Learning from Our Forefathers
In our world, “identity politics” is a topic of much debate. But God laughs at such notions. So, when Paul admonishes believers to go forward in faith he is talking to everyone. There is no Jew or Gentile, rather if we are Christ’s then Abraham is our forefather in the faith. And, if we are Abraham’s descendants — his children — then the bible is our story. That is why Paul could warn believers in his day to learn from the lessons of faith taught by Israel’s journey out of Egypt. Because Israel’s history was written to instruct them about their heritage. And to warn them not to make the same mistakes, and test Christ!
Lessons from Passover
The Passover season is celebrated yearly by the children of Abraham – and if we are Christ’s we are Abraham’s children. Passover is the beginning of a series of Holy Days that rehearse stories about God’s work in the affairs of men. And not only are we to draw lessons from these events, but we are instructed to teach our children. So, they too, will understand God’s work in their lives.
The Exodus story is a part of our family history that teaches us to put our faith in God. Why? Without faith in God’s works we will be like the warriors of Ephraim who lacked courage, did not follow God, and were destroyed. Reading the accounts of the protective pillar of cloud and fire, or the crossing of the Red Sea, or the water flowing from the rock give us hope. They are clear testimonies to God’s power and desire to provide for his people.
We All Need a Redeemer
In leaving Egypt, Israel needed a redeemer to ransom them from slavery. They needed a true path to follow and sure promises to give them hope, and God provided a pillar of fire to lead the way. As followers of Christ, we also need these things. We need to teach our children about our Redeemer who loves us and has saved us from spiritual slavery. And, we need to help them to set their hope in God and follow him in faith. This is not an easy choice in a world that offers powerful temptations.
Go Forward in Faith
Moses example of faith is recorded for us as an exhortation to choose God’s ways over the riches and status this world may offer. Moses was able to do this because he had seen the miraculous ways in which God was able to alter history and preserve his people.
That is why Moses counsels us today to put aside our fears, hold fast to God’s promises, and go forward in faith.
“And Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will accomplish for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall see again no more forever. 14 The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace.”
15 And the Lord said to Moses, “Why do you cry to Me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward.”
…Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea into dry land, and the waters were divided. 22 So the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea on the dry ground, and the waters were a wall to them on their right hand and on their left.
…So the Lord saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore. 31 Thus Israel saw the great work which the Lord had done in Egypt; so the people feared the Lord, and believed the Lord and His servant Moses.
Entering Our Promised Land