Fear Not: Moses and the Red Sea

Fear Not: Moses and the Red Sea

Fear Not: Moses and the Red Sea.

“Moses told the people, ‘Don’t be afraid! Just stand still and watch the Lord rescue you today. The Egyptians you see today will never be seen again. The Lord Himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.'”  (Exodus 14:13).

So after 400 years of slavery in Egypt, the Israelites have been released by the Pharaoh to worship the Lord elsewhere in freedom. They got as far as the Red Sea, and by this time Pharaoh had changed his mind. He sent his horses, chariots and soldiers to pursue the Israelites and overtake them them as they walk through the Egyptian desert. And soon the Israelites were trapped. On the one side they have the impassable Red Sea. On the other side is the fearsome Egyptian army. The people were terrified and started complaining to Moses and Yahweh. They said that they might as well have stayed in Egypt, that they would rather be slaves in Egypt than die in the wilderness. Moses tried to calm their fears. Instead of fighting for their survival, Moses told them to stand still. Stand still! That piece of advice is the last thing the people expected. As they voiced their fears, Moses told them to be quiet and watch God work. Moses assured them that Yahweh will do the fighting for them, and they will be delivered from the Egyptians once and for all. The rest is history… Moses lifted his staff over the Red Sea, strong winds blew over the Sea all night, the waters of the Sea parted, and the Israelites walked to the other side on dry ground. As the Egyptian forces pursued the Israelites into the parted waters, Moses stretched out his arms once again over the Red Sea, and the waters returned to their full depth, drowning the entire Egyptian army. In the coming days and years, sometimes the Israelites fought to overcome a fearsome challenge, and sometimes they stood still and let God do the fighting. Most of the time, though, the Israelites still had a part to play. Back at the Red Sea, God didn’t magically pick them all up and transport them to the other side of the Sea. They had to trust that God would hold those waters back as they walked across. They had to gather their courage and walk themselves to the other side through walls of water. Certainly this miracle showed God to the  rescue, but the people needed to cooperate to complete their deliverance.

An Answer to Fear: When threatened by a minor difficulty or a major catastrophe, inquire of God and wise friends as to how to respond. On the one hand, God will intervene and fight for you. God won’t desert you. On the  other hand, discover your part in your deliverance. One need never fear that God will turn His back in a critical situation. After seeking God’s guidance, discover how you can cooperate with Him as He acts. No matter what, nothing can separate you from God’s love, and your destiny is assured with Him in heaven. 

Take Heart: “Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When  you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.”  (Isaiah 43:1-3).