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January 28th

Promises of Deliverance
Exodus 6 : 1 Then the Lord told Moses, “Now you will see what I will do to Pharaoh. When he feels the force of my strong hand, he will let the people go. In fact, he will force them to leave his land!”
2 And God said to Moses, “I am Yahweh—‘the Lord.’ 3 I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob as El-Shaddai—‘God Almighty’—but I did not reveal my name, Yahweh, to them. 4 And I reaffirmed my covenant with them. Under its terms, I promised to give them the land of Canaan, where they were living as foreigners. 5 You can be sure that I have heard the groans of the people of Israel, who are now slaves to the Egyptians. And I am well aware of my covenant with them.
6 “Therefore, say to the people of Israel: ‘I am the Lord. I will free you from your oppression and will rescue you from your slavery in Egypt. I will redeem you with a powerful arm and great acts of judgment. 7 I will claim you as my own people, and I will be your God.

Even though Pharaoh has made life for the Israelite slaves harder with no straw for the making of bricks and Moses complains, the LORD affirms his purposes. He will force Pharoah to let the people go and will establish an intimate relationship with Israel… they will be His people and He will be their God. This is the beginning of an even greater, then hidden, plan to bring forth a people from the whole world – looking forward to the Universal People of God!

Pharaoh questions why he should listen to a god he does not know, but Moses and Aaron work miracles to prove God’s power… something which the magicians of Egypt falsely duplicate. However, the life-giving Nile river becomes a stinking bloody and fish polluted water, starting the attack on Egypt’s false gods. The battle for supremacy has begun.

In the New Testament, we learn to forgive as we are forgiven, for it will be the measure by which God forgives us. The Pharisees try to trap Jesus in a question about the custom of divorce and marriage.

The reading from the Psalms is probably the most treasured Psalm in history, the 23rd or Shepherd’s Psalm :) This Psalm has always been of great comfort to me when things seem to be going wrong.

Proverbs shows how sin can ensnare people.

Our daily reading is full of wonderful passages today. It is a virtual kaleidoscope of many theologies.

Exodus 5:22-7:25

We are a people of comfort and status quo. No matter how miserable we are in a comfortable place, we find comfort in our misery. I believe the plagues and Pharaoh’s stubbornness were needed to challenge the Egyptians’ gods but also to set up both Egypt and Israel to disengage from each other. Israel had to become a stench in the nostrils of Egypt and Israel needed to become reacquainted with the power of their God. God was making sure bridges were being burned.

Being oppressed and or being in slavery destroys self-initiative because a hopelessness sets in and then one develops a sick heart (Proverbs 13:12). When your heart is sick, blood circulation is hindered and the “body” doesn’t “act” the way it is suppose to. So, not only was it necessary to bring Egypt to her knees, Israel had to move from the mindset of a slave to one of freedom. Freedom isn’t free and requires a purchase price of responsible mind. But freedom means you become aware of your value to yourself, to others and most definitely your value to God.

Moving from welfare/dole, being enslaved or dependent on the government requires one to believe that there are gifts, talents, and abilities inside that can make one sufficient. Many times that means one has to get in touch with God to discover the gift God has placed within and how to use that gift in the market place. I know about moving from welfare to work and what it takes to cross that divide, courage. However, usually, that courage comes by way of crises.

Grace and peace,

I love the proverbs statement: 5:22. Run from sin..made me think of Joseph running from sin of Potiphars wife.

Ok in Ex 522 Pharoah had never intended for the Israelites to be let go. He was cruel. Love u Lord with all my heart.

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