A Lesson from Moses on Cultural Relevance and Spiritual Impact

Tuesday, November 16, 2010 Bryan Hudson 0 Comments

Hebrews 11:24 (NIV) By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. 25 He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time. 26 He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward. 27 By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the king’s anger; he persevered because he saw him who is invisible.

Moses was raised as an Egyptian, though he was a Hebrew by birth. Moses was educated and immersed in Egyptian culture. He was Pharaoh's adopted son and a prince in Egypt. It is remarkable that God helped Moses not lose his true identity while in Egypt. Certainly, having his mother "hired" to serve as his nursemaid was part of God's plan to preserve his Hebrew heritage. It is a sad sight to see believers lose their true self to this world by failing to discover their spiritual heritage.

The Hebrews' writer weaves messianic insight into the fabric of the text when he writes in verse 26, "He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt."

Clearly, Moses' life speaks to us as believers in Christ today. We live in a kind of Egypt with all of its comforts, educational systems, culture, material wealth, arts, entertainment, sinful pleasures, and the rest.

Our greatest challenge is in answering the call of God, and then turning around to admonish the same culture that God used to educate us. In essence, we must spiritually "leave" Egypt to pursue greater "value" in Christ. We must come to identify with "the people of God" or Christ's church more than all others.

I believe that God wants us to be immersed in our culture (or diverse cultures) in order to connect us to the people that we will lead to Christ. Like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in Daniel Chapter 3, or like the young Jesus who wandered off to be about his "Father's business," we are fully IN this world, but ultimately not OF it.

God's grace grants us the faith to persevere because we "see" the invisible Christ at work through us. Paul said it best in Philippians, 2:13-15, "For it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,