The word supposed means "reckon," "added up," "put the pieces together." He reasoned from the evidence he heard from God, and he thought that the people would reason too. It must have been general knowledge that Moses was the deliverer, but they did not have faith in it. Moses knew that God had a people, Israel, though they were in bondage. He had heard that Israel was to be delivered. He had even heard things about the Messiah, according to Hebrews 11. We do not know all that God communicated to Moses, but God set before his mind what His will and purpose was for him.
John W. Ritenbaugh
Faith (Part Two)
The act that Moses did here was heroic. It was noble. At the same time, it was also foolish. It was heroic and noble in that he could have just given the Israelites money. Is not that what most of us do today when somebody is in trouble? Especially when we find trouble in the United States, what does the government do? They throw money at the problem and say, "Be healed. Be relieved. The oppression is over now because we threw money at you."
Moses could have done that because he was in a position to have funneled a great deal of money toward them from the treasuries of Egypt. Maybe, instead of giving them money, he could have relieved some of the oppression by using his influence within the hierarchy of Egypt to help those in government understand their plight and make life a bit easier on the Israelites. Perhaps he could have forbidden the taskmasters to beat them or require so much of them. But he did not do any of these things.
What did he do? Moses gave himself to their plight. He gave his life. He gave his all. That is the heroic and the noble aspect of his action. The foolish part is that there is no mention in Exodus, Acts, or anywhere else that he sought God about what he should do or when he should do it. This is an important point in terms of conviction. Because Moses did what he did—giving up all that he did, perhaps forsaking the possibility of taking over the throne of Egypt—he gave up all of his rights to his Egyptian heritage to cast his lot with slaves.
He did just the opposite of what Joseph did. Joseph went from a slave to the second-highest position in Egypt in a matter of hours. Moses went the other direction, from the top to the bottom. Yet, nowhere does it say that he sought God.
However, for a man to do that, he must have had some strong beliefs, strong feelings about what he was doing. The U.S. Supreme Court has said that a preference can be such a strong belief that one will actually give his life to doing something. Yet, it is not a conviction (by the Court's definition) but only a preference, and preferences are not protected by the Constitution of the United States. Only convictions are protected. Thus, this is important to us.
Did Moses have a preference or a conviction? We know that he had strong feelings, and he was moved to act on what he did. However, we also know from the lack of information in the Scriptures that he did not seek God.
John W. Ritenbaugh
Conviction, Moses and Us