EXODUS 4:1-5:21 | MATTHEW 18:1-20 | PSALM 22:19-31 | PROVERBS 5:15-21
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Moses has a half-dozen excuses to offer when God tells him to go back to Egypt and be the leader of the people of Israel to bring them out of slavery. God listens to each of his excuses and proposes a number of miraculous signs to aid him. But Moses persists, stating his stammer to be yet another reason for his inability to speak to the Pharaoh.
And God says to him, “Who gave man his mouth? Who makes him deaf or mute? Who gives him sight or makes him blind? Is it not I, the LORD? 12 Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say.”
But still, Moses does not believe. That Moses was one tough cookie! And so, God relents and tells him to go and recruit Aaron, his brother for the task.
So Moses does just that. In due time, Moses and Aaron go down to Pharaoh and ask him to let the Hebrew people go. And Pharaoh says, “Who is the LORD, that I should obey him and let Israel go? I do not know the LORD and I will not let Israel go.”
So, as it turns out, the plight of the people is made worse by all this, and they find that they are being worked harder and longer, and with no hope in sight. It is to be seen how all this might turn out. Methinks it might be a while before Pharaoh lets the people go!
In the meantime, continuing in our reading of Matthew, we find Jesus continues with his ministry of teaching and preaching. Among other things, he speaks to the significance of each and every single person. So great is the love and concern for each soul, that he gives an example to illustrate this truth.
Jesus says: 12 “What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off? 13 And if he finds it, I tell you the truth, he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety-nine that did not wander off. 14 In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should be lost.
Isn’t that the most amazing thought — to think that you might be that one sheep that has wandered off, and God comes out looking for you, just for you, because YOU matter to him!
So great is the love that God has for each one of us. He cares for our spiritual lives just as much as he cares for our physical beings. Jesus encourages his disciples in this by telling them, 19 “Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.”
That is a most comforting promise!
Next, we turn to the Psalms, and find that David’s psalm for the day is one of praise. With conviction he says:
22 I will declare your name to my brothers;
in the congregation I will praise you.
Finally, Solomon seems to echo the sentiment of the readings of the day in this verse:
21 For a man’s ways are in full view of the LORD,
and he examines all his paths.
May God bless the reading and reflection of His Word. Amen.