Last week, the Hebrew people were in the desert complaining about what God was doing and learning that God provides. Today, we make the leap from Exodus to 1 Samuel. A lot in the life of the people of God happens in those 6 books between Exodus and 1 Samuel.
The Hebrew people conquer the Promised Land of Canaan which God had promised in the covenant to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. The nation of Israel was established and the Hebrew people became the Israelites. God told them they would be different than surrounding nations because He would be there God and only ruler.
As time went on, the people wanted a ruler so God appointed judges who were mediators and military leaders. There was the great judges Deborah and Gideon. Still, the people wanted to be more like surrounding nations and have a king. They begged God for a king but God resisted and they persisted. God said, “fine, but this won’t end well.” Continue reading
We’re only jumping ahead 12 chapters from last week to this week. The Hebrew people who are the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob have been freed from slavery in Egypt and are heading for the Promised Land. The Bible calls this group of people the Israelites, but I’d rather call them the Hebrew people at this point in the story. This people won’t truly become Israelites until the nation of Israel is established and we’re a long way from there, 3 books of the Bible away.
Last week, Moses was prepared to go to the Pharaoh and tell him, “God said, ‘let my people go.’” Pharoah is finally convinced to let the people go after enduring God’s plagues. Can anyone name the plagues?
The Lord tells the Hebrew people to prepare to flee. They have the first Passover meal saving no leftovers. They are packed up with just what they can carry and their sandals are laced up and tied. They head out when the Pharaoh says, “Go.”
The people head for the sea to cross through Egypt and head toward the land God promised to their forefathers. Pharaoh has second thoughts about letting all his slaves go free so he sends his army after them to capture them and bring them back. Moses parted the sea for the Hebrew people to pass through on dry ground. The water closed behind them and swallowed the Pharaoh’s men leaving them to do the dead man’s float. Continue reading
Last week, we read the story of Jacob’s vision of God which we call Jacob’s ladder. We jumping ahead again in the story of God and the people of God. I’m going to do some very high level overview because I don’t think we need to know much between the stories of Jacob and Moses to understand Moses.
So, I’ll jog your memory of some stories that you’re probably familiar with. Jacob works for many years for his uncle Laban to marry Leah and Rachel. Leah and Rachel and their maid servants give Jacob 12 sons. Jacob and his family return to Canaan and Jacob reconciles with Esau. Jacob’s sons were Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Dan, Naphtali, Gas, Asher, Issachar, Zebulun, Joseph and Benjamin.
Joseph was a dreamer and able to interpret dreams. His brothers sold him into slavery and he was taken to Egypt. Joseph became a powerful servant of the Pharaoh and he brought his family to Egypt during a famine. Jacob’s family grew and grew and God fulfilled His promise to make the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob many.
Over time, the Pharaoh changed and Jacob’s people fell out of favor with the Egyptians. The Egyptian Pharaoh enslaved Jacob’s people. I think most of us know the rest of the story thanks to Charleston Heston in The Ten Commandments. Continue reading