It was an honor to be able to open God’s Word with you this past Sunday, as we continued through the book of Exodus. The message was titled, “Fickle People and a Faithful God,” and we walked through one of the most well know passages in Scripture, the parting of the Red Sea (Exodus 13:17-14:31). The main emphasis of the sermon was, “As Christians, we can have confidence in our faithful God.” We spent our time looking at three main points: A Fickle People, A Faithful God, and A Right Response.
1. A Fickle People
In this passage, we see the absolute fickleness of nearly everyone in the narrative, excluding Moses and God. This becomes clear; first, in the fear and cowardice of the Israelites. We see this; first, when they would have been too afraid to battle the Philistines and would have ran back to Egypt. This was despite the fact that God was with them and they were equipped for battle (Ex 13:17-18). The Israelites then responded in great fear, as the Egyptians descended upon them; rather than having confidence in God’s protection of them (Ex 14:10-12). Next, we see that both the Israelites and the Egyptians were fickle, in that they forgot the works of God. The Egyptians forgot all that God had done to them, on behalf of the Israelites and acted as if it was by their decision that the they let the Israelites go free (Ex 14:5). But God’s people weren’t any better, in that they forgot all that God had done to save them and acted as if He were going to let them be slaughtered by the sea (Ex 14:10-12). After all that God has done throughout the book of Exodus thus far, the people seem to quickly forget and show their fickleness.
2. A Faithful God
The people’s fickleness, however, only exalts the faithfulness of God throughout this passage. God shows his incredible faithfulness and character to His people in several prominent ways. First, we see that this faithful God leads his people (Ex 13:17-18, 21-22, 14:19-20). Second, we see that this faithful God receives Glory for His works (Ex 14:4, 17-18, 25, 31). Third, we see that this faithful God is sovereign over all His creation in two ways: first, in his sovereignty over the hearts of the Egyptians (Ex 14:4, 8, 17) and second, over the parting of the Red Sea (Ex 14:16, 21, 26-29). Fourth, we see that this faithful God brings about great assurance by totally removing any possibility of Egypt enslaving them again. As God eliminates the Egyptian army (Ex 14:13, 26-28, 30), they now have nothing left; their livestock were killed, crops destroyed, firstborn killed, labor force removed, valuables plundered and their army abolished. God’s people have great assurance that their salvation is secure. Which leads to the fifth and final point, this faithful God secures salvation for His people (14:13-14, 29, 30). Through the Red Sea, Israel is totally free once and for all from the oppression of Egypt. In talking through this point, we looked at the fact that through Christ we can be freed from our slavery to sin; as we read from the amazing text of Ephesians 2:1-10.
3. A Right Response
In closing, we considered how we should respond in light of our fickleness and God’s faithfulness. In short, the emphasis was drawn back to the main point that, “As Christians, we can have confidence in our faithful God.” No matter what challenging or scary circumstances we find ourselves in, as believers we can have confidence in our God who is faithful (much like Moses in Ex 14:13-14). The consequences of responding incorrectly were also pointed out. The Egyptians responded with too little, too late and were eliminated by the waves crashing in on them. We only have this one life to place faith in the Lord Jesus. Our desire is that non-believers would come to know the confidence we have in our faithful God, by placing their faith in Him as well.