Published on
December 14, 2023

Exodus 33

“Moses said to the Lord, ‘Look, You have told me, “Lead this people up”, but You have not let me know whom You will send with me. You said, “I know you by name...”

Author Photo
Steve Wiggins
Author Photo
Steve Wiggins
Read Time
4 minutes
Exodus 33
“Moses said to the Lord, ‘Look, You have told me, “Lead this people up,” but You have not let me know whom You will send with me. You said, “I know you by name, and you have also found favor in My sight.” Now if I have indeed found favor in Your sight, please teach me Your ways, and I will know You and find favor in Your sight. Now consider that this nation is Your people.’”  Exodus 33:12-13 (HCSB)

Mother Teresa said, ‘You’ll never know Jesus is all you need until Jesus is all you have. Moses understood the importance of going with God. He had seen the destruction of Pharaoh’s army and the judgment of Israel when they denied the Lord.  Moses wanted to know God’s ways, but he could never have predicted God’s methods of instruction…bonding His people to Himself (and each other) by means of shared adversity.

For Moses & Israel, the next several decades would be a constant stream of faith-stretching trials. Why would the Lord choose this method of character building instead of lavishing abundance & prosperity upon His children?

Perhaps the answer is found in Moses’ discussion with God. Similar to their conversation at the burning bush, Moses seems to have difficulty taking God at His Word. Even though God told Moses He would be with him (and after all the miracles experienced in Egypt), Moses still sought signs.

It is said in business, “Speed of the leader, speed of the team.” That is to say, if Moses had faith problems, there was no way Israel would be all-in to follow him. Faith is a muscle that must be exercised. It takes desire, discipline, and time to grow.

A young man once came to the philosopher Socrates, searching for wisdom. Socrates was sitting beside a river, so the young man sat beside him. ‘I want you to teach me to be wise,’ he said. Without warning, Socrates grasped the young man by the neck and thrust his head under the water. The man struggled and flailed until Socrates finally let him up. As he gasped for air, Socrates said, ‘When you seek wisdom as you sought air, you’ll have it.’”

God gives His Word and Spirit to reveal His nature & ways to His children. He is gentle and kind but wise enough sometimes to thrust us into the water! Our life experience, stressed by the manner of His testing, filtered through His Word revealed, is what builds our faith. Ready for some faith stretching today?

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you experience various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. But endurance must do its complete work, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking nothing.”  James 1:2-4 (HCSB)

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