“Then Moses said to the people,
“Commemorate this day, the day you came out of Egypt,
out of the land of slavery,
because the LORD brought you out of it with a mighty hand”
The Lord God rescued the Hebrews from their slavery in Egypt and their bondage to Pharaoh. He brought them to Himself at Sinai where He gave them the choice of becoming His special people. From there He led them to the Promised Land – the land He had promised to Abraham, Isaac and to Jacob whom He renamed Israel.
This Exodus from Egypt which commenced the formation of the nation as the people of God prefigures our own spiritual journeys as God calls us out of our human bondage and slavery to sin – into which we were born as the sons and daughters of Adam.
Their passing through the waters of the sea under the pillar of cloud became known as their baptism into Moses, foreshadowing our baptism into Christ by water and the Spirit. In both cases the old life is to be left behind and the new life embraced.
- “They were all baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea” (1 Corinthians 10:2)
- “Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit” (John 3:5)
At Sinai the people were given the Law which was to govern their relationship with God and was their contribution to His Covenant.
- “Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.” (Exodus 19:5-6)
Not only were they completely unable to keep the provisions of the Law but we know that we are too. There is no pass mark under the Law other that 100% and only Jesus was able to achieve that. So the Law shows us our weaknesses and prepares us to acknowledge our desperate need for a Saviour. In truth we will never fully appreciate and value Grace until we have battled and fallen before the Law.
- “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23)
Our journey with God, therefor, brings us to a different mountain-top, the one crowned with a cross. And here we meet the end of the Law and the establishment of the New Covenant of Grace. Jesus spells it out for us –
- “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16)
- “Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God– children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God” (John 1:12-13)
- Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.” (John 6:29)
And when the Israelites came to the Promised Land for the second time they entered not on the basis of their works but because they believed. And when we turn to the Lord we enter into His salvation not because we have earned it but because we believe in the love and provision and the wonderful grace of our Lord. What an amazing God is this!
Am I saved only by grace through faith – or am I trying to earn it?
“Lord I believe – help my unbelief.” Amen