Exodus 4:2 “And the Lord said unto him, What is that in thine hand? And he said, A rod.
We find in this passage of scripture Moses in the midst of a dialogue with God. God has called him from the burning bush and told Moses that he wanted Him to return to Egypt and lead His chosen people out of Egypt and away from the bondage in which they have suffered for 400 years. Moses has already questioned Gods choice in himself by asking the question “but who am I?” and who shall I say sent me? Moses was terrified because of his previous failure. What God was requesting of him was something he had attempted and failed years before. That first attempt had ended with the murder of an Egyptian and his ultimate rejection of the slaves as they mocked him and spread the news of crime. That failure had led him to flee Egypt for his life and run to the back side of the desert where he had lived as a shepherd for the last 40 years.
In verse 2 we see that in Moses’ hand he is carrying the tool of his trade, A simple rod. Now a rod is simply a piece of wood. a stick or a branch approximately 5 or 6 feet in length. It was used by the shepherd as a walking stick to traverse the mountainous trails in which they led their flocks. It was also used in handling of the sheep where as many times there was a bend or crook at one end. Lastly it could be used as a club as in David’s case when he announced to Saul he had used one in defeating both a lion and a bear in protecting his flock. Although there were several uses, a rod was simply a stick. At least it was it was simply a stick until it changed possession. In verse 3 God commands Moses to cast the rod on the ground. When he obeyed that stick became a serpent and the Word of God says that Moses fled from before it. I cant say that I can blame him. For one thing I hate snakes, but beyond that Moses watched God use his walking stick in a supernatural way. In a way he couldn’t understand or explain. That Rod had changed possession. When used by God it now belonged to God. In verse 20 it is referred to as the Rod of God. It was carried by Moses and used to perform many mind boggling miracles. The Rod of God was used in the plagues of Egypt, It was held above the red sea as God opened it wide so Israel could walk across on dry ground. It was used to strike a rock causing water to pour forth and satisfy a thirsty people. It was lifted high as the army of Israel battled the Amalekites. As long as it remained lifted up Israel prevailed but when Moses grew tired and his arms grew weary and lowered the Amalekites prevailed. Faithful men of God assisted Moses in raising up his arms to hold the Rod of God high so that Israel prevailed. The power to perform these miracles was not in Moses. In fact it wasn’t in the rod either. The power was in He who now possessed the rod.
If Moses had truly been listening in the beginning when called by God he never would have doubted in the first place. In Exodus 3 :7 God told Moses “I have surely seen their affliction, I have heard their cry, I know their sorrows” In verse 8 he says “And I am come down to deliver them.” He wasn’t asking Moses to deliver the people but in essence he was asking him to be his rod. God would deliver the people; Moses was just a man, but in the hand of an almighty all-powerful God great wonders would be performed. God would use a simple back of the desert shepherd to lead God’s chosen people to freedom and victory.
I am fully persuaded that God has a specific plan for each of our lives. A purpose for which we were born. For some that call to serve God is terrifying because of past failures or present inability. We may ask who am I that God would use me. There are thousands of what if scenarios that we can come up with that are sourced from our doubt. The problem with these scenarios and questions is that they all stem from the false belief that it is I that will do something for God. Men are prone to weakness and failure. Even the greatest of men are just men. We are sinful selfish weak and unreliable, however we are like the rod. Just a simple stick until possessed by an almighty all-powerful God. We are only men until possessed by an almighty all powerful God. We don’t do anything for God, but God can do a mighty work through us when in his possession. To quote Jesus “with God nothing is impossible.”
Who possesses you today? Are you in His control led by the Spirit of God seeking to do His will? Let me remind you Christian you were bought with a price. You are not your own but belong to He who purchased you!