‘You know what thought did!’ Acts 7:20-29:

20 ‘At that time Moses was born, and he was no ordinary child.  For three months he was cared for by his family. 21 When he was placed outside, Pharaoh’s daughter took him and brought him up as her own son. 22 Moses was educated in all the wisdom of the Egyptians and was powerful in speech and action.  23 ‘When Moses was forty years old, he decided to visit his own people, the Israelites. 24 He saw one of them being ill-treated by an Egyptian, so he went to his defence and avenged him by killing the Egyptian. 25 Moses thought that his own people would realise that God was using him to rescue them, but they did not. 26 The next day Moses came upon two Israelites who were fighting. He tried to reconcile them by saying, “Men, you are brothers; why do you want to hurt each other?” 27 ‘But the man who was ill-treating the other pushed Moses aside and said, “Who made you ruler and judge over us? 28 Are you thinking of killing me as you killed the Egyptian yesterday?”  29 When Moses heard this, he fled to Midian, where he settled as a foreigner and had two sons.

 There are three give away phrases in this potted biography of Moses. They are:

‘’…he decided…Moses thought…He tried…’’ (23, 25 and 26).

Of course, it is not wrong to make decisions. The Bible is filled with stories of people who decided to do certain things, or to not do other things. The more we read God’s Book, the more we will want to make wise choices; and the greatest decision we all face is whether we will accept or reject the Lord Jesus Christ. Neither is it a bad thing to think. There is a vast array of teaching in Scripture about the proper use of the mind. It is, indeed, possible and necessary that we should endeavour to cultivate a Christian mind.  Nor is God’s Word against trying. For example, the book of Proverbs condemns laziness and commends diligence – as exemplified in the work ethic of the ant.

But…

…to just decide without reference to God…

…to think without seeking His wisdom…

…to try without relying on the power of the Holy Spirit…

This is not the way we’re meant to live. It is possible to be a Christian but live as a practical atheist – just making your own decisions, thinking your own thoughts and trying in your own strength. Think about what happened to Abraham when he tried to do God’s work (produce the child of promise) by his own fleshly efforts. Someone said to me recently that we shouldn’t assume. ‘To assume’ they said, ‘is to make an ass of u and me.’ Moses’ assumptions collided with reality, and He came off worse. Yet God used his failure to make him into the man/leader He wanted him to be. You may be brilliant – gifted and talented – as Moses clearly was (20-22), but if you are to fulfil God’s purpose for your life you will need to be broken of self-reliance and self-confidence. God will see that this happens, even if it takes years.

PRAYER: Lord forgive me for all the things I think and do without reference to you. Help me to submit all my thoughts and plans and ways – my everything – to you. I would not live in my own strength.