Exodus 18:25 And Moses chose able men out of all Israel, and made them heads over the people, rulers of thousands, rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens. 26 And they judged the people at all seasons: the hard causes they brought unto Moses, but every small matter they judged themselves.
In this passage, Moses’s father-in-law Jethro looked in from the outside and was concerned about his son-in-law. All day long Moses sat to judge the people from morning to evening. Jethro asked him why he sat alone and no one else helped him while some of the people waited all day to talk with him?
Moses out of the goodness of his heart was trying to help and do right, but he failed to delegate and train others. His method of serving the people was short-sighted and limited to what he could do. He loved the people, but the best thing he could do for them was to train other men rather than try to meet all the needs himself.
If he continued on this path, as Jethro observed, he was going to wear away and the people would get weary of waiting all day to discuss things. Right now you and I may be able to do the job and to meet the needs, but we need to plan for the future. We need to get things in place so when we are gone the work will continue.
So, the plan that they come up with was to find able men, who fear God, men of truth who hate covetousness, and to place place them as rulers over thousands, hundreds, fifties, and tens. These men would handle most problems, and only the biggest ones would be brought to Moses. These men would bear the burden with Moses.
This is such a powerful truth for those of us in leadership. We can’t do it all. We must train others. We must look for God-fearing, honest, and capable men who can help bear the burden with us. Let us look for them. Let us pray for them. Let us train them. And let us trust them. We are called not to do the work but to train workers to do the work.