Thursday, March 3, 2011

Exodus: Chapter 11

A rather short, somber chapter today but one that unveils the fulfillment of God's promises spoken to Abraham. God remembers His promises and He keeps His promises.  Evidently the darkness is still surrounding Egypt as Moses and Pharaoh have their final meeting and the final plague of death is announced.  Pharaoh's heart is firm--hard to anything but his own will--and the cost was to be great.  Moses leaves Pharaoh in anger--perhaps a grief-induced anger that realized the pain and suffering the leader's stubbornness was about to bring on so many.  Yet God reassures Moses even in this heartbreaking situation His purposes were going forth; His wonders would be multiplied in Egypt. 

The security of following God's call to walk by faith is beautifully glimpsed in this chapter as well.   The Israelites, slaves for centuries, had been prophesied to leave Egypt with considerable wealth.  Such a reality must have seemed little more than a fantasy for those who lived by sight.  In fact, fear of Egyptian hatred must have seemed more logical once people recognized the plagues as being the work of the Israelite's God. Yet, God gave Moses and the Israelites favor in the eyes of the Egyptians; they were even able to collect 'back wages' from the years of slavery!  God's grace made the distinction between the Egyptians and the Israelites (The chosen people were not in any way great in their own righteousness or power.), and God's grace softened the hearts of the Egyptians toward the Israelites.  Faith in Him is warranted because all comes from Him!

I am reminded that reality creates experiences but experience is NOT reality.  Generations of Israelites had 'thought' they were living in slavery, but God was accumulating their wages and He is faithful.  The reality was that God's purposes were unfolding; that reality remains.  Oswald Chambers gives a more beautiful description of reality, though; he says 'The only reality is redemption.'  Our work on earth is part of that reality, and like the Israelites, we can trust Him to care well for the treasures we store up in heaven!

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