And the horse and the rider fell into the sea...

Yet another childhood song is running through my head, well just one line of a song, actually. "..And the horse and the rider fell into the sea.."  Over and over its spinning around in my brain.  I'm pretty sure it's because I've been working my way through the highlights of Exodus via YouVersion's First Steps reading plan.  Can you believe those Israelites?!

I've been taught, read through and done countless childhood crafts all centered around these Israelites that Christians have often counted as grumbly and ungrateful. We have also deemed them far too similar to ourselves.  The doubt, the fear, the deliberate disobedience...it all hits a little too close for comfort at times.

This time through Exodus, however, a few things have reached out and grabbed me with a whole new perspective.  In Exodus 6 God speaks through Moses telling the Israelites all of the wonderful things that are about to happen, freedom was on it's way! Verse 9, however, is one of the verses that got caught in my throat...
"Moses spoke thus to the people of Israel, but they did not listen to Moses, because of their broken spirit and harsh slavery."

The Israelites were operating out of total and complete brokenness.  This was not ordinary brokenness either, this was a totally shattered spirit that had been splintered by over 430 YEARS of harsh, cruel enslavement.  These people were so broken, they couldn't even celebrate a new voice declaring freedom. 

YET,  the horse and the rider fell into the sea. 

Just 8 chapters later the people doubted, they feared, they grumbled and complained.  Those Israelites even resisted their freedom from slavery!  In Exodus 14 there is all kinds of exciting, nail biting drama taking place.  The Israelites are finally fleeing by the hand of God and the Egyptians are pursuing with evil vengeance.  Fear is spilling out of the mouths of the Israelites the entire time.  Verses 11 and 12 are heartbreaking...
They said to Moses, "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."
They couldn't see it.  They couldn't see that FINALLY freedom was enveloping them.  They couldn't see any other lifestyle.  They had been born into slavery and they were stuck in a mind of misery.  They couldn't see the process the almighty God was taking them through. God was physically visible in the form of cloud and fire, but they couldn't get past what they had always known.

YET, the horse and the rider fell into the sea.

Exodus 14 ends with true gracious beauty.  God parts the Red Sea down the middle for an entire night so that the 600,000 Israelite men AND their families could pass through.  The Egyptians were hot on their trail the entire time.  Did you realize Pharaoh's crew were chasing them even in the midst of the sea?  YET, as soon as the last Israelite baby and Grandma had reached the opposite shore, WHOOSH!  The horse and the rider fell (or were completely swallowed up) into the sea.

The Israelites had doubted, complained and even wished to return to slavery out of fear.  YET, God had a better plan.  He knew what to do.  He knew how to handle the fear, the doubt and the utterly shattered souls of the Israelites.  He knew what was best for His people. 

He put into motion a legacy of grace.

He set His people on the path of freedom.

And the horse and the rider fell into the sea.

1 comment:

elizabeth said...

Another great post that you should submit to {in}courage...do it!