I can only imagine how Moses was feeling coming out of Exodus chapter 5. We know that God has called Moses to deliver the Israelites from slavery so he confronts Pharaoh speaking on behalf of the Lord. And what happens? Pharaoh has no regard for what Moses has said and in fact, he makes life worse for God’s people. Moses clearly feels defeated and returns to the Lord and says to Him, “Why, Lord, why have you brought trouble on this people? Is this why you sent me? Ever since I went to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has brought trouble on this people, and you have not rescued your people and all.”
Then, chapter 6 happens, and it feels like dad is done playing games.
Verse 1 reads “Then the Lord said to Moses, “Now you will see what I will do to Pharaoh: Because of my mighty hand he will let them go; because of my mighty hand he will drive them out of his county.” Then verses 3-5 the Lord continues telling Moses, “I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob as God Almighty, but by name the Lord I did not make myself fully known to them. I also established my covenant with them to give them the land of Canaan, where they resided as foreigners. Moreover, I have heard the groaning of the Israelites, whom the Egyptians are enslaving, and I have remembered my covenant.”
God gives Moses a message to pass along to the Israelites to let them know that help is on the way, but they are so discouraged that they won’t hear it from him. Then the Lord tells Moses to go to Pharaoh again, and Moses, like many of us, is full of doubt. He asks the Lord in verse 12, “If the Israelites will not listen to me, why would Pharaoh listen to me, since I speak with faltering lips?”
As the story continues, God sends Moses and Aaron to Pharaoh with a message, and knowing how Pharaoh will react, God provides further instruction to prove the He is who He says He is. The events in chapter 7 usher in ten plagues that eventually bring to fruition God’s promise to deliver the Israelites from slavery in Egypt.
Chapters 6 and 7 offer several lessons that are applicable to us today, but I want to point to two that stuck out to me.
First one is that we must understand that we can do nothing apart from the power of the Lord. Moses doubted in his own ability to carry out what God had already set in motion for him. But, he obeyed and through God’s hand Moses pushes forward and eventually, we see the Israelites freed from captivity.
The second takeaway is the same as yesterday, today, and will be the same tomorrow. God’s plan will always prevail. No matter how full of doubt we can be, or who tries to derail what God is doing, He will win.