January 18: Day 18

Video: Holiness

Reading: Exodus 4-6, Psalm 18 (ESV)




Exodus 4

Moses Given Powerful Signs

1Then Moses answered, "But behold, they will not believe me or listen to my voice, for they will say, 'The Lord did not appear to you.'" 2The Lord said to him, "What is that in your hand?" He said, "A staff." 3And he said, "Throw it on the ground." So he threw it on the ground, and it became a serpent, and Moses ran from it. 4But the Lord said to Moses, "Put out your hand and catch it by the tail"—so he put out his hand and caught it, and it became a staff in his hand— 5"that they may believe that the Lord, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has appeared to you." 6Again, the Lord said to him, "Put your hand inside your cloak." And he put his hand inside his cloak, and when he took it out, behold, his hand was leprous like snow. 7Then God said, "Put your hand back inside your cloak." So he put his hand back inside his cloak, and when he took it out, behold, it was restored like the rest of his flesh. 8"If they will not believe you," God said, "or listen to the first sign, they may believe the latter sign. 9If they will not believe even these two signs or listen to your voice, you shall take some water from the Nile and pour it on the dry ground, and the water that you shall take from the Nile will become blood on the dry ground."

10But Moses said to the Lord, "Oh, my Lord, I am not eloquent, either in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue." 11Then the Lord said to him, "Who has made man's mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? 12Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall speak." 13But he said, "Oh, my Lord, please send someone else." 14Then the anger of the Lord was kindled against Moses and he said, "Is there not Aaron, your brother, the Levite? I know that he can speak well. Behold, he is coming out to meet you, and when he sees you, he will be glad in his heart. 15You shall speak to him and put the words in his mouth, and I will be with your mouth and with his mouth and will teach you both what to do. 16He shall speak for you to the people, and he shall be your mouth, and you shall be as God to him. 17And take in your hand this staff, with which you shall do the signs."

Moses Returns to Egypt

18Moses went back to Jethro his father-in-law and said to him, "Please let me go back to my brothers in Egypt to see whether they are still alive." And Jethro said to Moses, "Go in peace." 19And the Lord said to Moses in Midian, "Go back to Egypt, for all the men who were seeking your life are dead." 20So Moses took his wife and his sons and had them ride on a donkey, and went back to the land of Egypt. And Moses took the staff of God in his hand.

21And the Lord said to Moses, "When you go back to Egypt, see that you do before Pharaoh all the miracles that I have put in your power. But I will harden his heart, so that he will not let the people go. 22Then you shall say to Pharaoh, 'Thus says the Lord, Israel is my firstborn son, 23and I say to you, "Let my son go that he may serve me." If you refuse to let him go, behold, I will kill your firstborn son.'"

24At a lodging place on the way the Lord met him and sought to put him to death. 25Then Zipporah took a flint and cut off her son's foreskin and touched Moses' feet with it and said, "Surely you are a bridegroom of blood to me!" 26So he let him alone. It was then that she said, "A bridegroom of blood," because of the circumcision.

27The Lord said to Aaron, "Go into the wilderness to meet Moses." So he went and met him at the mountain of God and kissed him. 28And Moses told Aaron all the words of the Lord with which he had sent him to speak, and all the signs that he had commanded him to do. 29Then Moses and Aaron went and gathered together all the elders of the people of Israel. 30Aaron spoke all the words that the Lord had spoken to Moses and did the signs in the sight of the people. 31And the people believed; and when they heard that the Lord had visited the people of Israel and that he had seen their affliction, they bowed their heads and worshiped.


Exodus 5

Making Bricks Without Straw

1Afterward Moses and Aaron went and said to Pharaoh, "Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, 'Let my people go, that they may hold a feast to me in the wilderness.'" 2But Pharaoh said, "Who is the Lord, that I should obey his voice and let Israel go? I do not know the Lord, and moreover, I will not let Israel go." 3Then they said, "The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Please let us go a three days' journey into the wilderness that we may sacrifice to the Lord our God, lest he fall upon us with pestilence or with the sword." 4But the king of Egypt said to them, "Moses and Aaron, why do you take the people away from their work? Get back to your burdens." 5And Pharaoh said, "Behold, the people of the land are now many, and you make them rest from their burdens!" 6The same day Pharaoh commanded the taskmasters of the people and their foremen, 7"You shall no longer give the people straw to make bricks, as in the past; let them go and gather straw for themselves. 8But the number of bricks that they made in the past you shall impose on them, you shall by no means reduce it, for they are idle. Therefore they cry, 'Let us go and offer sacrifice to our God.' 9Let heavier work be laid on the men that they may labor at it and pay no regard to lying words."

10So the taskmasters and the foremen of the people went out and said to the people, "Thus says Pharaoh, 'I will not give you straw. 11Go and get your straw yourselves wherever you can find it, but your work will not be reduced in the least.'" 12So the people were scattered throughout all the land of Egypt to gather stubble for straw. 13The taskmasters were urgent, saying, "Complete your work, your daily task each day, as when there was straw." 14And the foremen of the people of Israel, whom Pharaoh's taskmasters had set over them, were beaten and were asked, "Why have you not done all your task of making bricks today and yesterday, as in the past?"

15Then the foremen of the people of Israel came and cried to Pharaoh, "Why do you treat your servants like this? 16No straw is given to your servants, yet they say to us, 'Make bricks!' And behold, your servants are beaten; but the fault is in your own people." 17But he said, "You are idle, you are idle; that is why you say, 'Let us go and sacrifice to the Lord.' 18Go now and work. No straw will be given you, but you must still deliver the same number of bricks." 19The foremen of the people of Israel saw that they were in trouble when they said, "You shall by no means reduce your number of bricks, your daily task each day." 20They met Moses and Aaron, who were waiting for them, as they came out from Pharaoh; 21and they said to them, "The Lord look on you and judge, because you have made us stink in the sight of Pharaoh and his servants, and have put a sword in their hand to kill us."

22Then Moses turned to the Lord and said, "O Lord, why have you done evil to this people? Why did you ever send me? 23For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has done evil to this people, and you have not delivered your people at all."


Exodus 6

God Promises Deliverance

1But the Lord said to Moses, "Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh; for with a strong hand he will send them out, and with a strong hand he will drive them out of his land."

2God spoke to Moses and said to him, "I am the Lord. 3I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, as God Almighty, but by my name the Lord I did not make myself known to them. 4I also established my covenant with them to give them the land of Canaan, the land in which they lived as sojourners. 5Moreover, I have heard the groaning of the people of Israel whom the Egyptians hold as slaves, and I have remembered my covenant. 6Say therefore to the people of Israel, 'I am the Lord, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will deliver you from slavery to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great acts of judgment. 7I will take you to be my people, and I will be your God, and you shall know that I am the Lord your God, who has brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. 8I will bring you into the land that I swore to give to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. I will give it to you for a possession. I am the Lord.'" 9Moses spoke thus to the people of Israel, but they did not listen to Moses, because of their broken spirit and harsh slavery.

10So the Lord said to Moses, 11"Go in, tell Pharaoh king of Egypt to let the people of Israel go out of his land." 12But Moses said to the Lord, "Behold, the people of Israel have not listened to me. How then shall Pharaoh listen to me, for I am of uncircumcised lips?" 13But the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron and gave them a charge about the people of Israel and about Pharaoh king of Egypt: to bring the people of Israel out of the land of Egypt.

The Genealogy of Moses and Aaron

14These are the heads of their fathers' houses: the sons of Reuben, the firstborn of Israel: Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron, and Carmi; these are the clans of Reuben. 15The sons of Simeon: Jemuel, Jamin, Ohad, Jachin, Zohar, and Shaul, the son of a Canaanite woman; these are the clans of Simeon. 16These are the names of the sons of Levi according to their generations: Gershon, Kohath, and Merari, the years of the life of Levi being 137 years. 17The sons of Gershon: Libni and Shimei, by their clans. 18The sons of Kohath: Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel, the years of the life of Kohath being 133 years. 19The sons of Merari: Mahli and Mushi. These are the clans of the Levites according to their generations. 20Amram took as his wife Jochebed his father's sister, and she bore him Aaron and Moses, the years of the life of Amram being 137 years. 21The sons of Izhar: Korah, Nepheg, and Zichri. 22The sons of Uzziel: Mishael, Elzaphan, and Sithri. 23Aaron took as his wife Elisheba, the daughter of Amminadab and the sister of Nahshon, and she bore him Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar. 24The sons of Korah: Assir, Elkanah, and Abiasaph; these are the clans of the Korahites. 25Eleazar, Aaron's son, took as his wife one of the daughters of Putiel, and she bore him Phinehas. These are the heads of the fathers' houses of the Levites by their clans.

26These are the Aaron and Moses to whom the Lord said: "Bring out the people of Israel from the land of Egypt by their hosts." 27It was they who spoke to Pharaoh king of Egypt about bringing out the people of Israel from Egypt, this Moses and this Aaron.

28On the day when the Lord spoke to Moses in the land of Egypt, 29the Lord said to Moses, "I am the Lord; tell Pharaoh king of Egypt all that I say to you." 30But Moses said to the Lord, "Behold, I am of uncircumcised lips. How will Pharaoh listen to me?"


Psalm 18

TheLordIs My Rock and My Fortress

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David, the servant of the Lord, who addressed the words of this song to the Lord on the day when the Lord rescued him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul. He said:

1 I love you, O Lord, my strength.

2 The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,

my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,

my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

3 I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised,

and I am saved from my enemies.

4 The cords of death encompassed me;

the torrents of destruction assailed me;

5 the cords of Sheol entangled me;

the snares of death confronted me.

6 In my distress I called upon the Lord;

to my God I cried for help.

From his temple he heard my voice,

and my cry to him reached his ears.

7 Then the earth reeled and rocked;

the foundations also of the mountains trembled

and quaked, because he was angry.

8 Smoke went up from his nostrils,

and devouring fire from his mouth;

glowing coals flamed forth from him.

9 He bowed the heavens and came down;

thick darkness was under his feet.

10 He rode on a cherub and flew;

he came swiftly on the wings of the wind.

11 He made darkness his covering, his canopy around him,

thick clouds dark with water.

12 Out of the brightness before him

hailstones and coals of fire broke through his clouds.

13 The Lord also thundered in the heavens,

and the Most High uttered his voice,

hailstones and coals of fire.

14 And he sent out his arrows and scattered them;

he flashed forth lightnings and routed them.

15 Then the channels of the sea were seen,

and the foundations of the world were laid bare

at your rebuke, O Lord,

at the blast of the breath of your nostrils.

16 He sent from on high, he took me;

he drew me out of many waters.

17 He rescued me from my strong enemy

and from those who hated me,

for they were too mighty for me.

18 They confronted me in the day of my calamity,

but the Lord was my support.

19 He brought me out into a broad place;

he rescued me, because he delighted in me.

20 The Lord dealt with me according to my righteousness;

according to the cleanness of my hands he rewarded me.

21 For I have kept the ways of the Lord,

and have not wickedly departed from my God.

22 For all his rules were before me,

and his statutes I did not put away from me.

23 I was blameless before him,

and I kept myself from my guilt.

24 So the Lord has rewarded me according to my righteousness,

according to the cleanness of my hands in his sight.

25 With the merciful you show yourself merciful;

with the blameless man you show yourself blameless;

26 with the purified you show yourself pure;

and with the crooked you make yourself seem tortuous.

27 For you save a humble people,

but the haughty eyes you bring down.

28 For it is you who light my lamp;

the Lord my God lightens my darkness.

29 For by you I can run against a troop,

and by my God I can leap over a wall.

30 This God—his way is perfect;

the word of the Lord proves true;

he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.

31 For who is God, but the Lord?

And who is a rock, except our God?—

32 the God who equipped me with strength

and made my way blameless.

33 He made my feet like the feet of a deer

and set me secure on the heights.

34 He trains my hands for war,

so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.

35 You have given me the shield of your salvation,

and your right hand supported me,

and your gentleness made me great.

36 You gave a wide place for my steps under me,

and my feet did not slip.

37 I pursued my enemies and overtook them,

and did not turn back till they were consumed.

38 I thrust them through, so that they were not able to rise;

they fell under my feet.

39 For you equipped me with strength for the battle;

you made those who rise against me sink under me.

40 You made my enemies turn their backs to me,

and those who hated me I destroyed.

41 They cried for help, but there was none to save;

they cried to the Lord, but he did not answer them.

42 I beat them fine as dust before the wind;

I cast them out like the mire of the streets.

43 You delivered me from strife with the people;

you made me the head of the nations;

people whom I had not known served me.

44 As soon as they heard of me they obeyed me;

foreigners came cringing to me.

45 Foreigners lost heart

and came trembling out of their fortresses.

46 The Lord lives, and blessed be my rock,

and exalted be the God of my salvation—

47 the God who gave me vengeance

and subdued peoples under me,

48 who delivered me from my enemies;

yes, you exalted me above those who rose against me;

you rescued me from the man of violence.

49 For this I will praise you, O Lord, among the nations,

and sing to your name.

50 Great salvation he brings to his king,

and shows steadfast love to his anointed,

to David and his offspring forever.