The Bible records only eight times when God reiterates someone’s name. The first time was to Abraham. Skipping a generation, He spoke the next one to Abraham’s grandson, Jacob. More than four hundred years elapsed before God chose the opportune place and time for another double knock.
No doubt, many people thought of Moses as a has-been. He may have believed it of himself. After all, he had been raised in the royal lap of luxury and privilege. He had been carefully schooled and groomed for greater things than herding sheep in a foreign desert–and for his father-in-law to boot! This life was so far from where he had been headed.
Those youthful dreams were snuffed out when he murdered a man and, in blind terror, had to flee Egypt for parts unknown. But he had made do in Midian. Married a daughter of the local priest. Fathered two sons. Learned a new profession (if you could call it that). When he came home tired and dirty, he walked into a tent, not a palace.
Who cared that he had once been a respected and admired prince of whom great things were presumed? Who cared that he was overqualified for this shepherd work? Who cared that it was a job with no future? Moses heard who cared on a day when his curiosity got the better of him.
It was a strange phenomenon he saw: a burning bush that did not burn up. Moses stepped away from the sheep for a close look.
When the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am” (Exodus 3:4 ESV).
The double knock stopped Moses in his tracks. This Voice calling his name twice knew everything about him–past and present. Moses was all ears. As he listened with rapt attention, God laid out his future:
“Come, I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring my people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt” (Exodus 3:10 ESV).