The Five Excuses of Moses

There are many beautiful examples, from the lives of Biblical charters to which we can relate and take away practical application. Moses is, perhaps one of the greatest leaders of the Children of Israel. There are many great things he did for God and Israel that we can reflect on; however, it is the not the great stuff I want to think about, it is the excuses he made to God when God first called him to lead the Children of Israel out of Egypt.

Today, I want to look at five excuses Moses gave God. In this reflection, I will comment on whether or not Moses had valid reasons for his excuse or if he were only trying to avoid responsibility. I also want to think about this with an honest heart and ask myself how many times have I made these same excuses to God.

The first excuse is found in Exodus 3:11, “But Moses said to God, ‘Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt’” (NIV)? Perhaps this is a valid statement more than an excuse. Moses is revealing something about his heart attitude, and maybe part of the reason God chose Moses. Moses is saying; I am not qualified for this task, I cannot perform this task. But God assures him, “‘I will be with you. And this will be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain’” (3:12, NIV). I believe God is telling Moses that He will qualify him for the job He is asking Moses to perform. I am convinced at this juncture Moses is without an excuse.

Before moving on, how many times has God called us to do something, and we have handed Him every excuse in the book not to do what He is asking all because we feel we are unqualified? Seldom does God ask us to do what is comfortable, often God’s call takes one outside one’s comfort zone.

There is an old expression that states, “God doesn’t call the qualified, rather, He qualifies the called.” I believe God calls un-qualified people, so they will remain dependent on His ability and not their ability.

The next excuse Moses makes is, “’Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them’” (3:13, NIV)? God has already given Moses the assurance the He is with him and guiding him. I think at this point Moses is trying to avoid responsibility, but he continues with his third excuse to God, “‘What if they do not believe me or listen to me and say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you’” (4:1, NIV)?

Suppose they doubt me; suppose they do not believe me. Moses was making me-centered excuses. We do this when we take our focus off God and His greatness. Remember, when God asks you to do something, and someone doubts or does not believe He has asked you, that person is ultimately questioning God, not you. We will talk about this more next time.

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