The Wanderers Part 1: The Crossing
Today we begin our summer teaching series “The Wanderers”.
Over the next several weeks we are going to journey through the story of God’s people as they were brought up out of Egypt and began their journey through the wilderness.
Our Series begins today with the crossing of the Red Sea.
The Red Sea crossing is the moment when God gave his people a seemingly impossible victory over the enslaving powers of Egypt.
It’s a defining moment of deliverance and grace for his people
In this story, God saves His people from the pursuing Egyptian army by splitting the Red Sea, saving the Israelites, and destroying the pursuing army.
As Pharaoh approached, the Israelites looked up, and there were the Egyptians, marching after them. They were terrified and cried out to the Lord. They said to Moses, “Was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert to die? What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt? Didn’t we say to you in Egypt, ‘Leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians’? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!” Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.”
Already in our story we find a motif of mistrust and rebellion that we will see time and time again throughout their journey.
We will say to ourselves “How can they doubt and complain after all they have seen God do?” And our Father will look us in the eye and smile knowingly
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on. Raise your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea to divide the water so that the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground. I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they will go in after them. And I will gain glory through Pharaoh and all his army, through his chariots and his horsemen. The Egyptians will know that I am the Lord when I gain glory through Pharaoh, his chariots and his horsemen.” Then the angel of God, who had been traveling in front of Israel’s army, withdrew and went behind them. The pillar of cloud also moved from in front and stood behind them, coming between the armies of Egypt and Israel. Throughout the night the cloud brought darkness to the one side and light to the other side; so neither went near the other all night long. Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and all that night the Lord drove the sea back with a strong east wind and turned it into dry land. The waters were divided, and the Israelites went through the sea on dry ground, with a wall of water on their right and on their left.
In these moments of terror, the steadfast faith of Moses bears the weight of the un-believing people.
In the eyes of the people, they were stuck. A sea before them and death behind them. There was no way.
But God was about to display his power to make a way- literally, an unimaginable way for them to be saved, and for him to get the Glory.
In this story we begin to understand that as we are backed up against the impossible- God is not limited by our imaginations. He’s not limited our plans, or our ability to see the way forward.
He has a plan for redemption. A plan that will bring him glory for generations to come!
Our call as His people is to trust and believe in Him.
The Egyptians pursued them, and all Pharaoh’s horses and chariots and horsemen followed them into the sea. During the last watch of the night the Lord looked down from the pillar of fire and cloud at the Egyptian army and threw it into confusion. He jammed the wheels of their chariots so that they had difficulty driving. And the Egyptians said, “Let’s get away from the Israelites! The Lord is fighting for them against Egypt.” Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea so that the waters may flow back over the Egyptians and their chariots and horsemen.” Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and at daybreak the sea went back to its place. The Egyptians were fleeing toward it, and the Lord swept them into the sea. The water flowed back and covered the chariots and horsemen—the entire army of Pharaoh that had followed the Israelites into the sea. Not one of them survived. But the Israelites went through the sea on dry ground, with a wall of water on their right and on their left. That day the Lord saved Israel from the hands of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians lying dead on the shore. 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.
The Lord went behind his people protecting them, and he went before them making the way for salvation.
That’s not just what God did, it reveals who he was, and the good news today friends, it’s who he still is today.
The Lord goes behind you, and before you. Will you trust him? Will you trust him to do the impossible?
Jesus said in Mark 10:27 “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”
Will you trust God with your impossible today?
Overview of Exodus
This video gives a brief overview of the book of Exodus, helping us frame it within the biblical narrative. This link is for Part 1, make sure to watch Part 2!