Monday, February 15, 2016

How To Influence Others -- Moses' Style


Moses Stars As A Defense Attorney and Influencer
Exodus 32:11-14: Then Moses entreated the Lord his God, and said, “O Lord, why doth Thine anger burn against Thy people whom Thou has brought out from the land of Egypt with great power and with a mighty hand? Why should the Egyptians speak, saying, ‘With evil intent He brought them out to kill them in the mountains and to destroy them from the face of the earth? Turn from Thy burning anger and change Thy mind about doing harm to Thy people. Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, Thy servants to whom Thou didst swear by Thyself, and didst say to them, ‘I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heavens, and all this land of which I have spoken I will give to your descendants, and they shall inherit it forever.’” So the Lord changed His mind about the harm which He said He would do to His people.
Have you ever had to entreat God? The Hebrew word for this action is ‘chalah’ and it is translated in many ways from its root, namely, to be or become weak, sick, diseased, grieved, or sorry. It is easy to see how Moses must have felt weak and sick after hearing God say what He had said about destroying His people. There is no doubt in my mind that Moses also felt distressed for his people and very apologetic on behalf of the Israelites.
But Moses didn’t stop there. He refused to sit by idly let God do what even God Himself really did not want to do. (There are times when we must act and intercede in situations – with men, and before God.) He was a leader and a leader knows how to plead on behalf of his people. He also had a brilliant mind and he used it in his entreating of God.
What We Can Learn From Moses In Influencing People
First, we could say that in essence, he subtly corrects God who had, in His anger, accredited Moses bringing up “his” people from Egypt. He gives the people back to their rightful owner, God Himself. Moses reminds God that, “They are Your people and You brought them up from Egypt.” That takes guts. God may have been angry when He had said what He had, but above all, God is ‘truth’ and He would want us to stand up, even to Him, for the truth. Here was Moses correcting God, but in love and devotion – a very model of how God would want us to correct others with the truth.
Second, Moses appeals to God’s greatness reminding Him that He did all this with “great power and with His mighty hand”. And in the process he was affirming his continued love for God, and his continued belief in His authority. Again, Moses continues to demonstrate the process for influencing someone positively – tell the truth; and appeal to their their positive attributes (sense of worth and contribution).
Third, Moses appeals to God’s sense of honor and he does so in three ways. First, he points out what the Egyptians may think of His actions of “evil intent” were He to destroy His people after bringing them out of the land of Egypt. Moses knew God did not want to give His enemies any reason to glory over what took place when in fact God fully intended for His people to become a great nation. Second, Moses appealed to God’s love for the fathers of Israel – Abraham (a ‘friend of God’ forever – 2 Chronicles 20:7), Isaac (the son of promise – Galatians 4:22,23), and Jacob (born in answer to prayer – Genesis 25:21 and who saw the heavenly ladder – 28:10-19). How could God turn His back on them now? And third, Moses appeals to God through His personal promises made and words uttered with respect to making their descendants as the stars in the heavens.
The fourth key factor in the approach that Moses used to influence God was that none of his arguments were about himself. Moses had no personal vested interests in influencing God in this way.  While it would have been very difficult to go down from the mountain and tell the people they would be destroyed by God, Moses remembered how God had protected him so many times in his life, and he realized that if God really intended to start all over with him and keeping the covenant that had been made and broken by the Israelites, God could do it and keep Moses safe. But he didn’t care for that. He wanted God to be true to His character and His true love and desires for His people, Israel. (Many times we step in to influence people but we have a real conflict-of-interest.  That is why third-party mediators are often more successful than family members when it comes to influencing.  And maybe why friends are more influential than family.
So let’s summarize Moses’ approach to influencing another person:
-- sticks to the truth
-- appeals to the good in the one he wants to influence
-- appeals to their sense of honor
-- he had no personal vested interest in the outcome.
And Moses succeeded. The Bible says, “So the Lord changed His mind.” Amazing, but possible. Can you change God’s mind? Well, Moses did. And I believe there may be times when we can – that is what entreating God in prayer is all about.


Thanks for dropping by. Sign up to receive free updates. We bring you relevant information from all sorts of sources. Subscribe for free to this blog or follow us by clicking on the appropriate link in the right side bar. And please share this blog with your friends. Also, I’ve read some good books and make some great recommendations for you at http://astore.amazon.com/accorconsu-20  which you can purchase right from there.  Finally, check us out at Accord Consulting.  And while you’re here, why not check out some more of our recent blogs shown in the right hand column.  Ken.
 

Sign up (on the right) to receive free updates. We bring you relevant information from all sorts of sources. Subscribe for free to this blog or follow us by clicking on the appropriate link in the right side bar. And please share this blog with your friends and while you’re here, why not check out some more of our recent blogs shown in the right hand column.

Also, I’ve read some good books and make some great recommendations for you at http://astore.amazon.com/accorconsu-20 which you can purchase right from there.

Check our firm out at Accord Consulting.

No comments:

Post a Comment