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Moses Chose the Right Treasure

Moses, Man of the Mountain is a 1939 novel by the famous African American writer, Zora Neale Hurston. In the story, she reimagined the events and themes of Moses' life and the Exodus in ways that reflected the black experience in American history. She drew on African American folklore and songs, used colloquial English, and wrote with passion and insight.

Moses was a biblical giant of faith because he, like David, chose the right treasure. His decision was costly. He gave up being known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, that is, royal family status (v. 24). He gave up access to all kinds of pleasure as well as the “treasures of Egypt” (vv. 25–26). He gave up what was presumably the king’s favor and risked his anger instead (v. 27). In short, he sacrificed an enormous amount of power and wealth and what was likely a future filled with more of the same.

What did he receive in exchange? It may seem like a bad bargain. Moses chose “to be mistreated along with the people of God” (v. 25). He preferred (in the larger biblical picture) “disgrace for the sake of Christ” (v. 26). Why? Moses, like all those listed in Hebrews 11, made his choices “by faith,” based on “confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see” (v. 1). Specifically, “he persevered because he saw him who is invisible,” that is, God Himself (v. 27), beginning with his encounter at the burning bush (Exodus 3).

Moses knew that God had called him to lead the Israelites out of slavery. He chose to be faithful to that calling and everything it involved because he trusted God. He knew that an eternal reward lay ahead (Heb. 11:26, see also v. 6).

Apply the Word

The life of Moses has been depicted in many works of art—novels, paintings, musical compositions, and well-known movies such as The Ten Commandments and Prince of Egypt. He is a great example of choosing the right treasure. Research at least one such work of art to learn more about the artist’s perspective on Moses’ life.

BY Brad Baurain

Dr. Brad Baurain has worked as a writer and editor for Today in the Word since 1993. Currently, he serves as associate professor and TESOL program head at Moody Bible Institute. Brad has the unique privilege of holding a degree from four different universities (including Moody). He has also taught in China, Vietnam, the United States, and Canada. Brad and his wife, Julia, have four children and reside in Munster, Indiana.

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