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Called Out: God’s Response to Rebellion

As we continue through Exodus, we arrived at an intriguing passage this Sunday. The Amalekites, a group with various ties to Israel, come and attack the Israelites. In response, Moses goes up on the hill and holds the staff of God, while Joshua goes and fights. In the end, the Israelites defeat the Amalekites. We see in this text, that God will judge those in rebellion of Him and rescue those committed to Him.


  1. See Our Rebellion Against God: v.8

The attack against Israel comes across as surprising at initial glance. But when we know more of the history of Amalek, we realize it’s not as surprising as we think. This is a group that has been in opposition to God’s plan for generations. What’s important to understand, is our natural tendency or bent is that of rebellion toward God.


  1. Trust God’s Providence for His People: v.9-13

In this next section of the story, we see God’s providence for His people. We see the continuing theme of God testing His people in bringing them to a place where they trust Him for all things. Here Israel is able to trust God’s providence and protection over the attacking Amalekites. What is important to note here is Moses’ submitted dependence upon God. While Moses raises the staff (a sign of judgment throughout Exodus), he alone is incapable of dealing with the Amalekites. He is dependent upon God working out His purposes for His people. We too must trust God’s providence in all things, knowing that in and of ourselves we are incapable of doing what must be done.


  1. Warning of God’s Judgment Against Rebellious People: v.14-16

This section of text ends with God telling Moses what He will ultimately do to Amalek. In short, God is going to deal with the rebellion of Amalek the way that He deals with all rebellion; He will bring judgment. It’s important to remember that the Amalekites weren’t some peaceful people, quietly minding their own business. They intentionally came after God and His people. We must keep in mind that rebellion can be active or passive. Just because we aren’t demonstrative with our rebellion does not mean that our hearts aren’t calloused or turned away from the Lord. God will deal with rebellion by bringing His righteous judgment.


As we closed the service, we asked a series of questions to help us determine if there is rebellion within our hearts. I’ve included the questions below to ask again or to review.


  • Am I allowing God’s word to instruct my life?
  • When I come across something in God’s Word that is difficult, is my response to obey or to fight against it?
  • Do I live my life in a posture of submitted dependence or self-sufficiency?
  • When I am complimented or praised, am I quick in my mind and actions to attribute this to the Lord or to myself?
  • When failure enters into my life, do I own it as my own or cast the blame on God?
  • Do I realize that the Gospel is necessary in every aspect and at every moment of my life?
  • Am I aware of my own rebellion toward God?



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