Moses, Take off Your Shoes!

 •  4 min. read  •  grade level: 5
You may have heard the story of baby Moses who was found floating in a little basket in the Nile River. An Egyptian princess found him and adopted him, so he became the king’s grandson.
The royal palace made sure that as Moses grew up he was given an excellent education. He knew more about the pyramids than historians know today, and he probably saw the pyramids often. But along with all his learning, he had a secret sadness. He knew he was a Hebrew boy and that the Hebrews were hard-working slaves of the Egyptian people who mistreated them badly.
Moses’ heart was deeply troubled when he saw how the Egyptians continued to abuse the Hebrews. He knew the Hebrews were God’s chosen people, and, being a Hebrew by birth, his loyalty led him to refuse to be called the king’s grandson. He gave up all the royal pleasures and chose instead to endure the hardships the Hebrews were going through.
Is following God really worth that much? Wouldn’t it be better to have everybody respecting him as the king’s grandson, rather than standing on the side of God? Ask yourself this question. If Jesus is truly your Saviour, is it better to stand with the world and not let anybody know that you belong to Jesus? You might lose your friends if you tell them, “I belong to Jesus.”
Moses lost his place in the royal family. In fact, he almost lost his life, but he went off to the desert and got a job looking after the sheep of a man named Jethro. Was this new position better or worse? Wait and see  ...
Moses had been working there for forty years, and he had married Jethro’s daughter and had two sons. By now he was eighty years old. Maybe he had forgotten his Egyptian education, but he had learned a lot more. He was a listener now when God spoke — and that’s worth learning. Have you learned to be a listener when God speaks?
One day Moses saw something very puzzling — a bush on fire. Even though it was burning with fire, it was not burning up. He decided to go closer to see why the bush didn’t burn up. Moses, Moses, called a Voice from the burning bush. Then Moses answered, Here am I. The Voice continued, Don’t come closer. Take off your shoes, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.
If you heard God’s voice calling you like that, would you answer Him or would you run away? The Bible is God’s Word, and He is calling you by name today! Are you listening? He has better news for you than He had for Moses, because you are living in the time after the Lord Jesus died on the cross. He doesn’t tell you to take off your shoes. Instead, you will be given a son’s place in the Father’s house. God wants to make you one of His children, if you will accept His Son, the Lord Jesus, as your very own Saviour. He promises a position in His family that will be yours forever! Will you answer, “Here am I”? “As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name” (John 1:1212But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: (John 1:12)).
The Voice continued, I am the God of Abraham and of Isaac and of Jacob. There was no doubt about whose voice it was. Still Moses did not run away, but he hid his face. He was afraid to look upon God.
It is a good thing for you and me to be afraid of God, because He hates sin  ...  but that’s not the end of the story. I know that Jesus died for my sins, including every secret sin, and I come before Him with joy because my sins are gone — washed away by His precious blood. “In whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace” (Ephesians 1:77In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace; (Ephesians 1:7)).
Boys and girls, do you know whose voice is speaking in the Bible? It is God Himself speaking to you. You may close the book and try to forget, or you may be afraid of His holiness, but how much better to stand up as a forgiven sinner and a true child of God and answer Him with joy. Which shall it be? God loves you and really wants you to be a part of His family. He says, “Come unto Me” (Matthew 11:2828Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28)).
Think About God’s Word!
1. What did the Voice from the burning bush say to Moses?
2. How do we learn to listen to God’s voice? What does He use to speak to us? What are some of the things that make us “hard of hearing”?
Project: Look in the Book of Job to see if you can figure out what made it hard for Job to “hear” God at first. What can you find at the start of the last chapter of Job that shows how Job finally was able to listen to God’s voice?