4 Moses answered, “What if the elders of Israel won’t believe me? What if they won’t listen to me? Suppose they say, ‘The Lord didn’t appear to you.’ Then what should I do?”
“A wooden staff,” he said.
So Moses threw it on the ground. It turned into a snake. He ran away from it. 4Then the Lord said to Moses, “Reach your hand out. Take the snake by the tail.” So he reached out and grabbed hold of the snake. It turned back into a staff in his hand.
5The Lord said, “When they see this miraculous sign, they will believe that I appeared to you. I am the God of their fathers. I am the God of Abraham. I am the God of Isaac. And I am the God of Jacob.”
9“But suppose they do not believe either miracle. Suppose they will not listen to you. Then get some water from the Nile River. Pour it on the dry ground. The water you take from the river will turn to blood on the ground.”
11The Lord said to him, “Who makes a man able to talk? Who makes him unable to hear or speak? Who makes him able to see? Who makes him blind? It is I, the Lord. 12Now go. I will help you speak. I will teach you what to say.”
14Then the Lord’s anger burned against Moses. He said, “What about your brother, Aaron the Levite? I know he can speak well. He is already on his way to meet you. He will be glad to see you. 15Speak to him. Put your words in his mouth. Tell him what to say. I will help both of you speak. I will teach you what to do. 16He will speak to the people for you. He will be like your mouth. And you will be like God to him.
18Then Moses went back to his father-in-law Jethro. He said to him, “Let me go back to my own people in Egypt. I want to see if any of them are still alive.”
Jethro said, “Go. I hope everything goes well with you.”
21The Lord spoke to Moses. He said, “When you return to Egypt, do all of the miracles I have given you the power to do. Do them in the sight of Pharaoh. But I will make his heart stubborn. He will not let the people go.
22“Then say to Pharaoh, ‘The Lord says, “Israel is like an oldest son to me. 23I told you, ‘Let my son go. Then he will be able to worship me.’ But you refused to let him go. So I will kill your oldest son.” ’ ”
25But Zipporah got a knife that was made out of hard stone. She circumcised her son with it. Then she touched Moses’ feet with the skin she had cut off. “You are a husband who has forced me to spill my son’s blood,” she said. 26So the Lord didn’t kill Moses. When she said “husband who has forced me to spill my son’s blood,” she was talking about circumcision.