Have Thine Own Way, Lord

Alec Motyer

READ : Exodus 4:1-31

I will be with your mouth. (vv. 12, 15)

The Lord gave Moses a divine command to return to Egypt and speak to Pharaoh (3:10). Moses’ objections were all very human: I’m not adequate (3:11), knowledgeable (3:13), effective (4:1), gifted (4:10), the right person (4:13). And the Lord never contradicts him. It is as if the Lord says, “Of course you’re not adequate, knowledgeable, effective, etc. I’ve known that from the start! But you are my man for the job.”

The Lord knows what he is doing and will not be denied. The merely human response to the call of God is, “I can’t, so I won’t.” The obedience of faith says, “I can’t, but he can. So I will.”

We are told three further truths about Moses’ return to Egypt. First (vv. 18-20), that though he knew he was to go back (v. 18), he waited for the Lord to reveal the right moment before he set out (v. 19). Second (vv. 24-26), the servant of the Lord must be careful about personal obedience. Moses had been neglectful of the law of circumcision; he will not be allowed to proceed till that is put right. (Zipporah’s words in verse 25 mean, “This circumcision has restored you as a bridegroom to me.”) Third (vv. 27-31), absolute fidelity to the word of the Lord achieves results.


“Blessed are you, O Lord; teach my your statutes.” (Psalm 119:12)