ImmerseMessiah NLT - Page 84


“One day when Moses was forty years old, he decided to visit his relatives, the people of Israel. He saw an Egyptian mistreating an Israelite. So
Moses came to the man’s defense and avenged him, killing the Egyptian.
Moses assumed his fellow Israelites would realize that God had sent him
to rescue them, but they didn’t.
“The next day he visited them again and saw two men of Israel fighting.
He tried to be a peacemaker. ‘Men,’ he said, ‘you are brothers. Why are
you fighting each other?’
“But the man in the wrong pushed Moses aside. ‘Who made you a ruler
and judge over us?’ he asked. ‘Are you going to kill me as you killed that
Egyptian yesterday?’ When Moses heard that, he fled the country and
lived as a foreigner in the land of Midian. There his two sons were born.
“Forty years later, in the desert near Mount Sinai, an angel appeared to
Moses in the flame of a burning bush. When Moses saw it, he was amazed
at the sight. As he went to take a closer look, the voice of the Lord called
out to him, ‘I am the God of your ancestors—the God of Abraham, Isaac,
and Jacob.’ Moses shook with terror and did not dare to look.
“Then the Lord said to him, ‘Take off your sandals, for you are standing on holy ground. I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in
Egypt. I have heard their groans and have come down to rescue them. Now
go, for I am sending you back to Egypt.’
“So God sent back the same man his people had previously rejected
when they demanded, ‘Who made you a ruler and judge over us?’ Through
the angel who appeared to him in the burning bush, God sent Moses to
be their ruler and savior. And by means of many wonders and miraculous
signs, he led them out of Egypt, through the Red Sea, and through the
wilderness for forty years.
“Moses himself told the people of Israel, ‘God will raise up for you a
Prophet like me from among your own people.’ Moses was with our ancestors, the assembly of God’s people in the wilderness, when the angel
spoke to him at Mount Sinai. And there Moses received life-giving words
to pass on to us.
“But our ancestors refused to listen to Moses. They rejected him and
wanted to return to Egypt. They told Aaron, ‘Make us some gods who can
lead us, for we don’t know what has become of this Moses, who brought us
out of Egypt.’ So they made an idol shaped like a calf, and they sacrificed
to it and celebrated over this thing they had made. Then God turned away
from them and abandoned them to serve the stars of heaven as their gods!
In the book of the prophets it is written,
‘Was it to me you were bringing sacrifices and offerings
during those forty years in the wilderness, Israel?

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