SERIES ON MOSES
NUMBER ONE - HIS BIRTH AND CHILDHOOD
Reading: Exodus 1:22-2:10
[a] I think if things continue as they are, weíll soon see Santa as a summer holiday attraction - you know, "GET YOUR PHOTO TAKEN IN YOUR BATHING COSTUME ON THE BEACH WITH SANTA!"
[b] However, for the Christian, in amongst all the commercialism, the flurry, the rush and the celebrations - THERE IS ONE SINGLE DOMINANT THOUGHT - THE BIRTH OF A BABY FOR THE DELIVERANCE OF MANKIND!
[c] How often, as a parent, I have looked at my own children, especially as I held them as little babies, wondering what life might hold for them.
This of course, was especially true at the time of their dedications, when we gave them back to God.
[d] Often a baby is responsible for drawing together a couple whose relationship has become a little strained.
i.††††††††† After all, in Godís plan of things, a baby is the culmination, the end product of deep love between two people.
ii.††††††††† Often rifts in families have been healed through the emergence of a grandchild.
[e] It surely is an emotional pauper who cannot feel love for a very young child!
i.††††††††† I suppose this is one of the reasons that recent famine appeals have been so successful - the moving pictures of young children, whose lives have barely begun, suffering and dying of hunger, while it is well within our power to do something to help.
[f] The Scriptural story we read takes place at a time of great turmoil, distress and tribulation in the Israelite nation! Not only were they in slavery, but, on the direct orders of Pharaoh, the numbers were to be controlled, and Israel was to be ĎCULLEDí by the slaughter of all the baby boys. They were to be drowned like unwanted kittens! Obviously, in the eyes of the Egyptians, they were little more than animals of burden.
PROVIDENCE AND PRESERVATION
[a] But in amongst all the chaos, we can now see in retrospect, the long term plan of God being worked out! We can never take one event in isolation!
[b] God, Who can always see the end from the beginning, is planning, and commencing, through this little bundle of love, the deliverance of the whole nation of Israel!
[c] Sometimes, we find it difficult to comprehend that God has a plan for every one of our lives.
Perhaps we feel that we frustrate His plans so often, and hurt Him by our lack of faith and trust in His guiding hand in our lives!
Bernard Gilpen, sentenced in the reign of Queen Mary Tudar to die for his faith, repeated each morning and night of his imprisonment, "We know that all things work together for good to them that love God." On his way to execution, he fell and broke his leg, and was sent back to prison, moaning in pain. The jailer mocked him with his text. "Ah" said Gilpen, "itís true all the same." And sure enough it was, for while he lay in hospital, Queen Mary died, and Elizabeth ascended to the throne, and Gilpen was set free!
[e] Iím sure when Miriam saw her baby brother being found by Pharaohís daughter, her heart skipped a beat. She must have been very worried until she saw the favourable attitude towards the little one!
i.††††††††† But what a wonderful little lassie she was, for as soon as she saw the opportunity, she dived straight in - "Iíll get you one of the Hebrew women as a nurse!"
ii.††††††††† So Moses was brought up, NURSED BY HIS OWN MOTHER, and yet with all
the ADVANTAGES OF A PRINCE, and his mother GOT PAID FOR AT AS WELL!
Isnít God wonderful!!! Hallelujah!!
Miriam must have been a bright girl - after all later on we read she played the TIMBREL or tambourine!!
iii. Mosesí upbringing, his Egyptian training and schooling was fitting him perfectly for the task which lay ahead.
In fact without such a grounding, it is almost impossible to see how he could have fulfilled his appointed task of leading his REAL PEOPLE to DELIVERANCE!
iv.†††††††† It is also most questionable, how much Israelite history, and indeed BIBLICAL HISTORY would have been recorded, had it not been for the privileged education of Moses!
Remember, he was to LEAD A GROSSLY UNDERPRIVILEGED NATION OF SLAVES!
His superior education and royal upbringing, earned him their respect!
[f] I think as we look, we can see the wonderful plan of God beginning to take shape.
i.††††††††† But let us remember that also to bring it about, God was using the ungodly daughter of Pharaoh.
ii.††††††††† God doesnít always work through the ways that you and I expect!
Provided we donít interfere with Godís plan, He uses all sorts of people and events to bring it to fruition.
PARENTAGE AND PREPARATION
[a] At Christmas, we thought of the way in which God preserved the Baby Jesus, through dreams to the wise men, and to Joseph. So too, Moses was preserved, as God softened the heart of Pharaohís daughter towards this little Hebrew Baby, which she thought she had found by accident.
[b] But we know better, because we know that this was the first step in Godís carefully planned deliverance of His people Israel!
[c] Moses was literally adopted into Egyptís Royal Family, with all the inside knowledge and experience this would give.
[d] Little did they realise that this was Godís little TIME-BOMB, which would one day explode in the deliverance of His people from their evil taskmasters!
[e] Growing up in the court of Pharaoh, was teaching him how to deal with rulers of other countries and the protocol to follow. Unknown to Moses, this would be an important feature of his life in the future years. He would also learn HOW TO RULE AND CONTROL A NATION HIMSELF!
[f] He was no doubt brought up to THINK like an Egyptian, and was therefore able to know how they would react in many different circumstances, especially under the provocation of their SLAVE NATION seeking itís freedom!
PARALLEL AND PURPOSE
[a] Often the Scripture has striking parallels to the plan of Salvation as seen in Christ!
Abraham offering up Isaac.
Jonah 3 days in the whaleís belly,
David the Shepherd King,
Joseph - rejected by his brethren, only to become their ruler.
[b] Bible theologians call such parallels, ĎTYPESí OF CHRIST!
[c] We must constantly remember that the whole of the Old Testament is geared to LOOKING FORWARD to the COMING MESSIAH!
[d] We all go through experiences of life where we say, "I feel Iíve lived through this before!"
[e] As we have thought in recent days of the Christmas story - I think we can see striking similarities to the story of the baby Moses!
i. All through the world people have been uplifting the Name of Jesus and singing, "BORN HIS PEOPLE TO DELIVER." But I wonder did you ever stop to think, that in a lesser way, the same could be said of MOSES!
A little baby, not in a manger in a stable, but in a wicker basket in the bulrushes at the riverside.
ii. There he hides because Pharaoh is murdering all the baby boys of the Hebrews!
iii. Whilst in the New Testament, Herod the King is practising his own brand of INFANTICIDE for a totally different reason.
Let us remember that the Baby Jesus had to be hidden also.
[f] Itís easy for us to look at the actions of Pharaoh or Herod and throw up our arms in horror, crying "HOW AWFUL! HOW BARBARIC!"
i.††††††††† But wait a moment, the horror fades into insignificance in the light of the THOUSANDS OF BABIES MURDERED IN OUR OWN COUNTRY THIS PAST YEAR, UNDER THE PRETENTIOUSLY RESPECTABLE NAME OF ABORTION!!!
ii.††††††††† No arc in the bulrushes for them, the poor little mites are not even allowed to be born!
iii. LIFE HAS BECOME AT LEAST AS CHEAP IF NOT CHEAPER IN OUR OWN MODERN ĎCIVILISEDí SOCIETY!
iv.†††††††† Had it been as cheap in the days when you and I were born, some of us may not have been here tonight to consider it!!
EVERY UNBORN CHILD HAS THE SAME RIGHT TO EXIST TODAY, AS HAD BABY MOSES, HIDDEN IN THE BULRUSHES ALL THOSE YEARS AGO!!
[a] Through the little baby Moses, was to come about the deliverance of the nation of Israel from slavery!
[b] Out of that same nation came our Redeemer, the Lord Jesus Christ!! Through Him was to come the availability of Salvation for the whole world!
[c] Godís plan is a perfect and wonderful thing - ARE YOU ALLOWING IT TO WORK WITHOUT HINDRANCE IN YOUR OWN LIFE!!
[d] Sometimes maybe we feel that our part in the plan of God, doesnít seem terribly important!
Maybe we feel, someone else can do it if we fail!
[e] What would have happened if Miriam had not done her little bit in looking after the baby Moses and suggesting her mother as a nurse for him?? GODíS PLAN COULD NOT HAVE PROCEEDED!!!
[f] Are YOU doing your bit in Godís plan??
[g] Maybe as yet you have not been willing to accept and acknowledge Godís plan for your life - and to hand your life over to Him in faith!
[h] When we are saved, we offer God our life and ask Him to come in and take over, and work out His plan through us! Is that the way itís working, or is there something which needs to be put right just now?
Prayer chorus no 99
7 in Happiness and Harmony
16 in Happiness and Harmony