22 Then Moses turned to the Lord and said, “O Lord, why have you done evil to this people? Why did you ever send me? 23 For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has done evil to this people, and you have not delivered your people at all.”
6 But the Lord said to Moses, “Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh; for with a strong hand he will send them out, and with a strong hand he will drive them out of his land.”
2 God spoke to Moses and said to him, “I am the Lord. 3 I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, as God Almighty but by my name the Lord I did not make myself known to them. 4 I also established my covenant with them to give them the land of Canaan, the land in which they lived as sojourners. 5 Moreover, I have heard the groaning of the people of Israel whom the Egyptians hold as slaves, and I have remembered my covenant. 6 Say therefore to the people of Israel, ‘I am the Lord, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will deliver you from slavery to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great acts of judgment. 7 I will take you to be my people, and I will be your God, and you shall know that I am the Lord your God, who has brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. 8 I will bring you into the land that I swore to give to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. I will give it to you for a possession. I am the Lord.’” 9 Moses spoke thus to the people of Israel, but they did not listen to Moses, because of their broken spirit and harsh slavery.
10 So the Lord said to Moses, 11 “Go in, tell Pharaoh king of Egypt to let the people of Israel go out of his land.” 12 But Moses said to the Lord, “Behold, the people of Israel have not listened to me. How then shall Pharaoh listen to me, for I am of uncircumcised lips?”
Moses felt as low as a slug’s belly. Way down there. He still hadn’t rid himself of the idea that he was supposed to be the deliverer, and that he was somehow failing. How many times had God explained it to him? Yet, like many of us, he had trouble keeping a grip on the Lord’s assurances.
What was Moses to do now? The message was a rerun of the last one: “Go, tell Pharaoh king of Egypt to let the sons of Israel go out of his land” (v. 11).
“Go to Pharaoh, Lord? My own people just bought me a one-way ticket caravan back to Midian, and You want me to go back to Pharaoh? R-r-r-e—m-m-m-em—ber m-m-me? I’m the guy who can’t t-t-t-talk. Shoot, I’d mess up a rock fight, Lord. I can’t get it together. I’m at the end of my rope. How in the world are You going to pull this off?”
Moses didn’t know it at the moment, but he’d put before the Lord the best proposition yet. I’m at the end of my rope. How are you going to do it?
Before we go any further, I’d like to underline a major truth in this world of ours that I don’t pretend to understand. Here it is: the best framework for the Lord God to do His most ideal work is when things are absolutely impossible and we feel totally unqualified to handle it. That’s His favorite circumstance. Those are His ideal working conditions.
In spite of the Lord’s assurances, things kept going from bad to worse for Moses. He’d already gotten the worst of it in a meeting with Pharaoh, and now, in a subsequent parley with the Israelites, he found himself fresh out of credibility. They would no longer listen to him.
Time after time, He brings us to our absolute end and then proves Himself faithful. That, my friend, is not only the story of my life, it’s the story of the Bible in a nutshell.
Time after time God brings us to our absolute end—then proves Himself faithful.
— Charles R. Swindoll