Passage of the week:
Moses and the Burning Bush
1 Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. 2 There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. 3 So Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.” 4When the Lord saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!” And Moses said, “Here I am.” 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. 7The 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. 8 So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey—the home of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. 9 And now the cry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have seen the way the Egyptians are oppressing them. 10So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt.” 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.” 13 Moses said to God, “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?” 14 God said to Moses, “I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I am has sent me to you.’” 15 God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has sent me to you.’
“This is my name forever, the name you shall call me from generation to generation.
– Exodus 3:1-15
The passage this week is a famous one that speaks to many different themes. While we don’t see slavery in our modern world in the same way as it was back in ancient Egypt, we do still see significant oppression in our world. The world has been shaken with all the injustice we’re seeing towards the black community and part of me wishes that God would show himself explicitly in the way he did in the days of Moses. While he may not speak to us anymore through physical burning bushes, he does still work within us and through us to alleviate the bondage our brothers and sisters are facing. We can see it in the faces of all those standing up to fight against injustice and I believe it all starts with us accepting God’s calling.
When we hear God’s calling, I think we all have the natural reaction Moses did in asking, “Who am I to be used for your will God? What and who could I possibly influence as an individual?”. Imagine a world where people like Martin Luther King Jr. had not marched or stood up because of the fear of their own limitations and inadequacies? As God speaks to in this passage, He will give us the strength, the voice, the stage, and will turn the ears of the oppressors. We simply need to trust in who God is and have faith that He will finish the good work He has started in all of us.