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Sinai Covenant: Part One Exodus 1 24

2522 words - 10 pages

Before continuing with the Bible survey, we would like to interject a few sentences to explain the historical perspective used in preparing it. All attempts to place Joseph, Moses, and the events in Exodus alongside a secular, historical timeline proved unsatisfactory -- frustratingly so. There are educated opinions too numerous and complicated to reconcile. Anyone who claims to have the definitive word on which dynasty Joseph served or which pharoah withstood Moses or drowned in the Red Sea does so under the weight of a truckload of assumptions and inferences.Now, back to the study of the Biblical narrative, which does not attempt to satisfy our endless human curiosity, but instead beckons us to know the motives, wisdom, and faithfulness of a God who not only created man, but also continually reaches out to offer him redemption and fellowship.After Joseph's death, the Hebrews continued to live in Goshen of Egypt, where their numbers grew until they "filled the land" -- a very strong people. In time, a new ruler came into power in Egypt who enslaved and afflicted the Hebrews in the name of political control. His distrust of a people who could have been a strong ally dictated his ruthless action: he was afraid the Hebrews would join their enemies to fight against them. In spite of ever-increasing oppression from their Egyptian masters, the children of Israel continued to grow more numerous and mighty.The life of Moses is familiar to people of many nations and religious persuasions. Rescued from infanticide by Pharaoh's daughter, nursed by his Hebrew mother, and educated as would befit an Egyptian prince, Moses never lost touch with his heritage. His disastrous attempt at becoming a rescuer of his people caused him to endure years of exile in the land of Midian. When God finally called upon him to go back into Egypt to lead Israel out of bondage, Moses had no ambition to be a rescuer anymore. He had to be convinced to do the job. After instructing him how to appeal to the elders of Israel on the basis of the covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Ex. 3:13-17), God also committed Himself to show His power to Egypt by signs and wonders. Faced with Moses' continued objections, the LORD angrily assigned Aaron to be a spokesman for Moses.Because of Pharaoh's arrogant refusal to free the children of Israel, God turned the Nile River into blood. Thus began a series of humiliations for the 'gods' of Egypt: the Nile River, worshiped as the "giver of life," was turned to blood; animals which represented Egyptian gods were devastated (i.e., Heka - a frog, Apis - a bull); the sun (worshiped as Ra) was blotted out as darkness covered Egypt for three days; even Pharaoh, whom the people deified, was directly affected by the death of his firstborn son. (Beginning with the fourth sign, God spared His people from being afflicted as were the Egyptians.) To cause the Israelites to remember the night that the LORD killed the firstborn of Egypt, a memorial called the...

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