Knowing from the Bible (and a lot of secular information) that Moses did answer the call of God… have you ever wondered what Moses was thinking about as he left the mountain and headed for home? At that time home was a tent on the ‘back-side’ of the mountain where he lived with his family… and probably his extended family because that was the way they lived then.
Did he have to ‘rehearse’ what he wanted to ask his father in law… his employer? Did he wonder what he would say to his wife? Had he told her over the years about his past ‘life’ in Egypt? If so, how did she feel about it? How did she feel about his returning there?
Well these are questions we are not given answers to, nor do we need them… I only mention them to demonstrate that he, like each of us, had human problems to deal with. It was not a simple matter of ‘God said’ and he went.
Go, he did…
“Go in peace,” his father in law told him.
As a further assurance God told him
“Go, return to Egypt, for all the men are dead who sought your life.” Exodus 4:19b
He took his wife Zipporah and their two sons.
This time he was not fleeing for his life and he was able to talk the easy way back to Egypt. He provided a donkey for his sons and they headed off on what would be one of the most famous happenings in the Old Testament.
Then one of the more puzzling verses in the Bible…
Exodus 4:24 And it came to pass on the way, at the encampment, that the Lord met him and sought to kill him
How could this be? God was the one who had told him to go. Probably we will never know, but the best guess of many scholars is that it was due to the fact Moses’ sons had not been circumcised.
Circumcision was the entry of a male child into the Covenant with God.
We can assume that Moses had been circumcised, or God would not have sent him in the first place.
Perhaps it was only Moses who was supposed to go, and taking uncircumcised boys on a mission from God was contemptuous and disrespectful of God.
So, why had Moses not circumcised his sons?
Again the answer is not given in either the Bible or Josephus, (who ignored the incident altogether)… and again scholars have speculated.
- Perhaps it was not the Midianite way…
See Exodus 4: 25 ‘Then Zipporah took a sharp stone and cut off the foreskin of her son and cast it at Moses feet, and said “Surely you are a husband of blood to me!” ‘
This is confirmed in Exodus 4: 26 ‘So He let him go. Hen she said, “You are a husband of blood” – because of the circumcision.’
Clearly she did not like circumcision
As God promised, He sent Aaron to help Moses…
Exodus 4: 27 ‘And the Lord said to Aaron, “Go into the wilderness o meet Moses.” So he went and met him on the mountain of God, and kissed him.’
Moses explained to his brother all that had happened and all God had said and together they went to the elders of Israel.
Exodus 4: 31 ‘So the people believed; and when they heard that the Lord had visited the children of Israel and that He had looked on their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshipped.’
Till next week…
Walk softly, you may be treading on someone’s dreams.