And as for you, lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, so that the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground.
1. Israel leaves Egypt for the purpose of proceeding to Canaan, the promised land. A figure of an awakened soul, drawn to God, which takes the firm and noble resolution to renounce all sin, and serve God, seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.
I. FORWARD! - GOD'S CONSTANT INJUNCTION TO HIS CHURCH. The law of Christian life is advance. God never brings his Church or people into positions from which retreat is necessary, or in which advance is impossible. We may bring ourselves into false positions of this kind, but God never leads us into them. In proportion as we surrender ourselves to his guidance, we may depend on being conducted always "forward." There is no instance in the whole history of the Old or New Testament Church in which, while God's guidance was followed, retreat had to be made. Forward!
(1) In Christian attainments.
(2) In holy living.
(3) In labours for the advancement of Christ's kingdom.
(4) In missionary enterprise.
(5) In doing good to our fellow-men.
II. FORWARD! - IN CONTRAST WITH VAIN LAMENTATIONS, AND UNBECOMING EXPOSTULATIONS WITH PROVIDENCE. These do no good, but much harm. They betray an unbelieving spirit. ]f God brings us into situations of trial, the fact that it is he who brings us into them is of itself a pledge that with the trial, he will make also a way of escape (1 Corinthians 10:13). When the foe bears hard upon us, we should, instead of losing heart, rather feel that the time has come for getting everything in readiness for advance - the "great door and effectual" must be on the very point of opening.
III. FORWARD! - BY THE WAY WHICH GOD MAKES FOR US. At the same moment that he is saying - "Speak unto the children of Israel that they go forward," he is doubtless commissioning some Moses to stretch out his rod over the sea, to open up the way for us. God never says "Forward," without at the same time opening the way.
IV. FORWARD! - WITH GOOD HEART, STRONG HOPE, AND FIRM ASSURANCE OF BEING PROTECTED ON THE JOURNEY. Going forward at God's word, the Israelites were assured of God's protection. They were certain of reaching the further shore in safety. No fear of the waves rushing back, and burying them. Pharaoh pursued, but he was not permitted to capture them, and was himself overthrown. We may confront any perils, if duty calls, and God goes with us. Cf. Luther at Worms. - J.O.
Through the midst of the sea.I. GOD'S DELIVERANCE OF ISRAEL.
II. JUDGMENT ON GOD'S ENEMIES, as well as a deliverance of His friends.
III. God's separation of Israel for his service.
IV. THE UNITY OF GOD'S REDEEMED ONES.
(E. N. Packard.)
1. The nature of the protection.
2. The all. sufficiency of the protection.
II. DELIVERANCE THROUGH THE RED SEA.
1. Its means, A blending of the human and the Divine.
2. Its method.
(1) (2) III. THE ENEMY DESTROYED IN THE RED SEA. 1. The superinducing cause. The daring persistency of Pharaoh brought him and his hosts into danger. So even with sinners. "Thou hast destroyed thyself." 2. God left Pharaoh and his hosts to themselves in the peril. 3. God caused the waters to return to their normal state.(1) If we stand in the way of danger, we have no one to blame but ourselves for the consequences.(2) Every sinner places himself in the way of peril.Lessons: 1. Pharaoh undertook what no one has ever succeeded in — to fight against God. 2. Moses placed himself and Israel in a relation to God, in which no one has ever failed. (D. C. Hughes, M. A.)
(2) III. THE ENEMY DESTROYED IN THE RED SEA. 1. The superinducing cause. The daring persistency of Pharaoh brought him and his hosts into danger. So even with sinners. "Thou hast destroyed thyself." 2. God left Pharaoh and his hosts to themselves in the peril. 3. God caused the waters to return to their normal state.(1) If we stand in the way of danger, we have no one to blame but ourselves for the consequences.(2) Every sinner places himself in the way of peril.Lessons: 1. Pharaoh undertook what no one has ever succeeded in — to fight against God. 2. Moses placed himself and Israel in a relation to God, in which no one has ever failed. (D. C. Hughes, M. A.)
III. THE ENEMY DESTROYED IN THE RED SEA.
1. The superinducing cause. The daring persistency of Pharaoh brought him and his hosts into danger. So even with sinners. "Thou hast destroyed thyself."
2. God left Pharaoh and his hosts to themselves in the peril.
3. God caused the waters to return to their normal state.(1) If we stand in the way of danger, we have no one to blame but ourselves for the consequences.(2) Every sinner places himself in the way of peril.Lessons:
1. Pharaoh undertook what no one has ever succeeded in — to fight against God.
2. Moses placed himself and Israel in a relation to God, in which no one has ever failed.
(D. C. Hughes, M. A.)
2. The fiery and cloudy pillar is the secret but powerful attraction of the Father to the Son, which the soul follows, and by which it is faithfully and correctly guided. Here the individual is brought to the salutary means of grace, or they to him, in such a manner that he is afterwards obliged to confess, that if a single, and often inconsiderable, circumstance of his life had been otherwise, his whole course would have assumed another form.
3. The pursuing Pharaoh is a figure of the law in its strict and insatiate requirements, as well as of Satan and the powers" of darkness. The latter soon perceives when any one is desirous of escaping from him, and consequently opposes him in every way. Some he torments with blasphemous, others with unbelieving thoughts, etc.
4. The utterly helpless condition of the children of Israel represents the oppressive weakness felt by the awakened soul.
5. But the Red Sea, which threatened destruction to the Israelites, proved of the greatest benefit to them. And this very feeling of sin, misery, and inability, which causes an awakened person so much uneasiness, turns to his greatest advantage. For it serves, like the blindness of the man born blind, and the death of Lazarus, to promote the Divine glory that Christ may be honoured by it.
6. The way by which Israel was delivered was one which was most miraculously opened; a way apparently dangerous and terrific, and hidden from the Egyptians. This may be also said of the way by which the Lord leads His people to life. For how wonderful is the way of salvation through the birth, sufferings, death, and resurrection of Christ!
7. A strong east wind arose, and dried the sea; and a rushing, like the sound of a mighty wind, was the signal to the holy apostles of the approach of the Holy Spirit. When He blows upon man, "all flesh is as grass, and all the goodliness thereof as the flower of the field." He it is that quickens.
8. The cloud, which overshadowed the people of Israel, protecting them from the pursuing foe, descending upon them as a refreshing dew, and serving by its radiance instead of a lamp, may be regarded as an emblem of the Redeemer's blissful mediation between God and man. From it drops a refreshing dew upon the troubled heart, and a healing balm for the wounded conscience, yea, a peace of God which passeth understanding.
9. Lastly, the divided sea is a type of baptism, and consequently of all that which is requisite to purify the soul from sin. The Red Sea of the Redeemer's blood is the abyss into which the sins of believers are so deeply plunged, that, if sought for, they can never be found; the sea which swallows up, overwhelms, and drowns Satan, with all his host, and the old man, and quickens in us a new man, who after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. This precious blood of Christ, who offered Himself to God by the Holy Spirit, is that which alone perfectly cleanses our consciences from dead works, to serve the living God.
(G. D. Krummacher.)
I. WE ARE NOT DELIVERED AT THE BEGINNING OF THE LIFE OF FAITH FROM ALL THE OLD ENEMIES OF THE HOUSE OF BONDAGE.
II. The hour when old enemies return may reveal the fact that NO ACCUMULATION OF CONFIDENCE IN GOD HAS BEEN GAINED BY THE EXPERIENCE OF PAST DELIVERANCES. To most men the great events of life seem to be disconnected. They bear no relation one to another. If Fremont's Peak and Pike's Peak and the Spanish Peaks stood apart, connected by no mountain-ridge, no great results would come from them upon soil or climate. They would not determine the rain-fall or fix the trend of the rivers. But, linked together by lofty mountain-chains, they become part of the vast water-shed of a continent, fixed the length and course of the rivers and causing the humid atmosphere and fertile soil on one side, the dry air and arid wastes upon the other. So the great facts of Divine Providence, isolated and separate one from another, have no determinative influence over life. But linked together they make its moral atmosphere.
III. SOME OLD ENEMIES OF THE SOUL MAY BE UTTERLY DESTROYED. Evil companionships abandoned, etc.
IV. THE PROVIDENTIAL WAY OF DELIVERANCE IS OFTEN MYSTERIOUS.
V. DELIVERANCE CAME TO ISRAEL NOT BY HUMAN ACHIEVEMENT, BUT BY THE POWER OF GOD. The most solemn hours of life are not times of great endeavour and of high achievement. They are times when we are called to" Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord." Such an hour is that when we begin the life of faith, not a time of achievement when, by mental struggle and spiritual travail, we win the favour of God. It is rather the time of self-surrender, when unreservedly we commit our ways to the Lord, that He may work for us, and in us, His redeeming work.
(W. G. Sperry.)
PeopleEgyptians, Israelites, Moses, Pharaoh, Zephon
PlacesBaal-zephon, Egypt, Etham, Migdol, Pi-hahiroth, Red Sea
TopicsCleave, Divide, Dry, Ground, Israelites, Lift, Lifted, Midst, Parted, Rod, Sons, Staff, Stretch, Stretched, Towards
Outline1. God instructs the Israelites in their journey
5. Pharaoh pursues after them
10. The Israelites murmur
13. Moses comforts them
15. God instructs Moses
19. The cloud removes behind the camp
21. The Israelites pass through the Red sea, which drowns the Egyptians
Dictionary of Bible ThemesExodus 14:16
LibraryA Path in the Sea
'And the angel of God, which went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; and the pillar of the cloud went from before their face, and stood behind them: 20. And it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel; and it was a cloud and darkness to them, but it gave light by night to these: so that the one came not near the other all the night. 21. And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
Entangled in the Land
Epistle Lxiii. To Brunichild, Queen of the Franks.
They who have not Been Promoted to that Office. ...
The Personality of Power.
The Faults Committed in this Degree --Distractions, Temptations --The Course to be Pursued Respecting Them.
Answer to Mr. W's Sixth Objection.
The Hardening in the Sacred Scripture.
Blessed are they that Mourn
Epistle iv. To Cyriacus, Bishop.
The Sovereignty of God in Reprobation
Of the Necessity of Divine Influences to Produce Regeneration in the Soul.
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