by Tony Nester

Send Someone Else!
Tony R. Nester
Exodus 4:1-13

Moses had his reasons:
* People won't believe me;
* they won't listen to me;
* and they will doubt that God has sent me do this.

Leaders of every kind can appreciate how Moses felt. Leadership is difficult. It's hard to get people to change. People will always claim they want strong leadership, but as soon as that leadership starts to effect a change they don't like, they resist the leader.

I'm not saying that we shouldn't question the leadership of anyone who claims that God has spoken to them.

There are plenty of people who use spiritual intimation to get people to do things. "God told me to do this," they tell us. "I know how God wants to handle this," they claim. "You should be obedient in this situation," they announce. And they say all these things with a great deal of self-assurance.

But not every one who makes these claims is speaking in the truth of God. Not every leader deserves to be followed; not every change is the right change at the right time in the right way.

This is why it takes a lot of mature spiritual discernment to "test the spirits" as the Scripture tells us to do:

(1 John 4:1 NRSV) "Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God; for many false prophets have gone out into the world."

Or as a bumper sticker puts it: God wants spiritual fruit, not religious nuts. Sorting the fruit from the nuts takes discernment.

God gave Moses three dramatic signs to perform before the Israelites:
* turning a staff into a poisonous snake,
* causing his hand to turn white with leprosy,
* and changing some water of the Nile into blood.

Parents, teachers, supervisors – wouldn't you love to use any one of those to get your children to listen to you, or your classroom to pay attention, or your employees to get their jobs done right?

For me I'd pick the snake trick. Sending snakes down the pews ...

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