Some people go through life believing they have very little self-worth. They struggle with a lack of self-confidence. This makes it difficult for them to do anything worthwhile. So what does the Bible say about lack of confidence in your self?
Moses and self-confidence
If you struggle with self-confidence then consider the example of Moses when he had a conversation with God. The conversation was in relation to the task of freeing the Israelites from Egypt. Moses had lack of confidence or self-doubt in five areas:
i Moses and identity
When Moses heard that he had to do this task of leading the Israelites out of Egypt he said to God:
"Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?"
He was saying that he was a “nobody”, so he couldn’t possibly carry out this task. Moses had been brought up in Egypt in the royal family and so had a good understanding of what would be involved in freeing the Israelites. As a result, he was suffering from self-doubt.
In response to Moses self-doubt, God gave him two promises:
And God said, "I will be with you. And this will be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain."Exodus Ch.3:12
God promised that he would be with him. He also promised that he would bring Moses back to the same place where he was standing now. The people of God who live today are given the same words of encouragement today. Therefore we should have confidence in God and not ourselves.
ii Moses and authority
Moses second concern was that he wasn’t sure what he was going to say to his fellow Israelites.
Moses said to God, "Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, 'The God of your fathers has sent me to you,' and they ask me, 'What is his name?' Then what shall I tell them?"Exodus Ch.3:13
Moses was anxious about how he was going to explain who had sent him. Moses was probably thinking why any people should believe him - a old man coming out of the wilderness.
In answer to this concern God reaffirmed His role as the Lord God of the Israelites:
God said to Moses, "I am who I am . This is what you are to say to the Israelites: 'I AM has sent me to you.' "
God also said to Moses, "Say to the Israelites, 'The LORD, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has sent me to you.' This is my name forever, the name by which I am to be remembered from generation to generation.Exodus Ch.3:14-15
So Moses did not need to be anxious and worrying about his authority, for God was with him. God is in control. He is the Lord. He rules over all the earth and its people.
iii Moses and faith
Moses was also worried that the people would not believe him.
Moses answered, "What if they do not believe me or listen to me and say, 'The LORD did not appear to you'?"Exodus Ch.4:1
Moses was showing self-doubt. Again, God showed that he was with him. He gave Moses three “signs” or miracles to perform. These acts would prove God’s presence and power.
iv Moses and communication
Moses was troubled by his perceived lack of ability as a spokesperson.
Moses said to the LORD, "O Lord, I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue."Exodus 4:10
God told him that he was the Lord of communication.
The LORD said to him, "Who gave man his mouth? Who makes him deaf or mute? Who gives him sight or makes him blind? Is it not I, the LORD ? Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say."Exodus Ch.4:11-12
God promised to be with Moses so that his words would be understood. So once more Moses was being told that God would be with him.
God is also with us. If we are a believer, then sometimes we have to represent the Lord to people we speak associate with.
But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,1 Peter Ch.3:15
When we explain to others why we are a believer, we can feel confident that God is with us to help us with the words we speak.
v Moses and obedience
Moses self-doubt lead to him being unwilling to carry out the Lord’s commands.
But Moses said, "O Lord, please send someone else to do it."Exodus Ch.4:13
So despite all the promises and signs that God had given him, Moses still didn’t want to do the task! As a result of this question, the anger of God was kindled.
Then the LORD's anger burned against Moses and he said, "What about your brother, Aaron the Levite? I know he can speak well. He is already on his way to meet you, and his heart will be glad when he sees you.Exodus Ch.4:14
Maybe God had intended to surprise Moses with this encouraging news. Instead, he told Moses of the coming of Aaron out of exasperation with Moses refusal to trust Him.
Other examples of confidence
Rather than putting confidence in your own abilities put your confidence in God. The following examples demonstrate people who had confidence in God rather than themselves:
i David and Goliath
The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine."1 Samuel Ch.17:37
This day the LORD will hand you over to me,
1 Samuel Ch.17:46
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. Psalm 23:4
Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart, all you who hope in the LORD. Psalm 31:24
He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved. Psalm 62:6
Our God will fight for us. Nehemiah Ch.4:20
So the king gave the command, and they brought Daniel and cast him into the den of lions. But the king spoke, saying to Daniel, “Your God, whom you serve continually, He will deliver you.” Daniel Ch.6:16
The example of Moses conversation with God teaches us about our self-confidence. What we learn is that we should place our confidence in God not in ourselves. We can place our confidence in God by praying to him and asking for his help in the things we do.
Moses had many areas of self-doubt and each time God’s answer was the same - that he would help him. Modern day believers in God have the same benefits – don’t put confidence in yourself but rather put it in God. He will lead you through any difficulties you face. In return, you need to have faith in God and be obedient to Him.
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Last Updated: Sunday, 08 March 2015