Moses and the Burning Bush
1One day Moses was tending the flock of his father-in-law, Jethro,*3:1a Moses’ father-in-law went by two names, Jethro and Reuel. the priest of Midian. He led the flock far into the wilderness and came to Sinai,*3:1b Hebrew Horeb, another name for Sinai. the mountain of God.
4When the Lord saw Moses coming to take a closer look, God called to him from the middle of the bush, “Moses! Moses!”
“Here I am!” Moses replied.
5“Do not come any closer,” the Lord warned. “Take off your sandals, for you are standing on holy ground.
7Then the Lord told him, “I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries of distress because of their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering.
11But Moses protested to God, “Who am I to appear before Pharaoh? Who am I to lead the people of Israel out of Egypt?”
12God answered, “I will be with you. And this is your sign that I am the one who has sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God at this very mountain.”
13But Moses protested, “If I go to the people of Israel and tell them, ‘The God of your ancestors has sent me to you,’ they will ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what should I tell them?”
14God replied to Moses, “I Am Who I Am.*3:14 Or I Will Be What I Will Be. Say this to the people of Israel: I Am has sent me to you.”
This is my eternal name,
my name to remember for all generations.
16“Now go and call together all the elders of Israel. Tell them, ‘Yahweh, the God of your ancestors—the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob—has appeared to me. He told me, “I have been watching closely, and I see how the Egyptians are treating you.
18“The elders of Israel will accept your message. Then you and the elders must go to the king of Egypt and tell him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has met with us. So please let us take a three-day journey into the wilderness to offer sacrifices to the Lord, our God.’
19“But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless a mighty hand forces him.*3:19 As in Greek and Latin versions; Hebrew reads will not let you go, not by a mighty hand.