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Who removed his shoes?


In the Old testament there are two stories that share the same idea of removing the shoes off the legs. The first one was the in the story of the burning bush, as we can read in Exodus 3:2-5-

” וַיֵּרָא מַלְאַךְ יְהוָה אֵלָיו, בְּלַבַּת-אֵשׁ–מִתּוֹךְ הַסְּנֶה; וַיַּרְא, וְהִנֵּה הַסְּנֶה בֹּעֵר בָּאֵשׁ, וְהַסְּנֶה, אֵינֶנּוּ אֻכָּל. וַיֹּאמֶר מֹשֶׁה–אָסֻרָה-נָּא וְאֶרְאֶה, אֶת-הַמַּרְאֶה הַגָּדֹל הַזֶּה: מַדּוּעַ, לֹא-יִבְעַר הַסְּנֶה. וַיַּרְא יְהוָה, כִּי סָר לִרְאוֹת; וַיִּקְרָא אֵלָיו אֱלֹהִים מִתּוֹךְ הַסְּנֶה, וַיֹּאמֶר מֹשֶׁה מֹשֶׁה–וַיֹּאמֶר הִנֵּנִי. וַיֹּאמֶר, אַל-תִּקְרַב הֲלֹם; שַׁל-נְעָלֶיךָ, מֵעַל רַגְלֶיךָ–כִּי הַמָּקוֹם אֲשֶׁר אַתָּה עוֹמֵד עָלָיו, אַדְמַת-קֹדֶשׁ הוּא

“The angel of the LORD appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush; And he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed. So Moses said, “I must turn aside now and see this marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up.” When the LORD saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then He said, “Do not come near here; Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.”


The second story is with Joshua who met an angel of G-d, who told him to do the same, as written:

“וַיְהִי, בִּהְיוֹת יְהוֹשֻׁעַ בִּירִיחוֹ, וַיִּשָּׂא עֵינָיו וַיַּרְא, וְהִנֵּה-אִישׁ עֹמֵד לְנֶגְדּוֹ וְחַרְבּוֹ שְׁלוּפָה בְּיָדוֹ; וַיֵּלֶךְ יְהוֹשֻׁעַ אֵלָיו וַיֹּאמֶר לוֹ, הֲלָנוּ אַתָּה אִם-לְצָרֵינוּ. וַיֹּאמֶר לֹא, כִּי אֲנִי שַׂר-צְבָא-יְהוָה–עַתָּה בָאתִי; וַיִּפֹּל יְהוֹשֻׁעַ אֶל-פָּנָיו אַרְצָה, וַיִּשְׁתָּחוּ, וַיֹּאמֶר לוֹ, מָה אֲדֹנִי מְדַבֵּר אֶל-עַבְדּוֹ. וַיֹּאמֶר שַׂר-צְבָא יְהוָה אֶל-יְהוֹשֻׁעַ, שַׁל-נַעַלְךָ מֵעַל רַגְלֶךָ, כִּי הַמָּקוֹם אֲשֶׁר אַתָּה עֹמֵד עָלָיו, קֹדֶשׁ הוּא; וַיַּעַשׂ יְהוֹשֻׁעַ, כֵּן”

“Now it came about when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing opposite him with his sword drawn in his hand, and Joshua went to him and said to him, “Are you for us or for our adversaries?” He said, “No; rather I indeed come now as captain of the host of the LORD.” And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and bowed down, and said to him, “What has my lord to say to his servant?” The captain of the LORD’S host said to Joshua, “Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy.” And Joshua did so.”(Joshua 5:13-15)

Moses and Joshua removed their shoes or their sandals. Moses did it alone without the responsibility of a leader. Moses didn’t meet G-d before the burning bush story. Joshua, on the other hand, knew what is the power of G-d as the servant of Moses and as a leader too. Maybe this is the reason that he met only the angel of G-d, that was probably related to the war with Jericho in the next chapter.Joshua unlike Moses had the option to come close to the angel of G-d;Moses couldn’t do it!

Can you see other differences between those two stories? Why won’t you share it with us here or on our Facebook fan page?

Have a blessed week, Eli

Hebrew -Transcription –Translation

שַׁל- šal-Remove!


הַמָּקוֹם-hammāqôm-The place

אַתָּה-’attāh-You (m.s.)



3 Responses to Who removed his shoes?

  1. Junie says:

    I feel so much hppaier now I understand all this. Thanks!

  2. Mario Torres says:

    In the Moses account the word translated “bush” C@nah (sen-eh’) is found only in this passage and in Deuteronomy 33:16 and it means a plant as the thorn bush or bramble.

    Now you see why God told Moses to remove the sandals from his feet. Footwear provides protection from thorns and thistles,which is a product of the Adamic curse (Genesis 3:17,18), but in the presence of the Lord there is no need to wear foot protection because Holy ground is “thornless!”

    When a crown of thorns was placed on Jesus’ head in Matthew 27:29, the curse was removed by the last Adam and now we can approach God…Jesus Christ Himself….blameless and “shoeless!”

  3. Jair says:

    Fear is no match for those that have God on their side. I love this saying.this is my words of the day. I tend to worry alot knnwiog that God is on my side. I love the Lord and I also fear the Lord. The Lord is unpredicable, and I know he only going to do what best for me.Pray for me, May god take care of me and the children.May God supply all the neccsary thing that I need to live happily and peacefully. Amen. Pray for me I will be going back to school this fall. amenThanks

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