Scripture Reading: Exodus 20:22-23:19
What has God taught you that might be helpful to others? We’ve all learned things from Him over the years―things we’ve done wrong, things we’ve done right, things He’s spoken to us or through us.
I was in the midst of writing down some of the things God had spoken to me when I was reading Exodus chapters 20, 21, 22 and 23. When I read about God’s conversation with Moses on the mountain, and how God gave Moses the Ten Commandments and the 600+ rules that followed, I saw what God was doing in a new light.
Of course, we’re supposed to read what God spoke to Moses during those forty days, and of course, we’ll be blessed if we follow that wisdom. But I also saw a new lesson for my life when I stepped back and looked at what God was doing overall. God was pouring out His wisdom to Moses so that Moses could pour it out to others.
The lesson for me was that God has poured out wisdom into our lives, too, and He wants us to pour it out to others.
Up to this point in the story of how God set the Israelites free from Egypt, Moses was the sole judge over the entire nation. Everyone who had a dispute would bring it to Moses to be settled. God would give Moses the wisdom he needed to make a ruling, and Moses would make the decision.
This worked for a time, but eventually it began to wear Moses and the people out. So God, through the words of Jethro, prompted Moses to delegate the work of judging others to several of the other leaders of Israel. Moses would still be available to hear the most difficult cases, but the majority of cases could be decided by these others.
It was at this time―as Moses prepared to delegate these duties―that God called Moses up to the mountain and spoke to him the Ten Commandments and all the rules that followed. As I read through this list of commandments, I could almost picture how the conversation between God and Moses might have gone:
“Moses, do you remember when that bull gored a man to death―the bull that had never gored anyone before? And do you remember how I told you to rule in that situation―that the bull must be killed, but the owner of the bull would not be held responsible? Share that with others.
“And do you remember when another bull gored a man to death, but that bull had a habit of goring people? Do you remember how I told you to rule in that situation―that the bull must be killed as well as the owner, unless those hurt by the goring would accept payment from the owner instead? Share that, too.”
Although the actual conversation between God and Moses isn’t recorded, the result of what God spoke during those forty days is recorded. What should be done when a bull gores someone is clearly spelled out in Exodus 21:28-32.
Maybe God reminded Moses of things that happened in the past, as well as telling him about things that might come up in the future. God spoke to Moses about all kinds of topics one by one, from cases involving adultery, theft and murder, to love, lust and anger. Then God asked Moses to share them with others, which he did.
Now, thousands of years later, we can still read these words of wisdom that came from the mouth of God. They form the foundation of the laws that are currently on the books in country after country. They help us to understand our basic rights, how to get along with each other, and how to better love God and our neighbors.
Think with me for a minute how this lesson might apply to you.
God has spent a lifetime pouring out His wisdom into you. What topics in life has God spoken to you about the most? Or the most often? Or the most clearly? What questions have you struggled with, wrestled through, and found God’s answers?
Take time to share what you’ve learned with others. The answers you’ve found may set them free, too.
Want to learn more? You can watch a podcast with more discussion about this topic below.