Two powerful themes stand out to me in this third chapter of Exodus. One is the holiness of God and the second is God’s continued compassion for His people.
5 “Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” 6 Then he said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.” At this, Moses hid his face, because he was afraid to look at God.
This scripture always strikes me as an extremely important reminder of the holiness of God and the importance of recognizing it and considering if our actions adequately reflect that recognition. Are our hearts and minds in the right place when we go before God in prayer or worship?
The second theme of God’s continued compassion for His people jumps out at me in verse 7:
7 The Lord said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering.”
God chooses to hear our cries and to care about our suffering. I have been through a very difficult season the past few years that has been punctuated by many great losses. For this reason, reading those words in verse 7 takes on a whole new meaning. There is power in being reminded that He is listening and that He cares so very deeply.
Not only does He care about our suffering, but He also understands our insecurities and the challenges they can present for us.
11 But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?”
12 And God said, “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.”
Questions for Reflection and Discussion
- In what ways might you need to “take your sandals off” before God so that you can properly acknowledge His holiness?
- When you encounter hard seasons in life, what are some ways that you can be reminded that God hears you and cares about your suffering?
- How might God be calling you to help others who are stuck in suffering? How can you bring God’s words, power and compassion to them?
Tomorrow we will read Exodus 4.