God’s People Aren’t Impressive. Just Look at Moses’s Family Tree byfor The Gospel Coalition
The Bible is surely history’s most honest book. Its unfettered and brutal transparency about the unimpressive nature of God’s chosen people, even its human authors, testifies to its authenticity.
The gospel makes this point powerfully.
Jesus, the God-man, entered human history, lived a sinless life, died a sinner’s death, and rose again so that unrighteous, unimpressive chosen people would be reconciled to God. If God’s people believe they’ve been saved by grace through faith—that they contributed nothing to their salvation except the sin that made redemption necessary—then why do they often have such a challenging time believing that God can use them to do his kingdom work?
Frequently God’s people sense a lack of ability, as if God chooses to work only through those who have some innate and impressive aptitude.
Moses struggled with this very thing.
The same Moses whom God used to deliver Israel from Pharaoh’s oppression was a self-identified unimpressive man who believed he was unable to accomplish God’s mission. The example of Moses helps highlight the unimpressive nature of God’s chosen people and his choice to use them anyway.
Toward the beginning of Exodus, shortly after God commissions Moses, there’s a genealogy that seems out of place. But the genealogy, found in Exodus 6:14–25, serves a critical purpose in the exodus narrative and a larger theological purpose for God’s people. Unfortunately, our tendency is to read genealogies hastily or skip over them altogether. Genealogies offer God’s people critical information, however, and Exodus 6 is no exception.
Like the framing on a piece of art, a literary framing complements and accentuates the substance within its border. Moses, led by the Holy Spirit, builds this particular frame so God’s people would better understand the genealogy’s significance to the exodus story.