“Now Moses said to Hobab the son of Reuel the Midianite . . .”
Hobab is the father-in-law of Moses. Notice, we are told that he is a Midianite, not an Israelite. Listen to what Moses says to him:
“We are setting out for the place of which the LORD said, ‘I will give it to you.’ Come with us, and we will treat you well; for the LORD has promised good things to Israel.”
In the midst of all the hurrying to get ready to go, Moses searches out his father-in-law and invites him to join Israel in their journey to the Promised Land.
Remember, Hobab is a Midianite, he’s not a believer, he’s not a follower of the Lord. Yet, Moses says to him, “Hobab, we’re going to the place the Lord has been preparing for us for 400 years. God promised it to Abraham, and He has been getting it ready all this time.” Moses asks, “Do you want to come to the land the Lord is preparing for us?”
I think Moses is setting a very good example for us. I think we can learn a little bit regarding how to reach the lost from his example. Israel was heading for Canaan, but where are we going? We’re going to the place that Jesus has been preparing for us, not for 400 years, but for 2000 years. Like Israel, we are waiting to hear the trumpet sound.
In Matthew 25, Jesus tells us how to be ready for that trumpet sound. He told the parable of the ten virgins, exhorting us to be certain we are, in fact, saved. Then he told the story of the talents, exhorting us to be involved in serving the Lord. Jesus Christ is coming back to take us home, and I don‘t think he wants us to come home alone.
So, in a sense, Moses is evangelizing. He’s trying to reach out to his father-in-law. He implores Hobab, “Come on, man, come with me.” That is a great way to approach evangelism. I’m going to heaven, do you want to come? A friend of mine was going to be baptized at her church, so she put together very formal invitations and sent them out to friends and family who were not believers. She made it clear in the invitation, this was a very important event for her, and she really wanted them to be a part of it. When the day of her baptism arrived, her pastor explained what baptism represents, then he gave her an opportunity to address the congregation. In short she said, “I have trusted Jesus and I am going to heaven, but I love all of you so much, I do not want to go alone. Will you please accept Jesus so you can come to heaven with me?” I have to tell you, it was one of the most powerful evangelistic messages I have ever heard. If you have received Jesus Christ, then you are saved and going to heaven; seek to bring as many along with you as you can. I recall a song we used to sing when I first got saved, one line went, “. . .with one hand reach out to Jesus with the other bring a friend. . .” Moses is not so consumed with packing for the trip that he neglects to invite Hobab.