Moses' life began as a journey of faith - his parents' faith when they chose to trust God for the protection of their baby boy. His life continued as a life of faith as God led him step by step to carry out the purpose He had for Moses. My prayer as you study the life of Moses is that you would grow deeper in your own journey of faith, that you would be encouraged and be willing to let God work in and through you to carry out His purpose(s) for you.
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“By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents…
By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter…
By faith he left Egypt…
By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of the blood…
By faith they passed through the Red Sea…”
Moses’ life began as a journey of faith - his parents’ faith when they chose to trust God for the protection of their baby boy. His life continued as a life of faith as God led him step by step to carry out the purpose He had for Moses. No, Moses wasn’t perfect, but that didn’t prevent God from using him. That gives me great hope as I see my shortcomings in my own journey of faith.
Each day is divided into four sections. “Looking to God’s Word” is designed to get you into the Scripture to do observation and interpretation. “Looking Upward” will direct you with questions that are more application-oriented. “Looking Deeper” is optional. It is for those who want to go further in their study of the lesson. It will direct you to other related passages to deepen your personal study. This section is not required, and the questions in “Looking Deeper” will not be discussed in your small group time unless your group decides to include them. If you have time, however, to go deeper, this section can enhance your personal study time. It is not always located in the same order each day because there are times it is better suited for the end of the lesson. “Looking Reflectively” is designed for application and reflection on the lesson. Each day I have given a “nugget” on which you can meditate throughout the day. Sometimes you will be asked to evaluate something in your life. Other times you will be asked to pray about something or to journal your thoughts about an issue. This area of the study is designed to take the head knowledge and make it heart knowledge.
My prayer as you study the life of Moses is that you would grow deeper in your own journey of faith, that you would be encouraged as you see God use an imperfect, ordinary person, and that you would be willing to let God work in and through you to carry out His purpose(s) for you.
This week we will look at the beginning of the life of Moses and his journey of faith. How did God prepare Moses for his purpose in life? How long did the process take? I find myself at times becoming impatient with God’s schedule, like an impatient traveler wanting to avoid delays, detours, and layovers. Yet He always makes it clear to me that I need to wait on Him and not move ahead. When I have stepped forward in my own strength, I have always failed miserably.
As you look at Moses’ early years, make note of how God prepared him for what lay ahead. Notice how negative situations were used for good in God’s plan. When you become discouraged by your own difficult circumstances, be encouraged as you study the life of Moses and his journey of faith, knowing that God can use even your difficulties and failures as He does His work in and through you.
As we begin to study the life of Moses, it is important that we look at the situation that preceded his birth. What was going on before Moses was even born? What was the situation into which Moses arrived? Today we will look at the background of the Israelites and their circumstances under the king of Egypt.
1. Describe the situation of the sons of Israel in Egypt according to verse 7.
2. What were the fears of the new king concerning the sons of Israel (vv. 8-10)?
3. Describe the relationship between the sons of Israel and the Egyptians (vv. 11-14).
4. Why did the midwives disobey Pharaoh (vv. 15-21)? Can you think of another way (or ways) that the midwives could have handled this without being dishonest with Pharaoh and still please God?
The midwives disobeyed the king’s orders. In this story, the narrator seems to see them as completely positive – the women are described twice as fearing God, and God clearly rewards them for what they did. As you look at other examples in Scripture where someone lied or disobeyed his or her authority and yet pleased God in doing so, why were those situations “permissible” and pleasing to God?
In the book of Acts, Stephen gave a speech in which he reviewed the history of the nation of Israel. Review the history of that time in Acts 7:11-19. Are there any new insights that you gain from this passage?
5. The midwives feared God, meaning that they had a reverential awe for God, not that they were scared of Him. Proverbs 1:7 says that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. What are some ways in which the fear of God can/should affect you in making decisions and in how you interact with others?
6. How do you react to people who make your life difficult, such as verbally abusing you, betraying you, “draining” you emotionally, or trying to take advantage of you?
God is more powerful than any evil intent of others against us.
If there are people in your life presently who are difficult for you, ask God to give you the grace to endure and the ability to trust Him one day at a time. Pray for that person or persons.
God knew the path of our lives before we were ever born, and He sovereignty has had His hand on us from the very beginning. Today, we will look at the early years of the life of Moses. As you read, make note of the ways God directed Moses’ path through the people God placed in his life. Our early years are never wasted. They are part of the process God uses to prepare us for following Him throughout our lives.
7. How do you see God’s hand on Moses?
a. Through his parents
b. Through his sister
c. Through the family who adopted him
8. Who actually named him Moses?
What additional insights do you see in these passages?
How is Moses described in Acts 7:20, Hebrews 11:23, and Exodus 2:2?
9. How has God used both your good and bad experiences within your family in a positive way in your life?
10. Read and summarize Romans 8:28 in your own words. How was this verse true in the life of Moses? How have you seen it to be true in your own life?
11. What was David saying in Psalm 139:16? How does this verse encourage you concerning God’s involvement in your life?
God has His hand on you from the very beginning of your life. He makes no mistakes.
I grew up in a small town of 1000 people where everyone knew everyone. One day when I was a young girl, I stole a toy from a department store there. I can’t even remember why I stole it, but, nevertheless, I did. When I told my mom later, she didn’t punish me, other than to say, “Don’t do it again.”
Shortly after, I was at the same department store shopping for a coloring book and colors. I realized that I didn’t have enough money for both, and I had to make a decision. Then, I remembered that my mom “let me get away” with stealing the last time, so why not just steal again? I bought the coloring book, and then walked back into the store, slipped the box of colors into my sack, and quickly walked back out. All the way home (which was only a block), I was chuckling to myself about how easy this was. I had no idea what was about to happen. When I got home, I told my mom (laughingly) what I had done, expecting the same response that she gave the last time. However, I was so wrong. This time, she had a different response, and I wasn’t prepared for it. If she had only disciplined me at home, I could have stood that. But, my mom drove me back to the store, made me give the colors back to the cashier (who was a good friend of my mom’s), tell her what I had done, and ask forgiveness. That was the most painful punishment my mom could have given me. At the time, I didn’t understand how a loving mother could do that to her child. But I look back at that day as a turning point in my life. From that day on, I have never had the desire to steal anything. My mom’s discipline made a lasting impact in my life. She has told me many times that it hurt her much more than it hurt me. I am grateful that she loved me enough to discipline me in such a way that I would not repeat the act of stealing ever again.
Take some time today to thank God for the family He has placed you in, even though you may not understand why. God has a bigger purpose than we can sometimes see.
Today we will look at a turning point in the life of Moses. Up to this point, his life seemed to be going very smoothly, with few problems. He had no idea that morning when he woke up how drastically his life would change because of one action. Do you ever look back at major turning points in your life? Something you did or a decision you made that changed your life for good or for bad? Even though you may blow it or make a mistake, God can still use your failures and even your sins for His purpose. Ask God to prepare your heart today as you go to His Word.
12. How did Moses’ Egyptian upbringing build leadership qualities into his life?
13. How old was Moses when “it entered his mind to visit his brethren, the sons of Israel”?
14. Did Moses already know God’s purpose for him at this point? Why or why not?
15. Why was Moses not ready to be a leader yet?
What are some indications in these verses that Moses knew his actions were wrong?
Does failure necessarily mean that we stepped out on our own strength? Explain your answer.
Identify some areas of strength in Moses’ life from this passage.
16. Is there a past sin or failure in your life that you feel would hinder God from using you? What do you need to do to move forward?
17. Do you consider yourself a leader? If so, in what areas do you struggle as a leader? If not, what hinders you from being a leader?
18. How would you know if you were leading in your own strength instead of letting Him lead through you?
There is no sin too great to render us unusable to God if we have a repentant heart.
We must be careful to let God lead through us instead of trying to lead on our own.
Take some time to think back on major turning points in your life. How has God used them?
If something from your past is holding you back from following God or serving Him, give it to the Lord. Ask Him to help you let go and move forward in obedience.
At this point, Moses fled to Midian, where God further prepared him for his ultimate purpose. He had tried to deliver his people from slavery. However, he tried doing it on his own strength and in his own timing and he failed. Now he has purposely separated himself from the Hebrews and the Egyptians, but these would not be wasted years. God would continue to work in his life during this time to prepare him.
The land of Midian is an area east of the Gulf of Aqaba, on the Sinai Peninsula. It was inhabited by the nomadic sons of Abraham.1
19. Why did Moses flee Egypt?
20. What character qualities do you see in Moses during this time in Midian?
21. What “events” happened in Moses’ life here? (See also Acts 7:29.)
22. If you were Moses, how would you be feeling about your life at this point?
23. Does God have to take us through a “desert” experience before He can use us? Explain your thoughts. How does God work in your life during a “desert” experience or after a failure?
David also “blew it” when He sinned in his relationship with Bathsheba. Describe David’s perspective and attitude after his sin.
Why would God delight more in the sacrifice of a broken spirit and contrite heart than in burnt offerings (vv.16-17)?
God has a reason for where He takes you. Look at your “desert” experiences as His time of preparing you and making you usable.
Take some time today to thank God for those dry times in your spiritual life and for the “desert” experiences. Thank Him specifically for what you have learned from those times and for what He has done in your life through them.
If you feel that you are in the “desert” now, thank Him for what He is doing in your life during this time, even though you don’t understand.
Being usable doesn’t mean being perfect.
It is important to note that many of the characters in Hebrews 11 made mistakes in their lives and were not perfect, yet God used them. Take some time to thank Him that He doesn’t “disqualify” us from being usable because of mistakes we may have made along the way.
Do you ever feel that God is just “out there” somewhere and isn’t really involved in your life? Do you ever wonder if He has forgotten you? The sons of Israel must have questioned what God was doing while they were suffering such harsh conditions under the Egyptians. Had He forgotten them? Today we will look at how God responded to the Israelites during this time of hardship and bondage. Be encouraged as you look at God’s response to their cries.
24. What had happened in Egypt during these days?
25. How were the sons of Israel dealing with their bondage?
26. List the four verbs that describe God’s response to the cries of the Hebrews.
27. Is there an area in your life where it seems that God is silent?
28. How do you respond to God when it “feels” like He is not actively involved in your life or aware of what is going on?
29. Does our crying out to God move Him to “deliver” us from a tough situation? Explain your thoughts.
As you look at these psalms, how did David, in the midst of his troubles, describe and find comfort in God?
God is very much aware of what is going on in your life. He cares even when it seems He is silent.
God had His hand on Moses from the time he was born. He orchestrated every detail of his life, in order to place him where He wanted him to be. He knew the purpose He had for Moses. He knew what would be required to prepare him and when Moses would be ready. Moses tried to get ahead of God and step out in his own strength, which led to failure. However, that did not prevent God from using Moses to carry out His purpose, but it took forty more years of preparation.
Are you willing to let God use you? Are you willing to go through the preparation process and wait on God’s timing? If you’ve made mistakes, don’t let those mistakes defeat you and discourage you. Learn from them and move forward under God’s leading. Walk in the power of the Spirit, not in the strength of your flesh. Wait for His timing. Let Him prepare you for the task(s) He has called you to do for His glory.
Take some time to journal and write down your thoughts concerning this week’s lesson. How is God working in your life through your present situation?
1 Charles Caldwell Ryrie, Ryrie Study Bible, Expanded Edition (Chicago: Moody Press, 1995), 93.
Last week we looked at the period in the life of Moses in which God prepared him for what He would one day lead him to do. Moses knew that he was to deliver the Israelites from the Egyptians, but he wanted to do it in his own way and on his own timing. The result was failure. After years in the desert, removed from any notion of being used to deliver the Israelites, Moses was in for a surprise. God appeared to Moses and removed him from the desert. It was time for Moses to carry out God’s plan. God had prepared him and worked in his life during these years in Egypt and in Midian. By now, Moses probably had given up any hope of being used by God after what had happened in Egypt. However, God’s timetable is different from ours.
Are you open to what God is asking you to do for Him? Are you willing to step out in faith and follow God regardless of what He is asking you to do? Do you feel as if you are too “old” or too “young” to step out in faith? Ask God to speak to your heart this week as you look to his Word.
It was time for Moses to carry out God’s grander purposes for him. Years in the desert had passed, yet these were not wasted years. Moses may have felt that he would spend the rest of his life in that desert and that God was finished with him. Yet God knew Moses was ready to carry out His plan. He appeared to him when Moses probably least expected it. Today we will look at God’s encounter with Moses.
1. How long was Moses in the desert? Looking back at Acts 7:23, how old would that make Moses at this time?
2. What was Moses doing when God appeared to him? How might that have prepared Moses for his future task?
3. Describe Moses’ response to the burning bush and to God’s appearance. (Look also at Acts 7:31-32.)
4. In Exodus 3:7-9, list the responses of God to the cries of the Israelites. What is God communicating to Moses here?
Contrast God’s plan for Moses with the perspective of the sons of Israel.
How does this encourage you personally?
5. What characteristics would you use to describe God in Exodus 3:1-10?
6. What methods has God used to direct or redirect your life, or to get your attention?
Be attentive to God’s calling and leading in your life. You are never too young or too old to serve Him.
God took Moses, who was a murderer, and made him into one of the greatest Prophets of the Old Testament. Your past mistakes do not necessarily hinder God from using you.
God answers prayer in His timing and in His way.
Take some time to praise God for the attributes you listed under question 5 Moses was filled with awe in the presence of God. Are you?
God knew that Moses was the man He wanted to deliver the Israelites. Now He must show Moses that he can do it, with God’s help. As you study His Word today, think through your own life and in what ways you relate to Moses.
7. How did Moses respond to God’s call in verse 11?
8. What are some possible reasons why Moses hesitated to step out now and be the leader and deliverer he once wanted to be?
9. What were the two promises that God made to Moses (verse 12)? How would those promises encourage Moses to follow God’s calling?
Horeb was another name for Mount Sinai (Deuteronomy 5:2). God would again meet with Moses at this mountain, Horeb or Sinai, once he brought the children of Israel out of Egypt. Notice how God kept His promise in Exodus 19:1-2. It would also be on this same mountain that God would give Moses the Mosaic covenant (Exodus 19-23).
How did God encourage others in the following passages? Write down any phrases that specifically encourage you.
10. How do you respond to God when you feel inadequate to do something He has called you to do?
11. How does knowing that God is “with you” affect your daily life?
12. What kind of character qualities does God desire in our lives so that He can use us to draw others to Himself?
Don’t let past failures or fear of the future render you useless to the Lord.
God knows exactly why He chooses you to carry out His purpose. All He asks of you is to trust and obediently follow Him.
Spend some time with Him today and be honest concerning your feelings about where He has you in life. Do you trust God in how He is leading you? Are you willing to step out in faith and follow His leading? Are you where He wants you?
Feeling inadequate is not necessarily a weakness. If we turn our attention and focus on God instead of on ourselves, then it can actually be a strength. When I am feeling inadequate, I know that I have to depend on the Lord. There is no other option, other than failure. When I am feeling adequate and strong in my abilities, I am tempted to draw from my own strength and not from the Lord. I personally don’t like feeling inadequate, but that is when I see God working in my life in a special way. It is a good place to be, even though it may not feel that way at the time.
Today we will continue looking at the conversation between Moses and God. We will look at some of the struggles that Moses was dealing with in his heart and how God answered him. God wanted him to know that He is all that Moses needed. He is an all-sufficient God.
13. What was Moses’ next response to God’s call (v. 13)?
14. God gives several names for Himself that he repeats a number of times in Exodus 3. List the names. (Look at vv. 6, 14, 15, 16, and 18.)
Moses’ fear that the elders would not accept him is understandable. God had not revealed Himself to His people for over 400 years. When Moses asked how he should answer the question, “What is His name?” he was asking how he could demonstrate to them that their God had sent him. God’s name, I AM, expressed His nature and actions. The name Yahweh can be interpreted I AM WHO I AM and I WILL BE WHO I PROMISED I WILL BE. The use of capital letters (LORD) in the Bible text indicates that the Hebrew word is Yahweh.
15. What were the details of God’s plan in verses 16-22?
16. What do you suppose was God’s intent in laying out the details of the future for Moses at this point?
17. What are some possible reasons why God doesn’t lay out the details of our future for us today?
Many years later, Jesus would attribute to Himself the name “I AM” (John 8:58). How did He complete the name?
John 10:7, 9
John 10:11, 14
How does each name indicate that He is all we need, that He alone is sufficient?
What does using “I AM” say about who Jesus claimed to be?
God is sufficient for us in every situation we may find ourselves. That will never change.
If God leads you to do something, He will always enable you to accomplish it.
Take some time today to praise Him as Yahweh: a God who is personal, a God whose goal is to redeem His people, a God who is self-existent and self-sufficient, and a God who will be that He will be.
Excuses…Excuses… We all have them and we all use them at some point in our lives. When I am asked to do something that I really don’t want to do or feel inadequate to do, it’s amazing how many reasons I can come up with for why I can’t do it. Moses was no exception. He wasn’t eager to get back into a position of leadership. He had failed once, and he probably felt as if he would fail again. Moses was hesitant to follow God’s calling, yet God continued to encourage him through each excuse and objection. Today, we continue to look at Moses’ reasons for not wanting to follow God’s call in his life. Perhaps you can identify with some of his reasons.
18. What were the other excuses or objections that Moses gave God (vv. 1, 10, 13)? What were his objections or excuses centered around?
19. What was God trying to communicate to Moses by His response in verses 11-12 and 14-17?
20. As you look at Acts 7:22, how had Moses changed in those 40 years in the desert?
21. In what areas do you feel inadequate in serving God? In what areas do you feel gifted?
22. How can we balance using our gifts and strengths in serving God, and yet drawing from His strength and not our own? How do we keep from becoming prideful in our strong areas?
What similarities do you see in the way Moses and Jeremiah responded to God’s calling, as well as the way God encouraged them?
The way God sees us is more important than the way we see ourselves. Are you looking at yourself through God’s perspective or your own?
God knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows how He wants to use us for His glory. Are you willing to put aside your fears, inadequacies, and excuses and follow His leading?
Is there an area in which God is leading you but you have been hesitant to step out in faith? What is your biggest fear? How do you see yourself? Take some time and be honest with God about your fears and hesitations.
God had given Moses his mission. Moses had given God his objections as to why he was not the right person for the task. Yet God was not swayed or convinced to look elsewhere. He knew this was the right man, in spite of his weaknesses, fears, and past failures. I am so thankful that God doesn’t put us “on the shelf” just because we may have blown it in the past.
Today we will look at what happened after the encounter between Moses and God and how Moses took those first steps in obedience.
23. How was Moses encouraged by Jethro and Aaron?
The incident in 4:24-26 tell us that Moses had failed to circumcise his second son. Circumcision was God’s appointed sign of the Abrahamic Covenant in Genesis 17:9-14, which signified Abraham’s commitment to the Lord. The Lord alone would be His God, whom he would trust and serve. Circumcision symbolized a self-cursing oath: “If I am not loyal in faith and obedience to the Lord, may the sword of the Lord cut off me and my offspring, as I have cut off my foreskin.” Thus, Abraham was to submit himself under the rule of God, consecrating himself, his offspring, and all he owned to the service of the Lord.
24. Why was it important for Moses to circumcise his son? (Look also at Gen 17:10-14.)
25. After Moses and Aaron told the elders of the sons of Israel what God had spoken to Moses, the people bowed low and worshipped (Ex 4:31). What expectations of God did they have?
26. Have you used any of the excuses of Moses when God has asked you to serve Him in some way? What was the outcome?
27. How has God encouraged you through others to move forward in doing something you were hesitant to do?
28. How has God shown you an area of disobedience in your life?
When God calls us to step out in obedience to His leading, we often feel inadequate. We think of all the reasons why we are not the “best” person for the “job.” Yet, God wants us to come to the place where we know our adequacy comes from Him, not ourselves.
How do these verses encourage you at times when God is asking you to step out in obedience even though you may feel inadequate?
Proverbs 16:3, 9
2 Corinthians 3:5
1 Thessalonians 5:24
There is no better place to be than in the center of God’s will, doing what He has asked you to do.
When God first called me to Asia, I was working on staff with Campus Crusade for Christ in Kentucky. I had to make a decision whether or not I would follow His call, and it was not an easy decision. “Lord, I’ll follow You anywhere, but it would devastate my mom if I move to the other side of the world for four years.” “Lord, I’ll follow You anywhere, but ministry is going so well here at Western Kentucky. Maybe we could wait until I’ve finished what I can do here.” “Lord, I’m not married yet, and if I move to Asia, I’ll probably never marry. Perhaps it would be better if I married first. Then we could go overseas and serve You together.”
I came up with some good reasons for not going, but I knew that if I didn’t follow His calling, I would be settling for less than God’s best in my life. I had committed my life to follow Him, and yet, here I was, hesitant to follow Him into the unknown. I finally let go of my excuses and made the decision to move forward in the direction He was calling me. Yes, it was hard leaving family, friends, ministry, and the comforts of home. (It was even hard for me to leave my cat!) However, God provided new friends, new family, and grace to adapt to a new way of living. I would not trade anything for those four years in Asia. Being in the center of God’s will, regardless of where that may be, is far better than settling for the comfortable and familiar, and being outside of His will.
He never promised that following Him would be easy, but He promised that He would always be with us. He will give the grace and strength we need to follow Him wholeheartedly. Will you obey His leading? Will you submit to His will even before you know what lies ahead?
Ask God to search your heart today. Are you yielded to His will for you? Are you willing to obey even if you are fearful or feeling inadequate? Go before Him with your honest feelings.
Moses felt inadequate to deliver God’s people. He had tried once and failed. Why would this time be any different? He pleads his case before God, but God doesn’t give in to Moses. Now, Moses is ready from God’s perspective. He knows he is inadequate on his own strength. He knows that he alone cannot carry out God’s purpose. That is exactly where God wanted him, dependent on Him alone.
Finally, the time had come for Moses to step out in obedience to God and go to Pharaoh. He was probably nervous, yet excited to be part of God’s plan to deliver the Israelites. This week we will look at the discouraging times Moses faced in the midst of obedience. As he became discouraged, he began to question his role in delivering the Israelites.
Discouragement is an inevitable part of ministry and life. We will see successes and positive results, but we will also see failures and disappointments. Sometimes those failures are a result of our own self-effort. Other times, I believe God uses them to remind us of our dependence on Him and His overall sovereignty in life. Ask God to speak to your heart as you look to His Word this week.
Today we will look at the results of Moses’ obedience to God. He did what God asked him to do, and yet, the results were less than desirable. His obedience had a negative impact on the very ones he wanted to help. God works in ways that we cannot always understand. He doesn’t ask us to understand, but to trust.
1. How did Pharaoh view the God of Moses (v. 2)?
2. What effect did Moses’ request have on the Israelites? What does verse 9 give as a reason for Pharaoh’s response?
3. Describe Moses’ feelings as expressed in verses 22-23 after the foremen of the sons of Israel showed hostility toward Moses and Aaron?
How might it have helped Moses if he had remembered what God had told him in Exodus 4:21?
In Exodus 5:3, what was Moses trying to communicate to Pharaoh by saying, “Let us go…lest He fall upon us with pestilence or with the sword”?
Why would the sons of Israel “need” to go out of the land to sacrifice to God (Ex 8:25-26)?
4. How have you seen obedience lead to tougher circumstances in your life or in the lives of others?
5. When do you tend to get discouraged and question God?
6. What helps you work through this period of discouragement and questioning?
Even when our obedience leads to unexpected or negative results, we must trust that God is still in control and that this is part of His plan for us.
Is there something in your life that is difficult for you right now? Are you confused about what God is doing? Are you feeling that God has “let you down”? Take some time to be honest with Him, as Moses did, and give your feelings and thoughts to the Lord. Ask Him to give you the grace and patience to wait on Him and His timing.
Moses had stepped out and obeyed God, yet the results were not what he had expected. The Hebrew foremen were already criticizing and complaining about Moses. He thought God would deliver the people immediately, even though God had told him that He would harden Pharaoh’s heart. Moses, in his discouragement, went to God and poured out his heart. I can imagine their conversation. “Look. I’ve done what you told me to do. I have held up my part of the deal, but you have not kept your promise. What is going on? You said you would deliver your people, but instead they are worse off than before. Why?” I think most of us have come to that place at some point in our lives where we have questioned what God is doing. Today, we will look at God’s response to Moses. Be encouraged as you study God's Word and see His involvement in the lives of His people.
7. How would reminding Moses of who God is, His names, and His covenant with the people in verses 2-5 encourage Moses?
8. List the promises God made to the sons of Israel in verses 6-8.
9. How did the people’s response in verse 9 differ from their response in Exodus 4:29-31? Why did their response to God change?
10. How would you describe God as He is revealed in this passage?
11. How do difficult times affect your fellowship with God and the way you listen to other Christian brothers and sisters?
12. How do you handle discouragement?
God appeared to Moses as Yahweh in Exodus 3:14. He made Himself known as God Almighty (El Shaddai in Hebrew) to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Ex 6:2-3). In the passages below, what was the situation in which God was called by His name, El Shaddai, God Almighty?
Job 23:8-17; 27:2
God is always faithful and true to His Word regardless of how it may seem at the time.
Don’t let discouragement hinder you from obeying God. Instead, allow it to draw your focus to Him.
Are you focused on your circumstances or on Him? Thank Him for His faithfulness to you. If you doubt His faithfulness in the midst of some tough circumstances, confess your doubts and claim the truths of God’s Word over your feelings. Trust Him, by faith, when you can’t understand what He is doing.
Moses had spoken to the sons of Israel to encourage them with God’s words, yet the people did not listen. Think how Moses must have felt. At the end of Exodus 5, we see him in the midst of discouragement and doubt. God greatly encouraged him in Exodus 6, and he was probably feeling much better about the situation…until the people did not listen. As you read today, make note of the way Moses viewed himself. Did he see himself through God’s eyes or his own eyes?
Exodus 6:10-13; 28-30
13. What effect did the peoples’ response have on Moses?
14. What did Moses see as the problem?
15. In verse 13, what does God’s response to Moses and Aaron communicate?
Skim Exodus 6:14-27.
16. Where do Moses and Aaron belong in the lineage of the tribes of Israel?
Exodus 6:14-27 seems to be an unnatural insertion into the narrative. However, the genealogy was placed here to identify Moses and Aaron more specifically because of the prominent position they were assuming as representatives of the people before the Egyptian state.
Look back at Exodus 4:10-12. Moses had earlier brought up this “excuse” or “weakness” to the Lord. How did God respond then?
What does Isaiah 45:9-10 communicate concerning our relationship with our Creator?
How should we look at our weaknesses in light of 2 Corinthians 12:9-10?
17. How do you usually respond when you feel as if you have failed? Can you give a specific example?
18. In what ways has God encouraged you in the midst of discouragement?
Focus on Him in the midst of discouragement, not on your own weakness.
Have you been discouraged lately? Are you feeling inadequate or that you’ve failed? Go before Him, and thank Him for the tough times. Thank Him for making you just the way He did, strengths and weaknesses. Ask Him to build on your strengths and work on your weaknesses.
If God has called you to a task, He will make you adequate for it.
Meditate on 1 Thessalonians 5:24: “Faithful is He who calls you, and He will also bring it to pass.”
Moses turned his focus inward instead of keeping his focus on God. He began questioning and doubting himself. Have you ever felt like Moses, discouraged about something, but feeling better about it after spending time with God and in His Word, only to lose heart again when things didn’t unfold the way you had expected? I have. Yet, we must keep our focus on Him and not on ourselves.
Things had not gone smoothly for Moses. Pharaoh increased the labor of the Israelites, and they were upset with Moses, blaming him for their plight. Yet, God once again sent Moses and Aaron back to Pharaoh, in the midst of Moses’ self-doubt. Even though it must have been hard for him to go back to Pharaoh, Moses made a choice to obey and follow God’s command once again.
19. How did God “convince” Moses to step out in obedience in the midst of his self-doubt?
20. What was God’s ultimate purpose in hardening Pharaoh’s heart (7:3, 5)?
21. What was the possible significance of Aaron’s staff swallowing up the magicians’ staffs in verses 11-12?
22. How old were Aaron and Moses at this time (v. 7)?
Often in the Old Testament, the age of a prominent figure is given just before a major event is to occur.
23. Give an example of a time when you obeyed God even though you didn’t understand His purpose.
24. What moves you to obedience? In other words, why do you obey God, even when it is difficult?
1 Samuel 15:1-23
How did Saul disobey God? How did Saul differ from Moses in his response to God?
Develop some principles on obedience from this passage.
Obedience requires listening to God, not our feelings.
You don’t have to understand what God is doing in order to be obedient to His call. God delights in our obedience.
Are you listening to God’s Word or to your feelings? Are you hesitant to step out in obedience because you feel inadequate or discouraged? Spend some time with Him. Be honest with Him about your feelings. Trust Him and His leading in your life.
Is there a situation in which you are struggling with obeying God because of the difficulty of the circumstances? Are you questioning what God is doing? Do you have doubts that God can use you in light of some of your weaknesses? Take your thoughts to Him.
In yesterday’s lesson, God told Moses that He would harden Pharaoh’s heart. The hardness of his heart prevented Pharaoh from listening to God. Was Pharaoh responsible for his hardened heart, or God, or both? I admit that this is a difficult question. When it is hard for us to comprehend or understand a concept of the way God works in people, we must trust in His sovereignty and in His ultimate purpose.
25. Today, we are going to look ahead at some verses in which Pharaoh’s heart is hardened. Make note of whether God or Pharaoh hardened his heart. If it is unclear who is responsible for the hardening, put a question mark. Also, give the reason for why God hardened Pharaoh’s heart if it is stated.
Exodus 7:13, 22
Exodus 10:20, 27
26. What does it mean to have a hardened heart?
27. What would be some warning signs that your heart is becoming hardened?
What is one cause of a hardened heart? Why would that cause a heart to become hardened?
How would you define the “deceitfulness of sin”? Can you give an example?
What additional information does this passage give you concerning Pharaoh and his hardened heart?
A hardened heart prevents us from listening to God and obeying Him.
Is your heart hardened in any way to prevent you from listening to God’s prompting and believing Him? If so, confess your hardness of heart.
I have to be honest - I was in the midst of discouragement when I wrote this week’s lesson. I know what it feels like when you want to “quit” because you feel that you are not capable of doing something well. I felt like I was “living” this lesson as I was writing it. These Scriptures became heart knowledge for me, not just head knowledge. I related to Moses, as if God were telling me, “Get out there and do what I’ve called you to do. Get your eyes off yourself and focus on Me.” My prayer for you is that you would listen to God’s Word, not your feelings, if you are in the midst of discouragement. God uses these discouraging times in our lives for a reason. In my own life, they have brought me to a deeper dependence on Him.
Moses could have quit in the midst of discouragement, but he didn’t. God could have given up on Moses, but He didn’t. We will all face discouragement in life and ministry in some way. Satan would love to see us discouraged and ready to quit, but we must keep pressing on and being obedient to God’s call, regardless of how we feel.
This week we will look at the plagues that God brought on Egypt and how Moses developed as a leader during this time. Moses went to Pharaoh repeatedly to request that he let God’s people leave Egypt. Each time, Pharaoh’s heart was hardened and he refused, which was all part of God’s plan. These must have been difficult times as plague after plague came upon the land. Yet, Moses continued to walk obediently and followed God’s leading.
Last week we saw Moses beginning to doubt himself and question if he was the right person for the task God had given him. This week we see growth in Moses’ life as he gained boldness and deepened his trust in God.
The reading is lengthy this week but don’t let that intimidate you. It is important that we look at the plagues in one week in order to get the big picture of what God was doing. Each day there is a theme to focus on. Ask God to teach you as you study His Word this week.
We begin looking at the plagues that God sent on Egypt and how Pharaoh responded each time. Today we will only look at the first plague. It gives us a glimpse into Pharaoh’s hardened heart, which prevented him from listening to God. How well do we listen to what God is trying to tell us?
1. Describe the first plague. How long did it last?
2. Why was Pharaoh not concerned about this plague?
3. What was the role of Moses and what was the role of Aaron? As you look back at the conversation in Exodus 4:10-17, does this surprise you?
This first act of God serves as a paradigm of the nine plagues that follow. “Striking the Nile with the rod suggested dominion over creation and all the gods of Egyptian mythology. The Egyptians linked many of their gods with the life-giving force of the Nile.”
Contrast the life of the one who listens to wisdom with the life of the one who does not.
4. What keeps you from listening to the Lord? (Be more specific than just answering “sin.”)
5. How does not listening to Him affect us over time?
It is important that we listen to what God is trying to communicate to us. He will eventually get our attention, one way or another.
Ask God to show you if there is an area in your life in which you are not listening to Him. If there is, why are you not listening? Ask Him to remove any barriers that might be hindering you.
Today we will look at the next three plagues that God sent on Egypt. Pharaoh, at times, seemed to respond to God and the plagues in a favorable manner. Yet, each time we see that Pharaoh is not true to his word and is deceitful with Moses. Try to get a glimpse into Pharaoh’s heart as you study the plagues today.
6. Describe the second, third, and fourth plagues.
7. How did Pharaoh’s initial response to the frogs (8:8) and the insects (8:25-28) differ from his response to the first plague (7:23). What are some possible reasons for why his response differed?
8. What would it accomplish by asking Pharaoh to give a specific time to entreat the Lord for him in 8:9?
9. Notice in verses 22-23 that God set His people apart to protect them from the plague of insects. What effect might this have had on the Egyptians?
How does this Psalm describe God?
How does God protect and take care of His people?
10. How have you seen God’s protective hand on your life?
11. Moses exhorted Pharaoh to not deal deceitfully again in refusing to let the people go to sacrifice to the Lord. How should you respond to someone who is “dealing deceitfully” or being dishonest with you?
God takes care of His children and is in control, even though at times, we may question what He is doing.
Take some time today to thank Him and praise Him for what He is doing in your life. Thank Him for specific ways you have seen His hand on your life this week.
You may want to reflect on Psalm 91.
Today we will look at the fifth, sixth, and seventh plagues. Regardless of how many plagues God brought on Egypt, Pharaoh did not fear God. He “admitted” his sin, he asked Moses to make supplication for him, but his heart was hardened, and he did not fear God.
12. Describe the fifth, sixth, and seventh plagues.
13. How did Pharaoh’s initial response after the hailstorm (vv. 27-30) differ from his previous responses?
14. In verse 30, Moses said he knew that Pharaoh and his servants did not yet fear the Lord God. How did Pharaoh’s actions in verses 33-35 show this to be true?
In what areas of Moses’ life do you see growth during this period?
Pharaoh did not yet fear the Lord God (9:30). What additional insights do you gain about fearing the Lord God in these verses?
15. If someone’s confession of sin were sincere, what results would you expect to see?
16. How would you define fear of God?
17. In light of Proverbs 8:13 and Genesis 22:11-12, how is fear of the Lord evidenced in your life?
Fear of the Lord leads to true repentance and complete submission.
True repentance involves more than just saying the words, “I have sinned.” True repentance involves turning away from your sin.
Reflect on what it means to fear the Lord. Do you have a healthy fear of God?
Pharaoh had told Moses several times that he would let the people go, but each time his heart was hardened and he refused to let the sons of Israel leave. Today we will look at one of the key issues in Pharaoh’s heart: pride.
18. Describe the eighth and ninth plagues.
19. How did Pharaoh’s responses to the two plagues differ?
20. What stands out to you about the way Moses interacted with Pharaoh after both plagues? In what ways has he grown since the desert in Exodus 3?
21. Pharaoh’s sin was pride. Pride is thinking more highly of ourselves than we ought to. It is also refusing to humble ourselves before God. How was that manifested in Pharaoh’s life (9:16-17; 10:3)?
22. How does pride hinder us from obeying God?
23. How have you seen pride “creep” into your life? How has it affected you?
What are some results of pride?
Why would pride cause these results?
In order to yield completely to God, we must confess any pride in our lives.
Pride keeps my focus on me instead of on God.
I wish I could tell you that I don’t struggle with pride, but it “creeps” into my life in subtle ways. When the Holy Spirit convicts me and shows me pride in my heart, I realize how important it is to confess it and to acknowledge my dependence on Him.
Ask God to show you if there is any pride in your life. If there is, confess it, and give that area to Him.
Today we will look at the announcement to Pharaoh of the tenth and final plague. It appears that Moses is continuing his conversation with Pharaoh in 11:4 from where he left off in 10:29.
24. How did the Egyptians view Moses and the people of Israel at this point? Why might they have had this perspective?
25. Describe the tenth and final plague.
26. What are some possible reasons why Moses “went out from Pharaoh in hot anger” in verse 8?
28. What causes you to become angry?
29. The “ultimate loss” of his firstborn son would move Pharaoh to let the sons of Israel go. What in your life would be the “ultimate loss” and why?
Repetition is often used to emphasize a main point or theme. In the following verses, what was God trying to emphasize through repetition?
Exodus 7:3, 5, 17
Exodus 8:10, 22
What was God’s overall purpose in the plagues?
God uses difficult and painful situations in our lives for a reason.
If you are experiencing some difficult times and are having trouble understanding God’s plan, can you trust that His purpose is perfect for you?
Take some time to pray and journal concerning what God is doing in your life.
God desires for people to know Him as the only true God.
How well do you know God? In what ways can you improve your relationship with Him?
Moses had grown as a leader since God appeared to him in the desert of Midian. It’s encouraging to see the spiritual growth in Moses’ life as he stepped out in obedience to God. This was only the beginning of how God wanted to use Moses. God is continually working in our lives. He wants us to trust Him, to allow Him to build into our lives, to bring us to spiritual maturity. That means we will go through hard times in the process, but those hard times are used to refine us and make us more like Him.
This week we come to a high point in the life of Moses. We will see him accomplish what God directed him to do when he was in the desert: to deliver and lead the sons of Israel out of Egypt. This was no easy task for Moses and the path had been difficult for him. Yet, here he was, ready to help bring about God’s purpose for Pharaoh, the Egyptians, and the sons of Israel.
At this point, we will begin to break away from reading every verse in every chapter. This is not a study of the book of Exodus, but a study of the life of Moses. Therefore, I want to focus on his life, not on the history of Exodus. We will skip some passages for that reason. Feel free to read all of Exodus, but for the purpose of this study, we will mainly look at the passages that deal with Moses’ life and his spiritual growth.
Exodus 12:1-13; 21-28
1. What was the purpose of the blood on the doorposts?
2. Would that purpose be accomplished if they just killed the lamb but didn’t put the blood on the doorpost? Why or why not?
3. Hebrews 11:28 states, “By faith he (Moses) kept the Passover and the sprinkling of the blood, so that he who destroyed the firstborn might not touch them.” Why was keeping the Passover and the sprinkling of blood on the doorposts an act of faith?
What do these verses tell us about our salvation?
1 Peter 1:18-19
4. Based on Romans 10:8-10 and Ephesians 2:8-9, what must a person do in order to be saved from the penalty of sin?
5. Have you accepted Christ’s redeeming work on the cross and allowed His shed blood to cleanse you from all your sins? If you have, describe how you came to that decision. If not, what is hindering you from accepting His gift?
6. Based on John 5:24 and 1 John 5:11-13, how can you know for sure that you have eternal life?
Jesus has provided all that is necessary to give us salvation but we must personally accept that payment and accept Him as our Savior.
Have you accepted Him as your personal Savior? If you have, take some time to thank Him for your salvation and for all that He endured on the cross for your sake.
If you have not personally accepted Him as your Savior, I encourage you to make that decision now. Acknowledge that you are a sinner and that your sins have made a separation between you and a holy God. Thank Him that He loves you so much that He sent His only Son, a perfect sacrifice, to die on the cross for your sins. The penalty for sin is death, and Jesus paid that penalty for you. Accept His payment for your sins. You can express that to Him through a simple prayer: “Lord Jesus, I need you. Thank you for dying on the cross for my sins. Come into my life. I accept you as my personal Savior and place my trust in you for my salvation. Thank you for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Amen.”
I accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior when I was 9 years old. My parents had taught me that Jesus died for my sins, and I could choose to accept or reject His payment. As a 9-year old, I didn’t have many “blatant” sins, but even at that age, I knew what sin was, and I knew I was a sinner. I had a volatile temper (ask my mom), and I could be very selfish and say unkind things to my parents or brothers or friends when I got angry. I wanted to accept His payment for my sins, and I wanted to become His child. I made the choice to accept Him as my Savior, and it is a decision that I have never regretted.
Today we will look at the exodus of the sons of Israel. Finally, the day had come when Pharaoh would “let” the sons of Israel leave Egypt. God was still very much in control, and all that happened was part of His plan. Moses must have been excited finally to see the sons of Israel set out from their bondage in Egypt.
7. Describe the situation that caused Pharaoh finally to send the sons of Israel out of Egypt.
8. In what ways did the tenth plague differ from the other nine?
9. How many years were the sons of Israel in Egypt (12:40-41)?
10. How was God faithful to His word in Genesis 15:13-14 and to Moses in Exodus 3:20-22?
How do these verses describe God?
11. How have you seen God’s faithfulness in your own life?
12. What could tempt you to doubt God’s faithfulness?
13. Had you been one of the sons of Israel, what emotions would you have felt on this night?
God is faithful to His word. However, He works in His timing, not ours.
Are you questioning God’s timing in a situation? Are you impatient or discouraged with His timing? Be honest with God and let Him know how you feel, but then give your feelings to Him. Trust Him and His faithfulness.
Meditate on Lamentations 3:22-23.
Things were going well. The sons of Israel were on their way out of Egypt and had plundered the Egyptians. They were finally moving toward freedom and out from bondage to Pharaoh. It was perfect…or was it? All of a sudden, Pharaoh reconsidered and decided to go after the sons of Israel. They were no longer thrilled about leaving Egypt and their bondage. How quickly they forgot what their lives had been like. Can you relate to the sons of Israel in any way? Go to God’s Word with an open heart today.
14. In what ways do you see that God had a specific plan and purpose in how He was leading the sons of Israel?
The pillar of cloud and pillar of fire was the visible symbol of God’s presence among His people.
15. Describe the attitude of the sons of Israel in 14:10-12.
16. Why did they respond in the way they did?
17. How do you respond when you don’t like the direction God is leading you?
18. What causes you to question God’s leading at times?
19. Psalm 119:105 says that God’s Word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path. How has God used His Word to give “light” to your path?
What other methods does God use to lead and direct you?
2 Chronicles 20:1-19
Contrast Jehosophat’s view of God and his response to an overwhelming situation with that of the Hebrews.
God leads us continuously. He doesn’t lead us to a point and then expect us to find the rest of the way on our own.
God doesn’t necessarily choose the easiest path for us, but He has a reason for the path He does choose.
Our perspective of God and life can become distorted when we are faced overwhelming challenges.
Has your perspective of God become distorted because of challenges and hard times? Are you content with the path on which He has you? Spend some time with Him today, thanking Him for His leading in your life. Ask Him for grace to wait on His timing and leading and to trust His hand in your life.
Moses was faced with a difficult situation. God had led them out of Egypt, but when the sons of Israel saw Pharaoh’s armies coming after them, they lost heart. Instead of people marching out boldly, they began to complain. Yet, God was still very much in control. He would be glorified through what was about to happen. Moses was obedient and God used Him once again to carry out His plan.
20. What stands out to you about Moses in the way he responded to the people’s complaints?
21. List what the sons of Israel were told to do, what Moses was told to do, and what God would do.
22. How did the attitude of the sons of Israel change toward God and Moses after God delivered them from the Egyptians (Ex 14:30-31)? Why?
23. What does Moses’ response to the people show you about His relationship with God?
24. How do you know when to sit back and let God take care of a situation or when to step out and take action yourself?
25. When have you seen God work a “miracle” in your life when the situation seemed hopeless?
What are some principles from this Psalm that you can apply to times of overwhelming situations in your life?
God is greater than any obstacle we may face.
When life seems hopeless, God wants us to turn to Him and not to our own methods or strength. He wants to be glorified.
Is there a situation in your life that seems overwhelming? Can you rest in God’s strength instead of worrying about it? Spend some time with Him and give Him those overwhelming situations. Trust Him to work in His way and His timing. Let Psalm 46 encourage your heart.
Life was going great for the sons of Israel. God had delivered them from Pharaoh and killed all those who sought their lives. They had seen God’s miraculous and powerful hand at work on their behalf. Now they turned their attention and focus to praise Him for who He is and what He had done.
26. As you read the song of Moses and Israel, list all that they praised God for, including who He is and what He did.
27. What do you learn about Miriam in verses 20-21?
As you look at another perspective of this story of the Israelites, why did God deliver them (v. 8)?
How did the perspective of the sons of Israel differ in verses 7 and 12?
28. When do you find it easiest to praise God? When is it the hardest?
29. Why is it difficult to trust God and praise Him before He acts, but easy to praise Him afterwards?
30. What effect does praising God have on your heart in the midst of great times and difficult times?
Praise takes our focus off our circumstances and ourselves and places our focus on God.
Our praise is a pleasing fragrance and aroma to God.
Spend some time today praising and worshipping Him for who He is. Use what you listed from Exodus 15 to guide you through your time of praise. Perhaps praise Him with music and song.
This week we have looked at Moses as a strong leader who led the sons of Israel out of Egypt. We have seen him in the midst of a great victory, but we have also watched him deal with adverse circumstances. The sons of Israel were not an easy group to lead – yet Moses continued to seek God and obey Him.
High points and victories in life are exciting! We love to be on the mountaintops, but God doesn’t want us to stay there. For on the mountaintops, everything is wonderful and we love the Lord and praise Him; but we are not in need on the mountaintop. God has to bring us into the valleys to teach us, to build our character, to bring us to a place of dependence on Him. Valleys are where God is most reflected to others as we look to Him in the midst of our trials. We need both mountaintops and valleys in our lives.
There is no lecture to accompany this lesson.
Life is always full of challenges. Just when we think that everything is going smoothly and according to God’s plan, we are faced with a challenge, something that causes us to feel inadequate once again, something that causes us to seek His direction and strength. It didn’t take very long for God to give Moses and the sons of Israel some challenges that would stretch their faith and patience. This week we will look at some of those challenges and the way Moses faced them.
We ended last week with a high point in the lives of the sons of Israel and Moses. God had delivered them. They were free from bondage and ready for a new life in a new land. They were praising God and singing songs to Him…until there was a slight problem. There was no water to drink. Instead of continuing to praise God, they began to grumble. Today’s lesson is short but packed with truth that needs to be applied to our lives. Ask God to speak to your heart as you go to His Word.
1. How would bringing the sons of Israel to a place with no drinking water be a form of testing?
2. What was God trying to communicate to them in 15:26?
3. What was the purpose of God’s testing of Israel?
This section of Exodus is the description of the travels of the people from the Red (Reed) Sea to Mount Sinai, which was a three-month journey (19:1). The rest of Exodus describes God’s dealings with the Israelites during their encampment at Mount Sinai.
4. How would you define grumbling?
5. What causes someone to grumble? What is the root issue?
6. What is your typical response to adversity? Would people describe you as someone who grumbles?
In Philippians 2:14-16, what are some results of not grumbling and complaining?
In Exodus 15:26, God revealed Himself through another name, Yahweh-rophe, “I, the Lord, am your healer.” How do these verses encourage you to bring your problems and pain to your Healer, Yahweh-rophe?
God knows what your needs are and will provide in His way and in His timing.
If you have seen God provide and care for you in the past, why would you doubt that He would do it again?
How does adversity affect you? If you are currently facing a difficult situation, are you grumbling and complaining or trusting His hand? Think back to specific situations that were tough at the time, but in retrospect, you can see God’s hand in it for good. Thank Him for how He has worked in your life and trust His sovereignty as He continues to work in you today. Go to Him with your problems and allow Him to minister to you as Jehovah-rophe.
The people had only been in the wilderness for three days when they began grumbling at Marah. God heard their cries and provided for their needs. Today we will look at another situation in a new location that caused the sons of Israel to grumble and complain. God once again heard their cries and once again provided for their needs. Moses soon realized what type of attitude he was up against in leading these people. There would certainly be challenges ahead.
7. Where are they now, and how long had it been since they left Egypt (v. 1)?
8. Describe the attitude and perspective of the sons of Israel. How was their perspective distorted from the truth?
9. How did God test them here and how was it different from the testing in Exodus 15:25?
10. What are some possible reasons why God gave them such specific and detailed instructions concerning the manna?
The Hebrew word manna means “what?” – as if to say, “the what’s its name.”
The manna was “bread from heaven” (v. 4). It came six days each week and was absent on the Sabbath. Jesus presents manna as an antitype of Himself who is “the true bread out of heaven” (John 6:32-35). By a type is meant a picture or object lesson by which God taught His people concerning His grace and redemptive power (manna). An antitype is that which is represented by the type (Jesus).
Forty years later, as Moses gave a charge to the people, identify the different ways God was working in the lives of the sons of Israel in the wilderness.
Against what was Moses warning them?
In verse 16, Moses reminded them of the manna that God had fed them,“that He might humble you and that He might test you, to do good for you in the end.” How would the humbling and testing “do good” for them in the end?
11. What causes your perspective to become distorted?
12. Read James 1:2-4 concerning the value of testing in our lives. Give an example of how God has tested your faith and the effect it had on your spiritual growth.
It is in the difficult times that we see just how strong our faith is.
Can you see God’s hand in the difficult times?
Our grumbling and complaining do not please God. Our trust and obedience do.
How much of your day is spent grumbling and complaining? Do you tend to lose perspective in the midst of difficult times? Ask God to strengthen your faith, to keep your focus on Him and not on your circumstances.
The sons of Israel left the wilderness of Sin and camped in a new place called Rephidim. Once again, they were in need of water. Once again, they complained and grumbled. Are you beginning to see a trend in the attitude of the Israelites? Moses had to face one challenge after another with the sons of Israel, and it wouldn’t get any easier.
13. Describe the relationship between the sons of Israel and Moses at this time.
14. How did Moses respond to the situation? Had you been Moses, what would you have been feeling at this time?
15. Why did God use Moses each time He provided water (15:25; 17:5-6), instead of just bringing forth water on His own?
16. How were the sons of Israel “testing” the Lord (v. 7)?
This place was named Massah (Test) and Meribah (Quarrel) because of the quarrel of the sons of Israel, and because they tested the Lord (Ex 17:7). What other insights do you see from these passages?
17. How do you respond when you find yourself in need? What does your response show you about your faith and trust in God?
18. What effects do grumbling and complaining have on others around us, as well as on ourselves?
Several years ago, I went to Inner Mongolia with a group of Americans to study the Chinese language (Mandarin). However, when we arrived by train on that cold wintry morning, we were not prepared mentally or emotionally for the conditions we were to live in. There was running water, but no hot water; no showers; and only holes in the ground for “toilets,” which we shared with some resident rats. There was no electricity in the “bathroom” for the first week, which made for an interesting situation with the rats until we “disposed” of them. The dorm they placed us in had actually been condemned and they reopened it for us American students. I vividly remember the first hours in our new “home.” We all were wondering, “What have I gotten myself into? Can I handle this?” The first evening, we gathered together to pray and ask God for grace, to not only endure, but to be thankful for our situation and to trust God’s sovereignty in our circumstances.
We were only in Inner Mongolia for six months, but when it was time to leave, none of us wanted to go. We had decorated our dorm rooms to make the most of a “bleak” situation, and it had truly become home to us. I still look back on those months in Inner Mongolia with fond memories. We had decided as a group to focus on the positives and not dwell on the negatives. The result was that we came to appreciate and enjoy where God had placed us, to the point that we didn’t want to leave. I’m thankful we made the choice to not grumble and complain, but to trust God’s hand instead. What a difference it made in my life.
However, having told this story, I have to confess that sometimes, in adverse situations, I choose to grumble and complain. I can honestly say, though, that contentment comes from choosing to focus on the positives and not the negatives. My grumbling and complaining never accomplish anything, but trusting God and giving thanks in the midst of tough circumstances pleases Him and builds my faith and character.
God does not delight in a complaining, demanding spirit. He does delight in a heart that trusts Him in all situations.
When life gets tough, God wants us to turn to prayer instead of complaining.
Are you more prone to pray or complain in a tough situation? Take some time to be honest with God about your feelings. If you’re unhappy with a situation in your life, make a conscious decision to take it to God in prayer, instead of complaining and grumbling. Confess any complaining attitude you may have in your heart.
This has been a tough time for Moses in the wilderness. The people were hungry and thirsty and blamed Moses for their situation. They were constantly complaining and grumbling about something, and, yet, God always provided for their needs. Now a new challenge surfaced. Moses was faced with an enemy who wanted to destroy Israel. How would he handle this situation?
19. In what ways did Moses show leadership here?
20. Who were the men who helped Moses in this battle?
21. What are some possible reasons why God secured this victory in the unique manner that He did?
The staff of God was a symbol of power; holding it was a sign of dependence and trust in God.1
What observations can you make about the situation when Amalek attacked the Israelites?
What observations can you make about Amalek?
When are you most prone to attacks from the “enemy”?
22. In what ways do you show your dependence on God?
23. Who are some people in your life whom God has brought to work alongside you, to encourage you and strengthen you?
24. Are you more of a team player or “lone ranger”? What are the dangers of being a “lone ranger”?
God wants us to be dependent on Him and allow Him to work through us.
Know when it’s time to allow others to help you carry out your task.
Where are you in your spiritual journey? Are you feeling dependent on Him, knowing that He is the only One who can truly provide for all your needs? Do you have others in your life who walk alongside of you? If not, I encourage you to begin praying that God would bring some people into your life for that purpose.
Moses had his hands full as he led the sons of Israel in the wilderness. Just when he needed it, God brought someone to encourage and guide him, to help him be a better leader. He was willing to listen and implement the counsel he had received. As a result, he was able to focus on issues that were more important.
25. How did God use Jethro in Moses’ life to encourage him and help him in the leadership of the people?
26. What was Jethro concerned about with Moses?
27. List the qualities that Moses was to look for in the leaders he would choose (v. 21). Why were these qualities necessary for the task?
What do these verses have to say about counsel from others?
28. What are some warning signs that you are spreading yourself too thin and doing too much by yourself?
29. When is it hard for you to take counsel from others?
30. If you are trying to do too much, why are you? What are some other options for you? If you feel that you are balanced with your time and not doing too much, what are you doing that has helped you get to this point?
God places people in your life for a season and for a specific purpose. Let God use them in your life.
Beware of trying to do too many things and not focusing on what is priority. Learn to delegate.
Are you doing too much? Are you too busy with your life? What do you need to do to cut back? How well do you delegate?
Is there someone in your life to whom you go for counsel?
We all go through “wilderness” times in our lives. These are times that are dry and difficult; times that we find ourselves in need and even desperate, sometimes questioning what God is doing. I never enjoy the “wilderness” times while I am in the midst of them, but I realize that it is in those times, that my faith deepens and I find myself coming to the place of total and desperate dependence on Him. Don’t run from them, but embrace them. Let God draw you closer to Him during these times.
1 Hannah, The Bible Knowledge Commentary, 135.
Moses had successfully led the sons of Israel out of Egypt, but then had to deal with their grumbling and complaining. Their faith was weak in the God who had delivered them. They have been traveling for three months in the wilderness and finally have arrived at the wilderness of Sinai (19:1). This week we will focus on Moses’ relationship with God and the sons of Israel. How did he relate to them in different situations? Notice how his relationship with God becomes more intimate this week. We can learn much about our own relationships with God and others as we study these passages.
Today’s reading is lengthy, but it is important to lay the foundation for God’s relationship with His people and the role He had for Moses.
1. What was the condition of the covenant between God and Israel (v. 5)? If they met that condition, what was God’s promise to them (vv. 5-6)?
2. What was the role of Moses during this time?
3. How did God communicate to Moses and the people that He is holy?
Note: The order of the narrative appears to be different from the order of events, since 20:18 is most likely a continuation of 19:25.
4. How did the people respond to God and why?
Describe God’s presence on Mount Sinai from these verses.
In Exodus 20:19-20, what was God’s purpose in coming to them?
5. Define holiness. (You may want to use a dictionary or other study help.)
6. How does God’s holiness affect your relationship with Him?
7. How should we prepare ourselves for “meeting with God”?
God is a holy God. We are not to take that lightly.
Our “fear” of God should keep us from sin.
We have access to our holy God through our mediator Jesus Christ.
Is your heart right before God? If not, take a moment to confess any unconfessed sin.
Take some time today to reflect on God’s holiness. Worship Him and praise Him for His holiness.
Beginning in Exodus 20, Moses is on Mount Sinai, where God lays out for Moses and Israel His laws that they are to follow. He begins with the Ten Commandments in chapter 20, and then covers the laws of the “book of the covenant” through chapter 23. Chapter 24 continues the story from 20:21. Chapters 25-31 cover the instructions for the building of the tabernacle. The laws and instructions are an important part of Exodus, but because we are focusing on the life of Moses and not on the book of Exodus as a whole, we will not read this section.
Today we pick up the story at the end of Moses’ time with God on Mount Sinai. It is at this point that God instructs Moses to go back down because the people are out of control. Moses was on Mount Sinai with God for forty days and forty nights (Exodus 24:18).
8. Why might Moses’ absence cause the people to demand that Aaron make for them a god?
9. How did God respond to what the people had done (vv. 7-10)?
10. How did Moses argue for the defense of the people (vv. 11-14)?
11. What can you learn about Moses’ character from his decision to intercede for the people instead of agreeing with God to destroy them?
12. What makes God angry, based on this passage?
13. What is an idol? What causes idolatry (other than sin)?
14. What are some potential “idols” that people may be tempted to “worship” today?
As you look at another situation when God relented (changed His mind) from destroying a people, how did the Ninevites respond to Jonah’s declaration?
What caused God to relent or change His mind (v. 10)?
What do you learn about God’s character from these two situations in and Jonah?
What additional insights can you learn concerning God changing His mind from these passages?
God desires our undivided, wholehearted devotion. Are you wholly devoted to Him?
Are there any “idols” in your life, anything that you are “worshipping” other than God? Ask God to show you if there are. Yield your heart to Him today.
Do any of your actions make God angry? If so, confess them. Go to God with a repentant heart.
Be encouraged that God is a patient God and slow to anger. Meditate on Jonah 4:2, “You are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, and one who relents concerning calamity.”
Moses had just left God on Mount Sinai after pleading with God not to destroy the people for their sin. Yet, when he came back to the camp and witnessed what was going on with his own eyes, it must have been difficult for Moses to see firsthand. He could have given up on the people, gone back to God on Mount Sinai, and told Him to go ahead and destroy them… but he didn’t. Do you ever wonder why Moses didn’t just let God wipe out the people? We get a glimpse into the heart of Moses as we look at the way he dealt with the people and Aaron.
15. How did Aaron’s account to Moses in verses 21-24 differ from the actual account in verses 1-5? What can you learn about Aaron from this?
16. How did Moses respond to the people (vv. 19-20, 25-29)? What can you learn about Moses from this?
17. What exactly was Moses asking of God in verse 32? Why would he ask this?
18. What were the consequences of the people’s sin?
As you look at other versions of this event, list any new observations you gain from these passages.
What was the sin of the Israelites?
19. When you see sin in the lives of those around you, how does it affect you and how do you respond?
20. What motivates you to intercede and pray for someone in sin?
We should be intercessors for others who have sinned, even though our anger may tempt us not to pray for them.
Several years ago, I was in line to check my luggage at the Los Angeles Airport, getting ready to move to Asia for four years. All of a sudden, a young woman tapped on my shoulder and told me a man had just stolen my wallet out of my purse. I was sure she was mistaken, but as I looked down at my purse, it was unzipped and my wallet was gone. Because of the situation with my cash, credit cards, and luggage keys in the wallet, the airlines let me delay my departure. I was angry at first, and then burst into tears. As my friends returned from parking the car, I relayed to them what had just happened. As we drove back to where I had been staying, I suggested we pray together. I needed to calm my anxious heart and talk to God about the situation. As I began praying, God laid on my heart to pray for the person who took my wallet. God knew his situation. Perhaps he was in need of money for some difficult crisis in his life. I even prayed for his salvation, if he did not know Jesus Christ personally. After I finished praying, one of my friends said, “What was that all about? How in the world could you pray for someone who just robbed you? I can’t and won’t do it.”
To be honest, I was surprised at my ability to pray for someone who had wronged me, and I knew it was totally of God, not me. By praying for the one who had taken my wallet, I had a peace that God was in control and that somehow He would use this for good. He did. I was not meant to get on the plane that night. I didn’t have a peace in my heart about my assignment in Asia, but it was too late to change my mind. God intervened. By having my flight delayed for several days, I was able to share my feelings and reservations about this assignment with my leadership. As it turned out, another situation opened up for me in Asia that was a much better fit. Had I not been robbed, I would have gotten on that plane and gone to an assignment that I knew in my heart was not right for me. I could have been angry that night, wanting revenge and justice, but what would that have accomplished? Instead, God gave me the ability to trust Him in this situation and to pray for the person who was in the wrong. God taught me an important lesson that night about praying for others, especially those who are hard to pray for.
Are you a faithful intercessor for others, even for those who are disobedient? If not, what hinders you? Is there someone you need to be praying for specifically today?
God punished the people for their sin (Ex 32:35), but as you read today’s passage, you will see that God was still upset with the people. I am grateful that God is a merciful God and doesn’t give us what we deserve.
21. What was God’s plan for the Israelites at this point and how was He planning to be involved (vv. 33:1-6)?
22. What was Moses asking of God in verses 12-23?
23. What do Moses’ requests show you about his heart and relationship with God?
In Exodus 33:20, God said, “You cannot see My face, for no man can see Me
and live.” How do you reconcile that with Genesis 32:30, Exodus 24:9-11,
Exodus 33:11, Deuteronomy 34:10, and Isaiah 6:1-5?
24. How does knowing that God is with you affect your daily life?
25. If your relationship with God is not as intimate as it should be, what needs to change? What can you do to improve it?
God wants an intimate relationship with each one of us. Do you desire that intimacy with Him?
God’s presence is enough for us. Do you live as if it is?
Take some time to thank God for His love, for Jesus’ death on the cross for you, for the Holy Spirit who indwells you as a believer.
Spend some time alone with Him today and allow Him to speak to your heart. Don’t do all the talking. Be still. Be quiet and listen.
At this point in the book of Exodus, God renews the covenant with Israel. Moses returns to Mount Sinai, and God lays out for Moses the laws and regulations that the sons of Israel are to observe. God gives specific details to Moses concerning the building of the Tabernacle, and the book of Exodus ends with the glory of the Lord in the Tabernacle.
However, the end of Exodus is not the end of the story of Moses. We pick up the story in Numbers 10:11: “Now in the second year, in the second month, on the twentieth of the month, the cloud was lifted from over the tabernacle of the testimony; and the sons of Israel set out on their journeys from the wilderness of Sinai. Then the cloud settled down in the wilderness of Paran. So they moved out for the first time according to the commandment of the Lord through Moses.”
Now they begin their wanderings in the wilderness after Mount Sinai. They journeyed for three days (Numbers 10:33), and then the Ark of the Covenant came to a resting place. How will the people respond now? How will Moses deal with the people in this new place, away from Mount Sinai?
26. Describe the attitude of the Israelites in verses 1-6.
27. Describe Moses’ perspective of the situation (vv. 10-15, 21-22).
28. What had he lost sight of?
This psalm recites the early history of the nation of Israel in order to warn future generations against a repetition of unfaithfulness. As you look at the section in which Asaph recalls their provocation of God in their wilderness wanderings, list all that is said about the Israelites.
What was their sin and how was it manifested?
29. How can you determine if your desires are God-given or selfish desires?
30. What are some possible causes of “forgetting” who God is and what He can do?
31. In what areas do you struggle with trusting God? Why are those areas hard?
God wants us to focus on Him and not on ourselves. He often places us in overwhelming situations to show us that we are inadequate and He is sufficient to meet our needs.
God’s power is not limited. Our lives and attitudes should reflect that we believe there is nothing too difficult for Him.
Take some time today and ask God to show you if you are questioning His power and greatness in any way.
In your journal, make a list of ways you have seen God work beyond your expectations. Praise Him and thank Him for the ways He works in your life.
This week as we have looked at some of the relationships in Moses’ life, think about the relationships that God has placed in your life. How has God used even the tough relationships? How has your relationship with Him grown more intimate over time?
Moses’ relationship with God had definitely grown deeper since that day in the desert at Mt. Sinai when God appeared to him in a burning bush. Moses was placed in life situations that caused him to rely completely on God. It is in those dependent times on Him that we see our relationship with Him deepen. Thank Him for those times. Thank Him for the relationships He has placed in your life, even the tough ones.
It is impossible to study adequately the life of Moses in a short eight weeks. Yet, we can get an overall picture of his life as we look at certain situations and key events. We ended last week with the sons of Israel camped out three days journey from Sinai. It had been a year since they left Egypt, yet they appeared to have not grown very much in their relationship with God since the exodus. They were still complaining about the “wonderful food” they had in Egypt, complaining about how much better off they were in Egypt, and continually complaining about Moses and Aaron. Moses was God’s chosen leader, but that didn’t mean that life would always go smoothly for Moses. God has shown us His great patience as He chose not to destroy the obstinate and stubborn sons of Israel. Moses had interceded for them repeatedly, and God always listened and answered Moses’ requests and prayers.
We will spend this final week studying sections of Numbers and Deuteronomy, looking at some major events in the life of Moses as he neared the end of his earthly journey. We all have those times in our lives that we will not forget because of their impact on us. Some are good memories; others are ones we’d like to forget. Yet, God uses everything, even the negative events, in our lives for a purpose.
Miriam, Aaron, and Moses had gone through much together. Miriam is presumably the older sister who watched and protected Moses when he was placed into the Nile as a newborn baby. Aaron had been Moses’ friend and partner, as well as brother, as they followed God’s calling on their lives. However, today we will look at a situation in which there was family conflict among them. Sometimes, the ones we are closest to can hurt us the most deeply.
1. What was the stated issue of the conflict between Miriam, Aaron, and Moses (v. 1)? What was the root issue (v. 2)?
Moses’ wife Zipporah may be referred to here; if so, the term “Cushite” is used in contempt of her Midianite ancestry. It is more likely that the reference is to a new wife taken by Moses, perhaps after the death of his first wife.
2. How was Moses and his relationship with God described here (vv. 3, 7-8)?
3. What do you learn about Moses from the way he dealt with this situation?
Why would Miriam and Aaron’s sin (12:11) have caused the anger of the Lord to burn against them?
As you look at a situation that preceded, and perhaps precipitated, the murmuring of Aaron and Miriam, contrast the perspective of Joshua with that of Moses.
4. How do you respond when someone complains or “murmurs” about you?
5. How do you recognize humility in someone?
6. What are some reasons why we may complain about someone? What should we do instead of complaining?
Humility is a quality that prevents us from “lording” it over anyone or avenging a wrong done to us.
We are not only to pray for those who are easy to pray for, but also for those who have wronged us.
Ask God to search your heart and show you if humility is lacking. If so, confess your pride.
Is there someone who has wronged you or spoken unkindly about you for whom you need to pray? Ask God for the grace and love to pray for that person.
Is there someone about whom you have spoken unkindly? If so, confess it. If necessary, go to that person and ask forgiveness. Ask God to allow you to see others through His perspective.
God has placed some wonderful people in my life over the years, people who have loved me, encouraged me, and helped me persevere on my journey of faith. He has also placed some relationships in my life that have been extremely difficult and painful at times. He has used those relationships to “sharpen” me, to help develop my character, to make me dependent on Him, as I fall short in loving (and liking) others. I don’t enjoy working through those difficult relationships, having to confront someone, or asking forgiveness when I’ve spoken out of line. Yet, God uses those times for a purpose. I can’t always see the reason in the midst of it, but I can look back on a number of difficult relationships and see how God used them for good in my life.
The sons of Israel were camped at Kadesh-barnea when Moses sent 12 men to spy out the land of Canaan. Only two of the 12 spies, Caleb and Joshua, came back with a positive report, and the people chose instead to believe the negative reports. Moses once again had his hands full with the disobedient Israelites.
7. What was the perspective of the 10 spies who brought back a negative report (13:27-29, 31-33)?
8. What was the perspective of Joshua and Caleb (13:30; 14:6-9)?
9. All 12 spies saw the same land and people. Why were their perspectives so different?
10. Describe the attitude of the Israelites in Numbers 14:1-10.
As you look at another telling of this event by Moses, how did the people view God in this situation?
How did Moses describe God’s relationship with the sons of Israel (vv. 30-33)?
11. Why is it often easier to focus on the negatives in overwhelming situations instead of focusing on God and the positives?
12. What helps you to look at a tough situation from God’s perspective?
13. What can cause someone to stop trusting God after seeing God’s faithfulness repeatedly?
Regardless of the obstacles we may face in life, we must continue to trust God and His faithfulness.
God is greater than any fear or “giant” we may face. Keep your focus on Him, not your fears.
What are the “giants” in your life that are keeping you from moving forward with God in obedience? Give those fears to Him. Thank Him for His faithfulness to you and for His great power to accomplish whatever He desires.
List specific ways you have seen God’s faithfulness in your life over the past few months.
The Israelites let fear keep them from going in and taking the land God had promised them. The result of their disobedience was that none of that generation would go into the promised land, other than Caleb and Joshua (Deut 1:34-40). The price of disobedience carries a hefty price tag. We need to consider seriously the consequences of our disobedience and lack of trust in God.
We now turn our attention to the beginning of Israel’s last year in the wilderness. It had been 40 years since the exodus out of Egypt, and this was a new generation: the children of the rebellious generation that Moses brought out of Egypt. We find them now in the wilderness of Zin. Numbers 20 begins with the death of Miriam and ends with the death of Aaron. In between the two is the tragic sin of Moses at Meribah. Notice that this new generation complained about the same things that their parents did. Today we will look at a specific situation in Moses’ life in which he disobeyed God and the results were extremely costly for him.
14. What were God’s specific instructions to Moses in verse 8? What did Moses do in verse 11?
15. How would you describe the attitude of Moses based on the words he spoke in verse 10?
16. How was Moses’ action indicative of not believing and treating God as holy?
Why was Aaron included in the punishment of not bringing the people into the land even though it was Moses, not him, who struck the rock and spoke?
What additional insights do you see from these passages?
17. What are some examples of how we do not revere God as a holy God today?
18. What are some ways we rationalize our sin and disobedience?
19. What does our disobedience reveal about our attitude toward God?
God wants us to revere Him as a holy God. Does your life reflect that?
Our disobedience has consequences. Have you counted the cost of disobedience?
As you reflect on this lesson, is there a past sin that has changed the course of your life? What were some of the consequences? You may want to spend some time journaling your thoughts to God.
Ask Him to reveal any disobedience in your life today. Confess it. Thank God for His forgiveness. Thank Him that He is a gracious and loving God who can still work in and through us if our hearts are right before Him.
Moses had the heart of a shepherd, always caring for and looking out for the Israelites. Now he asked God to appoint someone after him who would carry on the task of leading the people. Joshua was the likely choice. It is never wasted time to invest in someone’s life and help prepare that person for what God has called him/her to do.
20. What was Moses’ concern for the people and how did he pray?
21. As you look at other passages concerning Joshua, why was he a good choice to lead the people after Moses?
How old was Moses now?
What did Moses emphasize about God’s character in order to encourage Joshua and the sons of Israel?
22. What qualities make a good leader?
23. What are some specific ways that you can invest in and build into those that God has placed in your life?
24. How would you rate yourself as a “shepherd” of others? How can you improve?
We should always be building into someone’s life in some way regardless of our life stage. It will look different for each one of us.
Spending time with people, allowing them to see how you live life, is a crucial part of discipleship and mentoring.
Thank Him for those He has placed in your life to disciple and equip you, including your parents.
Thank Him for those He has placed in your life for you to build into, including your children. Pray for them and their relationship with God.
Meditate on the characteristics of God in Deuteronomy 31:1-8.
Moses was 120 years old when he died. Yes, he made some mistakes in his life, but he was still used greatly by God. Today we will look at how he finished the “course” God had chosen for him. When Moses gave his charge to the people and to Joshua, he could have been bitter because he was not allowed to lead the people into the land, but he wasn’t. The journey of faith for Moses was soon to end. It was now time for him to close the “book” on his earthly life.
25. How did Moses describe his interaction with God and God’s response concerning the issue of crossing over into the land?
26. What are some possible reasons why God did not change His mind and allow Moses to enter the land?
27. How was Moses’ life described in this passage?
How did Moses’ choices in verses 24-26 exhibit faith?
What was the reward he was looking to in verse 26?
28. What characteristics would describe a life lived by faith and not by sight?
29. What would be a potential area in your life that could tempt you not to finish strong in your walk with God?
God forgives our sin, but we still must live with the consequences of our sin.
Our spiritual journey may begin strong, but there may be obstacles throughout our lives that attempt to trip us up. Beginning strong doesn’t necessarily guarantee a strong finish.
Take some time to evaluate your spiritual journey. Where are you in your relationship with God? Are you right where He wants you, being obedient to what He has asked you to do at this time of your life? Are you struggling with your walk with Him? Are there some obstacles that are holding you back from being all that He wants you to be? Spend some time with Him, thanking Him for where He has you, asking Him to direct you step by step. Ask Him to protect you from the enemy and the enemy’s methods to get you off God’s path.
Each of us has our own journey of faith that God has sovereignly planned for us. Enjoy your journey, whether you are just starting out, right in the middle of it, or beginning to wind down your “earthly journey.” As you can see from the life of Moses, a life of faith is never boring or dull. We are expected to trust God in the greatest of times and in the darkest of times; in the midst of victories and in the midst of failures; in the times of deep loneliness and despair and in the times of great fellowship and intimacy with God and others.
Life is never certain, but one thing we can always depend on to be true – God is faithful to His children. He loves us, and because He loves us, He challenges us to grow deeper in our faith and relationship with Him. Sometimes, He must allow us to go through painful and difficult times in order to bring about an end result far better than we could ever have imagined. Sometimes He must discipline us when we step out of line in disobedience. At times, we find ourselves enjoying the thrill of the mountaintop. Other times, we experience the depth of the valley. Wherever He takes us, He has our journey of faith mapped out. We don’t need to know what’s around the next corner, but we just need to take one step at a time, allowing Him to guide us.
As you continue your journey of faith, keep your focus on the One who goes before you, with you, and behind you… all the way home.
Barker, Kenneth L. et al. Zondervan NASB Study Bible. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1999.
Constable, Thomas. "Exodus." Online: http://www.soniclight.com/constable/notes/pdf/exodus.pdf.
Hannah, John. D. “Exodus.” In The Bible Knowledge Commentary, vol. 1, ed. John Walvoord and R. B. Zuck, 103-162. Wheaton: Victor Books, 1985.
Johnson, Elliott. "Notes on Exodus." Unpublished class notes in BE 102 Old Testament History I. Dallas Theological Seminary, Spring 2004.
MacDonald, William. Believer's Bible Commentary. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 1995.
Merrill, Eugene H. Kingdom of Priests: A History of Old Testament Israel. Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 1996.
Ryrie, Charles Caldwell. Ryrie Study Bible : New American Standard Bible, 1995 Update. Expanded ed. Chicago: Moody Press, 1995.
Swindoll, Charles R. Moses: A Man of Selfless Dedication. Plano, TX: Insight for Living, 2002.
Wiersbe, Warren W. The Bible Exposition Commentary: Pentateuch. Colorado Springs, CO: Victor/Cook Communications, 2001.
Zodhiates, Spiros. NASB Hebrew-Greek Key Word Study Bible. Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 1990.
Zondervan Compact Bible Dictionary. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.