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Moses Brings Frogs, Gnats and Flies Upon Egypt! – Exodus chapter 8

Listen to the newest episode of my podcast, Nicholas Hood3: Genesis chapter 8 – Moses Brings Frogs, Gnats and Flies Upon Egypt https://anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3/episodes/Genesis-chapter-8—Moses-Brings-Frogs–Gnats-and-Flies-Upon-Egypt-e2ld1b

The Second Plague: Frogs

Exodus 8 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord: Let my people go, so that they may worship me. If you refuse to let them go, I will plague your whole country with frogs. The river shall swarm with frogs; they shall come up into your palace, into your bedchamber and your bed, and into the houses of your officials and of your people, and into your ovens and your kneading bowls. The frogs shall come up on you and on your people and on all your officials.’ ” And the Lord said to Moses, “Say to Aaron, ‘Stretch out your hand with your staff over the rivers, the canals, and the pools, and make frogs come up on the land of Egypt.’ ” So Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt; and the frogs came up and covered the land of Egypt. But the magicians did the same by their secret arts, and brought frogs up on the land of Egypt.

Then Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron, and said, “Pray to the Lord to take away the frogs from me and my people, and I will let the people go to sacrifice to the Lord.” Moses said to Pharaoh, “Kindly tell me when I am to pray for you and for your officials and for your people, that the frogs may be removed from you and your houses and be left only in the Nile.” 10 And he said, “Tomorrow.” Moses said, “As you say! So that you may know that there is no one like the Lord our God, 11 the frogs shall leave you and your houses and your officials and your people; they shall be left only in the Nile.” 12 Then Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh; and Moses cried out to the Lord concerning the frogs that he had brought upon Pharaoh. 13 And the Lord did as Moses requested: the frogs died in the houses, the courtyards, and the fields. 14 And they gathered them together in heaps, and the land stank. 15 But when Pharaoh saw that there was a respite, he hardened his heart, and would not listen to them, just as the Lord had said.

The Third Plague: Gnats

16 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Say to Aaron, ‘Stretch out your staff and strike the dust of the earth, so that it may become gnats throughout the whole land of Egypt.’ ” 17 And they did so; Aaron stretched out his hand with his staff and struck the dust of the earth, and gnats came on humans and animals alike; all the dust of the earth turned into gnats throughout the whole land of Egypt. 18 The magicians tried to produce gnats by their secret arts, but they could not. There were gnats on both humans and animals. 19 And the magicians said to Pharaoh, “This is the finger of God!” But Pharaoh’s heart was hardened, and he would not listen to them, just as the Lord had said.

The Fourth Plague: Flies

20 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Rise early in the morning and present yourself before Pharaoh, as he goes out to the water, and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord: Let my people go, so that they may worship me. 21 For if you will not let my people go, I will send swarms of flies on you, your officials, and your people, and into your houses; and the houses of the Egyptians shall be filled with swarms of flies; so also the land where they live. 22 But on that day I will set apart the land of Goshen, where my people live, so that no swarms of flies shall be there, that you may know that I the Lord am in this land. 23 Thus I will make a distinction between my people and your people. This sign shall appear tomorrow.’ ” 24 The Lord did so, and great swarms of flies came into the house of Pharaoh and into his officials’ houses; in all of Egypt the land was ruined because of the flies.

25 Then Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron, and said, “Go, sacrifice to your God within the land.” 26 But Moses said, “It would not be right to do so; for the sacrifices that we offer to the Lord our God are offensive to the Egyptians. If we offer in the sight of the Egyptians sacrifices that are offensive to them, will they not stone us? 27 We must go a three days’ journey into the wilderness and sacrifice to the Lord our God as he commands us.” 28 So Pharaoh said, “I will let you go to sacrifice to the Lord your God in the wilderness, provided you do not go very far away. Pray for me.” 29 Then Moses said, “As soon as I leave you, I will pray to the Lord that the swarms of flies may depart tomorrow from Pharaoh, from his officials, and from his people; only do not let Pharaoh again deal falsely by not letting the people go to sacrifice to the Lord.”

30 So Moses went out from Pharaoh and prayed to the Lord. 31 And the Lord did as Moses asked: he removed the swarms of flies from Pharaoh, from his officials, and from his people; not one remained. 32 But Pharaoh hardened his heart this time also, and would not let the people go.  [1]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What are your thoughts about the progression of plagues starting with blood in the river, frogs in the river, gnats and flies in the land?
  2. What do you make of Pharaoh vacillating between agreeing to let the Israelites go to worship and then changing his mind?
  3. I still find it amazing that Moses and Aaron can meet Pharaoh in the morning as he went to bathe – what does this tell you about Egyptian society, Pharaoh, Moses and Aaron?
  4. What about the Hebrew sacrifice do you think would be offensive to the Egyptians?
  5. In verse 19, the Egyptian magicians could not produce gnats like Moses and Aaron. What do you make of their comment to Pharaoh that, “This is the finger of God”?
  6. What about the “Finger of God” comment from the magicians does not move the attitude of Pharaoh?
  7. In reading chapter 8, I noticed that although God gives the commands to Moses, Moses commands Aaron to “Stretch forth his hand” and the plagues follow, one after another. Why do you think Moses is not the one who is stretching forth his hand?

 

Prayer:  Lord, make me resolute in my commitment to you!  Set my sight on what it is you want me to do, and grant me the inner strength to follow the path to the end.  Lord, I trust you, even when I cannot see the end!  Lord, I believe in you, even when the road is dark and filled with dangerous holes and unforeseen turns.  Lord, I give you my heart, my body and my soul.  In Jesus name I pray.  Amen.

 

Written by Pastor Nick Hood3

Photo by Pastor Nick Hood3

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, and meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org and www.puccdetroit.org

New – Listen to readings from the Book of Psalms, Genesis and Inspirational Prayers written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at Nicholas Hood3, is now available on Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/nicholas-hood3/id1370371705.

Or, at anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3.

Also, on Google Podcasts at Nicholas Hood3

Now on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/1fQTqugJtGj6FCgHaGuG

 

Thank you,

 

Nick

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ex 8:1–32). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Moses and the 1st Plague- Exodus chapter 7

Listen to the newest episode of my podcast, Nicholas Hood3: Genesis chapter 7 – Moses Brings the 1st Plague https://anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3/episodes/Genesis-chapter-7—Moses-Brings-the-1st-Plague-e2l6ms

 

Exodus 7 The Lord said to Moses, “See, I have made you like God to Pharaoh, and your brother Aaron shall be your prophet. You shall speak all that I command you, and your brother Aaron shall tell Pharaoh to let the Israelites go out of his land. But I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and I will multiply my signs and wonders in the land of Egypt. When Pharaoh does not listen to you, I will lay my hand upon Egypt and bring my people the Israelites, company by company, out of the land of Egypt by great acts of judgment. The Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I stretch out my hand against Egypt and bring the Israelites out from among them.” Moses and Aaron did so; they did just as the Lord commanded them. Moses was eighty years old and Aaron eighty-three when they spoke to Pharaoh.

Aaron’s Miraculous Rod

(Ex 4:1–5)

The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “When Pharaoh says to you, ‘Perform a wonder,’ then you shall say to Aaron, ‘Take your staff and throw it down before Pharaoh, and it will become a snake.’ ” 10 So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and did as the Lord had commanded; Aaron threw down his staff before Pharaoh and his officials, and it became a snake. 11 Then Pharaoh summoned the wise men and the sorcerers; and they also, the magicians of Egypt, did the same by their secret arts. 12 Each one threw down his staff, and they became snakes; but Aaron’s staff swallowed up theirs. 13 Still Pharaoh’s heart was hardened, and he would not listen to them, as the Lord had said.

The First Plague: Water Turned to Blood

14 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Pharaoh’s heart is hardened; he refuses to let the people go. 15 Go to Pharaoh in the morning, as he is going out to the water; stand by at the river bank to meet him, and take in your hand the staff that was turned into a snake. 16 Say to him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, sent me to you to say, “Let my people go, so that they may worship me in the wilderness.” But until now you have not listened. 17 Thus says the Lord, “By this you shall know that I am the Lord.” See, with the staff that is in my hand I will strike the water that is in the Nile, and it shall be turned to blood. 18 The fish in the river shall die, the river itself shall stink, and the Egyptians shall be unable to drink water from the Nile.’ ” 19 The Lord said to Moses, “Say to Aaron, ‘Take your staff and stretch out your hand over the waters of Egypt—over its rivers, its canals, and its ponds, and all its pools of water—so that they may become blood; and there shall be blood throughout the whole land of Egypt, even in vessels of wood and in vessels of stone.’ ”

20 Moses and Aaron did just as the Lord commanded. In the sight of Pharaoh and of his officials he lifted up the staff and struck the water in the river, and all the water in the river was turned into blood, 21 and the fish in the river died. The river stank so that the Egyptians could not drink its water, and there was blood throughout the whole land of Egypt. 22 But the magicians of Egypt did the same by their secret arts; so Pharaoh’s heart remained hardened, and he would not listen to them, as the Lord had said. 23 Pharaoh turned and went into his house, and he did not take even this to heart. 24 And all the Egyptians had to dig along the Nile for water to drink, for they could not drink the water of the river.

25 Seven days passed after the Lord had struck the Nile.

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What did you learn after reading chapter 7 of the Book of Exodus?
  2. How much older than Moses was his brother Aaron?
  3. What are your thoughts about Moses and Aaron bringing the first plague upon Egypt?
  4. Are you surprised that Moses and Aaron had access to Pharaoh?
  5. Why do you think Pharaoh is not moved by the 1st plague?
  6. Other thoughts about chapter 7?

 

Prayer:  Lord, show me how to use the power you have invested in me.  Teach me to use my hands for good and not evil.  Help to understand the power of words and speech and the ability to communicate with others.  Grant me courage to stand up to the powers of this world.  Where I am weak, make me strong.  When I need inspiration, grant me motivation.  When I am lost and fumbling around without a clue, grant me direction and lead me to a level path.  In Jesus name I pray.  Amen.

 

Written by Pastor Nick Hood3

Photo by Pastor Nick Hood3

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, and meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org and www.puccdetroit.org

New – Listen to readings from the Book of Psalms, Genesis and Inspirational Prayers written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at Nicholas Hood3, is now available on Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/nicholas-hood3/id1370371705.

Or, at anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3.

Also, on Google Podcasts at Nicholas Hood3

Now on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/1fQTqugJtGj6FCgHaGuG

 

Thank you,

 

Nick

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moses Argues with Pharaoh- Exodus 5 and6

Listen to the newest episode of my podcast, Nicholas Hood3: Exodus chapters 5 and 6 – Moses Argues With Pharaoh https://anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3/episodes/Exodus-chapters-5-and-6—Moses-Argues-With-Pharaoh-e2l19b

 

Bricks without Straw

Exodus 5 Afterward Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said, “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, ‘Let my people go, so that they may celebrate a festival to me in the wilderness.’ ” But Pharaoh said, “Who is the Lord, that I should heed him and let Israel go? I do not know the Lord, and I will not let Israel go.” Then they said, “The God of the Hebrews has revealed himself to us; let us go a three days’ journey into the wilderness to sacrifice to the Lord our God, or he will fall upon us with pestilence or sword.” But the king of Egypt said to them, “Moses and Aaron, why are you taking the people away from their work? Get to your labors!” Pharaoh continued, “Now they are more numerous than the people of the land and yet you want them to stop working!” That same day Pharaoh commanded the taskmasters of the people, as well as their supervisors, “You shall no longer give the people straw to make bricks, as before; let them go and gather straw for themselves. But you shall require of them the same quantity of bricks as they have made previously; do not diminish it, for they are lazy; that is why they cry, ‘Let us go and offer sacrifice to our God.’ Let heavier work be laid on them; then they will labor at it and pay no attention to deceptive words.”

10 So the taskmasters and the supervisors of the people went out and said to the people, “Thus says Pharaoh, ‘I will not give you straw. 11 Go and get straw yourselves, wherever you can find it; but your work will not be lessened in the least.’ ” 12 So the people scattered throughout the land of Egypt, to gather stubble for straw. 13 The taskmasters were urgent, saying, “Complete your work, the same daily assignment as when you were given straw.” 14 And the supervisors of the Israelites, whom Pharaoh’s taskmasters had set over them, were beaten, and were asked, “Why did you not finish the required quantity of bricks yesterday and today, as you did before?”

15 Then the Israelite supervisors came to Pharaoh and cried, “Why do you treat your servants like this? 16 No straw is given to your servants, yet they say to us, ‘Make bricks!’ Look how your servants are beaten! You are unjust to your own people.” 17 He said, “You are lazy, lazy; that is why you say, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to the Lord.’ 18 Go now, and work; for no straw shall be given you, but you shall still deliver the same number of bricks.” 19 The Israelite supervisors saw that they were in trouble when they were told, “You shall not lessen your daily number of bricks.” 20 As they left Pharaoh, they came upon Moses and Aaron who were waiting to meet them. 21 They said to them, “The Lord look upon you and judge! You have brought us into bad odor with Pharaoh and his officials, and have put a sword in their hand to kill us.”

22 Then Moses turned again to the Lord and said, “O Lord, why have you mistreated this people? Why did you ever send me? 23 Since I first came to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has mistreated this people, and you have done nothing at all to deliver your people.” [1]

 

Israel’s Deliverance Assured

(Ex 3:1–4:17)

Exodus 6 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh: Indeed, by a mighty hand he will let them go; by a mighty hand he will drive them out of his land.”

God also spoke to Moses and said to him: “I am the Lord. I appeared to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob as God Almighty, but by my name ‘The Lord’ I did not make myself known to them. I also established my covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land in which they resided as aliens. I have also heard the groaning of the Israelites whom the Egyptians are holding as slaves, and I have remembered my covenant. Say therefore to the Israelites, ‘I am the Lord, and I will free you from the burdens of the Egyptians and deliver you from slavery to them. I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with mighty acts of judgment. I will take you as my people, and I will be your God. You shall know that I am the Lord your God, who has freed you from the burdens of the Egyptians. I will bring you into the land that I swore to give to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; I will give it to you for a possession. I am the Lord.’ ” Moses told this to the Israelites; but they would not listen to Moses, because of their broken spirit and their cruel slavery.

10 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, 11 “Go and tell Pharaoh king of Egypt to let the Israelites go out of his land.” 12 But Moses spoke to the Lord, “The Israelites have not listened to me; how then shall Pharaoh listen to me, poor speaker that I am?” 13 Thus the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, and gave them orders regarding the Israelites and Pharaoh king of Egypt, charging them to free the Israelites from the land of Egypt.

The Genealogy of Moses and Aaron

(Gen 46:8–27)

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

26 It was this same Aaron and Moses to whom the Lord said, “Bring the Israelites out of the land of Egypt, company by company.” 27 It was they who spoke to Pharaoh king of Egypt to bring the Israelites out of Egypt, the same Moses and Aaron. [2]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. Why do you think Pharaoh forced the Israelites to make bricks without straw?
  2. What are the modern parallels between the Israelites not trusting Moses and Arron’s leadership?
  3. Can you understand why Pharaoh refused to let the Israelites go for a three-day period of worship?
  4. What did you learn by reading the genealogy of the decedents of Aaron in chapter 6?

 

Prayer:  Lord, grant me the courage to speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves.  Lord, help me to pray, even when it seems hopeless.  Lord, in spite of the odds, teach me to unafraid to stretch forth my hands, and use the power you have already invested in me.  Lord, you are my blessing.  You are my sunshine.  In you I put my trust.  In you I put my hope.  In you I put my courage.  I may be small, but you are mighty.  I may be weak, but you are strong.  I may seem insignificant, but you are magnificent.  Shine down from heaven glory beyond glory, hope above hope and love beyond love.  In Jesus name I pray.  Amen.

 

Written by Pastor Nick Hood3

Photo by Pastor Nick Hood3

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, and meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org and www.puccdetroit.org

New – Listen to readings from the Book of Psalms, Genesis and Inspirational Prayers written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at Nicholas Hood3, is now available on Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/nicholas-hood3/id1370371705.

Or, at anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3.

Also, on Google Podcasts at Nicholas Hood3

Now on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/1fQTqugJtGj6FCgHaGuG

 

Thank you,

 

Nick

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ex 5:1–23). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[2] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ex 6:1–27). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Stages of loneliness

The following video is of a sermon I preached today on the topic of loneliness.

https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10155979262615208&id=627995207

Moses Miraculous Power- Exodus 4

Listen to the newest episode of my podcast, Nicholas Hood3: Genesis chapter 4 – Moses Miraculous Power https://anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3/episodes/Genesis-chapter-4—Moses-Miraculous-Power-e2ksb4

Moses’ Miraculous Power

Exodus 4 Then Moses answered, “But suppose they do not believe me or listen to me, but say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you.’ ” The Lord said to him, “What is that in your hand?” He said, “A staff.” And he said, “Throw it on the ground.” So he threw the staff on the ground, and it became a snake; and Moses drew back from it. Then the Lord said to Moses, “Reach out your hand, and seize it by the tail”—so he reached out his hand and grasped it, and it became a staff in his hand— “so that they may believe that the Lord, the God of their ancestors, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has appeared to you.”

Again, the Lord said to him, “Put your hand inside your cloak.” He put his hand into his cloak; and when he took it out, his hand was leprous, as white as snow. Then God said, “Put your hand back into your cloak”—so he put his hand back into his cloak, and when he took it out, it was restored like the rest of his body— “If they will not believe you or heed the first sign, they may believe the second sign. If they will not believe even these two signs or heed you, 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.”

10 But Moses said to the Lord, “O my Lord, I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor even now that you have spoken to your servant; but I am slow of speech and slow of tongue.” 11 Then the Lord said to him, “Who gives speech to mortals? Who makes them mute or deaf, seeing or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? 12 Now go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you are to speak.” 13 But he said, “O my Lord, please send someone else.” 14 Then the anger of the Lord was kindled against Moses and he said, “What of your brother Aaron the Levite? I know that he can speak fluently; even now he is coming out to meet you, and when he sees you his heart will be glad. 15 You 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 what you shall do. 16 He indeed shall speak for you to the people; he shall serve as a mouth for you, and you shall serve as God for him. 17 Take in your hand this staff, with which you shall perform the signs.”

Moses Returns to Egypt

18 Moses went back to his father-in-law Jethro and said to him, “Please let me go back to my kindred in Egypt and see whether they are still living.” And Jethro said to Moses, “Go in peace.” 19 The Lord said to Moses in Midian, “Go back to Egypt; for all those who were seeking your life are dead.” 20 So Moses took his wife and his sons, put them on a donkey, and went back to the land of Egypt; and Moses carried the staff of God in his hand.

21 And the Lord said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt, see that you perform before Pharaoh all the wonders that I have put in your power; but I will harden his heart, so that he will not let the people go. 22 Then you shall say to Pharaoh, ‘Thus says the Lord: Israel is my firstborn son. 23 I said to you, “Let my son go that he may worship me.” But you refused to let him go; now I will kill your firstborn son.’ ”

24 On the way, at a place where they spent the night, the Lord met him and tried to kill him. 25 But Zipporah took a flint and cut off her son’s foreskin, and touched Moses’ feet with it, and said, “Truly you are a bridegroom of blood to me!” 26 So he let him alone. It was then she said, “A bridegroom of blood by circumcision.”

27 The Lord said to Aaron, “Go into the wilderness to meet Moses.” So he went; and he met him at the mountain of God and kissed him. 28 Moses told Aaron all the words of the Lord with which he had sent him, and all the signs with which he had charged him. 29 Then Moses and Aaron went and assembled all the elders of the Israelites. 30 Aaron spoke all the words that the Lord had spoken to Moses, and performed the signs in the sight of the people. 31 The people believed; and when they heard that the Lord had given heed to the Israelites and that he had seen their misery, they bowed down and worshiped. [1]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What are your thoughts about the reaction of Moses to God’s command to return to Egypt?
  2. What is God attempting to teach Moses by telling him to look at and use the staff that is in his hand?
  3. Why do you think God gave Moses signs to show Pharaoh?
  4. As they leave Midian for Egypt, the text tells us that Zipporah circumcised their son and placed the bloody foreskin on the feet of Moses. Why do you think they had not already circumcised their son?
  5. What are your thoughts about God giving Aaron as a communicator for Moses?

 

Prayer:  Lord, grant me the courage to use the power you have placed in my hands.  Lord, grant me faith, that I might believe in you.  Lord, grant me strength, that I might run the race of life with vigor.  Lord, grant me a sense of purpose, that I might have a reason to live, a reason to hope, a reason to love.  Grant me courage to speak truth to power, to challenge injustice, and to love without abandon.  In Jesus name I pray.  Amen.

 

Written by Pastor Nick Hood3

Photo by Pastor Nick Hood3

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, and meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org and www.puccdetroit.org

New – Listen to readings from the Book of Psalms, Genesis and Inspirational Prayers written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at Nicholas Hood3, is now available on Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/nicholas-hood3/id1370371705.

Or, at anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3.

Also, on Google Podcasts at Nicholas Hood3

Now on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/1fQTqugJtGj6FCgHaGuG

 

Thank you,

 

Nick

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ex 4:1–31). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

God Calls Moses from a Burning Bush- Exodus 3

Listen to the newest episode of my podcast, Nicholas Hood3: Exodus 3 – God Calls Moses From a Burning Bush November 24, 2018 https://anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3/episodes/Exodus-3—God-Calls-Moses-From-a-Burning-Bush-November-24–2018-e2koee

Moses at the Burning Bush

(Ex 6:2–7:7; 11:1–4; 12:35–36)

Exodus 3 Moses was keeping the flock of his father-in-law Jethro, the priest of Midian; he led his flock beyond the wilderness, and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire out of a bush; he looked, and the bush was blazing, yet it was not consumed. Then Moses said, “I must turn aside and look at this great sight, and see why the bush is not burned up.” When the Lord saw that he had turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then he said, “Come no closer! Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” He said further, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.

Then the Lord said, “I have observed the misery of my people who are in Egypt; I have heard their cry on account of their taskmasters. Indeed, I know their sufferings, and I have come down to deliver them from the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land to a good and broad land, a land flowing with milk and honey, to the country of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. The cry of the Israelites has now come to me; I have also seen how the Egyptians oppress them. 10 So come, I will send you to Pharaoh to bring my people, the Israelites, out of Egypt.” 11 But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?” 12 He said, “I will be with you; and this shall be the sign for you that it is I who sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall worship God on this mountain.”

The Divine Name Revealed

13 But Moses said to God, “If I come to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your ancestors has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?” 14 God said to Moses, “I Am Who I Am.” He said further, “Thus you shall say to the Israelites, ‘I Am has sent me to you.’ ” 15 God also said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the Israelites, ‘The Lord, the God of your ancestors, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you’:

This is my name forever,

and this my title for all generations.

16 Go and assemble the elders of Israel, and say to them, ‘The Lord, the God of your ancestors, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, has appeared to me, saying: I have given heed to you and to what has been done to you in Egypt. 17 I declare that I will bring you up out of the misery of Egypt, to the land of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, a land flowing with milk and honey.’ 18 They will listen to your voice; and you and the elders of Israel shall go to the king of Egypt and say to him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has met with us; let us now go a three days’ journey into the wilderness, so that we may sacrifice to the Lord our God.’ 19 I know, however, that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless compelled by a mighty hand. 20 So I will stretch out my hand and strike Egypt with all my wonders that I will perform in it; after that he will let you go. 21 I will bring this people into such favor with the Egyptians that, when you go, you will not go empty-handed; 22 each woman shall ask her neighbor and any woman living in the neighbor’s house for jewelry of silver and of gold, and clothing, and you shall put them on your sons and on your daughters; and so you shall plunder the Egyptians.” [1]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. Why do you think God chose Moses to return to Egypt?
  2. Why do you think God spoke to Moses through a burning bush?
  3. What do you make of the questions that Moses presented to God?
  4. At the time God appeared to Moses, Moses was 80 years of age. What does that tell you about God and people who are older?
  5. What does the intention of God to free the Hebrews from Egypt tell you about the compassion of God?

 

Prayer:  God, I thank you for your compassion.  I thank you for your divine awareness of the human condition.  I thank you for your mercy.  I thank you for your grace.  I thank you for your justice and equality.  I thank you that at every age and stage of life, you see something worthwhile in every human being.  Bless me now with your favor and the sunshine of your love.  In Jesus Christ I pray.  Amen.

 

Written by Pastor Nick Hood3

Photo by Pastor Nick Hood3

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, and meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org and www.puccdetroit.org

New – Listen to readings from the Book of Psalms, Genesis and Inspirational Prayers written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at Nicholas Hood3, is now available on Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/nicholas-hood3/id1370371705.

Or, at anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3.

Also, on Google Podcasts at Nicholas Hood3

Now on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/1fQTqugJtGj6FCgHaGuG

 

Thank you,

 

Nick

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ex 3:1–22). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Birth of Moses – Exodus chapters 1and 2

Listen to the newest episode of my podcast, Nicholas Hood3: Nov 23, 2018 Exodus chapters 1 and 2 – Birth of Moses https://anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3/episodes/Nov-23–2018-Exodus-chapters-1-and-2—Birth-of-Moses-e2kku9

 

Exodus

 

1 These are the names of the sons of Israel who came to Egypt with Jacob, each with his household: Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah, Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin, Dan and Naphtali, Gad and Asher. The total number of people born to Jacob was seventy. Joseph was already in Egypt. Then Joseph died, and all his brothers, and that whole generation. But the Israelites were fruitful and prolific; they multiplied and grew exceedingly strong, so that the land was filled with them.

The Israelites Are Oppressed

Now a new king arose over Egypt, who did not know Joseph. He said to his people, “Look, the Israelite people are more numerous and more powerful than we. 10 Come, let us deal shrewdly with them, or they will increase and, in the event of war, join our enemies and fight against us and escape from the land.” 11 Therefore they set taskmasters over them to oppress them with forced labor. They built supply cities, Pithom and Rameses, for Pharaoh. 12 But the more they were oppressed, the more they multiplied and spread, so that the Egyptians came to dread the Israelites. 13 The Egyptians became ruthless in imposing tasks on the Israelites, 14 and made their lives bitter with hard service in mortar and brick and in every kind of field labor. They were ruthless in all the tasks that they imposed on them.

15 The king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other Puah, 16 “When you act as midwives to the Hebrew women, and see them on the birthstool, if it is a boy, kill him; but if it is a girl, she shall live.” 17 But the midwives feared God; they did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but they let the boys live. 18 So the king of Egypt summoned the midwives and said to them, “Why have you done this, and allowed the boys to live?” 19 The midwives said to Pharaoh, “Because the Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women; for they are vigorous and give birth before the midwife comes to them.” 20 So God dealt well with the midwives; and the people multiplied and became very strong. 21 And because the midwives feared God, he gave them families. 22 Then Pharaoh commanded all his people, “Every boy that is born to the Hebrews you shall throw into the Nile, but you shall let every girl live.”

 

Birth and Youth of Moses

(Heb 11:23)

2 Now a man from the house of Levi went and married a Levite woman. The woman conceived and bore a son; and when she saw that he was a fine baby, she hid him three months. When she could hide him no longer she got a papyrus basket for him, and plastered it with bitumen and pitch; she put the child in it and placed it among the reeds on the bank of the river. His sister stood at a distance, to see what would happen to him.

The daughter of Pharaoh came down to bathe at the river, while her attendants walked beside the river. She saw the basket among the reeds and sent her maid to bring it. When she opened it, she saw the child. He was crying, and she took pity on him. “This must be one of the Hebrews’ children,” she said. Then his sister said to Pharaoh’s daughter, “Shall I go and get you a nurse from the Hebrew women to nurse the child for you?” Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Yes.” So the girl went and called the child’s mother. Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this child and nurse it for me, and I will give you your wages.” So the woman took the child and nursed it. 10 When the child grew up, she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter, and she took him as her son. She named him Moses, “because,” she said, “I drew him out of the water.”

Moses Flees to Midian

(Heb 11:24–25)

11 One day, after Moses had grown up, he went out to his people and saw their forced labor. He saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his kinsfolk. 12 He looked this way and that, and seeing no one he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. 13 When he went out the next day, he saw two Hebrews fighting; and he said to the one who was in the wrong, “Why do you strike your fellow Hebrew?” 14 He answered, “Who made you a ruler and judge over us? Do you mean to kill me as you killed the Egyptian?” Then Moses was afraid and thought, “Surely the thing is known.” 15 When Pharaoh heard of it, he sought to kill Moses.

But Moses fled from Pharaoh. He settled in the land of Midian, and sat down by a well. 16 The priest of Midian had seven daughters. They came to draw water, and filled the troughs to water their father’s flock. 17 But some shepherds came and drove them away. Moses got up and came to their defense and watered their flock. 18 When they returned to their father Reuel, he said, “How is it that you have come back so soon today?” 19 They said, “An Egyptian helped us against the shepherds; he even drew water for us and watered the flock.” 20 He said to his daughters, “Where is he? Why did you leave the man? Invite him to break bread.” 21 Moses agreed to stay with the man, and he gave Moses his daughter Zipporah in marriage. 22 She bore a son, and he named him Gershom; for he said, “I have been an alien residing in a foreign land.”

23 After a long time the king of Egypt died. The Israelites groaned under their slavery, and cried out. Out of the slavery their cry for help rose up to God. 24 God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. 25 God looked upon the Israelites, and God took notice of them. [1]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What modern day situations could be seen as similar to the beginning of Exodus chapter one where we read that “There arose a pharaoh who did not know Joseph?
  2. What are your thoughts regarding the Egyptians forcing the Hebrews into hard labor?
  3. As the Hebrews began to be placed in hard labor, what do you think happened to their livestock?
  4. What are your thoughts about Moses killing an Egyptian?
  5. What do you make of the request of Pharaoh to the Hebrew midwives to kill male Hebrew children at childbirth?
  6. What are your thoughts about the daughter of Pharaoh taking Moses as a son and raising him in the house of her father?
  7. By allowing the mother of Moses to serve as his nurse, do you think she also provided the mother of Moses special exemption of the rule to kill the Hebrew male children?
  8. Do you think that Moses may have lived with some conflict between being Hebrew, but also Egyptian?
  9. Why do you think Moses chose to flee to the land of Midian?
  10. What similarities do you see between Moses defending the daughters of Reuel and Jacob helping the daughters of Laban?
  11. What other questions come to your mind when reading Exodus chapters one and two?

 

Prayer:  Lord, grant me the strength to deal with difficult people and difficult situations.  Grant me the ability to look beyond the immediate and to envision a better day and better life.  Grant me the inner strength to stand up for justice, to remember the poor and those that are disenfranchised.  Lord, grant me the wisdom to know when to stand and fight, but also to know when it is best to walk away.  Lord, grant me the courage to try new things and meet new people.  Grant me courage to know when to try a new life and start over again.  In Jesus name I pray.  Amen.

 

Written by Pastor Nick Hood3

Photo by Pastor Nick Hood3

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, and meditations from Pastor Nick Hood3 at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org and www.puccdetroit.org

New – Listen to readings from the Book of Psalms, Genesis and Inspirational Prayers written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at Nicholas Hood3, is now available on Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/nicholas-hood3/id1370371705.

Or, at anchor.fm/nicholas-hood3.

Also, on Google Podcasts at Nicholas Hood3

Now on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/1fQTqugJtGj6FCgHaGuG

 

Thank you,

 

Nick

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ex). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Thanksgiving Devotional for Individuals and Families

Thanksgiving Devotional

The following devotional is designed for family, friends and personal use.  This is a complimentary blessing from Pastor Nick Hood3 to you.  Please feel welcome to use around the Thanksgiving table or in the solace of your personal spiritual moment at home.

 

Leader: 1      O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever. 2      Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, those he redeemed from trouble 3       and gathered in from the lands, from the east and from the west, from the north and from the south.[1]  (Psalm 107)

 

Family and Friends:  Lord, we thank you for family and friends and this opportunity to gather together in harmony, fellowship and love.

 

Leader: 1     Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions. 2   Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. [2]  (Psalm 51)

 

Family and Friends:  O Lord, we thank you for life, we thank you for family, we thank you for friends.  We thank you for every opportunity.  We thank you for every challenge.  We thank you for the year that has almost ended.  Thank you for the sweet moments.  We thank you for the difficult decisions.  We thank you for every blessing.  We thank you for the extension of your favor, mercy and grace and most of all, your love.

Leader:  For those who choose, share some of those things with those who are gathered with you, that you give thanks to God

Conclusion:  If you choose, sing a song together or simply conclude by offering a prayer and reciting the Lord’s Prayer Together –

 

Our Father, which art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy Name.
Thy Kingdom come.
Thy will be done in earth,
As it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive them that trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
The power, and the glory,
For ever and ever.
Amen.

 

Written By Pastor Nick Hood

Pastor and Senior Minister of the Plymouth United Church of Christ

600 E. Warren Ave. Detroit, Michigan 48201

313-831-2460

www.puccdetroit.org

https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

 

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ps 107:1–3). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[2] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ps 51:1–2). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Stages of Loneliness



Stages of Loneliness and Thanksgiving




Mark 1: 12 And the Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness. 13 He was in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him. [1]




Genesis 46: 30 Israel said to Jose



ph, “I can die now, having seen for myself that you are still alive.”[2]




My sermon Sunday is about loneliness and thanksgiving.  In the aftermath of the death of my  father, it has dawned upon me that one element of grief is not just sadness, but loneliness.  I do not believe I am sad, but I am l lonely.  Some tell me that the holidays make them sad because they remember those who are no longer with them
My problem is not a holiday.  My loneliness is with me all the time.  As I consider the dimensions of loneliness, I think there are several levels:
The loneliness of companionship
Loneliness of intimacy
 Loneliness of just having someone around
Loneliness of intellectual stimulation
Spiritual loneliness
The scripture lesson is from Genesis46 – the reunification of Joseph and his father, Jacob (tell the story)

This text is a scripture that speaks to the thanksgiving of a father and son who thought they would never meet again
It also speaks to the loneliness they experienced when apart.Joseph was alive, but his fatherthought he was dead! Jacob was alive, but had no way of informing his father!Have you ever thought someone mightbe dead, but actually they were alive?Jacob is so thankful that his son isalive, he says, “Now I can die”
Has there ever been a time in yourlife where you felt that you were thankful for what you accomplished?
Let us go back to loneliness
Joseph was probably lonely for several reasons:
 He has no one he can share his story with.Even though he lived well in Egypt,he was separated from familyJoseph also bore the loneliness of leadership
It is tough being a leaderLoneliness of vision that you cannot share
The story of Joseph and Jacob is a story of thanksgiving for a father and son who never thought they would see each other again

  • This thanksgiving, I encourage you to take stock of every blessing you possess










[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Mk 1:12–13). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.




[2] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ge 46:30). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers. f

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