J.B. Phillips New Testament
Moses’ first abortive attempt at rescue
23-29 “Now when he was turned forty the thought came into his mind that he should go and visit his own brothers, the sons of Israel. He saw one of them being unjustly treated, went to the rescue and paid rough justice for the man who had been ill-treated by striking down the Egyptian. He fully imagined that his brothers would understand that God was using him to rescue them. But they did not understand. Indeed, on the very next day he came upon two of them who were quarrelling and urged them to make peace, saying, ‘Men, you are brothers. What good can come from your injuring each other?’ But the man who was wronging his neighbour pushed Moses aside saying, ‘Who made you a ruler and judge over us? Do you want to kill me as you killed that Egyptian yesterday?’ At that retort Moses fled and lived as an exile in the land of Midian, where he became the father of two sons.
Moses hears the voice of God
30-34 “It was forty years later in the desert of Mount Sinai that an angel appeared to him in the flames of a burning bush, and the sight filled Moses with wonder. As he approached to look at it more closely the voice of the Lord spoke to him, saying, ‘I am the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’ Then Moses trembled and was afraid to look any more. But the Lord spoke to him and said, ‘Take your sandals off your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground. I have certainly seen the oppression of my people who are in Egypt; I have heard their groaning and have come down to deliver them. And now come, I will send you to Egypt.’Read full chapter