Exodus 18:13-26 NIV “The next day Moses took his seat to serve as judge for the people, and they stood around him from morning till evening. When his father-in-law saw all that Moses was doing for the people, he said, “What is this you are doing for the people? Why do you alone sit as judge, while all these people stand around you from morning till evening?”
Moses answered him, “Because the people come to me to seek God’s will. Whenever they have a dispute, it is brought to me, and I decide between the parties and inform them of God’s decrees and instructions.”
Moses’ father-in-law replied, “What you are doing is not good. You and these people who come to you will only wear yourselves out. The work is too heavy for you; you cannot handle it alone. Listen now to me and I will give you some advice, and may God be with you. You must be the people’s representative before God and bring their disputes to him. Teach them his decrees and instructions, and show them the way they are to live and how they are to behave. But select capable men from all the people—men who fear God, trustworthy men who hate dishonest gain—and appoint them as officials over thousands, hundreds, fifties and tens. Have them serve as judges for the people at all times, but have them bring every difficult case to you; the simple cases they can decide themselves. That will make your load lighter, because they will share it with you. If you do this and God so commands, you will be able to stand the strain, and all these people will go home satisfied.”
Moses listened to his father-in-law and did everything he said. He chose capable men from all Israel and made them leaders of the people, officials over thousands, hundreds, fifties and tens. They served as judges for the people at all times. The difficult cases they brought to Moses, but the simple ones they decided themselves.”
Growing through Leadership Concept 3: God Provides Guidance
I love this story of Jethro giving advice to Moses.
Jethro was Moses’ father-in-law and had come to visit him. When Moses had told him all that God had done in Egypt he was “delighted” (Exodus 18:9). The day after he’d arrived, Jethro observed as Moses served as a judge, something the people had come to expect of him as a leader.
In his blog on Jethro, Bob Pearle from Birchman Baptist Church says, “The next day Jethro witnesses Moses wearing himself out from morning to evening judging the people. He told Moses this was not good and gave him advice to find godly men who Moses would teach the statutes and laws of God and make them judges among the people. These men would be ranked where some would judge thousands, others would be over hundreds, then fifty, and ten. Those most difficult cases Moses would judge but they would judge smaller issues.”
He concludes: “Jethro was a wise man who gave great counsel. His wisdom enabled Moses to carry out his responsibilities in difficult times.”
Moses was convinced that, without God’s presence and guidance, he’d be lost, however, he was also open to advice from trusted people that God had put in his life.
As you step out in leadership, be on the lookout for the wise and trusted people that God will bring to help nudge you along the way.
“Thank You Lord for Your presence and the provision of the people You have put in my life. As I benefit and grow from the words of life You provide through them, I pray that You would use me in some small way in the lives of others, for Your purpose and glory. In Jesus’ name, amen.”