Ever Watching Over Us
Of all of the great epics of history and of the writings of literature, likely there is none greater than the account of God’s deliverance of His people from Egypt that is found in the Exodus. Though the event was over 3000 years ago, the scope, length, and faith lessons learned by Israel walking with God has been the source of lots of illustrations. From various aspects of the journey, many have been strengthened in their faith right up to this present day. Likely, you have a favorite sermon, lesson, or life-illustration that you love to tell from the Exodus.
One of the mighty things that God demonstrated during the long years of the Israelites wilderness wandering was that He was with them every step of the way to watch over, provide for, and care for them. Their constant rebellion against obeying God resulted in their perishing in the wilderness. How tragic to be led out of slavery by the miraculous power of God only to fail to be led “into the promised land” by His mercy because of the lack of steadfast trust and obedience on Israel’s part.
Have you ever considered how many ways God “covered” His people with His grace even when they were far from Him and even in rebellion to His will?
In Exodus 13-14, let’s review some of the times displaying the grace covering of God over His people, Israel….
13:17 – GOD COVERED THEIR FRAILTY. God knew the frailty of the fleeing slaves. God knew they were not “fighters” and would have been slaughtered by the military armies of Egyptian soldiers. So, he led them into a wilderness away from confrontation with any enemy that would attack them. Their time in the wilderness caused them to be dependent upon Him.
13:20 – GOD COVERED THEM DAY AND NIGHT. God wanted to assure them, “I will never leave you”. So, He covered them with a cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night for 40 years. In that way, they knew when to “move”, where to go, when to stop, and that God was never far from them. His name, I AM, was the answer to every question they had. “Will you be the One to provide for us?” “Will you be the One to protect us?” Will you be the One to feed and water us and our flocks and herds?” In every question they asked, the answer was His name, “I AM”. His covering reminded them daily that God was near! He was their deliverer! That would be demonstrated clearly as He saved them from Pharaoh’s army at the Red Sea!
Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea. The LORD drove the sea back with a powerful east wind all that night and turned the sea into dry land. So, the waters were divided, and the Israelites went through the sea on dry ground, with the waters like a wall to them on their right and their left.
The Egyptians set out in pursuit—all Pharaoh’s horses, his chariots, and his horsemen—went into the sea after them.
Then the LORD said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea so that the waters may come back on the Egyptians, on their chariots and horsemen.” So, Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and at daybreak the sea returned to its normal depth. The waters came back and covered the chariots and horseman, the entire army of Pharaoh, that had gone into the sea. None of them survived. (Exodus 14:21-23; 26; 28). I love the old lyrics that state, “His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me!”