Summary: God sees the evil of the world and creates a plan to rescue his people.
• First off, I want to wish everyone a happy 4th of July!
• Sometimes when we look at the Bible, particularly at the Old Testament, we tend to think that we humans have progressed, that the things they struggled with are not the same struggles we deal with.
• So the tendency is to not pay much attention to what we read.
• Today we begin a new series from the Old Testament book of Exodus.
• Big Idea of the Series: This eight-week series describes the escape of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt, and the nature and character of God revealed along their journey.
• Exodus reveals a God who liberates, provides, protects, cares for, and gives an identity to his people, Israel.
• This same God does this for his people today as well.
• As we celebrate the birth of our nation today, we need to make sure that we heed the warning and learn from the mistakes that the nation of Israel experienced during their journey with God.
• When things get difficult, we have to resist the temptation to go with the flow; we need to take a stand for God.
• We also need to know that when the battles of life come at us that the battle belongs to the Lord!
• The Israelites were going to find themselves in a challenging situation that they did not see coming.
• There was someone who saw it coming, God!
• All during the time of the enslavement of God had a plan!
• When your life is out of control, God has a plan!
• When all looks lost, God has a plan.
• I want to be careful how I say this, lest it is misunderstood, but there is no way this nation should have ever gotten off the ground considering the odds the nation faced.
› Big Idea of the Message: God sees the evil of the world and creates a plan to rescue his people.
Let’s turn to Exodus 1 together this morning!
Exodus 1:1–7 (CSB)
1 These are the names of the sons of Israel who came to Egypt with Jacob; each came with his family:
2 Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah;
3 Issachar (ISS A CAR), Zebulun, and Benjamin;
4 Dan and Naphtali (NAF TALI); Gad and Asher.
5 The total number of Jacob’s descendants was seventy; Joseph was already in Egypt.
6 Joseph and all his brothers and all that generation eventually died.
7 But the Israelites were fruitful, increased rapidly, multiplied, and became extremely numerous so that the land was filled with them.
I. Living in the comfort zone.
• The nation of Israel was living the good life in Egypt.
• Life was good.
• Joseph rose to second in command of Egypt, and his lineage found refuge and a home in Egypt.
• When Joseph’s people came to Egypt, it was a small contingency that entered the land.
• When we live in the comfort zone of life, we tend not to be aware of what is brewing around us.
• God’s people were fruitful and were rapidly multiplying, and they were exceedingly strong.
• The Israelites were not looking to overthrow anyone or form a political party; however, their large population became a threat to the king (see verse 9).
• An alternative translation for grew exceedingly strong is “they grew so large in numbers that they became a threat [or, dangerous] to the Egyptians.” Osborn, N. D., & Hatton, H. A. (1999). A handbook on Exodus (p. 17). New York: United Bible Societies.
• When we live in our comfort zone, we tend to get so comfortable that we start making mistakes.
• Our prosperous country will cease to be prosperous if we keep doing some of the things we are doing.
• For Christians, we need to make sure that we are not so comfortable that we forget why we are here and who we serve.
• I think we all like living in our comfort zone, but we need to be careful so that things do not one day catch us off guard.
• The Israelites seemed to be everywhere.
A Handbook on Exodus (1. The Israelites in Egypt (1:1–7))
So that the land was filled with them is an exaggeration.
It describes the result of the increasing population of the Israelites as well the impact of their corporate strength upon the people of Egypt.
The land refers to the territory of Egypt, and filled with them means that they seemed to be everywhere in the land of Egypt. Thus NEB says that “the country was overrun by them.”
• Let’s look at verses 8-11.
Exodus 1:8–11 (CSB)
8 A new king, who did not know about Joseph, came to power in Egypt.