The ESV Study Bible has a helpful breakdown of Mose’s unsuccessful attempt to persuade God not to send him as a deliverer of Israel from Egypt and Pharaoh:

Who am I that I should go? (3:11). I will be with you; when you come out of Egypt, you will serve me on this mountain (3:12).
What is your name, that I may tell the people who sent me? (3:13). I AM WHO I AM: Yahweh, the God of your fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (3:14-15).
How would the people believe that you have sent me? (4:1). Yahweh turns Moses’ rod into a serpent then back into a rod (4:2-4); Yahweh makes Moses’ hand leprous then heals it (4:6-7); Yahweh instructs Moses to turn water from the Nile into blood (4:9).
I am not eloquent; I am slow of speech (4:10). I, Yahweh, am the one who made your mouth (4:11).
Please send someone else (4:13). Aaron will go with you; you will speak my words to him and he will speak to the people for you (4:15-16).

Here is Jared Wilson’s more colloquial version:

1. Who am I to go for you?
Never mind who you are. That’s irrelevant.

2. Who are you for me to go for you?
I am GOD.

3. What if they don’t believe me?
It’s not your accomplishments you’re testifying to, but mine. Here, have some miracles.

4. Me no talk good.
I use junk and jackasses all the time.

5. Send somebody else!
I’ll send somebody with you, not instead of you.

Jared goes on to make some brief application for us today on how to glorify God.

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4 thoughts on “Moses’s Epic Fail (Or, Five Bad Excuses That Don’t Work with God)”

  1. Don Sartain says:

    I must say, I’m particularly fond of number 4…

  2. Chad says:

    Just the fact that you used the words “epic fail” are enough to merit this a good post that needs a comment ;)

    Seriously though, thanks for all you do in blogging. I visit daily, and multiple times at that.

    And, I like #1

  3. Moses FAIL.

    Exegetical contextualization WIN.

  4. hahahahaha! “I use junk and jackasses all the time”

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Justin Taylor


Justin Taylor is senior vice president and publisher for books at Crossway and blogs at Between Two Worlds. You can follow him on Twitter.

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