Through the Bible with Les Feldick
LESSON 2 * PART 3 * BOOK 7
BIRTH AND REJECTION OF MOSES
Genesis 46 – Exodus 4
Let’s turn again to Exodus Chapter 2. I always like for you to follow the references with us, because we always maintain it’s the Word of God that counts, and nothing I can say or anyone else can say, can make the difference. But to understand what God’s Word really says is what I hopefully am attempting to do.
Remember last lesson, Moses had made his presentation to Israel, and he had everything going for him but he was rejected. I’m going to take a few moments to review. So turn to Genesis 15. You must remember all of these things were in God’s mind before they ever happened. That’s the beauty of prophecy, and that’s again the substantiation that the Bible is the Word of God, because God foretold things before they ever happened. Here in Genesis 15, it’s shortly after God has given the Covenant to Abraham, that out of him would come this nation of people which he would put into a land, and give them a government, and he would be their King. So Abraham says in verse 8:
“And he said, Lord God, Whereby shall I know that I shall inherit it?”
This land You are talking about. When we were teaching this we said that God literally descended to man’s level and went through the very rites of transferring real estate. And I always tell people to write in their margins of Chapter 15, verses 12-21 ISRAEL’S DEED! He was going through this transferring of real estate, or the deeding of the whole Middle East to Abraham, he gives some prophecy. Verse 13 is where it begins:
“And he (God) said unto Abram, Know of a surety (In other words God said it and you can bank on it) that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs (Egypt), and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years;”
“And also that nation, whom they shall serve, will I Judge: and afterward shall they come out with great substance.”
“And thou shalt go to thy fathers in peace; thou shalt be buried in a good old age.”
“But in the fourth generation they shall come hither again (To the land of Canaan.); for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full.”
It is all prophesied that they would end up in a land that wasn’t theirs, they would go under slavery, but God would bring them back to the promised land. Now, let’s come back to Exodus 2, and after Moses kills the Egyptian, he has to flee:
“Now when Pharaoh heard this thing, he sought to slay Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh, and dwelt in the land of Midian (A land east of the Sinai Peninsula): and he sat down by a well.”
Here again is where I want to give credit to the movie, The Ten Commandments. I think they made it rather clear how, that as Moses now fled to that East country, he met certain young women herding sheep; and as they were about to water them, they came and drew water and filled the troughs to water their father’s flocks, as we see in verse 16. Now, let’s look at verse 17:
“And the shepherds came and drove them (the daughters of the priests of Midian) away: but Moses stood up and helped them,…”
You see there again, he wasn’t a puny individual. He wasn’t afraid of anybody. And so, even those rough old eastern shepherds, as they tried to usurp the well, Moses chased them away. And he did it single-handedly. Now verse 18:
“And when they came to Reuel their father, he said, How is it that ye are come so soon today?”
“And they said, An Egyptian…”
Now, underline that. From all outward appearances, from his language, from everything, what was Moses? He was Egyptian. He had been raised in Pharaoh’s palace for 35 years. But inside, what is he? He’s a Hebrew – an Israelite. Now, let’s finish verse 19:
“…delivered us out of the hand of the shepherds, and also drew water enough for us, and watered the flock.”
Then you know what happened. Let’s look at verse 21:
“And Moses was content to dwell with the man: and he gave Moses Zipporah his daughter.”
Here again, is the perfect picture all through the Old Testament. It happened to Joseph and it’s happened to Moses. We’ve also had other instances, where these men of God, driven away from their original setting, will marry what kind of a girl? A Gentile! You remember several lessons ago that when Christ was rejected, (and as I said in the last lesson, He was literally exiled back to Heaven), and while He’s in exile, what kind of a Bride is He calling out? A Gentile Bride. The Church is predominately Gentile. And so you have this picture all the way up through the Old Testament – even here with Moses. He was a Jew – an Israelite – but he marries a Gentile.
“And she bare him a son, and he called his name Gershom: for he said, I have been a stranger in a strange land.”
“And it came to pass in process of time, that the king of Egypt died: and the children of Israel sighed by reason of the bondage, and they cried, and their cry came up unto God by reason of the bondage.”
When it says, ‘in process of time,’ do you know how long it’s speaking of? 40 years! Again, you go back to Acts Chapter 7 and there we see that Moses’ life was broken down into three 40 year segments. Not counting the five years in his mother’s house. But the first 40 years is in Pharaoh’s palace, as the son of pharaoh’s daughter. The second 40 years he is on the back side of the desert, herding sheep. And then the third 40 years, as you’re all aware, he comes back and delivers the children of Israel. So now let’s look at verse 23:
“And when he was full forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his brethren the children of Israel.”
Then drop down to verse 30:
“And when forty years were expired, there appeared to him in the wilderness of mount Sinai an angel of the Lord in a flame of fire in a bush.”
That’s the beginning of his third 40 years when he will go back and lead Israel out into the wilderness. So he has three 40 year segments. Now, let’s go back to Exodus, Chapter 2 and verse 24:
“And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob.”
Now, I hammer that Covenant into people, constantly. In our Tahlequah class we are presently in the book of Acts. And I’m just showing them, and they are seeing it – how that everything that’s happening all the way through the gospels, and well into the Book of Acts, is based on that Abrahamic Covenant. And that Covenant said what? “I’ll make of you a great nation. I’ll put you in a geographical area and I’ll give you a King.“ But Who would be the King? The Son of God – the Messiah. Now here it is again. God, now realizes that it’s time for Him to move, according to His own prophetic utterances, back there to Abraham. He remembered the Covenant that He made with Abraham. He repeated it to Isaac. He repeated it to Jacob and that Covenant carries all the way through. Now verse 25:
“And God looked upon the children of Israel, and God had respect unto them.”
God remembered them, and now He’s going to start making things happen. Let’s go on to Chapter 3:
“Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro his father in law…”
In plain English, what is Moses’ title? He’s a shepherd. Let me show you what this must have done to the man. Now, for all practical purposes, he’s an Egyptian. Turn back with me to Genesis 46, the last verse of that Chapter and that will tell you, I think, without a doubt, what this did to the man, Moses. And we’ll see more of it in the verses to come. You’ve got to get the setting, and we haven’t got time to read all the verses previous to this one. Joseph is making things ready for Jacob and his other sons to come down into Egypt and to dwell in Goshen. Please remember, Joseph is the second man. He’s not the top. So everything has to be with Pharaoh’s blessing. So now Joseph is preparing the family so that they don’t blunder. And so he tells them what to do. When they get ready to approach Pharaoh, to say they are coming down into Egypt. Now let’s look at what the Word itself says:
“That ye shall say, ‘Thy servants’ trade hath been about cattle from our youth even until now, both we, and also our fathers [There’s a colon(:), so the thought goes back to Joseph, and why is he telling them that?]: that ye may dwell in the land of Goshen (So that you get pharaoh’s okay, but don’t tell him that you’ve got sheep): for every shepherd is an abomination unto the Egyptians.'”
It sort of reminds you of our old West, doesn’t it? The cattlemen thought cattle were king. So do I. I don’t like sheep. I suppose I’ll have some sheep farmers call me on that one. But I just don’t have a nickel’s worth of time for sheep. I think they smell, and are dumb, and all the rest of the things; and I think maybe that’s why God uses sheep as examples in Scripture – because they are a dumb animal. But nevertheless, Pharaoh knew that, and he just thought anybody who tended sheep was an abomination.
Now, are you getting the point? This is where Moses ends up. A shepherd! With those smelly old sheep, after having been 40 years in the pomp and circumstance and the wealth and luxury of Egypt. Now why? God had a purpose. Now, come back to Exodus again, if you will. As Moses is herding his sheep, he comes to the back side of the desert. Do you know what that really means? We use the term, “boondocks.” This was worse than that! This is boondockey boondocks! This is way out in the wilderness part of the desert – miles from any civilized city. And he comes to Mount Sinai.
Now I don’t know how many of you realize the geography of the Sinai Peninsula. Years ago, National Geographic Magazine had a whole center spread just on the Sinai Peninsula. I often have kicked myself for not making a point of putting them on file. The
Sinai is the most rugged, most wilderness country that you’ve ever laid your eyes on. How the children of Israel even negotiated it is beyond me. Anyway, it was not a very nice place to spend 40 years. And poor old Moses is going to have 80 of them out there. By now, he’s had 40 years back there tending sheep. Now, verse 1b:
“…and came to the mountain of God, even to Horeb.”
Now, I hope you all realize that Mount Horeb and Mount Sinai are one and the same.
“And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him a flame of fire …”
Now, keep your hand here in Exodus, as we’ve got to go back to Genesis 48 for a moment. This term, “angel of the Lord” pops up so often through the Old Testament and I want everyone to know without a doubt who is this angel of the Lord.
“The Angel which redeemed me…”
In other words Jacob says the Redeeming Angel. Remember, there is only one Redeemer in Scripture and Who is it? It’s Christ. He’s Jehovah in the Old Testament, the Son of God, The Angel of God, but it’s always the second Person in the Trinity. It’s God the Son. So Who then, is in the bush? Jehovah, God the Son. I don’t think Moses saw him bodily like Abraham did back in Genesis 18, but the voice was still the voice of Jehovah. Verse 2 continuing:
“And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed.”
Someone once made the comment that this burning bush was a picture of Israel. Israel is constantly in the fires of judgment. Everyone is always trying to obliterate them. But after 4000 years they have never burned up! The nation of Israel is still on the scene.
“And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt.”
“And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses.”
All through these verses we are going to see that God and the voice which is Jehovah are used synonymously; and why is that? Because Christ is God! I’m going to emphasize it because I’ve said so often that this is one of the first signs of the cults: they do not recognize Christ as God, but the Scripture does.
“And he said, ‘Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground.'”
Remember, Mount Sinai will remain that way for a long long time after that.
“Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob (why does God repeat this over and over again? So that it soaks in! All of these Covenant promises were repeated to those three patriarchs, and we cannot forget it.). And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God.”
There is another person that comes to mind, that said, “I see God.” Remember who that was? The most unlikely of people – it was Hagar. Jacob also saw God; he wrestled with Him. But always remember I’ve always taught you that the God-Head, The Trinity, is The invisible Spirit God. The Trinity is invisible, and no man has ever seen the God-Head. But Who steps out of the Trinity and reveals Himself to mankind, time after time? God the Son. Another perfect example of this is found in Hebrews Chapter 1 verses 1 and 2, and this is a lesson in its self:
“God (Just plain, absolute GOD, the Triune, the Eternal Sovereign God), who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets…” – The Old Testament. That same God:
“Hath in these last days (Remember the last days in Scripture are from the birth of Christ till the end – and how has he spoken?) spoken unto us by his Son,…”
So, in verse one you have the Triune God, but how does the Triune God speak to mankind? – through the Son. It was the same as was in the creation. “In the beginning God…” Scripture contributes the creation to God the Son. In fact, it right here in this same verse 2:
“whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he (The Son) made the worlds;…”
Now, back to Exodus Chapter 3 for a few moments:
“And the LORD said (Do you see how we have that constant change in Name of the Deity? First it’s “God,” – Elohim, the Triune Father, Son, Holy Spirit. Now, when you see that term LORD in capital letters Who is it? Jehovah. And who is Jehovah? God the Son. Who is God the Son? Jesus the Christ.), ‘I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt (What did the LORD call them? My people. Who is He talking about? The Jew – and I think you realize that now), and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows;'”
“‘And I am come down to deliver them out of the land of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land (Canaan. I will bring them into that)… land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanites,'”
Remember what He said back in Genesis 15? Israel would have to stay in bondage until the Canaanites’ iniquity was full. In other words, the Canaanites had gone so deep into sin and wickedness, that God was perfectly fair in telling Joshua when he brought the Children of Israel into the Promised Land, that they were to kill them all. So this is the reason that God let his own people go into Egypt and suffer, so that the Canaanites, the Hittites, and the Amorites, could prove the worthiness of the judgment that was going to come upon them.
Today, the nation of Israel is still God’s chosen people. He was the one that took them out of Palestine, as recorded in the Book of Acts, as a result of their rebellion. He had the Romans destroy the Temple. But always keep in mind, when He took them out, what did He promise them? “I’ll bring you back.” It’s their land, and now we are seeing it happen right before our eyes. God is bringing the Jews back to Palestine. I feel for the poor Arabs, they have their homes and business there, but something is going to happen, because that land belongs to Israel. And they will get every bit that belongs to them, because God made that promise to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.