Story of the life Moses is one whom most of us are familiar with. We know that Moses is a great man of God who led the children of Israel out of Egypt, all the story the 10 plagues and crossing of the Red seas never cease to fascinate people of all ages.
Psalm 103:7 beautifully sums up the Moses life vs Children of Israel lives with God.
It said here “He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the sons of Israel.”
As we read, I hope you notice that there is a sharp distinction between the way the children of Israel and how Moses knows God, “He made known His ways to Moses” This know is “Yada” which meant he knows God intimately. It is about spiritual transformation. The Israelites knew only the acts of God but Moses knew God intimately.
And in this beautiful short Psalm 90 compile by the palmist about a prayer of Moses
Psalm 90:1 Lord, You have been our dwelling place in all generations.
What is a dwelling place to you? A house, a home?
And what can we attribute to a home. I have here some characteristics of what a home is,
-A place of rest
-A place of safety
-A place to be yourselves, no mask
-A secret place
-A place you find forgiveness, love, warm, joy and care.
That is what a dwelling place is like.
We don’t normally describe a person entity as a dwelling place. God is omnipresent, His presence is everywhere at the same time. He is like a tent that spread across the whole heaven,
Psalm 61:3 describes this tent Let me dwell in Your tent forever; Let me take refuge in the shelter of Your wings.
We can run to God for love, peace, hope and justice.
Psalm 90:2 Before the mountains were born Or You gave birth to the earth and the world, Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God. What did Moses said about those mountains in verse 2 It said
“Before the mountains were born Or You gave birth to the earth and the world, Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.”
God is before the mountains in our life.
I am going to mention just 3 mountains that Moses encountered. The first mountain is found the books of Exodus. You know that children of Israel has escape from Egypt and crossed the Red Sea. And After three months of walking, Exodus chapter 19 describe for us that children of Israel came to the wildness of Sinai. And they made encamped at a base of the mountain.
In Exodus 19:18.
“Now Mount Sinai was all in smoke because the LORD descended upon it in fire; and its smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked violently. When the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke and God answered him with thunder.” In Exodus 19:20, it reads The LORD came down on Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain; and the LORD called Moses to the top of the mountain. When we encountered mountains in our life, God will approach us first.
God gave Moses the ten commandments, A guide for the Israelites to follow. God gave us the bible: how we can overcome the mountains in our life.
The second time God came to us is: Isaiah 9:6
“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Jesus is Prince of Peace he bring salvation to us so that we can overcome sins that we suffered. God came down in the form man to die for our sins of death. And give us a hope of eternal life so we can come up to him.
Next The second “Mountain” that Moses went is actually a hill that is called Prayer. The Israelites were on their way to the promise land and they encountered the enemies who seeks to destroy them,
That is found in the Exodus 17 which describe of this event
“Then Amalek came and fought against Israel at Rephidim. So Moses said to Joshua, “Choose men for us and go out, fight against Amalek. Tomorrow I will station myself on the top of the hill with the staff of God in my hand.”
A very vivid picture was painted for us in Exodus 17:10 of how the battle was fought.
“Joshua did as Moses told him, and fought against Amalek; and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. So it came about when Moses held his hand up, that Israel prevailed, and when he let his hand down, Amalek prevailed. But Moses’ hands were heavy. [In order to prevent them from suffering a defeat] Then the took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it; and Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side and one on the other”
From this story, we learnt about prayer. Prayer is important aspect of our Christian life. We must never not lower the covering of prayer over our church, ourselves, over people we know and most important over our country.
What is the root of our mountains in life?
The bible state that there one root cause that is SINS. Romans has a well quoted verse which I hope we are all familiar with Romans 3:23 – for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
While believers, our sins is forgiven on the Cross but what consequence of sins is still felt. No matter what definition the world or we like to give to sins. It don’t change a thing. And what is that consequence, death!!!
And in Psalm 90:3-6
“You turn man back into dust And say, “Return, O children of men.” For a thousand years in Your sight Are like yesterday when it passes by, Or as a watch in the night. You have swept them away like a flood, they fall asleep; In the morning they are like grass which sprouts anew. In the morning it flourishes and sprouts anew; Toward evening it fades and withers away.”
And Moses personally witnesses that consequence sins on Israelites when they are about enter the promise land. They reject the promise of God. The Israelites wanted to return to Egypt. Moses and Joshua pleaded with the people not to sin against God. Instead of listening, the Israelites wanted to stone them to death. God intervened and in the end, they have to wander in the desert.
The immediate of sin (complaint) is a live wasted in wandering in the desert for 40 years and not just wandering but eventual death.
And in Psalm 90: 7 – 11, Moses sums the whole situation For we have been consumed by Your anger And by Your wrath we have been dismayed. You have placed our iniquities before You, Our secret sins in the light of Your presence. For all our days have declined in Your fury; We have finished our years like a sigh. As for the days of our life, they contain seventy years, Or if due to strength, eighty years, Yet their pride is but labor and sorrow; For soon it is gone and we fly away. Who understands the power of Your anger And Your fury, according to the fear that is due You?
But it is God who reached out to us by coming down from Heaven as the son of man, Jesus Christ to die on Cross for sins.
Read John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
We need to response to God’s love. That is to climb up the mountain to believe in what Christ said and literal eat his words so that it is merge, burn into the well spring of our life. Live brother and sister in Christ, Live and be overcome by our mountains. Moses asked us to review those mountainous obstacle in lives in view of God
greatness by carefully counting our days where we are spending our time and effort
Psalm 90:13-15 So teach us to number our days:
Do return, O LORD; how long will it be? And be sorry for Your servants. O satisfy us in the morning with Your lovingkindness, That we may sing for joy and be glad all our days. Make us glad according to the days You have afflicted us, And the years we have seen evil.
Back to the mountains in Exodus: (Deuteronomy 32:49)
Now Moses went up from the plains of Moab to Mount Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, which is opposite Jericho. And the LORD showed him all the land, Gilead as far as Dan, and all Naphtali and the land of Ephraim and Manasseh, and all the land of Judah as far as the western sea, and the Negev and the plain in the valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees, as far as Zoar. Then the LORD said to him, “This is the land which I swore to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, saying, ‘I will give it to your descendants’; I have let you see it with your eyes, but you shall not go over there.” So Moses the servant of the LORD died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the LORD.
You know Moses died on Mount Nebo but the hope and promise of God continues. What arise from that 40 years of wandering in desert is a new generation of children of Israel with Joshua and Caleb ready to enter the promise land and conquer the land as God had promise to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
So Psalm 90:16-17 conclude:
Let Your work appear to Your servants And Your majesty to their children. And confirm for us the work of our hands; Yes, confirm the work of our hands.
“God made known His ways to Moses,” (Psalms 103:7)
So let us strive know the ways of God as Moses did and put our trust in him, believe
that he will leads through those mountains in our lives.