Exodus 4:18 –31 Surely, a Bloody Husband art Thou to Me

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Exo 4:18 –31 Surely, a Bloody Huband art Thou to Me

[Study Aired April 4, 2022]

Exo 4:18  And Moses went and returned to Jethro his father in law, and said unto him, Let me go, I pray thee, and return unto my brethren which are in Egypt, and see whether they be yet alive. And Jethro said to Moses, Go in peace. 
Exo 4:19  And the LORD said unto Moses in Midian, Go, return into Egypt: for all the men are dead which sought thy life. 
Exo 4:20  And Moses took his wife and his sons, and set them upon an ass, and he returned to the land of Egypt: and Moses took the rod of God in his hand. 
Exo 4:21  And the LORD said unto Moses, When thou goest to return into Egypt, see that thou do all those wonders before Pharaoh, which I have put in thine hand: but I will harden his heart, that he shall not let the people go. 
Exo 4:22  And thou shalt say unto Pharaoh, Thus saith the LORD, Israel is my son, even my firstborn: 
Exo 4:23  And I say unto thee, Let my son go, that he may serve me: and if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy firstborn. 
Exo 4:24  And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the LORD met him, and sought to kill him. 
Exo 4:25  Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me. 
Exo 4:26  So he let him go: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the circumcision. 
Exo 4:27  And the LORD said to Aaron, Go into the wilderness to meet Moses. And he went, and met him in the mount of God, and kissed him. 
Exo 4:28  And Moses told Aaron all the words of the LORD who had sent him, and all the signs which he had commanded him. 
Exo 4:29  And Moses and Aaron went and gathered together all the elders of the children of Israel: 
Exo 4:30  And Aaron spake all the words which the LORD had spoken unto Moses, and did the signs in the sight of the people. 
Exo 4:31  And the people believed: and when they heard that the LORD had visited the children of Israel, and that he had looked upon their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshipped. 

All things come alike to us all. In other words, we all go through the same experience as the Lord’s elect, but the details are different from each other.

Ecc 9:2  All things come alike to all: there is one event to the righteous, and to the wicked; to the good and to the clean, and to the unclean; to him that sacrificeth, and to him that sacrificeth not: as is the good, so is the sinner; and he that sweareth, as he that feareth an oath. 
Ecc 9:3  This is an evil among all things that are done under the sun, that there is one event unto all: yea, also the heart of the sons of men is full of evil, and madness is in their heart while they live, and after that they go to the dead. 

What this means is that what happened to Moses and all the prophets is our experience also. Thus, the story of Moses and the Israelites and their exodus from Egypt relate to our experience of our walk with Christ. With that in mind, it becomes easier to understand the details of the Lord’s encounter with Moses in the desert.

1Co 10:11  Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. 

Today’s study is based on Moses’ journey back to Egypt to start the process of delivering the Lord’s people from their bondage in Egypt. Let’s now look at what happened to Moses after his encounter with the Lord as follows:

Exo 4:18  And Moses went and returned to Jethro his father in law, and said unto him, Let me go, I pray thee, and return unto my brethren which are in Egypt, and see whether they be yet alive. And Jethro said to Moses, Go in peace.

We must understand that the return of Moses to Egypt does not mean that as the Lord’s elect, we will return to the world. Not even the apostate church in the wilderness (the Israelites) returned to Egypt. What it means for Moses to return to Egypt is that after we encounter Christ, we must face the world with the devil as the prince of the power of the air. Our encounter with the Lord is to prepare us to face the world with all its tribulations.

Joh 16:33  These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

Moses going to Jethro, his father-in-law, to request to go back to Egypt is not the result of Moses’ own volition. It was the result of his encounter with the Lord in the desert and his adherence to the command of the Lord to go back to Egypt to deliver the Lord’s people. There is a popular adage in the world that “where there is a will, there is a way”. However, my failures in life, even though I had the will, has taught me that it is only where there is the Lord’s will, that there is a way. It is not about him that runs, or wills or desires. It is about the Lord showing mercy!!

Rom 9:16  So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.

Moses’ own effort to deliver the people of Israel from bondage had failed woefully. He is now ready to depend on the Lord to do the work. The first challenge we face when the Lord visits us with His brightness (His words) is the call to leave Babylon to fulfill our destiny. This was what happened to Moses. He had to disengage with his father-in-law, Jethro, to pursue the Lord’s agenda. Jethro here negatively represents Babylon (the physical churches of this world), which we are admonished to leave.

Rev 18:4  And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.
Rev 18:5  For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities. 

When the Lord visited Abraham, he was also told to leave his family behind and pursue the Lord’s agenda. Although the family Abraham left signifies that to do the Lord’s will, we must leave behind the flesh, it can also mean leaving Babylon. So, Abraham also had to leave Babylon. As indicated in the introductory part of this study, we all have the same experience.

Jethro’s willingness to let Moses go is to let us know that in any situation we come across, as long as it is in the perfect will of God, the Lord will make a way for us. He indeed creates rivers in the desert for us.

Isa 43:19  Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.

Nobody leaves Babylon with a sending-off party. It usually comes with tribulation, but in the end, the Lord gives us the willingness and the capacity to respond to His call to leave.

Exo 4:19  And the LORD said unto Moses in Midian, Go, return into Egypt: for all the men are dead which sought thy life. 

The men who were seeking the life of Moses represent the beast or the old man within us. When Christ comes to us with His brightness, which is His words, the death of the beast within has begun in earnest. So, here we are being reminded that we need not fear whether we are going to be overcome by the beast within as the Lord has initiated the death process for the beast or the old man.

2Th 2:7  For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. 
2Th 2:8  And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: 

Exo 4:20  And Moses took his wife and his sons, and set them upon an ass, and he returned to the land of Egypt: and Moses took the rod of God in his hand. 

Moses coming to Egypt to the Lord’s people sitting on an ass is a foreshadow of Christ coming to us (Jerusalem) to bring deliverance to the daughters of Zion (the elect).

Mat 21:5  Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass. 

Zec 9:9  Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.

The choice of a donkey is, itself, an important symbol. Horses are the ideal animals for war, so victorious warriors would present themselves atop a horse as they paraded. Our Messiah using an ass is to let us know that our deliverance by Him from our bondage in Egypt is not by might nor by power, but by the spirit and that His kingdom is not of this world. It also shows our Lord’s humility. Moses coming back to Egypt on an ass means that those the Lord is calling as His sons come to us in humility. They do not glory in His presence because they recognize that it was just by the mercies of the Lord that they had been chosen.

Zec 4:6  Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts. 

Joh 18:36  Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence. 

This verse also demonstrates the victory the Lord has given us over the flesh.  Moses here represents the Lord whose wife is the New Jerusalem. The sons are the elect who are the product of the union between Christ and His wife, the New Jerusalem or the church of the first born.  As verse 20 indicates, Moses set them upon an ass on his return to Egypt. This means that after we have had an encounter with the Lord, our Lord Jesus Christ gives us the power to overcome the beast within which is symbolized by Moses’ family riding on top of an ass (beast).

1Jn 2:14  I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.

1Jn 4:4  Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. 

Verse 20 also shows us how to overcome the beast within. It is when Moses took the rod of God in his hands that victory is assured. As indicated in the previous session, the rod here represents Christ who is from the root of Jesse. It is when Christ comes to us to do His work of putting to death the sinful deeds of the flesh or the beast that we become victorious.

Exo 4:21  And the LORD said unto Moses, When thou goest to return into Egypt, see that thou do all those wonders before Pharaoh, which I have put in thine hand: but I will harden his heart, that he shall not let the people go. 

The Lord reminded Moses to do before Pharoah all the wonders that the Lord had shown him during his encounter with Him. In the previous study, we talked about the signs and their spiritual significance. Let’s revisit last week’s study to remind ourselves of the signs Moses is required to perform before Pharaoh.

The first sign

Exo 4:2  And the LORD said unto him, What is that in thine hand? And he said, A rod. 
Exo 4:3  And he said, Cast it on the ground. And he cast it on the ground, and it became a serpent; and Moses fled from before it. 
Exo 4:4  And the LORD said unto Moses, Put forth thine hand, and take it by the tail. And he put forth his hand, and caught it, and it became a rod in his hand: 

The rod here is the same as the staff. What is in our hands is what we cling to. In other words, what Lord was asking Moses pertains to what Moses was depending on. We are either depending on our strength or flesh, which is powered by the devil, or we are depending on the Lord alone. In the Bible, a rod is a symbol of discipline. However, the following verses show that a rod can represents Christ and His words or the devil and his lies, represented as serpent:

Isa 11:1  And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse (christ), and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:

Isa 14:29  Rejoice not thou, whole Palestina, because the rod of him that smote thee is broken (the devil): for out of the serpent’s root shall come forth a cockatrice, and his fruit shall be a fiery flying serpent.

It is when we have an encounter with Christ, that is, when He comes to us and causes us to understand His words, that we are shown what we are depending on. It is when the Lord comes to us with His brightness and starts His work of destroying the beast within that we see who we have been dealing with all our lives – our father the devil, who is represented here as a serpent. Christ coming to us with His brightness is when our heavens are opened to begin to understand the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven.

2Th 2:8  And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: 

Joh 8:44  Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. 

Just as Christ stands for the word of Christ or truth, the devil or Satan or the serpent is synonymous with deception or lies. So, it is when the Lord opens our hearts and minds to understand His words that we begin to see how all our lives we have been deceived by the lies of the serpent. Nobody wants to entertain deception. One of the key factors that destroy marriages is when one partner sees that he/she had been deceived all along. Immediately we recognize deception, and we run away from it. This was what happened to Moses. Immediately when he saw that the rod had become a serpent, he realized that he had been deceived all along. That is when he started to flee from deception. That was exactly what happened to us!!  Until Christ came to us with His brightness, we thought we were serving the Lord. We come to see that what we have been holding on to or depending on is indeed deception by our father the devil, and we flee!!

Joh 10:4  And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. 
Joh 10:5  And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers. 

Through the scriptures, we are able to know how to deal with the lies of the devil and his messengers. That is, we must put forth our hands and take the serpent by the tail. In the scriptures, the tail negatively symbolizes the false doctrines of false messengers of Satan.

Isa 9:15  The ancient and honourable, he is the head; and the prophet that teacheth lies, he is the tail.

Rev 12:4  And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.

The statement “And he put forth his hands, and caught it” means that Moses was able to seize, bind or restrain (Meaning of caught – H2388) the lies of the enemy, the devil. It is when we have dominion over the false doctrines in our heavens that we are able to hold on to Christ and His words, represented here by the serpent turning back to a rod. The rod is also a symbol of rulership. Thus, having this rod (Christ and His words) now in our hands is to assure us of our future inheritance as rulers, just as Moses ruled over the Lord’s people after this encounter with Christ with the rod in his hands.

Eze 19:14  And fire is gone out of a rod of her branches, which hath devoured her fruit, so that she hath no strong rod to be a sceptre to rule. This is a lamentation, and shall be for a lamentation. 

The Second Sign

Exo 4:6  And the LORD said furthermore unto him, Put now thine hand into thy bosom. And he put his hand into his bosom: and when he took it out, behold, his hand was leprous as snow.
Exo 4:7  And he said, Put thine hand into thy bosom again. And he put his hand into his bosom again; and plucked it out of his bosom, and, behold, it was turned again as his other flesh. 

The Hebrew word “chôq”H2436 is often translated as bosom, but it can also mean “within” as used in the following:

Job 19:27  Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed withinH2436 me.

So, we can say that putting thy hand into thy bosom can mean looking within. As we are aware, within us is a repository of evil, signified by Moses’ hand turning leprous as snow. This is what Jesus had to say about what is within us:

Mar 7:21  For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, 
Mar 7:22  Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: 
Mar 7:23  All these evil things come from within, and defile the man. 

Verses 6 and 7 present another way of saying that the vessel that our Lord made of clay was marred in His hands, and so He made it again into another vessel as it seemed good to Him.

Jer 18:4  And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.

During the Lord’s encounter with Moses, He told him that if they do not believe him after the first sign, then they will believe in him by the second sign. These two signs are what marks us out as the elect and makes those called and chosen who are in bondage believe in us. Without these two signs, we cannot impact anybody’s life.

Exo 4:8  And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe thee, neither hearken to the voice of the first sign, that they will believe the voice of the latter sign. 

By telling Moses that he will harden Pharaoh’s heart so that he will not let go, the Lord is reminding us that dealing with the beast within is a lifelong process.

Exo 4:22  And thou shalt say unto Pharaoh, Thus saith the LORD, Israel is my son, even my firstborn: 

The Lord describing Israel as His firstborn is to let us know about the election of Israel. The first-born son was the one who normally received a double inheritance and was the one who would inherit his father’s role as head of the family. As we are aware, Jesus is the first born among many brethren and is also the first born of every creature.

Rom 8:29  For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

Col 1:15  Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: 

God sometimes reversed this order as he did with Jacob and Esau and as Jacob later did with Ephraim and Manasseh. Reuben was also the first born of Jacob, but his rights as the first born were taken away because of his sin.

Gen 35:22  And it came to pass, when Israel dwelt in that land, that Reuben went and lay with Bilhah his father’s concubine: and Israel heard it. Now the sons of Jacob were twelve: 
Gen 35:23  The sons of Leah; Reuben, Jacob’s firstborn, and Simeon, and Levi, and Judah, and Issachar, and Zebulun: 

Gen 49:3  Reuben, thou art my firstborn, my might, and the beginning of my strength, the excellency of dignity, and the excellency of power: 
Gen 49:4  Unstable as water, thou shalt not excel; because thou wentest up to thy father’s bed; then defiledst thou it: he went up to my couch. 

The term “firstborn” spiritually refers to our election before the foundations of the world. So, the Lord telling Moses to tell Pharaoh that Israel is His first-born is to let us know about Israel’s election which is a foreshadow of our election.

Eph 1:4  According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: 

Exo 4:23  And I say unto thee, Let my son go, that he may serve me: and if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy firstborn. 

Pharaoh here is a symbol of the old man or the beast within who resists us from being free to worship the Lord. The Lord saying that He will slay the firstborn of Pharaoh is to let us know that the Lord will destroy the basis of the strength of the beast within as firstborns represent the basis of our strength as used in the following:

Gen 49:3  Reuben, thou art my firstborn, my might, and the beginning of my strength, the excellency of dignity, and the excellency of power: 

This means that the destruction of the beast, or the old man within us, is a process. As the story unfolds, we shall see that it takes time for the firstborn of Pharaoh to die. It is not accomplished in one day!! That is what Paul meant when he said that he dies daily.

1Co 15:31  I protest by that glorying in you, brethren, which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.

Exo 4:24  And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the LORD met him, and sought to kill him. 

The Lord seeking to kill Moses means that the Lord has commenced the process to put to death the old man or the beast within Moses.

2Th 2:7  For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. 
2Th 2:8  And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: 

Exo 4:25  Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me. 
Exo 4:26  So he let him go: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the circumcision. 

Zipporah, Moses’ wife, represents the elect. Stone on a positive note in the word of the Lord stands for the elect. What this means is that it is through what every joint supplies in the New Jerusalem or the church of the firstborn that we are able to take away the flesh of our foreskin, that is, destroy the flesh or the old man. As Paul stated, we the elect are the spiritual Jews who are circumcised spiritually.

Rom 2:28  For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: 
Rom 2:29  But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God. 

Col 2:10  And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power: 
Col 2:11  In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: 

Zipporah referred to Moses as a bloody husband. As we have indicated, Moses also represents the Lord and Zipporah the bride of Christ. Blood in the word of the Lord signifies life. So, calling our husband Christ, a bloody husband on a positive note is another way of saying that He has come that we might have life and have it more abundantly.

Lev 17:11  For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul. 

Joh 10:10  The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. 

Exo 4:27  And the LORD said to Aaron, Go into the wilderness to meet Moses. And he went, and met him in the mount of God, and kissed him. 
Exo 4:28  And Moses told Aaron all the words of the LORD who had sent him, and all the signs which he had commanded him. 

As we showed in the previous session, the Lord brought Aaron to assist Moses to carry out the Lord’s work. This is what we said about Aaron in the previous study:

On a negative note, Aaron is a symbol of our brothers and sisters in Babylon who are joined to us. In this context, Aaron’s role can be looked at from a negative perspective. Here we see that Aaron was to attend or minister to Moses in bringing salvation to the people of Israel. Throughout the years, our brothers and sisters in Babylon’s work only pertain to the keeping of instruments of the tabernacle of the congregation, but it is only Moses, Aaron and his sons (representing us) who are to minister before the Lord.

Num 3:5  And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, 
Num 3:6  Bring the tribe of Levi near, and present them before Aaron the priest, that they may minister unto him. 
Num 3:7  And they shall keep his charge, and the charge of the whole congregation before the tabernacle of the congregation, to do the service of the tabernacle. 
Num 3:8  And they shall keep all the instruments of the tabernacle of the congregation, and the charge of the children of Israel, to do the service of the tabernacle. 
Num 3:9  And thou shalt give the Levites unto Aaron and to his sons: they are wholly given unto him out of the children of Israel. 
Num 3:10  And thou shalt appoint Aaron and his sons, and they shall wait on their priest’s office: and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.

Num 3:38  But those that encamp before the tabernacle toward the east, even before the tabernacle of the congregation eastward, shall be Moses, and Aaron and his sons, keeping the charge of the sanctuary for the charge of the children of Israel; and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death. 

We should also note that Aaron’s role is the same as all the prophets of the Old Testament who ministered to us but did not receive the promise.

1Pe 1:10  Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: 
1Pe 1:11  Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. 
1Pe 1:12  Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into. 

Exo 4:29  And Moses and Aaron went and gathered together all the elders of the children of Israel: 
Exo 4:30  And Aaron spake all the words which the LORD had spoken unto Moses, and did the signs in the sight of the people. 
Exo 4:31  And the people believed: and when they heard that the LORD had visited the children of Israel, and that he had looked upon their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshipped. 

As indicated by the Lord Jesus, those called and chosen will respond to our call to be liberated from bondage when we show them the two signs.

Exo 4:8  And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe thee, neither hearken to the voice of the first sign, that they will believe the voice of the latter sign.

As indicated, the first sign relates to us being able to recognize that what we have depended on is in reality a deception. It is then that we learn how to deal with these false doctrines – by holding them by the tail. This first sign is basically inward, and it is not easily seen by others. However, the second sign relates to how we come to see ourselves as sinful, and through the grace of God, we come to shine forth His righteousness. It is this righteousness, which is like a lamp that cannot be hidden, we make others believe our voice.

1Pe 3:1  Likewise, wives, be subject to your own husbands, so that even if some do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives, 
1Pe 3:2  when they see your respectful and pure conduct. 

Mat 5:14  “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. 
Mat 5:15  Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. 
Mat 5:16  In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

Verse 31 is to assure us that in the fullness of time, when all humanity has seen us demonstrate these two signs, they will come to believe. It is when humanity comes to see the lies of the evil, and their eyes are unveiled to the plan of God regarding the salvation of the world, that they will all bow down their heads and worship the Lord. At that time, every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess that Jesus is Lord!!

Php 2:9  Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: 
Php 2:10  That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 
Php 2:11  And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.  

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