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Moses and the Parting of the Red Sea

(15)

Sermon shared by Revd. Martin Dale

March 2007
Summary: What can we learn from Moses and the Parting of the Red Sea today in our lives
Denomination: Anglican
Audience: General adults
Sermon:
NR ES and HC 15-04-07

Moses and the Parting of the Red Sea
Ex 14:10-31

Story: A little boy came back from Sunday school one morning and his father asked him:.

“Well, what did you learn?”.

The little boy replied: “How the people of Israel were kept in Egypt and used as slaves by this guy called Pharaoh.”

“Oh?” said the father. “Then what happened?”

The little boy went on

“A guy named Moses tried all these special effects on them.

It was really wicked.

He turned the river to blood, he covered the Egyptians with frogs, and bugs, and boils.
He beat them down with hailstones, and locusts, and scared them with an eclipse of the sun.

He started killing their cattle and then finally killing their oldest kids.”

“And did it work?’ his Dad asked

“Well, Pharaoh lets them go after the kids were killed, but then he sent his army after them.”

“And then what?”

“Well . . . Moses calls in the Israeli air force. And they strafed the Egyptian tanks and destroyed them on the ground. They also gave cover while the engineers lay down this pontoon bridge across the Red Sea.

And then the people of Israel crossed over without getting their feet wet.
But when the Egyptian army got on the pontoon bridge, the air force came back and bombed it away, and the Egyptians drown.”

“Is that what your teacher told you?” his father asked

“Well, not exactly. But if I told it the way she did, you’d wouldn’t believe me!

So what was the real story all about?

God had called Abraham, the founder of the Israelite nation in about 2000 BC to go and settle in the land of Canaan - also known as the Promised Land – an area known today as the country of Israel.

But over time, the Israelites left the land of Israel and went to live in Egypt.

There they were eventually subdued by the Egyptians and had been Egyptian slaves for 430 years, until Moses arrived on the scene.

Moses had been given a mandate by God to take the Israelites out of Egypt and bring them back to Canaan.

So Moses went to Pharoah to ask him to release the Israelites but Pharoah refused to do that

So God inflicted the Egyptians with 10 plagues - culminating in the death of every Egyptian firstborn.

Eventually, after the 10th plague, Pharoah had had enough and allowed the Israelites to go after 430 years of slavery

Once the Israelites had left - as with all good despots - Pharaoh had second thoughts and came after them with his army and threatened them with extinction.
And in our OT reading this morning we find the Israelites in a dilemma

In front of them was the seemingly impassable Red Sea and behind them were the Egyptians.

What were they to do?

God provided a way out of their dilemma but it needed them to step forward in faith.

They had to believe that the ground over which they were going to pass over was safe.

As the sea rolled back before them they had two choices.

1. To stay where they were and be killed by the Egyptians or at best enslaved again or

2. Step forward in faith with God and being saved

So what is the moral of this story for us today?

Like the Israelites at the Red Sea we too will go though times of crisis – times where things get hard . We will have our own RED SEA to cross.

And at these times, God will show us the way forward – one footstep at a time.

We might not see
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