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Examples of Faith

ChosenPeople.com, Featured Blog by Dr. Rich Freeman, February 2019

In this study, we will continue examining examples of faith in Hebrews chapter 11, beginning with the portion that discusses the faith of Moses’ parents. Hebrews 11:23says, “By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw he was a beautiful child; and they were not afraid of the king’s edict.”The only other time the Greek word translated as “beautiful” is used is in Acts 7:20where Stephen says the baby Moses “was lovely [or beautiful] in the sight of God.” The parents of Moses, Amram and Yochebed, believed that this newborn son was special to God and, perhaps, even the promised deliverer of the Israelites. So, in spite of the threat of death from Pharaoh’s decree that demanded the killing of all newborn Israelite boys, these godly Hebrew slaves hid the little baby until he was too big to hide. They ended up putting him in a little ark on the Nile River where Pharaoh’s daughter found him.

Moses’ life was actually divided into three distinct parts of forty years each. The first forty years he lived as a prince of Egypt. In Acts 7:22, Stephen testified: “Moses was educated in all the learning of the Egyptians, and he was a man of power in words and deeds.”

Everything changed at the age of forty when Moses set out to deliver the Israelites from the bondage of slavery in Egypt. The writer of Hebrews, in 11:24 says, “By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter.” He had all the characteristics of a perfect deliverer: He had been trained as a prince and a military man—this was too good to be true! This misjudgment is reminiscent of the time God instructed Samuel to choose a new king of Israel from among the sons of Jesse, the Bethlehemite.

When Samuel saw the first-born son Eliab, he deemed the strapping young man as the perfect king. He thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed is before him” (1 Samuel 16:6). But God rebuked him by saying, “…man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7). Instead, God chose the youngest son, David, who would be called “a man after God’s own heart” (1 Samuel 13:14). Similarly, Moses’ attempt at delivering the people in his strength as a prince of Egypt was a failure, and after killing an Egyptian for mistreating a Hebrew, he was forced to flee Egypt.

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