Exodus 14* God directs the Israelites to Pihahiroth, Pharaoh pursuesafter them. (1-9) The Israelites murmur, Moses comforts them.(10-14) God instructs Moses, The cloud between the Israelitesand the Egyptians. (15-20) The Israelites pass through the Redsea, which drowns the Egyptians. (21-31)1-9 Pharaoh would think that all Israel was entangled in thewilderness, and so would become an easy prey. But God says, Iwill be honoured upon Pharaoh. All men being made for the honourof their Maker, those whom he is not honoured by, he will behonoured upon. What seems to tend to the church's ruin, is oftenoverruled to the ruin of the church's enemies. While Pharaohgratified his malice and revenge, he furthered the bringing topass God's counsels concerning him. Though with the greatestreason he had let Israel go, yet now he was angry with himselffor it. God makes the envy and rage of men against his people, atorment to themselves. Those who set their faces heavenward, andwill live godly in Christ Jesus, must expect to be set upon bySatan's temptations and terrors. He will not tamely part withany out of his service. 10-14 There was no way open to Israel but upward, and thencetheir deliverance came. We may be in the way of duty, followingGod, and hastening toward heaven, yet may be troubled on everyside. Some cried out unto the Lord; their fear led them to pray,and that was well. God brings us into straits, that he may bringus to our knees. Others cried out against Moses; fear set themmurmuring as if God were not still able to work miracles. Theyquarrel with Moses for bringing them out of Egypt; and so wereangry with God for the greatest kindness ever done them; thusgross are the absurdities of unbelief. Moses says, Fear ye not.It is always our duty and interest, when we cannot get out oftroubles, yet to get above our fears; let them quicken ourprayers and endeavours, but not silence our faith and hope."Stand still," think not to save yourselves either by fightingor flying; wait God's orders, and observe them. Composeyourselves, by confidence in God, into peaceful thoughts of thegreat salvation God is about to work for you. If God brings hispeople into straits, he will find a way to bring them out. 15-20 Moses' silent prayers of faith prevailed more with Godthan Israel's loud outcries of fear. The pillar of cloud andfire came behind them, where they needed a guard, and it was awall between them and their enemies. The word and providence ofGod have a black and dark side toward sin and sinners, but abright and pleasant side toward the people of the Lord. He, whodivided between light and darkness, #Ge 1:4|, allotted darknessto the Egyptians, and light to the Israelites. Such a differencethere will be between the inheritance of the saints in light,and that utter darkness which will be the portion of hypocritesfor ever. 21-31 The dividing the Red sea was the terror of theCanaanites, #Jos 2:9|; the praise and triumph of the Israelites,#Ps 114:3; 106:9; 136:13|. It was a type of baptism, #1Co10:1,2|. Israel's passage through it was typical of theconversion of souls, #Isa 11:15|; and the Egyptians beingdrowned in it was typical of the final ruin of all unrepentingsinners. God showed his almighty power, by opening a passagethrough the waters, some miles over. God can bring his peoplethrough the greatest difficulties, and force a way where he doesnot find it. It was an instance of his wonderful favour to hisIsrael. They went through the sea, they walked upon dry land inthe midst of the sea. This was done, in order to encourage God'speople in all ages to trust him in the greatest straits. Whatcannot he do who did this? What will not he do for those thatfear and love him, who did this for these murmuring, unbelievingIsraelites? Then followed the just and righteous wrath of Godupon his and his people's enemies. The ruin of sinners isbrought on by their own rage and presumption. They might havelet Israel alone, and would not; now they would flee from theface of Israel, and cannot. Men will not be convinced, till itis too late, that those who meddle with God's people, meddle totheir own hurt. Moses was ordered to stretch out his hand overthe sea; the waters returned, and overwhelmed all the host ofthe Egyptians. Pharaoh and his servants, who had hardened oneanother in sin, now fell together, not one escaped. TheIsraelites saw the Egyptians dead upon the sands. The sight verymuch affected them. While men see God's works, and feel thebenefit, they fear him and trust in him. How well were it forus, if we were always in as good a frame as sometimes! Beholdthe end to which a Christian may look forward. His enemies rage,and are mighty; but while he holds fast by God, he shall passthe waves in safety guarded by that very power of his Saviour,which shall come down on every spiritual foe. The enemies of hissoul whom he hath seen to-day, he shall see no more for ever.
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