6 Apr 2010
It may seem like a simple thing to state that God is the great preparer. Think with me for a moment. What has God done that He did not provide for the preparation? He prepared Moses to lead His people out of the bondage of Egypt. Moses was, by the time the Lord was ready to use him, eighty years old. It seems that most of the fight had left him and he did not want to be the hero to lead a nation out of bondage at this stage of his life. God had been preparing him. A big portion of God’s preparation for Moses was to humble him. When he was young and full of fight he thought that he might solve the whole slavery problem of his people singlehandedly. As you may recall this did not work out so well but in a sense it did play into God’s hands regarding Moses’ preparation for doing the will and work of God.
Let’s pick up the narrative during his conversation with God just after he approached the burning bush. God had told Moses that He had come down to deliver His people out of the bondage of Egypt. Then He told Moses “ come now therefore and I will send you” Moses apparently did not hear the part that God was going to do it, as he answered God from the perspective that he, Moses would be required to do it. In Exodus chapter 4 the discussion between God and Moses was not going too well. When Moses complained to God that the people would not listen to him or obey him, God simply, by way of illustration, gave Moses a glimpse of His power. Please see Exodus 4:1-9 below.
Exodus 4:1-9 (AMP)1 AND MOSES answered, But behold, they will not believe me or listen to and obey my voice; for they will say, The Lord has not appeared to you.
2 And the Lord said to him, What is that in your hand? And he said, A rod.
3 And He said, Cast it on the ground. And he did so and it became a serpent [the symbol of royal and divine power worn on the crown of the Pharaohs]; and Moses fled from before it.
4 And the Lord said to Moses, Put forth your hand and take it by the tail. And he stretched out his hand and caught it, and it became a rod in his hand,
5 [This you shall do, said the Lord] that the elders may believe that the Lord, the God of their fathers, of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, has indeed appeared to you.
6 The Lord said also to him, Put your hand into your bosom. He put his hand into his bosom, and when he took it out, behold, his hand was leprous, as white as snow.
7 [God] said, Put your hand into your bosom again. So he put his hand back into his bosom, and when he took it out, behold, it was restored as the rest of his flesh.
8 [Then God said] If they will not believe you or heed the voice or the testimony of the first sign, they may believe the voice or the witness of the second sign.
9 But if they will also not believe these two signs or heed your voice, you shall take some water of the river [Nile] and pour it upon the dry land; and the water which you take out of the river [Nile] shall become blood on the dry land.
The Lord was preparing Moses to become a great leader. Moses probably would not have been hired by most of us for this job with his current resume. Moses apparently had some leadership training perhaps fifty years earlier, but in recent times he had been leading a flock of sheep. God, in His preparation of Moses, ask Moses what is in your hand? He then demonstrated that He had power to use any external resource for His purposes. God then focused on the hand, the hand that had held the rod. In this preparation lesson He showed Moses that He also controlled not only the external resources but all those things that were intimately internal to Moses himself.
Then the Lord mentioned a third sign; one that could not be done here as it was specific to the area, the real estate of the Egyptians. Moses knew that the Egyptians worshiped the Nile God Hapi and the annual flooding of the Nile was critical to the food supply of the nation. God gave Moses the promise of the third sign; one that would turn the water of the Nile into blood. This spoke to Moses of God’s supremacy over nature, economics, and all other gods. These signs were a part of God’s preparation of Moses to lead His people out of the bondage of Egypt to the promised land.
Next let’s look at God preparing the people for a deeper respect of Moses and a more consistent walk of obedience to the Lord. God will do this at Mt. Sinai.
Exodus 19:10-12 (AMP)
10 And the Lord said to Moses, Go and sanctify the people [set them apart for God] today and tomorrow, and let them wash their clothes
11 And be ready by the third day, for the third day the Lord will come down upon Mount Sinai [in the cloud] in the sight of all the people.
12 And you shall set bounds for the people round about, saying, Take heed that you go not up into the mountain or touch the border of it. Whoever touches the mountain shall surely be put to death.
About seven hundred years before the birth of Christ, Isaiah spoke of the preparation of John the Baptist who would prepare the way for the ministry of Jesus our Savior.
Isaiah 40:3-4 (AMP)
3 A voice of one who cries: Prepare in the wilderness the way of the Lord [clear away the obstacles]; make straight and smooth in the desert a highway for our God!
4 Every valley shall be lifted and filled up, and every mountain and hill shall be made low; and the crooked and uneven shall be made straight and level, and the rough places a plain.
We could talk of God’s preparations at great length, but you may be asking what does God’s propensity to prepare have to do with me in this time in which we live?
I would propose two things in answer to this question.
God is preparing for His work which will result in much destruction and perhaps the end of our nation as we know it today. His judgment will not be staid forever.
A part of His preparation for judgment is to bring a revival to our Nation.
In His preparation for revival He is calling His people to humble themselves and pray and seek His face and turn from their wicked ways. Praying for revival is primarily the work of preparation. As prayers for revival we are like John the Baptist ….. both critical and dispensable. First critical and only after our preparation is complete are we dispensable