And God Knew
16Now the priest of Midian had seven daughters, and they came and drew water and filled the troughs to water their father’s flock. 17The shepherds came and drove them away, but Moses stood up and saved them, and watered their flock. 18When they came home to their father Reuel, he said, “How is it that you have come home so soon today?” 19They said, “An Egyptian delivered us out of the hand of the shepherds and even drew water for us and watered the flock.” 20He said to his daughters, “Then where is he? Why have you left the man? Call him, that he may eat bread.” 21And Moses was content to dwell with the man, and he gave Moses his daughter Zipporah. 22She gave birth to a son, and he called his name Gershom, for he said, “I have been a sojourner in a foreign land.” 23During those many days the king of Egypt died, and the people of Israel groaned because of their slavery and cried out for help. Their cry for rescue from slavery came up to God. 24And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. 25God saw the people of Israel—and God knew.
Moses is now on the run from both the Egyptians and the Hebrews. He finds himself in Midian and meets the family of Reuel (also known as Jethro). This is an important meeting for Moses as these people become his new family. He marries the daughter of Reuel, Zipporah and has a son, Gershom, whose name means “driven out” or “alien”. What we also see in this story is a continuation of Moses as The Deliverer. He jumps to the rescue of Reuel’s daughters just as he had jumped to the rescue of the Hebrew who was being beaten. God chose a man whom He had already predisposed as a rescuer to be His mouthpiece to His people.
The last couple of verses in this passage tell us many things about Moses and God’s people.
- Moses can return to Egypt not as a fugitive but as a prophet. The Pharaoh who chased Moses out is dead.
- The Hebrews are still in trouble. The death of the Pharaoh didn’t not improve their situation.
- The Hebrews finally start to pray and beg God for release. They “cry out.”
- God remembers His covenant with Abraham, the father of these people. It’s time for action.
- God is an active part of this story. It is in
fact, HIS story – not Moses’.
The reading for today ends with an important point. While Moses is spending time in the desert building a family and learning about life in that region God has not forgotten the plight of His people. Even though the Pharaoh who chased Moses from Egypt has died the new Pharaoh (most likely son to the previous Pharaoh) has the same inclination toward the Hebrews and continues their bitter enslavement.
God saw the people of Israel—and God knew.
My heart resonated at these words today. So often we believe that God doesn’t see our struggle. Or maybe He sees it and doesn’t care enough to do something about it. But that is never true. Even as I type those words I am inundated with times and situations where I struggled to know that God cared about my problem or even actually knew about it. But those are false thoughts. God sees and God knows. Dwell on that today. It will change your entire day.