I’m sure we can all remember a time when we have faced what seems like an insurmountable problem. No matter how we look at the situation we cannot see a way out. Well it doesn’t get much more difficult than it did for the people as they fled from Egypt. Huge sea on one side, massive army on the other, and probably around 2 million people!!!
Can you imagine what it must have been like to be the leader responsible for all those people. For many of our world leaders today they face the same issue – a world pandemic which no one can control. How do you get out of such a situation? You don’t! You have to go through it!
We all know the story – Moses lifts his staff and God parts the sea. But what is interesting is how God did that.
21 Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the Lord drove the sea back by a strong east wind all night and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided.
An east wind is not a friendly wind, it is usually associated with destruction. It was an east wind that destroyed the crop and caused famine during the time of Joseph (Genesis 41), it was the east wind that brought the locust plague, in Job 27 we read of the force of the east wind and in many other places in the Old Testament the east wind speaks of great force and destruction. This east wind that divided the Red Sea would have had great force and the people would be aware of its destructive force. This wind which opened up the way for God’s people to walk through to safety was the same wind that would have hit Pharaoh’s army with great force as they pursued the people.
The presence of God and the force of the wind he had sent must have been terrifying to both God’s people and the Egyptians.
When things seem impossible and when God moves in power we have two choices – believe in Him and be saved by Him or panic and be overcome by Him. We need to recognise who our God is – He is a mighty man and the Lord over all the earth. By His word He commands the wind and the waves. If we submit to Him in holy fear we will pass through the greatest obstacles but if we oppose Him our fear will result in terror and panic.
As we look at how our world is being impacted by this pandemic how are we responding. Do we see the God of the Red Sea moving in power and submit to Him? Or are we terrified and desperate to find a way out as quickly as possible?
God’s people feared the Lord:
31 Israel saw the great power that the Lord used against the Egyptians, so the people feared the Lord, and they believed in the Lord and in his servant Moses.
Pharaoh’s army were overcome with terror and dread:
Terror and dread fall upon them; because of the greatness of your arm, they are still as a stone,
Fear of the Lord should cause us to honour Him. Having seen what God had done for them in His power and His love the people recognised just how powerful their God was and wanted to “be in His hands.”
Terror seizes and consumes us causing us to run from His judgement. The fear of the Lord should cause us to run into His protection and His mercy. Will the east wind of this pandemic seize you with terror and cause you to run from His judgement or fill you with the fear of the Lord and cause you to run into His protection and His mercy?