Summary: Attitudes to Overcome Problems
A. INTRODUCTION: FACING PROBLEMS - EXODUS 13:17 TO 15:1
1. Our greatest problems come after our greatest victories. From deliverance from Egypt to imminent destruction at the Red Sea. “The Egyptians pursued them, all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, his horsemen and his army, and overtook them” (Ex. 14:9).
2. Changing surroundings sometimes mean the beginning of problems. “So they took their journey . . . and camped in Etham at the edge of the wilderness” (13:20).
3. Sometimes God leads into a barren desert (difficulties) away from the straight road to the Promise Land (easy life). “God led them not through the way (road) of the land of the Philistines” (13:17).
What To Learn In The Desert
• Learn the folly of self reliance.
• Learn the hard lesson of shut doors.
• Learn to trust no one else but God for deliverance.
• Learn humility and lose self pride.
• Learn to get close to others for protection and survival.
• Learn not to curse the desert; God created it.
4. Sometimes God leads us to a dead-end street. “Speak to the children of Israel that they . . . camp . . . between Migdol and the sea” (14:2).
5. Israel forgot. “Our fathers understood not Thy wonders in Egypt . . . but provoked him at the . . . Red sea” (Ps. 106:7).
6. Israel did what we often do, they blamed God. “They were very afraid . . . and they cried to the Lord” (14:10, NKJV).
7. Israel blamed their leaders. “Why have you taken us away to die in the wilderness?” (14:11, NKJV).
8. Israel, like many, wanted to give up and go back to sin’s bondage. “It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than . . . die in the wilderness” (14:12).
B. ATTITUDES TO OVERCOME PROBLEMS
1. Their problem was less than they might have faced elsewhere. “God did not lead them on the road through Philistine territory . . . the shortest way . . . if the people are faced with a battle . . . return to Egypt” (13:17, LB).
• They had not yet learned God’s personal care for them.
• God adapts our journey to our strength.
• God always considers what we can bear.
2. Remember your problems could be a lot worse.
3. Prayer: “God, give us a spiritual leader who has utterly learned to trust you.”
4. Sometimes there is no time for extended prayer, so we must take action. “The Lord said to Moses, ‘Why are you crying out to Me? Tell the people to get moving’” (14:15, LB).
5. God watches your back. “The Angel of God who went before the camp of Israel . . . went behind them and the pillar of cloud . . . stood behind them” (14:19).
• To protect from an attack on their rear.
• To give them time to walk across the Red Sea.
• So the enemy can’t see what God is doing.
6. What did God use to deliver His people?
a. Direction by His Word.
b. Symbol, “Lift up your rod” (14:16).
c. Faith action, “Stretch out your hand over the sea” (14:16).