“THROW IT ON THE GROUND”
‘The Lord said, “Throw it on the ground.” Moses threw it on the ground and it became a snake, and he ran from it.’ Ex. 4:3
After Moses identified what he had, what came next was an instruction that may not make sense to human wisdom. A shepherd’s staff is what he carries with his hands. That is where it is useful. A stick or rod on the ground is not a shepherd’s staff, yet that is where the Lord asked Moses to throw his staff. He obeyed that instruction and his dead and dry stick became a live snake. “Cast your bread upon the waters for after many days you will find it again.”
The obedience to the instruction to throw what you have on the ground is very important. Sometimes people actually identify what is in their hand but feel it will be a waste to “throw it on the ground.” Whatever ‘ground’ it is that God asks you to ‘throw’ your staff, is where what was previously dead and dry will come alive. Even dry bones obey His Word. Never think that a particular ‘ground’ is too insignificant for you to throw your staff on. “Do whatever he tells you” is the word that will turn your water to wine that will satisfy a multitude. If it is among children throw it there. If it be among rural folks, cast it there. If it is among the rich or poor, throw your staff on that ground. Whatever ground he has asked you to remove your shoes and stand on, and he tells you to throw your staff on, simply comply.
All you need is to hear His voice. You just obey. Obedience unlocks the power of God.
“THE STAFF OF GOD”
‘Now the Lord had said to Moses in Midian, “Go back to Egypt, for all the men who wanted to kill you are dead.” So Moses took his wife and sons, put them on a donkey and started back to Egypt. And he took the staff of God in his hand.’ Ex 4:19-21.
‘Moses said to Joshua, “Choose some of our men and go out to fight the Amalekites. Tomorrow I will stand on top of the hill with the staff of God in my hands.”’ Ex 17:9.
What Moses had earlier identified as “A staff” later became to him “the staff of God.” He realized that that dry stick now belonged to God. Whatever the staff would do going forward was because it was “the staff of God.” It was this same staff that became a snake before Pharaoh. It turned the waters of Egypt into blood and performed many other wonders because it was now “the staff of God.” It was this staff that parted the red sea and brought water from the rock in the wilderness.
God can also work wonders with what is in your hand. For Moses, it began as an answer to a simple question. You have no idea what God wants to do with what is already in your hand if only you would identify it, surrender it to Him and throw it on any ground He asks you to. All that a certain ‘Israel’ is waiting for, to be delivered, may be the ‘staff’ in your hand that will become “the staff of God.” Don’t keep them waiting.
UNDONE BY THE STAFF
‘Moses and Aaron went from the assembly to the entrance to the Tent of Meeting and fell facedown, and the glory of the Lord appeared to them. The Lord said to Moses, “Take the staff, and you and your brother Aaron gather the assembly together. Speak to that rock before their eyes and it will pour out its water. You will bring water out of the rock for the community so they and their livestock can drink.”
So Moses took the staff from the Lord’s presence, just as he commanded him. He and Aaron gathered the assembly together in front of the rock and Moses said to them, “Listen, you rebels, must we bring you water out of this rock?” Then Moses raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff. Water gushed out, and the community and their livestock drank.
But the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you did not trust in me enough to honor me as holy in the sight of the Israelites, you will not bring this community into the land I give them.”’ Num. 20:6-12.
This exhortation will close with a warning. The same staff was in Moses’ hand when God asked him to only speak to the rock this time. The pressure of leading a stubborn people caused the meekest man on the earth to lose his patience and strike the rock with the rod. The instruction was to speak and not to strike. Interestingly, even though it was an act of disobedience, it still worked a miracle.
Therein lies the danger. “A staff” became “the staff of God” so it could work miracles at any time. But it was the undoing of the man of God. Wrong use of the staff, though still working miracles, caused Moses to miss out on entering the land of promise. You must watch your life and your doctrine carefully. That your ‘staff’ is still working miracles is not a guarantee that you are walking in obedience and what you are doing is correct. Be careful that the ‘staff’ that has brought you so much fulfillment in life and ministry does not become your life’s undoing. Let not its continuous working cause you to miss out on the land of promise. It is better to enter into life maimed than to be seemingly whole and end up in the wrong place. Dear Saint, examine yourself to see whether you are in the Lord.