This morning I was spending some time reading in the book of Exodus. Some months back I heard Jesus whisper to my soul that I was a “Modern-Day Moses”. I continually argued and claimed I had no ability to do what I believed He was calling me to accomplish for Him.
Oh how He must have laughed at me and my incredibly short-sightedness. How much He has taught me, revealed in the hearing of His voice in my mind and through the pages of Scripture.
He has showed me the incredible impossibility of my doing any work for Him. He opened eyes and heart to see the reality and truth of Ephesians 2:10:
For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.new american standard bible
Everything I thought He had created me to do, everything you think He created you to do, has already been done. We are merely to walk in the good works He has prepared and accomplished. Remember His words on the cross. It is finished. We so often think He was simply referring to redemption and certainly that was finished. That means there is absolutely nothing more for us to do for our redemption. Not a thing. It is finished. In Him and by Him. The works our faith produces are completed by Him. We simply walk in them as we walk in Him.
If you’re wondering what that has to do with Exodus, you’re in good company. Hopefully by the end of this post we will both know.
This morning I read in Exodus 5 of Moses and Aaron’s first appearance before Pharaoh. They tell him exactly what God told them to say. Pharaoh’s reaction was not at all surprising.
But Pharaoh said, ‘Who is the LORD that I should obey His voice to let Israel god? I do not know the LORD, and besides, I will not let Israel go.’exodus 5:2
What did surprise me and really make me pause to think, ponder, and pray was the next verse where Moses answers Pharaoh by completely ignoring the question. Check it out.
Then they said, ‘ The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Please, let us go a three days’ journey into the wilderness that we may sacrifice to the LORD our God, lest He fall upon us with pestilence or with the sword.’exodus 5:3
Here Moses and Aaron were given a golden opportunity to talk about their Great God and they ignored it. They completely side-stepped the question and instead further asked their original question. Why? I kept thinking about Jonah. He did not want to go to Nineveh because he knew they would hear and repent. Maybe it is a real possibility that if they had answered Pharaoh could have repented. That is all conjecture and a moot point because we already know God was going to deliver them and Pharaoh’s heart would be hardened.
You don’t evangelize your strongholds; you get rid of them.
If we see ourselves as enslaved in Egypt and Pharaoh as our strongholds, we begin to see why they did not answer the question. To evangelize (telling others Who our God is) would be making friends with our strongholds. Making friends with our strongholds would be to keep them intact. We do not want to do this. Strongholds are sin and negatively affect our service.
We cannot make friends with our sin. We must ruthlessly eradicate it. Now, please understand here, I am not at all saying that we must do something to atone for our sin. That is impossible and a horrible affront to God and His grace that we have that mindset (and make no mistake, we do). We cannot walk in freedom with God and live in our strongholds. Jesus has already paid the price for our sin and set us free. Our eradication of strongholds is not done by us, it is done when we confess the sin, and invite Jesus to speak His truth into the stronghold.
We do not tell our fear how big our God is. We don’t tell our strongholds how big our God is. They already know. We get rid of them through our Big God. Just because they taunt us by asking Who God is, does not at all mean we must answer.
The strongholds, our own personal Pharaohs, want us to believe they are the most powerful god in the land. They want us to believe they are more powerful than anyone and anything, even God. They want us to shut up about being free and get back to work for them. They want us to believe there is no freedom for us because there is no God bigger than them.
They are wrong. And we are fools when we believe them.
It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore. keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.galatians 5:1
There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.romans 8:1-2
and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.john 8:12
Do not dialogue with your strongholds. Surrender them to Jesus.