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The Check's In the Mail

by Tim O'Hearn

How do I know you are who you say you are? Can I see some identification? Why should I listen to you? People have a strange way of not trusting. We insist on getting verification of authority. We want proof for every promise. It has ever been thus. God sent Moses on a mission. What was his second question? “Who are you?” His first question was, “Why me?” God’s response is as unusual as Moses’ acceptance of it.

And he said, Certainly I will be with thee; and this shall be a token unto thee, that I have sent thee: When thou hast brought forth the people out of Egypt, ye shall serve God upon this mountain. (Ex 3:12)

The sign that I sent you will come after you do what I ask. That is like a car salesman saying, “Pay me this amount for thirty-six months, and then I will give you the car.” To be more current, that is like one of the Nigerian e-mail scammers saying, “I will tell you who I am after you give me your bank account number and PIN.” The proper response is to hit the delete button. Instead Moses opens his bank vault.

The difference, perhaps, is that Moses knew the one to whom he was talking. In response to his “why me?”, God said, “I will be with you.” God asks Moses to trust him because of who he is. If he trusts God, he will see the proof later. Maybe that is what prompted the second question. God says, “Trust me.” Moses says, “Who are you?” Even so, he knew the answer. As he approached the burning bush, he reacted in such a way as to show that he knew who God was; he fell on his face.

In some ways we are like Moses. God has told us who he is, and as proof of who he is he has promised us an eternity with him. All we have to do is trust him. He has promised us that he will take care of us. “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” (Rom 8:28) We don’t know the future. All we have to do is trust God.

At least we are not the first. Moses trusted God, and he did worship at the mountain. David trusted God, and earned the designation of a friend of God.

But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee. (Ps 5:11)
Unto thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul. O my God, I trust in thee: let me not be ashamed, let not mine enemies triumph over me. (Ps 25:1-2)

God gave Solomon wisdom to rule. What did that wisdom teach him? “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding.” (Prov 3:5)

We don’t know the details of our future. We have no understanding to trust, so we must trust the Lord. Paul was afforded a rare opportunity. He knew the future. He had been told that he would be imprisoned in Jerusalem. When those accompanying him bemoaned this fact, he answered, “What mean ye to weep and to break mine heart? For I am ready not to be bound only, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.” (Acts 22:13) He trusted the Lord, and did not die in Jerusalem but proclaimed the gospel even in the household of the Caesar of the Roman Empire.

God asks us to do what he says. What proof have we that he is who he is? What proof have we that we should obey him? “In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.” (Ps 56:11)