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1 And Moses answered, and said, But behold, they will not beleeue mee, nor hearken vnto my voice: for they will say, The Lord hath not appeared vnto thee.

2 And the Lord said vnto him, What is that in thine hand? and hee said, A rod.

3 And he said, Cast it on the ground: And he cast it on the ground, and it became a serpent: and Moses fled from before it.

4 And the Lord said vnto Moses, Put forth thine hand, and take it by the taile: And he put foorth his hand, and caught it, and it became a rod in his hand:

5 That they may beleeue that the Lord God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Iacob hath appeared vnto thee.

6 And the Lord said furthermore vnto him, Put now thine hand into thy bosome. And he put his hand into his bosome: and when hee tooke it out, behold, his hand was leprous as snowe.

7 And he said, Put thine hand into thy bosome againe. And hee put his hand into his bosome againe, and plucked it out of his bosome, and behold, it was turned againe as his other flesh.

8 And it shall come to passe, if they wil not beleeue thee, neither hearken to the voice of the first signe, that they will beleeue the voice of the latter signe.

9 And it shall come to passe, if they will not beleeue also these two signes, neither hearken vnto thy voice, that thou shalt take of the water of the riuer, and powre it vpon the drie land: and the water which thou takest out of the riuer, shall become blood vpon the drie land.

10 And Moses saide vnto the Lord, O my lord, I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken vnto thy seruant: but I am slow of speach, and of a slow tongue.

11 And the Lord said vnto him, Who hath made mans mouth? or who maketh the dumbe or deafe, or the seeing, or þe blind? haue not I the Lord?

12 Now therefore goe, and I will be with thy mouth, and teach thee what thou shalt say.

13 And he said, O my Lord, send, I pray thee, by the hand of him whom thou wilt send.

14 And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Moses, and hee said, Is not Aaron the Leuite thy brother? I know that he can speake well. And also behold, he commeth foorth to meet thee: and when he seeth thee, hee will be glad in his heart.

15 And thou shalt speake vnto him, and put words in his mouth, and I wil be with thy mouth, & with his mouth, and will teach you what ye shall doe.

16 And he shal be thy spokesman vnto the people: and he shall be, euen hee shall be to thee in stead of a mouth, and thou shalt be to him in stead of God.

17 And thou shalt take this rod in thine hand, wherewith thou shalt doe signes.

18 And Moses went and returned to Iethro his father in law, and said vnto him, Let me goe, I pray thee, and returne vnto my brethren, which are in Egypt, and see whether they bee yet aliue. And Iethro said to Moses, Goe in peace.

19 And the Lord said vnto Moses in Midian, Goe, returne into Egypt: for all the men are dead which sought thy life.

20 And Moses tooke his wife, and his sonnes, and set them vpon an asse, and he returned to the land of Egypt. And Moses tooke the rod of God in his hand.

21 And the Lord said vnto Moses, When thou goest to returne into Egypt, see that thou doe all those wonders before Pharaoh, which I haue put in thine hand: but I wil harden his heart, that hee shall not let the people goe.

22 And thou shalt say vnto Pharaoh, Thus saith the Lord, Israel is my sonne, euen my first borne.

23 And I say vnto thee, let my sonne goe, that he may serue mee: and if thou refuse to let him goe, behold, I will slay thy sonne, euen thy first borne.

24 And it came to passe by the way in the Inne, that the Lord met him, and sought to kill him.

25 Then Zipporah tooke a sharpe stone, and cut off the foreskinne of her sonne, and cast it at his feete, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to mee.

26 So he let him goe: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the Circumcision.

27 And the Lord said to Aaron, Goe into the wildernesse to meete Moses. And hee went and met him in the mount of God, and kissed him.

28 And Moses tolde Aaron all the wordes of the Lord, who had sent him, and all the signes which hee had commanded him.

29 And Moses and Aaron went, and gathered together all the elders of the children of Israel.

30 And Aaron spake all the wordes which the Lord had spoken vnto Moses, and did the signes in the sight of the people.

31 And the people beleeued: And when they heard that the Lord had visited the children of Israel, and that he had looked vpon their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshipped.

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Commentary for Exodus 4

God gives Moses power to work miracles. (1-9) Moses is loth to be sent, Aaron is to assist him. (10-17) Moses leaves Midian, God's message to Pharaoh. (18-23) God's displeasure against Moses, Aaron meets him, The people believe them. (24-31)1-9 Moses objects, that the people would not take his word, unless he showed them some sign. God gives him power to work miracles. But those who are now employed to deliver God's messages to men, need not the power to work miracles: their character and their doctrines are to be tried by that word of God to which they appeal. These miracles especially referred to the miracles of the Lord Jesus Christ. It belonged to Him only, to cast the power of the devil out of the soul, and to heal the soul of the leprosy of sin; and so it was for Him first to cast the devil out of the body, and to heal the leprosy of the body.

10-17 Moses continued backward to the work God designed him for; there was much of cowardice, slothfulness, and unbelief in him. We must not judge of men by the readiness of their discourse. A great deal of wisdom and true worth may be with a slow tongue. God sometimes makes choice of those as his messengers, who have the least of the advantages of art or nature, that his grace in them may appear the more glorious. Christ's disciples were no orators, till the Holy Spirit made them such. God condescends to answer the excuse of Moses. Even self-diffidence, when it hinders us from duty, or clogs us in duty, is very displeasing to the Lord. But while we blame Moses for shrinking from this dangerous service, let us ask our own hearts if we are not neglecting duties more easy, and less perilous. The tongue of Aaron, with the head and heart of Moses, would make one completely fit for this errand. God promises, I will be with thy mouth, and with his mouth. Even Aaron, who could speak well, yet could not speak to purpose, unless God gave constant teaching and help; for without the constant aid of Divine grace, the best gifts will fail.

18-23 After God had appeared in the bush, he often spake to Moses. Pharaoh had hardened his own heart against the groans and cries of the oppressed Israelites; and now God, in the way of righteous judgment, hardens his heart against the teaching of the miracles, and the terror of the plagues. But whether Pharaoh will hear, or whether he will forbear, Moses must tell him, Thus saith the Lord. He must demand a discharge for Israel, Let my son go; not only my servant, whom thou hast no right to detain, but my son. It is my son that serves me, and therefore must be spared, must be pleaded for. In case of refusal I will slay thy son, even thy first-born. As men deal with God's people, let them expect so to be dealt with.

24-31 God met Moses in anger. The Lord threatened him with death or sent sickness upon him, as the punishment of his having neglected to circumcise his son. When God discovers to us what is amiss in our lives, we must give all diligence to amend it speedily. This is the voice of every rod; it calls us to return to Him that smites us. God sent Aaron to meet Moses. The more they saw of God's bringing them together, the more pleasant their interview was. The elders of Israel met them in faith, and were ready to obey them. It often happens, that less difficulty is found than was expected, in such undertakings as are according to the will of God, and for his glory. Let us but arise and try at our proper work, the Lord will be with us and prosper us. If Israel welcomed the tidings of their deliverance, and worshipped the Lord, how should we welcome the glad tidings of redemption, embrace it in faith, and adore the Redeemer!

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Exodus 4

  • Stan jett
    And Moses said unto the LORD, O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant: but I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue. When I was a kid, like Moses, I also could not talk plain. Some said I was tongue tied. Which made me very bashful.Anyone asked me a question, even if I knew it, I would say I don't know. I can surely understand Moses here.
  • BSP
    Verse 14~Jehovah God was patient with Moses in reassuring him of his support, but Moses continued to question and doubt God and this made God angry.
  • Jo
    God did not attend to kill Moses, Moses had to circumcise his son Eliezer or God was going to kill his son. It was their custom to circumcise the males. Since Moses had Eliezer by Zippotah, while in Egypt, it wasn't the Egyptians way. The blessings of God flow down the family tree and Abraham, so all males in that family need to be circumcised if not they will be cut off.... Killed.
  • MARIA BEUCK
    To THINK ,SAY and DO GOD's WILL all GREATIONs TODAY s LIVE. No ONE MUST BE EXCUDED for KINGDOM BUILDING. REVELETION 4 (heading; HEAVENLY WORKSHIP)
  • Surferlaments
    what do i really think? just how lucky that moses was in being picked by God to do God's work here on earth.
  • Evans
    Israel is the first born of God.if you bless Israel you're blessed.

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