Moses’s Excuses, Exodus 3:10-11

Exodus 3:1-10- Come now therefore, and I will send thee unto Pharaoh, that thou mayest bring forth my people the children of Israel out of Egypt.  Exodus 3:11- “And Moses said unto God, Who am I, that I should go unto Pharaoh, and that I should bring forth the children of Israel out of Egypt?” Here we see the first of Moses’s excuses.

Introduction:  Moses was called by God to lead God’s children from Egypt unto the promised land, the land flowing with milk and honey. There is no doubt that as you look at the life of Moses that you can see that he was faithful to God, that he was a great leader, that he had great courage to face Pharaoh, and that he had a great faith toward God and fear of God. Those things are very evident however, at the same time, you cannot miss the excuses that Moses made to God called him. 

Last Sunday we heard testimonies from teenagers. There are many teenagers and adults alike that attend teen conference, missions conference, retreats, that have been called by God to do something specific and for what ever reason, they make excuses. I hope we can see the life of Moses and his excuses and be helped with our own specific calling and the excuses that we may be inclined to make.  

Moses made excuses regarding his calling by: 

  1. Questioning God’s Choice- Exodus 3:11- “And Moses said unto God, Who am I, that I should go unto Pharaoh, and that I should bring forth the children of Israel out of Egypt?” Moses here essentially questioned himself and his calling of God.  Illustration: I have met many a teenager that have received a calling from the Lord and completely ignored it because they didn’t believe God could possibly use them specifically. What can make you question God’s calling in your life? Your past and your future. 

A. Your Past- Exodus 2:11-12 “he slew the Egyptian”. 

Moses may have quickly looked back at the person he had been and possibly thought to himself of how unqualified he was. The same is true for many of us today. If it weren’t by God’s grace, long-suffering, and mercy in our lives, we too would have nothing to offer God. The great thing is that God has forgiven and forgotten our wretched past and even better, God doesn’t repent that he called us to do something, even after we mess up. Rom 11:29- “the gifts and calling of God are without repentance” Numbers 23:19- God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?”.  

B. Your Future- Exodus 2:15 “Now when Pharaoh heard this thing, he sought to slay Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh, and dwelt in the land of Midian: and he sat down by a well. 

Later on God made a way for Moses to get back to Egypt. Exodus 4:19– “return into Egypt: for all the men are dead which sought thy life”. 

“Who am I, that I should bring forth the children of Israel out of Egypt”? 

-Perhaps Moses may have quickly seen ahead regarding this great task and thought about how impossible it may have seemed. Perhaps you believe that God has called you to do something specific and you see your future without certain things there. Perhaps you might see that you will have to leave your friends to follow Christ or sell everything or how much work it will take to accomplish such calling. These are all just excuses.

ILLUSTRATION: Friend called to Missouri to Pastor- “Hardest things to do and yet it was the Easiest things to do because that is where God wanted him”. 

II. By Questioning The Response of People- Exodus 4:1- “But, behold, they will not believe me, nor harken unto my voice: for they will say, The LORD hath not appeared unto thee.” 

  1. Will Not Believe- Moses was already looking unto the future and assuming that the children of God would not believe that it was truly of God. One of the worse things that a believer can do is assume that other people will not believe you when you open the bible and share with them. It is not our job to think or assume that people will believe or not believe, we are simply to go and do what God commands us to do. 

Jeremiah 1:6-8– “will not believe, I’m too young”. 

  1. Will Not Harken- {Harken- to listen or give respectful attention.} To assume that people will not listen to God’s Holy Word is a mistake. 1. Who are we to place a limit on God’s power? 2. Who are we to assume that God cannot change people of their ways? Even in today’s wicked world, we still see God at work all around us. Just think about those around you getting saved and getting right with God. God is still working on people, your family, co-workers, etc, they are listening. 

God has placed you where you are so that you can be a witness and testimony of Jesus to them. 

Later on in Exodus 4:29-31, after Moses doubted, it tuns out that “the people believed”. Moses was wrong in assuming that they would not believe or harken and he was wrong in predicting that they would not believe or harken. 

III. By questioning with Questions- Exodus 3:13- “And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them. The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them?”

A. Good Questions- “What is his name?” That’s a good question anyone would want to ask God, the answer is in verses 14-15. However, Moses already knew the answer to that question. In Verse 6 Moses is told directly from God who He is and in Verse 15, there is a similar description of God. It is possible that Moses was just asking God questions in order to stall the inevitable. 

B. Bad Questions- Questions to God that are insincere are bad questions. It is possible that Moses asked God the previous question from a sincere heart however, if a person is insincere in asking God questions, there may be a hidden purpose and or agenda.

Sometimes people will ask questions to talk themselves out of something that God has called them to do. 

Notice the response of God in Exodus 4:14- “and the anger of the Lord was kindled”. God had called Moses and it was time for Moses to just go and do as God had said, no questions, no stalling. 

When God first calls there are a lot of questions that a person might have, not all questions have to be answered in order to do and go where God has called you. With time, as you continue to do what God is showing you to do, that calling will become clear and plain. As you commune with God like Moses did, “face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend”. 

You mean I have to leave the comfort of my home/country/friends? 

You mean I have to leave my career/change my career plan? 

I don’t know if that’s what it means for you BUT the best place you want to be is where God wants you to be. 

IV. Questioning God’s Equipping- Exodus 4:10-12- “I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant: but I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue.” “have not I the LORD?”. “Now therefore go.”  Here’s another of Moses’s excuses.

ILLUSTRATION: My Calling- When I was called to preach I soon realized that preaching was hard work. This led me to search for a Bible College to learn the Bible and later on to get to the point where I am today. 

1 Corinthians 1:26-For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called;I find it interesting that God calls imperfect people who have a desire to serve Him and devote themselves to God. 1 Corinthians 1:27– But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; People who have it all together and are perfect in speech, education, family, etc, USUALLY have no need for God.

When God calls, He will Teach- Exodus 14:15- “and I will be with thy mouth, and with his mouth, and will teach you what ye shall do”.   Stay in the Bible constantly and he will teach you personally on a daily basis. I know of people who have not been to Bible college but have Master’s degrees by spending time and studying their Bibles in their rocking chairs, you understand. That’s the best education you can have. 

When God calls, He will have others teach you: 

A. Faithful Men and Women- Discipleship.Titus 2- Aged men and the aged women teaching the younger. That’s how we learn, that’s how God teaches us. 

B. Pastors and Teachers– Ephesians 4:11-12- “and he gave some pastors and teachers, for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ”.

C. In a college environment- Bible College, Law School, Medical School, etc. 

If God has called you to do a specific thing or to a specific people, He will equip you with the right training. 

Conclusion: It is a privilege to be called and be sent to do something for the Lord, just like Moses was sent. To be used of God to do something specific. To be spent for Him and the work that He has given us. But be careful, you might just find yourself question God’s calling on your life. Moses questioned some things but figured out that the best way was God’s way. You can ask all the questions of God that you want, but just don’t make excuses regarding God’s calling on your life, just do what God wants you to do.