But the Lord said to Moses, “Put out your hand and catch it by the tail”—so he put out his hand and caught it, and it became a staff in his hand—“that they may believe that the Lord, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has appeared to you.”Exodus 4:4–5
In Exodus 4, when God told Moses to go to his Hebrew brothers and sisters and tell them God would deliver them, Moses asked God for proof to pass along to the people.
God instructed Moses to throw his staff down. When he did, it became a serpent. Then God told him to reach down and pick up the serpent by the tail. When he did, it became a staff again. In v. 5, God told Moses that this sign would be for the purpose “that they may believe” that God appeared to Moses.
The wording of this struck me as similar to what we read in John 17, where John talks about the unity of God and Jesus, and the unity of believers as an extension of that, being a witness of God’s existence. In verses 20–21, John writes, “I do not ask on behalf of these alone, but for those also who believe in me through their word; that they may all be one; even as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you sent me.”
What Proof Do We Have to Show?
In 2020 we may not have the ability to work miracles like Moses did in order to prove to those around us that God is real. But we can testify to God’s existence by showing love to those around us, and through our unity with fellow believers. We live in divisive times. Our demonstration of love and unity amidst turmoil may be just as powerful a witness in someone’s life as turning a staff into a serpent.