The Egyptians pursued them, all Pharaoh’s horses and chariots and his horsemen and his army, and overtook them encamped at the sea, by Pi-hahiroth, in front of Baal-zephon. When Pharaoh drew near, the people of Israel lifted up their eyes, and behold, the Egyptians were marching after them, and they feared greatly. Exodus 14:9-10
When Israel left Egypt they did so defiantly, (Ex 14:8) laden with plunder (Ex 12:36). But very soon after their exodus from Egypt – Pharaoh pursued them with fervor:
What the Israelites saw/heard:
- The thunderous sound of hundreds of horses racing towards them.
- The cloud of dust that rose from their hooves pounding the earth drawing ever closer.
- My guess is there was some screaming and children crying. Fear pressed in on every side.
Is it because there are no graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the wilderness? What have you done to us in bringing us out of Egypt? Is not this what we said to you in Egypt: “Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians”? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness. Ex 14:11-12
They seem convinced that death was the only possible outcome.
What God knew and purposed:
And I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they shall go in after them, and I will get glory over Pharaoh and all his host, his chariots, and his horsemen. And the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I have gotten glory over Pharaoh, his chariots, and his horsemen. Ex 14:17-18
God knew that although Pharaoh would release Israel, he would soon pursue them. In fact, Scripture said that God would harden Pharaoh’s and the Egyptian’s hearts. And God also said, in the end, the Egyptians would know He was the LORD and that He would get the glory.
It’s easy and natural for us to be gripped by what our senses tell us – what we can see, what we can hear, what we can smell, what we can feel and taste. In life circumstances, we can too quickly be inclined to focus on our circumstances. Above our circumstances there is a Mighty, Powerful, Loving God Who is accomplishing His plan and His purpose for His glory and our good.
Moses wrote of the God who led you through the great and terrifying wilderness, with its fiery serpents and scorpions and thirsty ground where there was no water, who brought you water out of the flinty rock, who fed you in the wilderness with manna that your fathers did not know, that he might humble you and test you, to do you good in the end. Deut 8:15-16
My point? My point is this… In the midst of your trials, suffering and difficulties…don’t be fooled by your five senses. In the midst of your circumstances, lift your eyes beyond what you can see and know with certainty that God is working His plan and purpose in your life despite and through your circumstances.
Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. Colossians 3:2
There is always a bigger picture.
Diane Hunt serves part time on the staff of America’s Keswick providing ministry support from her home in North Carolina. She is also a Biblical counselor and women’s event speaker. For more information about having Diane speak at your next event please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.