Chapter 13 The land of milk and honey!! They have finally made it!! I have a feeling though that they aren't going to be happy here for long! :) The Israelites are to consecrate their firstborn to the Lord. And they are to remember the day that the Lord brought them up out of Egypt by eating unleavened bread. The Lord gives them the land He has promised for generations to their forefathers....it is the land flowing with milk and honey. The observance of unleavened bread is to remind the Israelites that the law of the Lord is to be on your lips for the Lord brought them out of Egypt with a mighty hand. They are to keep this ordinance year after year.
As Pharaoh let the people go God did not lead them down the dusty road or the highway or even a trail. He took them by the way of the desert road toward the sea. The Red Sea. As they traveled, God provided them with guidance...a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night.....and neither "left its place in front of the people" (v. 21-22).
Chapter 14 The Israelites were camped out but here comes the Egyptian army! God hardened Pharaoh's heart....again and Pharaoh and his men pursued them Israelites...but only to let God show off His glory...again! :) So the Israelites are stuck between a rock and a hard place and are crying out to God. They are stuck between the Red Sea on one side and the impending doom of the Egyptian army on the other. I'd cry out to God too. They are crying out to God, were terried, and begged for the Lord to "leave us alone! Let us serve Egypt! We were better off as slaves!" But Moses told them to quit their whining and belly achin', to stand firm and trust in the Lord to bring them out of this. Moses tells them that they won't see those Egyptians any more. God will gain glory through Pharaoh, his chariots and his horsemen. Then the angel of the Lord that had been traveling with them -- ahead of them--leading the way--withdrew from them and went behind the Israelites. So now they are in the front, the pillar and the Lord's presence is in the middle, and the Egyptian army in hot on the heals of them all. But notice where the Lord's presence is....its moves from leading the way to being behind them. Why?! This is a wonderful point not to be missed....because God comes between us and our enemies.
Then Moses reached out his hand and lifted his staff out over the sea and the Lord drew back the sea "with a strong east wind and turned it into dry land and the waters were divided." (v. 21). Of course the Egyptians took off in hot pursuit of them. They follow the Israelites into the the dry sea bed....but as we know...the Israelites all get out safe and sound while the waters and wind are put back down......swallowing up Pharaoh, all of his chariots and horsemen...his army was no more. God had promised and God did it. Lesson here: the Israelites themselves had just learned to fear the Lord. They put their trust in him and in Moses!
Chapter 15 They sing! They dance! They have realized they are truly free from Pharaoh and never have to fear him again! I'd sing and dance too! This is a song of Moses and Miriam (Moses' sister!). They all worship the Lord! They are exuberant and relieved! What joy! What glory! Miriam's job and ministry was to lead these people in worship and praise. Guess she was the first music director of the Bible!
"Sing to the Lord, for he is highly exalted!"