore smitest thou thy fellow?'”
“And he said, Who made thee a prince and a judge over us?…”
Right there should ring a bell. Where do you get that very same statement? In the New Testament, when Jesus had presented himself as Israel’s King, what did Israel say the morning of his trial? “Who made you to rule over us.” And when the Roman authorities asked Israel, “Is He your King?” What was their answer? They said they had no king but Caesar.
So all of this is laying the ground work. They reject Moses and they have nothing to do with him, because, “who made you to be a ruler over us.” Let’s come back again to Acts Chapter 7. And for those of you who may not have done a lot of Bible study or reading, Acts Chapter 7 is the sermon of Stephen, who was one of the six deacons that were appointed back there in Acts Chapter 6, you remember. A man full of the Holy Spirit. I think this was about seven years after Pentecost. And for at least six or seven years, Peter and the eleven, and the other believing Jews, have been presenting Israel with their King, even though they crucified Him. God had raised Him from the dead and He could still be their King. So, here Stephen begins this appeal to the nation of Israel. Trying to convince them that the One they killed was their Messiah. And so he goes through the whole history of it.
Now let’s pick up with verse 9, and the account of Joseph. That’s why I’m glad we studied Joseph a little bit in the last few lessons. I hope that you are remembering what we spoke concerning him. Let’s look at verse 9:
“And the patriarchs, moved with envy (that is the 11 brothers or the 10 because Benjamin was at home), sold Joseph into Egypt; but God was with him,”
“And delivered him out of all his afflictions, and gave him favour and wisdom in the sight of Pharaoh king of Egypt; and he made him governor over Egypt and all his house.”
We know this has happened so often throughout human history, where a Jew who is foreign in a Gentile land, becomes one of the top men in government. Another one you all know real well was Daniel. He became the second in the Babylonian Empire. It was overrun by the Medes and Persians, but Daniel survived and becomes the second man in the Mede and Persian Empire. And so it has been all through human history. Well, the same thing happened here with Joseph. He comes in as a slave, and he ends up the second man in Egypt. Let’s go on to verses 11-13:
“Now there came a dearth over all the land of Egypt and Canaan, and great affliction: and our fathers found no sustenance (Nothing to eat).”
“But when Jacob heard that there was corn in Egypt, he sent out our fathers first.”
“And at the second time Joseph was made known to his brethren;…”
Do you remember the account? How the brethren came down from Canaan the first time with the little donkeys and carts, to get grain to take back to Canaan. And who was the guy they had to bump into? Joseph! Joseph knew who they were, but they didn’t know who he was. And it shook them up, if you remember, that he set a banquet for them, and he sat them at the table from the eldest to the youngest. On the way home, they were all concerned about how that Egyptian knew who was the oldest right on down to the youngest. You see, he knew them, but they did not know him. But, as the story rolled on, they ran out of food and Jacob had to send them back the second time.
When they get there the second time, what do they find out? They discover who Joseph is! Oh, the great elation! How they wept tears in that final reunion, when they suddenly realized that this second man in Egypt was really their savior? How? Because he had the food that they never would have had. But on top of that, he was their own brother. Now come all the way over to verse 24 and continue with Stephen’s account of Moses again.
“And seeing one of them suffer wrong, he defended him, and avenged him that was oppressed, and smote the Egyptian:”
“For he supposed his brethren would have understood how that God by his hand would deliver them: but they understood not.”
Now, stop a minute. When Moses, in his place of power and prestige (and no doubt, wealth), approached these Jews out there in the sand, what did Moses really think that they would do? He thought they would recognize him as the one that could get them out of their slavery. And he was ready to do so. Now, of course, Moses was a little ahead of God’s time-table, but he thought that surely he could deliver his people out of Egypt. And that’s exactly what Stephen is saying here. He thought, (Moses did) that these Jews that he had approached would have understood that he was to be their deliverer. But look at what the last part of that verse says – “they understood not.” Now verses 26-29:
“And the next day he showed himself unto them as they strove, and would have set them at one again (He again appealed to them), saying, ‘Sirs, your brethren; why do ye wrong one to another?'”
“But he that did his neighbor wrong thrust him away, saying, ‘Who made thee a ruler and a judge over us?'”
“‘Wilt thou kill me, as thou diddest the Egyptian yesterday?'”
“Then fled Moses at this saying, and was a stranger in the land of Madian, where he begat two sons.”
Moses left the country. Are you using your mind and thinking ahead? When is all this repeated? Why is all this set back here in the Old Testament? Isn’t that exactly what happened to Jesus? He came unto His own and presented Himself as their King. He proved His credentials with all of His miracles.
I remember many some little things that stick in my mind. Several months ago, we were talking about this very thing in one of my classes, as to why did Jesus perform all these miracles? I’ve got one or two elderly retired pastors in that class. One was sitting right on my left, and I’ll never forget his answer, and I’m always going to use it. He said, “He validated Who He was.” That was why He performed those miracles. He validated who He was. Israel should have known. Just like these Jews should have known what Moses was trying to do.But they understood not.
Now, as time went by, Jesus presented Himself and they rejected Him. They said they would not have this man to rule over them. What did they do? They killed him. And what did God do, according to Psalm 110:1? God said, ‘come and sit at my father’s right hand until I make your enemies your footstool.‘ He left the world; He left the country, so to speak. And He is now like an exiled King in glory.
Those of us who remember World War II, whenever a government went into exile, what did they wait for? The day that they could go back. That’s the way I want you to picture Christ. He came to His people the first time and they rejected Him. And He went back to glory as an exile. But when He left, what in so many words did He say? ” I’m coming back.” And that’s what He will one day do. And then, and that’s why you underlined the word “second,” when He appears the second time. Israel always has to have a first time, it seems. But now let’s turn back to the book of Zechariah and see what will happen the second time. We’ve looked at this passage before. Zechariah 12:10:
“And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications; and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his first-born.”
As we read this verse, keep reminding yourself of how they treated Joseph the second time. How did they treat Moses the second time. And now here’s Christ, and it’s telling them that He’s the one they crucified. “And they shall mourn for him,” ( as those 11 brothers wept tears of reunion, that’s the mourning that’s expressed here) they will mourn for Him as one mourneth for his only son. Now, let’s quickly look at Chapter 13, verse 6. And this is all about His second coming, when He returns to the nation of Israel in power and glory.
“And one shall say unto him, ‘What are these wounds in thine hands (The wounds of crucifixion)?’ Then he shall answer, ‘Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.'”
Now, do you see how all this ties together? Joseph appeared the first time and they didn’t know who he was. Moses goes out the first time and they didn’t know who he was. And Jesus comes the first time and the Scripture makes it so plain, that they did not know Who He was.