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May 19, 2011

The Prayer Life of Moses

Exodus 4:9

Part Four

The Power To Change

“But if they will not believe even those two signs or heed what you say, then you shall take some water from the Nile and pour it on the dry ground; and the water which you take from the Nile will become blood on the dry ground.”

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God has promised Moses that his life will change dramatically.  God has delivered the message to go to Egypt, and God will use Moses to break the oppression of His people, and plunder the Egyptians.  Now Moses gets powers from God to support the message from God. 

       Overcoming the Doubts of Others.  When you intend to lift people from their oppression, and break the grip of someone holding another person in oppression, you better expect opposition and unbelief.  Moses asked just such a question of God: “What if they will not believe me or listen to me?” (Exodus 4:1).  So, you may expect that change will never come easy because often opponents will try to maintain their grip of oppression.  You will always need supernatural, divine power to overcome oppression.  Simple will power will never be enough to bring you close to God and out of oppression.  God gave Moses three specific signs Moses could perform to overcome doubters.  God may not give you the same signs today, but God will provide supernatural power for you to accomplish His will and overcome doubts.

       Grasping Serpents.  God told Moses to throw his staff to the ground and it became a serpent.  Moses fled from it.  But then the Lord said something very interesting to Moses: “Stretch out your hand and grasp it by its tail . . .” (Exodus 4:3-4).  Moses had to put all of his faith in the words of God.  Anytime you stretch out your hand towards a snake you must be very careful.  In this case, God gave Moses instructions.  God does not call us to be snake handlers today, but He does expect us to use faith to trust His words will be true.  In these two verses, we see the power of God activated by faith.  Each of us should be careful to activate the power of God by faith, that is, to trust God to perform miracles designed to deliver us from oppression in our lives.  He will act with supernatural power, as we trust Him to change us first and then deliver others.  Notice the express purpose of the miracle is that “they may believe that the LORD, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God Jacob, has appeared to you.”  If you read these words carefully, you see that this miracle was to confirm the spiritual credentials of Moses to the people of Israel.  They must first believe God had sent him to help them before Moses will confront Pharaoh.  The people must no longer view Moses as a murderer and a man of privilege from Pharaoh, but rather as the servant of God sent to lead them out of the grasp of Pharaoh.  But first, they must know God had sent Moses to them.  So we see that the people held in oppression will not just welcome anyone who comes to help them.  First, they must understand that God sent you to help them.

       Hand of Leprosy.  God also gave Moses a second sign.  He put his hand into his bosom and it came out leprous.  Then God commanded him to do it again, and it came out restored and normal (Exodus 4:8).  God understands and knows that people will not be convinced easily, but will have strong doubts.  Never give up when people would rather cling to their doubts, than trust God to deliver them.  Often they will require proof from God, and then more proof.

       Water to Blood.  God also gave Moses a third sign.  God commanded Moses to take some water from the Nile river, and pour it on the ground.  It will then become blood on the ground (Exodus 4:9).  Because Moses had no Nile water available in the wilderness around Mt. Horeb, he had to take this sign on faith from God.  But wait, each of the signs related directly to the faith and obedience of Moses.  Moses had to believe God would do the signs by His divine power and that those signs would work when Moses needed them.  To tell people God sent you is one thing, but it is another thing altogether when you support that claim with supernatural power.  O.k., I can hear you saying, well this is a good Moses story, but how does it relate to us today?  The same principles apply today.  If you intend to go on a mission for God today, you must believe that God will supply all the supernatural power you need to fulfill that mission. If that mission includes delivering other people from oppression, then God will show them that they should listen to you because you will talk to them about God.  You will not be on your own mission, but on God’s mission.  When God sends you, He will also empower you.  To activate that power, you must believe God will work in you and the oppressed to overcome all the adversaries to deliverance.  You must first believe in the supernatural power of God to change you first, and then God will use you to help others overcome their oppression.  It starts with you praying and listening to God, seeing His power in your life, and then believing God will use His power to deliver other people, even skeptics who will doubt you and your message from God.

            So we learn more about the prayer life of Moses.

       ●  God empowered Moses to confirm to the oppressed that God had heard the cries of oppression and He intend to set them free.  Freedom starts always with prayer and faith in the power of God to change and deliver.  God has set people free from the oppression of sin since the beginning of the world, and He continues that ministry of life today.

       ●  God required Moses to believe in Him and expect God to protect him and direct him.  Moses had to count upon God to perform the signs, because Moses had no special power to do anything.

       ●  God told Moses to use supernatural power to overcome the doubts of the oppressed.  They will not be glad to see you and embrace you, but you have a message from God for them, and the power of God to confirm the message.  God has proclaimed freedom to the captives in Egypt, and the Lord Jesus Christ proclaims freedom today.  All hail the power of Jesus Christ today!

Application for Today

        Yahweh always works supernaturally in our lives.  In that sense, He performs miracles of all sorts in our lives today.  Jesus loves the people who have lost touch with the world, and hidden themselves in the wilderness.  He loves to forgive you and restore you to fellowship with Him so that He can send you to help others held in the grip of oppression.  Jesus has empowered you today to overcome your sinful problems, and also to send you to help others.  It will require you to believe that Jesus has the power, and never give up on believing Jesus to do His will, even when you meet opposition.  You will never expect the oppressed to change instantly.  You must believe that God will change them, and you first must believe God’s power to change you.  Will you believe in the power of God at work in your life today?