The Burning Bush


“Then God said, “Do not come any closer. Take off your sandals. You are standing on holy ground.” Exodus 3:5

Moses was now in the land of Midian far away from Pharaoh who wanted to take his life. Moses and Jethro, the priest of Midian, became friends, and so did Jethro’s family. Moses tended his flock and made his home with them. He chose one of Jethro’s seven daughters, Zipporah, to be his wife.

His life here in Midian was different from that in Pharaoh’s palace. He wore rough clothes, watching Jethro’s flock and pastures. He probably remembered his people back in Egypt, and prayed to God to take away their suffering.

During this time King Pharaoh died, and a new Pharaoh took his place. The new one was even more cruel. The Israelites cried to God for help. God heard their prayers and remembered He had made a promise to Abraham, Isaac, and Israel. He decided to take the Israelites back to their promised land.

One day Moses was near Mount Horeb. He suddenly saw a burning bush and flames of fire. He started closer, but a voice told him from the bush to come no closer for he was on holy ground. Moses recognized the voice as the same voice that had spoken to Adam, Eve, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; it was God speaking to him.

The Lord said he had heard his people crying in Egypt and was going to rescue them and take them back to the land he had promised them. Moses humbly asked the Lord if he was able to lead them. The Lord promised to be with Moses, and that He would help him bring them some day to the very mountain he was on, and here they would worship Him.

Moses told God the Hebrews would question why he was appointed their leader. God told him to tell them it was He who had sent him. Moses again contended, but they do not know me and will not trust me.

God asked Moses what was in his hand. Moses replied, a rod, my shepherd staff. The Lord commanded Moses to throw it down, and when he did it became a snake. Moses ran from it, but the Lord told him to take it by its tail. When he did, it became a rod again.

God told Moses to place his hand inside his robe. When it came out it was covered with the dreaded disease of leprosy. He laid it inside again, and it came out healed. As a third sign, he could turn water into blood.

Moses still pleaded that he could not speak well enough to do this great task. He said he could not make his mouth say what he meant. The Lord said, I made your mouth, and I will help you with what you say.

Moses was still afraid, but the Lord told him He would send his brother Aaron to help him, and that he was coming across the desert to help him. He was now sure God would give him strength to lead the Israelites. He returned to Jethro and asked permission to leave him.

Moses and his family set out for Egypt, and he carried the shepherd’s staff through which God had worked miracles.

He was sure God had saved him as a baby that time in the Nile River to lead His people. Moses met Aaron, and they travelled toward Egypt together.


1. What strange thing did Moses see on the mountain?

2. Whose voice did he recognize that he had heard before?

3. Name three signs God showed Moses to make him believe.

4. What were Moses’ excuses?

5. Whom did God promise to send to help Moses?


1. A burning bush and flames of fire 2. God 3. A staff turned into a snake, his hand had leprosy and then healed again, water into blood 4. He couldn’t speak very well 5. Aaron

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