Exo 11:3 And the LORD gave the people favour in the sight of the Egyptians. Moreover the man Moses was very great in the land of Egypt, in the sight of Pharaoh’s servants, and in the sight of the people.
The name Moses was famous throughout the whole land because of the signs, wonders and miracles wrought by him. He had caused so much chaos in the land of Egypt that it was impossible not to know him.
How did Moses achieve greatness?
He served God faithfully. He was not afraid to approach a king with an unreasonable request. He was willing to give up his status as son of Pharaoh’s daughter to become son of a slave. He was willing to be the servant of God when He called. Most importantly, he honoured God and not himself. And God will honour those who honour Him: “For them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed” (1 Samuel 2:30).
Though Pharaoh hated Moses, there were those of Pharaoh’s servants and his citizens that respected him. In Caesar’s household, Paul was known throughout the whole praetorian guard and certainly many would hold Paul in high esteem: “All the Roman guards and all the others here know that I am in prison for serving Christ” (Philippians 1:13, ERV).
Moses had a good reputation. He did not arrive at this acclamation by chance. He had spent the first forty years of his life achieving a great reputation both in knowledge and action (Acts 7:22). Obviously, many who knew him would remember him as a son of Egypt. Yet, he forsook the riches of Egypt to be a poor and lonely shepherd. Many would call him a fool but at the same time, he would gain respect from others for making such a sacrifice. Moses was a man who commanded respect from his people and from his enemies. You cannot read about his life without coming to the conclusion that he was a great man.
Do you think Moses is a great man? What are the things you admire about him that makes him great? For me, there are two things I admire most in Moses.
1. SELF-DENIAL – “By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter” (Hebrews 11:24). From a prince to a pauper; can you do that? We read of a rich young ruler who came to Jesus asking for eternal life. When told to give up all he had and follow Jesus, he went away sorrowfully. The reason being he loved his riches more than God; he could not part away with his riches (Matthew 19:16-22). He couldn’t deny himself. But Moses could!
2. PERSEVERANCE – Moses had to lead a group of unappreciative and ungrateful people. It was hard on him. On one occasion, he almost went into depression and poured out his despair to God: “I am not able to bear all this people alone, because it is too heavy for me” (Numbers 11:14). He even asked for death as relief: “And if You deal thus with me, please quickly kill me, if I have found grace in Your eyes, and let me not look on my affliction” (Numbers 11:15). Yet, he didn’t quit but continue on until they had reached the border of the Promised Land; that’s perseverance!
Moses’ greatness is magnified when he refused to advance himself or his own cause but followed wholly the will of God, and when he soldiered on in spite of difficulties. It is such kind of faith and resilience that makes him great. He was honoured for such virtues.
What about you? Do you have a great reputation from your peers and your enemies?
Psa 119:97 Oh how love I thy law! It is my meditation all the day.