When God’s appointed time to deliver the Israelites from the hands of Pharaoh came, it was not exactly the best of times for them. Pharaoh ordered that their labor be compounded and when God started warning the Egyptians with plagues, one could trust that the atmosphere would have been tense (Exodus 5,7-11). To them it seemed like things were somehow. They weren’t finding it any easier to work and the Egyptians weren’t finding it any easier to live. But God was out on a mission that they could not comprehend at the moment. Even when they eventually left Egypt for the promised land (Canaan) their struggles were far from over. Their long-awaited freedom had come but they still had a journey…a not so easy journey. They began to complain that why did Moses lead them out of Egypt to die in the wilderness as though there weren’t places to be buried in Egypt (Exodus 14:10-12; 16:1-3). It seemed like things were going from bad to worse but, God never fails His own. They didn’t understand what God was doing for them, taking them through series of trials but bringing them out unharmed so that they learn a few things about the great God they served. This is just a reminder that sometimes, before things get better, they appear to get worse but God who never fails would eventually bring those who trust in Him to the “better” He promised them.
The Pharaoh of Egypt at that time had already passed the point of repentance and his heart was hardened and set on destroying the Israelites so much so that even after he had ordered that they leave Egypt immediately, he still took all of his horses and chariots and men to chase after the unarmed unsuspecting Israelites (Exodus 14:1-31). But thank God who says “call on Me in the day of trouble, I will rescue you and you shall honor and glorify Me” Psalms 50:15. The Egyptians gathered themselves ready to shed blood if they had to, just to keep the Israelites back in bondage but they were quick to forget that warring against God’s people is equal to warring against God and God does not need as much as a spear to defeat an entire army. They came to Israel with chariots and all manner of weapons but Israel held on to God and God caused the extraordinary to happen for their sake.
After walking for so long it’s natural for anyone to get thirsty. The Israelites had been walking for a while and they began to get thirsty and there was no source of water in sight. At this point I wondered why God didn’t just send rain…they had tents to take cover in anyway. But I’ve come to realize that sometimes, God goes for the extraordinary to reveal to us the might of His power. God, instead, brought water out of a rock (Exodus 17:6-7). I don’t think I need to explain what a rock is but I’m sure we all know how dry and hard a rock is. However, God caused water to come out of it. He brought out water from a dry substance. This is significant of the fact that God can bring positivity out of what seems to be a negativity. He can turn even the most useless thing to be useful in just a matter of seconds.
Make God your source. As usual, the Israelites were on with their favorite activity: complaining. They were always complaining and murmuring and this time, it was about food (Exodus 16:1-3). They were hungry and instead of asking they chose to murmur and complain but God was not bent on focusing on that. Rather, He supplied them with heavenly food. This was a daily supply of bread which the bible describes to have been delicious (Exodus 16:4-31 AMP). What is even more intriguing is the fact that for the entire forty-year duration of the journey of the Israelites to Canaan, they were not for once unable to receive food supply (Exodus 16:35). Except on the Sabbath days on which they had been supplied enough for two days on the previous days (Exodus 16:22-30). God is that one stream that never runs dry and that one source that never empties. Why don’t you make Him your source today?
It cannot be overemphasized, how God fights for His people. That we should think that battles won’t arise and troubles won’t come is totally impracticable. Even Jesus Christ Himself, the Prince of Peace lets us know that in this world we would have tribulations but He goes further to tell us to stay calm because He has conquered the world (John 16:33). That the Children of Israel wanted to leave Egypt, became a war. Pharaoh was not wanting that and God was not taking no for an answer so He stepped into the battle for the Israelites and secured them, victory (Exodus 12:31-36). Again, while they were yet journeying to Canaan, they met with the Amalekites who were also ready to wage war against them but as the Victor that The Lord is, He secured them, victory again (Exodus 17:8-16). Your battle does not necessarily have to involve spears and guns. It could be anything from your boss who won’t give you a promotion that’s rightfully yours to financial instability to addiction of all sorts. Acknowledge that you cannot fight this on your own and let God fight for you…let Him secure the victory for you.
While reading the book of Exodus, I could not help but notice the magnanimity of the sacrifice God made by letting Jesus die for us. When God had some information to pass across to Moses in the presence of Israel, He came down in form of fire on a mountain and gave a strict warning to Moses (which he had to relay to the people) that anyone who touches the mountain would surely be put to death (Exodus 19:18-25). “Very scary” you must be thinking…I thought the same too. But how glorious is it that God now lives in us (2Corinthians 13:5; Romans 8: 9-10; Colossians 1:27). Ever since Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection we have been assessed by God and made worthy to carry the fullness of God in us…without having to be put to death. In fact, we now have more life than ever before!
P.S: This is somewhat unrelated to this post but consider it a food for thought.
When people come to you to judge a dispute or when you have to judge a matter that involves you, how do you do it? According to the statutes, laws and wisdom of God? Or according to your own limited wisdom?