Exodus 6: Who Is This About?

When last we left Moses, his mission to free the people from Egypt was falling apart. This caused him to ask some pretty tough questions of God.

Why have you mistreated the people?
Why did you ever send me?

In Exodus 6, God answers.

A Different Question

God’s reply to Moses contains the first person “I” 17 times. And none of those include a direct answer to the questions. Apparently God does not feel the need to explain himself.

Here is a list of all 17 I’s.

  1. You shall see what I will do to Pharaoh.
  2. I am the LORD
  3. I appeared to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
  4. By my name “The LORD” I did not make myself known
  5. I also established my covenant with them
  6. I have also heard the groaning of the Israelites.
  7. I have remembered my covenant
  8. I am the LORD
  9. I will free you from the burdens of the Egyptians
  10. I will redeem you
  11. I will take you as my people
  12. I will be your God
  13. I am the LORD
  14. I will bring you into the land
  15. that I swore to give to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
  16. I will give it to you for a possession
  17. I am the LORD

The answer seems to be: I made a promise and I intend to keep it. I am the LORD.

The question that answers? Who are you and what are you going to do?

But, But, But.

Sorry Moses, I’ve been counting. And since God started talking to you, you have countered him with a “but” seven times by the end of chapter 6.

I get it. I would be doing the same thing. All you’ve seen him do are little parlor tricks. A burning bush, a magic snake, a healing hand, and water that turns into blood aren’t going to get these people out of their chains.

You aren’t any closer to the freedom and the Promised Land. In fact, things have taken a turn for the worse since you showed up.

I wonder though: Who is this story about? You only have 7 buts to God’s 17 I’s. And I’m not even counting stuff he said in other chapters.

So maybe you, and me, and all of us really, need to start remembering whose story this really is.


What are some “buts” you are giving the “I” of the story?

4 responses

  1. I love this. (I also love the idea of this blog…it’s inspiring. And the posts are the perfect length and content. I’ve been reading these more diligently than my email devotionals lately. Keep ’em coming.)

  2. All the plagues of Egypt are natural phenomena that happen to this very day, the miracle of it is in the timing. Moses was a mere man confront by the God of all Creation. Honestly, would you want to go to Qadaffi and say let my people go? Moses was a man first and the leader of the Exodus second.

    Maybe we should give Moses a break, but it does record that God became angry with Moses and said, your brother Aaron will speak for you.

  3. This story resonates with me because so often I make my life all about me. My dreams, my blog, my desires, my skillz, my, my, my, my….the list could go on and on. But if God’s favor doesn’t rest on any of these things then they’re worthless and hold absolutely no meaning or power.

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