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090510 The Three Star Mother


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A sermon on Exodus 2:1-10 presented May 3, 2009, at Palm Desert Church of Christ by Dale Wells

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090510 The Three Star Mother

  1. 2. Exodus 2:1-10 NIV <ul><li>Now a man of the house of Levi married a Levite woman, (2) and she became pregnant and gave birth to a son. When she saw that he was a fine child, she hid him for three months. (3) But when she could hide him no longer, she got a papyrus basket for him and coated it with tar and pitch. Then she placed the child in it and put it among the reeds along the bank of the Nile. </li></ul>
  2. 3. Exodus 2:1-10 NIV <ul><li>(4) His sister stood at a distance to see what would happen to him. (5) Then Pharaoh’s daughter went down to the Nile to bathe, and her attendants were walking along the river bank. She saw the basket among the reeds and sent her slave girl to get it. (6) She opened it and saw the baby. He was crying, and she felt sorry for him. “This is one of the Hebrew babies,” she said. </li></ul>
  3. 4. Exodus 2:1-10 NIV <ul><li>(7) Then his sister asked Pharaoh’s daughter, “Shall I go and get one of the Hebrew women to nurse the baby for you?” (8) “Yes, go,” she answered. And the girl went and got the baby’s mother. (9) Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this baby and nurse him for me, and I will pay you.” So the woman took the baby and nursed him. </li></ul>
  4. 5. Exodus 2:1-10 NIV <ul><li>(10) When the child grew older, she took him to Pharaoh’s daughter and he became her son. She named him Moses, saying, “I drew him out of the water.” </li></ul>
  5. 6. Numbers 26:59 NIV <ul><li>The name of Amram’s wife was Jochebed, a descendant of Levi, who was born to the Levites in Egypt. To Amram she bore Aaron, Moses and their sister Miriam. </li></ul>
  6. 7. Moses towers across the Bible <ul><li>784 verses in the Bible </li></ul><ul><ul><li>705 verses in the OT </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>79 verses in the NT </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Pity those preachers who don’t believe in Moses </li></ul><ul><li>By the time they tear him out of their Bibles, they don’t have much Bible left </li></ul>
  7. 8. One of God’s greatest men <ul><li>Emancipator & lawgiver of Israel </li></ul><ul><li>Scholar </li></ul><ul><li>Soldier </li></ul><ul><li>Statesman </li></ul><ul><li>Saint </li></ul><ul><li>One of two who met with Christ on Mount of Transfiguration </li></ul>
  8. 9. Matthew 17:1-8 NIV <ul><li>After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. (2) There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light. (3) Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus. </li></ul>
  9. 10. Matthew 17:1-8 NIV <ul><li>(4) Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here. If you wish, I will put up three shelters--one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” (5) While he was still speaking, a bright cloud enveloped them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!” </li></ul>
  10. 11. Matthew 17:1-8 NIV <ul><li>(6) When the disciples heard this, they fell facedown to the ground, terrified. (7) But Jesus came and touched them. “Get up,” he said. “Don’t be afraid.” (8) When they looked up, they saw no one except Jesus. </li></ul>
  11. 12. He wrote the first song in the Bible <ul><li>Exodus 15:1-19 NIV Then Moses and the Israelites sang this song to the LORD: “I will sing to the LORD, for he is highly exalted. The horse and its rider he has hurled into the sea. (2) The LORD is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation. He is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him. (3) The LORD is a warrior; the LORD is his name… </li></ul>
  12. 13. In glory, they still sing the song of Moses, with a second verse <ul><li>“ The song of the Lamb” </li></ul>
  13. 14. Revelation 15:2-3 NIV <ul><li>And I saw what looked like a sea of glass mixed with fire and, standing beside the sea, those who had been victorious over the beast and his image and over the number of his name. They held harps given them by God (3) and sang the song of Moses the servant of God and the song of the Lamb: “Great and marvelous are your deeds, Lord God Almighty. Just and true are your ways, King of the ages. </li></ul>
  14. 15. Much of the credit for what he became <ul><li>Must be given to his mother, Jochebed </li></ul>
  15. 17. Pharaoh decreed the death of every Hebrew baby boy <ul><li>One of Satan’s early efforts to prevent the birth of the Messiah </li></ul><ul><li>A tremendous test of Amram and Jochebed’s faith </li></ul><ul><li>Their son, destined to rule the Israelites, born, like Christ, with a great red dragon waiting to devour him </li></ul>
  16. 18. They had two older children <ul><li>Possibly born before the edict </li></ul><ul><li>Few women have had to raise a family in more difficult circumstances </li></ul><ul><li>Many mothers have one child who makes an important contribution to mankind </li></ul><ul><li>The fact that three exceptional children came from a slave hut on the Nile says much about Jochebed’s influence </li></ul>
  17. 19. Micah 6:4 NIV I brought you up out of Egypt and redeemed you from the land of slavery. I sent Moses to lead you, also Aaron and Miriam.
  18. 21. Exodus 2:4-7 NIV <ul><li>His sister stood at a distance to see what would happen to him. (5) Then Pharaoh’s daughter went down to the Nile to bathe, and her attendants were walking along the river bank. She saw the basket among the reeds and sent her slave girl to get it. (6) She opened it and saw the baby. He was crying, and she felt sorry for him. “This is one of the Hebrew babies,” she said. (7) Then his sister asked Pharaoh’s daughter, “Shall I go and get one of the Hebrew women to nurse the baby for you?” </li></ul>
  19. 23. Exodus 15:20-21 NIV <ul><li>Then Miriam the prophetess, Aaron’s sister, took a tambourine in her hand, and all the women followed her, with tambourines and dancing. (21) Miriam sang to them: “Sing to the LORD, for he is highly exalted. The horse and its rider he has hurled into the sea.” </li></ul>
  20. 25. Moses’ big brother <ul><li>Exodus 6:20 NIV Amram married his father’s sister Jochebed, who bore him Aaron and Moses. Amram lived 137 years. </li></ul><ul><li>Exodus 7:7 NIV Moses was eighty years old and Aaron eighty-three when they spoke to Pharaoh. </li></ul>
  21. 28. Moses’ faith is linked to his parents’ <ul><li>Hebrews 11:23 NIV By faith Moses’ parents hid him for three months after he was born, because they saw he was no ordinary child, and they were not afraid of the king’s edict. </li></ul>
  22. 29. The king’s wrath was serious <ul><li>They feared God’s wrath far more </li></ul><ul><li>Refused to murder their child just to comply with the edict of a tyrannical king </li></ul><ul><li>God honored their faith </li></ul>
  23. 30. Time to emancipate slaves <ul><li>Promise to Abraham about to be fulfilled </li></ul><ul><li>Genesis 15:13-14 NIV Then the LORD said to him, “Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a country not their own, and they will be enslaved and mistreated four hundred years. (14) But I will punish the nation they serve as slaves, and afterward they will come out with great possessions. </li></ul>
  24. 31. To accomplish His purpose … <ul><li>God sent a baby into the world </li></ul><ul><li>That is usually God’s way </li></ul>
  25. 32. Consider the year 1809 <ul><li>Between two great battles that shaped world history: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1805 – Trafalgar ended Napoleon’s naval might </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>1815 – Battle of Waterloo ended his military might </li></ul></ul>
  26. 33. In 1809, the world was thinking of battles, not babies <ul><li>William Gladstone was born in Liverpool </li></ul><ul><li>Alfred Lord Tennyson was born in Somersby </li></ul><ul><li>Oliver W. Holmes was born in Massachusetts </li></ul><ul><li>Abraham Lincoln was born in Kentucky </li></ul><ul><li>Frederick Chopin was born in Warsaw </li></ul><ul><li>Felix Mendelssohn was born in Hamburg </li></ul><ul><li>The battles didn’t matter as much as the babies </li></ul>
  27. 34. God sends a baby to do his work <ul><li>When a wrong needs righting </li></ul><ul><li>When a work needs doing </li></ul><ul><li>When a truth needs preaching </li></ul><ul><li>When a continent needs opening </li></ul><ul><li>God sends a baby into the world to do it </li></ul><ul><li>That is why a baby was born at Bethlehem </li></ul><ul><li>Also why, long before Jesus, another baby was born in a slave hut on the banks of the Nile </li></ul>
  28. 35. Jochebed believed that God is greater than Pharaoh <ul><li>Satan is no match for the Holy Spirit </li></ul><ul><li>1 John 4:4 NIV You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. </li></ul>
  29. 36. Thank God she had Moses <ul><li>Moses’ Law </li></ul><ul><ul><li>At the heart of every sane piece of legislation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Moses’ five books form the Torah </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Without them we wouldn’t know God’s ways </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Moses laid the foundation for the rest of the Bible </li></ul>
  30. 38. Jochebed & Amram shielded Moses from the evil of the world <ul><li>When Moses could no longer be hidden </li></ul><ul><li>Amram could have said, “What do we do now?” </li></ul><ul><li>Jochebed could have answered with a question: “How does God save someone who is condemned to death?” </li></ul>
  31. 39. Then they remembered the ark <ul><li>When God condemned the world, He told Noah to build an ark to save his family </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Covered inside & out with pitch </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Noah and his family went into it </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Storm came – but those inside were saved </li></ul></ul>
  32. 40. They knew God is the same yesterday & today & forever <ul><li>Made a little ark, as Noah had done </li></ul><ul><li>Put baby in the ark & the ark in the Nile </li></ul><ul><li>The ark would come between Moses and death </li></ul><ul><li>“ We cannot save our little boy but God can” </li></ul><ul><li>God always honors faith like that! </li></ul>
  33. 41. There are three arks mentioned in Scripture <ul><li>All three point to Christ: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Noah’s ark: separated the saved from the condemned </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Moses’ ark: spared the future deliverer from death </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ark of the covenant: where God’s justice & mercy met </li></ul></ul><ul><li>We must commit our little ones to Him, as Jochebed & Amram committed Moses to the ark </li></ul><ul><li>We cannot save our children but He can </li></ul><ul><li>He alone can surround them with protection once they venture out into the world </li></ul>
  34. 42. From 3/31/09 Washington Post <ul><li>Ria Ramkisson (22) & son Javon, of Baltimore </li></ul><ul><li>Javon punished for failing to say “Amen” at meals </li></ul><ul><li>At direction of cult leader “Queen Antoinette” (40) who was charged in Javon’s starvation death </li></ul><ul><li>Ria refused to testify because she believed the Queen would resurrect Javon from the dead </li></ul><ul><li>Ria would cooperate if prosecutors promise to drop all charges if the Queen resurrects Javon </li></ul>
  35. 44. One of the great “coincidences” of history <ul><li>The royal princess (possibly Hatshepsut) found that little ark of bulrushes </li></ul><ul><li>She sent her maid to fetch it, and just when it was opened, the baby wept! </li></ul>
  36. 45. No woman’s heart could have resisted that whimpering child <ul><li>Was he hungry? wet? startled? </li></ul><ul><li>Tears on the cheek of that baby melted the heart of Pharaoh’s daughter </li></ul><ul><li>Changed the destiny of an empire & the fate of the world </li></ul><ul><li>“ This is a Hebrew boy. He should be thrown into the Nile, but I’ll adopt him & raise him as my son.” </li></ul>
  37. 46. Jochebed had not left Moses alone in his ark – Miriam was watching <ul><li>When we commit our children to Christ, God still expects us to take measures to protect them </li></ul><ul><li>He does not bless negligence </li></ul>Commendable presence of mind: “My lady, do you need a nurse for that child?”
  38. 47. The princess had not thought of it <ul><li>She needed a nurse </li></ul><ul><li>Baby not yet weaned </li></ul><ul><li>“ Fetch a Hebrew slave to nurse this child for me & tell her I will pay her.” </li></ul><ul><li>Jochebed received pay for raising her own son! </li></ul><ul><li>God rewards His children for doing those things that please Him – if not in this life, in the life to come </li></ul>
  39. 48. How long did Jochebed nurse Moses? <ul><li>Often in those days a child was not weaned for several years </li></ul><ul><li>Isaac seems to have been five years of age when he was weaned </li></ul><ul><li>No doubt this godly woman took full advantage of the few years she had </li></ul><ul><li>Before she was done, she drilled truth into his mind in a way he would never forget </li></ul>
  40. 49. What did she teach him? <ul><li>Easy to answer that question </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Read Genesis </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Moses also wrote four books out of his own experience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers & Deuteronomy </li></ul></ul><ul><li>In Genesis he recorded the truths his mother passed down to him </li></ul><ul><li>In the others, he showed how he incorporated those lessons into his life </li></ul>
  41. 50. We can surmise what Jochebed thought: <ul><li>“ I don’t have long but, God helping me, I’m going to get the Word of God into this child before the professors of Egypt try to fill his mind with foolishness.” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Creation, Cain & Abel, Enoch, Noah & the Flood & Tower of Babel </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Abraham & the covenant, Sodom & Gomorrah, Lot & his wife, Ishmael & Isaac, Jacob & Esau, & the twelve patriarchs </li></ul></ul>
  42. 51. She taught him about Joseph <ul><li>Young man lived for God in same courts </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sold as a slave into Egypt </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In spite of his youth, he took his stand against the impurity & immorality of Potiphar’s wife </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Suffered for his godliness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>God raised him to the right hand of Pharaoh </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Jochebed’s emphasis – Moses devoted one fourth of Genesis to the story of Joseph </li></ul>
  43. 52. The Jesuits used to say <ul><li>“ Give us a child until he’s seven, and you can do what you like with him after that.” </li></ul><ul><li>Jochebed would have agreed because she did a thorough job of training Moses </li></ul>
  44. 53. Eventually the order came from the palace: <ul><li>“ Send me Moses.” </li></ul><ul><li>As Jochebed kissed Moses goodbye, she probably said, “Remember what I’ve taught you, my son.” </li></ul><ul><li>Moses never forgot that he was a Hebrew </li></ul><ul><li>Universities of Egypt, temptations of the palace, lure of position, power, wealth & the possibility of a worldly throne never erased his mother’s training </li></ul>
  45. 54. What’s the most important thing you can do for your children? <ul><li>Get yourself right with God! </li></ul><ul><li>Acts 2:38-39 NIV Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (39) The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off--for all whom the Lord our God will call.” </li></ul>