“But Moses said to the Lord, ‘If the Israelites will not listen to me, why would Pharaoh listen to me, since I speak with faltering lips?’” (Exodus 6:12)
Moses was a great man of faith. Yet, when you read the story of God’s calling of Moses to lead the nation of Israel, you find that he was a man of faltering faith, at least at the beginning of his call. Intimidated by the significance of his calling, Moses says to God: “Please send someone else” (Exodus 4:13).
After receiving reassurance from God, Moses embarks on his God-given mission and heads to Egypt. He likely expects Pharaoh to submit to his demands since he was sent by God. But 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” (Exodus 5:2). Pharaoh then treats the Israelites ever more harshly, and they turn on Moses. He appeals to them but Exodus 6:9 tells us: “they did not listen to him because of their discouragement and harsh labor.”
God then tells Moses to go back to Pharaoh and Moses responds with the words of today’s focal verse: “If the Israelites will not listen to me, why would Pharaoh listen to me, since I speak with faltering lips?” Moses was not suffering from faltering lips; he was suffering from faltering faith.
I believe the Bible records this example of faltering faith by such a great leader as Moses because God wants us to know that faith is formative. It doesn’t come naturally to us. It develops as our relationship and experience with the Lord increase; and as our dependence on Him increases. And that may be the most important lesson of all. As his faith grew, his dependence on God and His word grew and prevented Moses from the error of thinking that it was his own ingenuity or strength that led to his success.
Question: Is your faltering faith becoming growing faith as you learn to depend on God and His word?
Challenge: Read the story of Moses in the book of Exodus and note how his faith falters and develops.
Prayer: Lord, increase my faith as I learn to depend on you.
Dan Kinnaman, Chapel Leader -- Norwich Sea Unicorns