In this text we find Moses who is in the middle of an identity crisis. He was once a prince in Egypt and is now a shepherd for someone else’s flock. He is watching over his flock, minding his own business and suddenly he encounters a burning bush. It is important to understand that this Scripture is not about the bush.
This story is about an all knowing, all powerful, always present God that has chosen to come to a shepherd in the wilderness.
It is about God speaking truth into someone’s life, not based on their position, but based on God’s person. There was a not so special place for shepherds in that day. They were not allowed to stay in the inns or eat in the village cafés because of their lowly occupation, yet God sought out Moses to represent Him.
In verse 4, God calls out to Moses from this burning bush that was not consumed by the fire that engulfed it. In verse 5, God tells Moses to remove his shoes. Again, this was not about the place, but more about the presence of God.
When we consider that fire often represented the presence of God and that Moses was told to take off his shoes because he was on holy ground, we must come to the obvious conclusion that God is ever present in any circumstance.
This is especially comforting to me at this moment in my own life journey. I had been asked to do this Sunday School series before my wife Nancy was unexpectedly diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in the last 10 days.
I am writing this lesson while sitting in the ICU unit watching my wife recover from a very difficult Whipple surgery. Our future is unsure, but as we prayed before her surgery, our God is worthy of our trust. His name represents His person and we have cried out His name on Nancy’s behalf many times in the last number of days.
In verses 9-12 we see the God who hears the cry of His people. Once again, what a comfort that we serve a God that hears and answers prayer. In verse 12 God declares, “I will certainly be with you.”
What an amazing parallel to what Jesus said in Matthew 28:19. Jesus told His followers, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations.”
Chuck Swindoll states it this way “As you are going and making disciples, I am always with you.” God told Moses to go and be his spokesperson and that he would certainly go with him and that he would eventually bring God’s people back to this very mountain to worship the one true God. In verse 14, God tells Moses to say, “I AM has sent me to you.”
We go as ambassadors of Christ believing that there is no other name given to people by which we are saved. As a former missionary with the IMB, it was one of my greatest joys to see people that had been delivered from spiritual captivity experience the joy of worshiping the one true God. B&R