God's Intent to Liberate
Exodus 2:23-25; 3:10-15; 4:10-17
You know the phrase, "you can never go home"? Moses has lived a lifetime away from Egypt when God calls him "home." Moses is a completely different person, a family of his own, a fully formed business of his own. He has built a life away from Egypt. He must've been asking, "Can I/ How can I leave this and go back to that place?"
But none of that is in the text, none of the reason why Moses was where he was, none of the background with Pharaoh, none of the dual citizenship that Moses lived with in his heart. If we were to read these sections of the text on their own merit, we would see five characters:
The bulk of the story is about Moses' reticence to go. I want to focus on this reluctant character, his fear, his backstory, his uncertainty, his inability to do that which God has asked him to do. I want to think about Moses' reunion with his distant brother Pharaoh or focus on Moses' relationship with Aaron, his other brother. It's a rich story made for the big screen, whether the classic "Ten Commandments" or the cartoon version "The Prince of Egypt." I'm drawn to Moses as the hero.
But what of the people? And what of God? It is the people who initiate the story with their cries for liberation. And it is God who sets the story in motion by hearing their cries for liberation. The story is about liberation. The text that we have here is Act One, Scene One - in which God hears the people, calls Moses and employs Aaron to help.
I don't need to go onto Scene Two or Three just yet because I wonder if God is seeking to enter other stories of freedom in my world today. Is God hearing cries of others, cries for liberation, for redemption, for freedom? And if so, who is God calling, who is God employing to help those called?
And what is the nature of the people's cries that have risen to God? Where is there slavery? Political? Social? Economical? Emotional? Physical? Financial? Racial? Domestic?
It appears that God's intention is set. Moses does not appear to have the option to pass on his calling. Aaron isn't even in the conversation directly. And although I believe the story is about the people and about God's intent to liberate, I imagine the end of Scene One has Moses clinging heavily on his staff. After all, God has instructed him to bring it with him, this one piece of his current life, his chosen career, the symbol of who he has become.
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