Friday, July 15, 2011

The Exodus

I read Genesis in 4 days, amazing, as part of the read your Bible in 90 days challenge. I was worried that reading like this might not yield me much fruit. It is a lot of information to process in an hour every day, but I am learning about God.

As I moved from Genesis into Exodus, I am thinking about the issue of trusting God and looking closely at how events take place. For one thing God is now dealing with a nation and not just one man or family.

Today’s reading was Exodus 1-15. Our first question is could God not have just wiped out the Egyptians and freed Israel? Why this process? As I read the account of their freedom, this is what I learned.

At the beginning in Exodus 4:11 The LORD said to him, (Moses) “Who gave human beings their mouths? Who makes them deaf or mute? Who gives them sight or makes them blind? Is it not I, the LORD?  God is letting us know who is in control of things.

God also lets Moses know that he will harden Pharaohs heart. In Exodus 4:21 The LORD said to Moses, “When you return to Egypt, see that you perform before Pharaoh all the wonders I have given you the power to do. But I will harden his heart so that he will not let the people go. God was in control of even Pharaoh’s heart. There are five occasions where the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s hearts and only three where it just says that Pharaoh hardened his heart. Why did God harden Pharaoh’s heart?

God goes on to explain in Exodus 9:15 “For by now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the earth. 16 But I have raised you up for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.”

In Exodus 10:1 “The LORD said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh, for I have hardened his heart and the hearts of his officials so that I may perform these signs of mine among them 2 that you may tell your children and grandchildren how I dealt harshly with the Egyptians and how I performed my signs among them, and that you may know that I am the LORD.”

God wanted to show his power. Not dealing with man on an individual level but in a large group, He showed his power so all could see and believe. That, it would be remembered for generations.  

Even after the plagues God knew their hearts and so Exodus 13:17 says  “For God said, “If they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.” 18 So God led the people around by the desert road toward the Red Sea.” Trusting in God’s care seems a very hard thing for human begins to comprehend.  

Bringing us to the red sea, and the Israelites fearing the Pharaoh’s army. God had once again hardened the hearts so that He could gain glory. Exodus 14:31 “And when the Israelites saw the mighty hand of the LORD displayed against the Egyptians, the people feared the LORD and put their trust in him and in Moses his servant.”

In the end God issues a very important promise, in Exodus 15:26 He said, “If you listen carefully to the LORD your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the LORD, who heals you.”

God promises that if we listen carefully and pay attention to his commands he will take care of us. This story is meant to remind us that God is in control of all things and every situation.   

If you want to share what you are learning join me at  Brag on God Friday's and link up. As always please let me know what you think, feel free to disagree, my beloved sister already did.

From Mind Change Moments 

 Mind Change Moments