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Moses- A Man of Many Failures (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston
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August 26, 2022 6:00 am

Moses- A Man of Many Failures (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston

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August 26, 2022 6:00 am

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God decided that Moses was going to herd sheep in the very region through which he was destined to lead the Jewish people. See, that's how God is. God put Moses to work. For 40 years he was learning those deserts because 40 years later he would be leading those slaves to their freedom through that very land that he was working in. God always knows what he's doing.

We just fail to trust him. This is Cross-Reference Radio with our pastor and teacher Rick Gaston. Rick is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville. Pastor Rick is currently teaching through the book of Genesis.

Please stay with us after today's message to hear more information about Cross-Reference Radio, specifically how you can get a free copy of this teaching. And now here's Pastor Rick with part two of his study called Moses, a man of many failures in Exodus chapter two. I pray to God that I could have a greater heart for his people and less for myself. You see, it shows up for yourself when you begin to defend yourself. And as a pastor, of course, being the victim of much, if I'm telling the story, of falsity and hearsay and things that are just wrong, and from people who are often guilty, you know, the tendency is to defend yourself by maybe attacking them or pointing out things or just not having a burdened heart. And it has been my prayer that God would give me a shepherd's heart and that I would keep a shepherd's heart and not have such a response. Well, a story's like this where we get the notice to be this way. You're not going to find that in Islam.

You're not going to have one of them say, I need to have a heart for those who attack me, my enemies. You're not going to find it anywhere else properly balanced than in the scripture. There are other attempts at it, but it's always clumsy because it has fragmented itself from the scripture.

And so another failure in this act of murder that he committed was that he failed to cover up the crime. As we're told, his personal wrath, it flamed out. That was his way of delivering God's people, but it wasn't God's way to deliver his people. We see by this event, look at verse 13 of Exodus chapter 2. And when he went out the second day, behold, two Hebrew men were fighting and he said to the one who did the wrong, why are you striking your companion? And he said, who made you a prince and a judge over us?

Do you intend to kill me as you killed the Egyptians? So Moses feared and said, surely this thing is known. Moses found out contrary to the proverb, a kind word turns back wrath, that a kind word does not always turn back wrath. He was trying to check the wrath of his fellow Hebrew on another brother, Hebrew, and he turned on him. And the big thing is that the man probably says it out loud. And when he blurts it out, Moses, oh man, this is going to hit the grapevine, the proverbial grapevine.

Everybody's going to find out about this. Pharaoh's going to put that down. They cannot let a Hebrew kill an Egyptian and get away with it unless an uprising be on their hands. And that's why Moses, his flight was so urgent. Stephen tells us this in Acts chapter 7, verses 23 and 25. He says, now when he was 40 years old, it came into his heart to visit his brethren, the children of Israel. That was the good plan, a good intention. It was misguided though, because it was not under the authority of God. It was under the authority of I'm going to do something good. I'm going to be the hero of the day.

I am an Egyptian educated Jew. If no one else is in the place, I'm the only one that can do this, the Tigger mentality. I'm the only one. Stephen continues, for he supposed that his brethren would have understood that God would deliver them by his hand, but they did not understand. That was the case with Stephen himself.

Stephen supposed that the Jews would listen to his sermon and receive Jesus as the fulfillment of the Messiah. They did not. They did kill Stephen. They did not get to kill Moses. And so again, they knew that this bold act of violence, if successful and not put down, would excite a slave uprising, and they did not want it. And Moses knew it, and this was a serious failure.

And so in his own strength, he could not successfully cover up a botched attempt to deliver his people. And so he runs, he flees. Verse 15, when Moses heard of this matter, when Pharaoh heard of this matter, pardon me, he sought to kill Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh and dwelt in the land of Midian, and he sat down by a well.

There's our text. He flees, and he arrives in Midian, and he sits down at this well. What mood do you think he was in when he finally arrives there and plants himself? Was he depressed? I think he was.

I think he felt awful. Or was he saying, I only am left as a friend of the oppressed, and they seek my life to take it. That was what Elijah would say many years later. Elijah would say, I'm the only one, Lord, that stands for you. Moses was feeling the same way, no doubt.

God checked it in both of them, but he verbalizes it with Elijah. He says, I've got 7,000 others than you who've not bowed their knee to bow. You're not the only one. We're never the only one. God has his remnant. We're never. Self-importance is not a virtue. It is not a virtue, in Christian or otherwise.

God is the one that lends us importance because he is perfect, not us. And so, in what should have been the prime of his life, he became a 40-year failure. At 40 years of age, he's running for his life. He's a fugitive. He's living in the desert. He's managing another man's property.

He's a complete failure. Acts chapter 7, Stephen makes this remark, Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians and was mighty in words and deeds. And now it's all wasted.

Now it is all useless. All of this Egyptian education at the universities, nothing wrong with being educated except when you make it something that it's not in the hands of God. And all of that education in university did not prepare him to do God's work in the desert.

That's the story. And so, God decided that Moses was going to herd sheep in the very region through which he was destined to lead the Jewish people. See, that's how God is. God put Moses to work.

For 40 years, he was learning those deserts because 40 years later, he would be leading those slaves to their freedom through that very land that he was working in. God always knows what he's doing. We just fail to trust him. Not all the time. Faith is doable.

It's not one of these things we just beat up on the Christians. You know, we're miserable, we're all failures. Well, we have our moments for sure. And those moments are very serious because if we don't get past them, we can crash and burn. That is a fact of life. But we should not.

There's no reason why we should. Jesus expects us to prevail because he will be with us. He will tell this man, Moses, three times, he says, I will be with you. I will be with your mouth.

I will be with your mouth. Moses had a hard time accepting that as we do also. But yet in the midst of all this, his heart remained true to the God of Abraham.

He didn't backslide. He did not fail, and that's it for me and God. Hebrews chapter three, verse two, it says this of Moses, Moses also was faithful in all his house. And then verse five, and Moses indeed was faithful in all his house as a servant for a testimony of those things which would be spoken afterward.

He lived his life as a part of the process of revelation of Jesus Christ. That's the idea of Hebrews chapter three. Never was there anything but a child of Abraham in his own heart.

In spite of all the Egyptian influences, he clung to who he was as a child of Abraham by faith. And so Hebrews 11, verse 24, by faith Moses, when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter, choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, esteeming the reproach of Christ greater than the treasures in Egypt, for he looked to the reward. That is with God. Now pause here because listen to what it says, esteeming the reproach of Christ greater than the treasures in Egypt.

But that was 1600 years before Christ was born in the manger. The deity of Jesus Christ is pronounced here. That Jesus and Jehovah or Yahweh is the same person.

God the son is Jesus Christ who is the creator of the universe. We get that in John chapter one, we get it in Colossians chapter one, we get it in Hebrews chapter one, and just the three main places in the New Testament where it is clearly stated. And so here we have God taking care of his servant and Moses, unbeknownst to him, being ministered to by God, and that makes us pause and say, okay, what about me? What about when I feel God's passing me by taking too much time?

What is my role under such circumstances? Trust God. That's what it is. Exodus chapter 14, we read about the man later who he had become after God began to use him to deliver his people. And listen to this, it says, Moses said to the people, this is when the Egyptian army was coming after them, it was the army in back of them, the sea in front of them, they had nowhere to go. It was a moment of total faith. Total faith means if God doesn't do something, you perish. That's total faith.

You can't put yourself in that spot. God has to do it and God has to get us out when he does do it. And that's where the Jews were. Moses said to the people, do not be afraid, stand still, see the salvation of the Lord which he will accomplish for you today, for the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall see again no more forever. That's what's going to happen at death or rapture, whichever comes. No more tears, no more evil, gone forever.

And as I mentioned earlier, on that day, Egypt lost her slaves, her army, and her status as a world power and she's never gotten it back and she never will. God is true. And this is why we're tracking a man like Moses for our own service. Moses also failed to go at his own calling alone. God called, see his own calling. God called Moses, the story is in Exodus chapter 4.

I'm not going to take time to go at it because, oh, we've got a little time, so maybe I will. Exodus chapter 4 verse 10. Then Moses said to the Lord after the Lord has called him, oh my Lord, I am not eloquent neither before nor since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and slow of tongue. Moses is trying to wiggle out of being a servant. We see this in the church.

We see people try to wiggle. They take the same application 20 times. They just never submit it.

Can't pull the trigger. They know what right is. They just don't want to trust God. We understand that.

We're not attacking them for that. It's a fact. It's how it is. It's in scripture too.

You're not alone. What are you going to do with that though? So the Lord said to him, who has made man's mouth? Well, who makes the mute, the deaf, the seen, or the blind? Have not I the Lord?

The idea of sovereignty, not cruelty. God is saying, I am sovereign. My thoughts above your thoughts, my ways above your ways.

You'll find out later if you stick with me. Verse 12, now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall say. Jesus says that to the church.

Verse 13, but he said, oh my Lord, he's backpedaling again. Please send by the hand of whomever else you may send. Send anybody but me. Anyone.

Just don't send me. So the anger of the Lord was kindled against Moses. And all the angels said, ooh. And he said, is not Aaron the Levite your brother? I know that he can speak well.

And what does that tell us? God's been listening to Aaron. That means God hears everything we say. He continues, and look, he is also coming out to meet you. When he sees you, he will be glad in his heart. Now you shall speak to him and put the words in his mouth, and I will be with your mouth.

The second time he says he'll be with his mouth. Prior to this, oh, I don't know, in chapter, oh, chapter 3, verse 12, he says, I will certainly be with you. So God is reinforcing Moses, helping him along to trust. And he says, he continues in chapter 4, verse 15, I will be with your mouth and with his mouth, and I will teach you what you shall do. So he shall be your spokesman to the people, and he himself shall be as a mouth for you, and you shall be to him as God, as his type, not assuming the state of being, of essence. Verse 17, you shall take his rod in your hand with which you shall do the signs. And so God kind of settles it then, but Moses, who wrote this record here in Exodus 4, he was sensing God was getting a little impatient with him. And none of us like Superior to be impatient with us if we are in the inferior position, especially when it is God. And so he failed to go at his own calling, but he went anyway.

And again, we know the end of the story. Something else Moses failed at was to control his own anger. James tells us in his letter, the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God. Yeah, brother, tell that to Moses. In addition to killing the Egyptian, he shattered the tablets of the law when the people shattered the spirit of the law. You remember, Moses was on the mountain with God, receiving the written word on tablets of stone.

He took a long time, too long for the impatience of the people. They began to riot, and they wanted to party, and they said to Aaron, you know, make us gods that we can say, hey, these brought us out. This is Jehovah that brought us out of Egypt. And Aaron did so, and when Moses came down, he saw the people dancing and having a good time in their sin, and he lost it.

And he threw the tablets down, and they broke. Incidentally, when it was time for God to redo them, God, instead of providing the tablets, said Moses, you get your own tablets and bring them up, and I'll write on them. This is a whole sermon in that, too. The ways of God. They are always true.

They are always right. Exodus 32, and so it was, verse 19, as soon as he came near the camp, that he saw the calf and the dancing. So Moses' anger became hot, and he cast the tablets out of his hands and broke them at the foot of the mountain. His anger became hot.

You say, but that's righteous indignation. Yeah, but we know enough about the man to know this was also just who he was, what he struggled with, because in addition to shattering the tablets, he struck the rock in the presence of the people in wrath, and that misrepresented the mood of God which he was entrusted with as their leader. Numbers, chapter 20, verses 11 and 12. Then Moses lifted his hand and struck the rock twice with his rod, and water came out abundantly, and the congregation and their animals drank. Then the Lord, then the Lord spoke to Moses and said, Moses and Aaron, because you did not believe me and hallowed me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this assembly into the land which I have given them. They provoked Moses, and he lost his cool, and God dealt with Moses.

He blessed his, I'm going to bless the message that you give from the pulpit, but I'm going to deal with your heart later. And he severely dealt with it, and it's quite a lesson there, we'll move on, we'll capture more, we've got five minutes left. And so again, he failed to control his anger, and because of that, he was not, and his brother, were not permitted to go into the promised land at that time. Moses had hoped to enter that land himself at the head of these free people, these two million plus people. He could see himself leading them across the Jordan, into the promised land, and God took it from him. That is what was going on. That's not exactly what happened, but that's what was going on.

He said, well what do you mean it wasn't what happened? Well, Moses did not bear resentment towards God. He will appeal to God, he'll fail with that appeal also. He spent 40 years, the best 50 years of his life, in an effort to bring those people in. Now, my head agrees with Moses. Those people, he should have struck the people, not the rock.

That's what I read when I see the story, that's my head. But in my heart, God is right. God is always right. And it's up to me to get lined up with God. And I know Moses, you're wrong. And I don't side with him.

I try to avoid, I have suffered a similar, much less in severity, but similar chest-tizing from the Lord also. And so this failed opportunity is gone. The leader disqualified.

The leader, the one who is supposed to show the way, blows it in front of everybody and writes it into the story. We have to learn to watch our mouths when it comes to God's appointed leaders. Don't you be quick criticizing them. Let's God deal with you. That's part of the lesson. He's disqualified. But who is prepared to stand up and say, yeah, Moses, you deserved it.

I wouldn't. That's between him and God. God's right, that's it for me.

Powerful lessons. As I mentioned, and we won't go into Deuteronomy chapter 3, he failed in his appeal and God said, don't bring this up again. So Moses does bring it up again.

He failed to stay dead. That's also what Moses is guilty of in an abstract twist to the story. Sixteen hundred years later, we see him actually in the promised land. He and Elijah. You see, Moses, the lawgiver, could not bring the people into the land because the law does not bring freedom.

That's the idea. Joshua, whose name means salvation, who is, the name, Yah'shua is the Hebrew version of the Greek, Esos, which is the transliter, in the English, transliterated into Jesus. Jesus is the one that brings us in to the promised land flowing with milk and honey, the land of peace we know as heaven. Now, the promised land is not a type of heaven in its true sense because there was war in that land and there will be no war in heaven when we are there at the end of the age.

The law could not bring Moses into the land. Jesus brought him in. That's the idea of the mount of transfiguration in Matthew's gospel, chapter 17, when Moses and Elijah are standing on the mount of transfiguration with Jesus and Peter and James and John. The idea is that Jesus brings him in, not the law. Moses in type represents, when he is on the mount of transfiguration with Jesus, he represents those saints who have died and are raised from the dead. Elijah represents those saints who are raptured. That's part of the typology that belongs to the story of Moses in the promised land with Elijah. And in the end, in Revelation 15, we see the persecuted, the martyred saints, singing the song of Moses. This man of many failures is a dynamo for God. He shows up from Genesis, the writing of the story of Genesis, right to the end of the book, the library, that is, the book of the Bible in Revelation. No one can dispute that God made this man the man that we should hold in high esteem.

And I want to just close with these thoughts. He represents the sacrifices of faith and the victories of faith that go with it. There's no sacrifice in faith that's wasted.

We think it is because we don't see the results all the time. We may not even see them in our own lifetime. God sees them. And if God did not have people to work through, there would be none. There would be no beneficiaries of the goodness of God. When we would sing, God is so good, who would be listening?

Who would be there to sing it in the end? One of the last actions of Moses was the execution of divine judgment. Numbers chapter 31 verse 2, take vengeance on the Midianites for the children of Israel. Afterward, you should be gathered to your people. After you deal with this sin, you are coming home. He finished business. That's the idea. Everything that he was assigned to do, he did.

Now listen to this. When Aaron, his brother, died, the scripture tells us that Moses and Eleazar, Aaron's son, went up on Mount Hor with him and stripped him of his vestments and there Aaron died and was buried. Moses, when it came time for him to die, the Lord takes him atop of Mount Nebo. And there with the Lord he is shown all the promised land from Dan in the north to Beersheba in the south, to the farthest parts to where the Mediterranean Sea touches the shore. He was shown all the land and then he died on that mountain and God buried him somewhere in Pisgah, that mountain range in the valley. To this day, from the mountain Jerusalem where the temple stood, you can see Mount Nebo. It's there in the horizon.

You can't miss it. It's a constant reminder. It is the shadow of what God did through Moses, of who God is to his people. So when God decided, here on Mount Moriah, I will establish my name and this city shall be called the City of Peace, Jerusalem. From that place, you will see with Moses where Moses was when I took him home.

A constant reminder of what God does for his people. You've been listening to Cross Reference Radio, the daily radio ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel in Mechanicsville, Virginia. Pastor Rick is teaching from God's word each time you tune in.

As we mentioned at the beginning of today's broadcast, this teaching is available free of charge at our website. Just visit That's We'd also like to encourage you to subscribe to the Cross Reference Radio podcast. Subscribing ensures that you stay current with all the latest teachings from Pastor Rick. You can do so at or search for Cross Reference Radio in your favorite podcast app store. That's all for today. Join Pastor Rick next time for more character studies right here on Cross Reference Radio.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-05 18:47:39 / 2023-03-05 18:57:11 / 10

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