When Vices Become Virtues

Devotional II

“…Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh and dwelt in the land of Midian; and he sat down by a well.”Genesis 2:15

Moses had grown up and was now first in the land of Egypt after Pharaoh. Moses had everything he could ever think of or ask for. He wanted for nothing physically. However, there seemed to be something spiritual missing.

Although accepted into an Egyptian household, it is almost sure that friends and others joked with him and never let him forget his Hebrew heritage. It probably never really dawned on him to think about his heritage until that one day that changed his life forever.

As Moses was out one day, the Bible tells us that he “went out to his brethren and looked at their burdens.” In other words, he gave attention to what they were going through, and it became apparent that it was unfair and uncalled for. His people were being beaten and used, and this moved him. The anger that welled up inside of him was left uncontrolled. In his rage, he killed an Egyptian and buried him in the sand. When Pharaoh found out, Moses was running for his life.

We find Moses in Midian, where he remained for 40 years. A man who once found it a disgrace as an Egyptian to herd any animal has now become a shepherd himself. A man who once had servants bringing him food and drink was currently serving animals in that very fashion. This was, without a doubt, a humbling experience.

Moses’ life experience has now gone that 18 inches from head to heart. He has now become a man of meekness who the Bible says was “very humble, more than all men who were on the face of the earth.” The sins of his past and repentance of heart had shaped him into the humble man he became. And, that is precisely the man needed him to be for the task God had in his near future.

Moses’ love and boldness for his brethren created a passion in him that went uncontrolled. Now, that love and courage were reserved in meekness, and God would use these changed character traits for His perfect plan.

“The truth is, no truly meek man ever does so begin. It is not true meekness if it is found in any man at the beginning of his life. True meekness it is not till it has been planted, and watered, and pruned, and purified, and beaten upon by every wind of god, and cut to pieces by every knife of God…”

– J.I. Packer 

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