And Now You Shall See

Overcoming initial obstacles, Moses had a major triumph. He had met with Aaron, and together they informed the elders of Israel, the Good News–God had heard their cry, seen their suffering and would deliver them from the land of bondage and bring them to the Promised Land. "So the people believed; and when they heard that the LORD had visited the children of Israel and that he had looked on their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshipped." (Exodus 4:31)

Then Moses and Aaron presented themselves to Pharaoh. "Thus says the LORD God of Israel: 'Let my people go, that they may hold a feast to me in the wilderness.'" (Exodus 5:1). Pharaoh was not so enthusiastic. Not only did he refuse to let them go but he viewed Moses and Aaron's request with contempt and responded by immediately increasing the daily quota for making bricks to discourage any more thoughts of holidays.

Moses and Aaron were in hot water! Pharaoh had refused to let Israel go, and he had increased their suffering, but now Moses and Aaron were losing support from their brethren, " . . . because you have made us abhorrent in the sight of Pharaoh . . . " (Exodus 5:21)

"So Moses returned to the LORD and said, 'Lord, why have you brought trouble on this people? Why is it you have sent me? For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in your Name, he has done evil to this people; neither have you delivered your people at all.'" (Exodus 5:22-23)

Moses was distraught. He had hoped to bring at least some relief, instead, he brought further suffering on his brethren, as if they were not suffering enough. Far from redemption, Israel's woes only increased since he had spoken to Pharaoh–where was the relief ?! Israel remained in bondage–where was the promised deliverance?!

Instead of redemption, Israel went deeper into bondage.

"Then the LORD said to Moses, 'Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh. For with a strong hand he will let them go, and with a strong hand he will drive them out of his land.'" (Exodus 6:1)

Contrary to all appearances, now was the time. Redemption had not failed–the time had come! Light was appearing at the end of the tunnel. Salvation was near. Deliverance was at hand. All the pieces are in place, "Now you shall see . . . "

Now you shall see how great your God is. The road travelled had been painful, but there was no alternative. This is also what we see when the Messiah said, "O my Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will but as you will." (Matthew 26:39) He did not want death, yet if His death brought life, then, not as He willed but according to the Father's will.

Yeshua gave what no other could give. The most any human can give to another is to exchange his or her life, to allow another to continue living. But eventually the person will die. Whereas, Yeshua the Messiah gave His life that " . . . whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life." . (John 3:16) No human can give such a gift. Only God is able to forgive sin. Only God can give eternal life. And God has provided atonement for sin through the death of His only begotten Son, Yeshua. He has raised Him from the dead, and has seated Him at His right hand.

The children of Israel had suffered terribly, and though their suffering would continue, an end was in sight. Only now could the light be seen, because NOW they would see what the LORD would do to Pharaoh! The appointed time had come. You will see it, O Israel! Lift up your heads, for your redemption is drawing near!

Almost blinded by hopelessness, Israel would see what the LORD would do to Pharaoh. Be warned, Pharaoh will resist until his strength is exhausted, only then will he send them out like unwanted slaves and drive them out like a diseased people.

The Exodus from Egypt was more than just so the children of Israel would see the power of God, as good and wonderful as that was. A larger picture was in view, because all the nations would hear the Name of God and would marvel at His glory.

"But indeed for this purpose I have raised you up, that I may show my power in you, and that my name may be declared in all the earth." (Exodus 9:16)

This was the time, it was NOW, that the nations would see and hear of the LORD God of Israel.

"Who is the LORD, that I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I do not know the LORD, nor will I let Israel go." (Exodus 5:2) The connection between Israel and the LORD was not known to Pharaoh. According to Jewish history Pharaoh asked his seventy scribes who were well versed in the literature of other cultures, whether they had heard of the LORD, and what might have been His connection to Israel? They answered Pharaoh that they did not know of the LORD.

Perhaps the knowledge of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob had faded into the sands of time. After all, it had been more than four hundred years since the children of Israel had left Canaan for Egypt. Some nations may have considered that their leaving Canaan was some kind of punishment for the children of Israel, because of their rejection of Joseph. And that their being in slavery was an indication that God had finished with them. Yet God told Abraham that his descendants would be afflicted in Egypt for many years. "Know certainly that your descendants will be strangers in the land that is not theirs, and will serve them, and they will afflict them four hundred years. And also the nation whom they serve I will judge; afterward they shall come out with great possessions." (Genesis 15:13-14)

It is the same for those who today think that because the Jewish people have been dispersed among the nations for so long that God has finished with them. And that because they have not accepted Yeshua the Messiah that God has rejected them.

Pharaoh would learn who the LORD is and he would learn the relationship He has with the people of Israel.

The connection was clearly identified.

"And God spoke to Moses and said to him; 'I am the LORD. I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, as God Almighty, but by my Name LORD I was not known to them." (Exodus 6:2-3)

The God of the Hebrews did not abandon His people to die in exile, in Egypt, and despite the more than 200 years in Egypt the connection and relationship were clearly identified. The LORD God who appeared to the Patriarchs, to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob was now appearing to their descendants, the children of Israel.

In fact, the LORD God who had appeared to their Fathers had also made a covenant with them. "I have also established my covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage, in which they were strangers." (Exodus 6:4) In spite of the length of time, and though the nations may not remember, the LORD still remembers.

The nations were aware of the plight of the children of Israel in the land of Egypt, and so too, the LORD. But unlike the nations who were immobilzed by indifference and apathy, the LORD would overthrow the Egyptian tyrant, and rescue His people from his strong grip.

"And I have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel whom the Egyptians keep in bondage, and I have remembered my covenant. Therefore say to the children of Israel: 'I am the LORD, I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, I will rescue you from their bondage, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgements.

'I will take you as my people, and I will be your God. Then you shall know that I am the LORD your God who brings you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. And I will bring you into the land which I swore to give to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; and I will give it to you as a heritage: I am the LORD.'" (Exodus 6:5-8)

All nations would see and hear. The Name of God has been proclaimed and spoken of in hush tones throughout the nations. Even though the Exodus happened centuries ago, it is still remembered today.

At the time, the nations saw the power of the God of Israel, and heard how He delivered His people from Egypt, to bring them to the Promised Land. The nations saw how Pharaoh and the Egyptians were decimated by the plagues, and the destruction that came upon the land of Egypt. The lesson was clear, any nation who resisted the LORD God of Israel and refused the people of Israel the freedom to serve Him would be punished severely.

Remarkably, the Exodus from Egypt is also a shadow of a future greater exodus that the prophets of Israel foretell.

As in the first exodus, the prophets predict that the people of Israel, like their forefathers will be in exile. And just as the children of Israel were scattered throughout the land of Egypt, in the future they will be scattered throughout the nations. And yet in spite of these enormous obstacles they shall be gathered and brought home to the Promised Land–a greater exodus.

"'Therefore, behold, the days are coming,' says the LORD, 'that they shall no longer say, "As the LORD lives who brought up the children of Israel from the land of Egypt," but, "As the LORD lives who brought up and led the descendants of the house of Israel from the north country and from all the countries where I had driven them." And they shall dwell in their own land.'" (Jeremiah 23:7-8)

The historical record will reveal that as a nation, Israel has endured centuries of exile. Just as they were dispersed throughout the land of Egypt for over 200 years, the people of Israel have been dispersed among the nations for nearly 2,500 years. Significantly, in our day, the people of Israel are returning home to the Promised Land. Many believe this is the beginning of the fulfilment of the prophecy–the beginning of the greater exodus. Now we shall see, in these days, what the LORD will do!

Since the reestablishment of the State of Israel, thousands of Jewish people from over one hundred countries have returned home. They are rebuilding the ruined cities, cultivating the desolate places, and taking possession of their inheritance, all of which the prophets foretell.

The prophet Ezekiel also speaks of the great ingathering of the exiles back into the Land of Promise. "Thus says the Lord GOD: 'When I have gathered the house of Israel from the peoples among whom they are scattered, and am hallowed in them in the sight of the Gentiles, then they will dwell in their own land which I gave to my servant Jacob. And they will dwell safely there, build houses and plant vineyards; yes, they will dwell securely, when I execute judgements on all those around them who despise them. Then they shall know that I am the LORD their God.'" (Ezekiel 28:25-26)

Remarkably, just as the awesome power of God was evidient in the first Exodus, so too will His power and glory be seen in the latter exodus, such that, "When . . . I am hallowed in them in the sight of the Gentiles . . . when I execute judgements on all those around them who despise them." Just as God set apart the children of Israel in Moses and Aaron's day, so too, in the days of the greater exodus, the people of Israel will be set apart (hallowed) again " . . . in the sight of the Gentiles . . . " .

Just as the nations saw and heard the power of God in the first Exodus, so too, in the latter exodus the nations will hear and see the manifestation of God's power and glory, as He brings His people home to Israel.

Pharaoh resisted, he would not let Israel go, therefore, the power of God was displayed against him and the land of Egypt. Likewise, the power of God will be displayed against nations and leaders who oppose Israel's modern exodus and return home. Indeed, the LORD says that He will execute judgements " . . . on all those around them who despise them."

The land of Egypt was covered with plagues and ruined by natural disasters. In the end times, the Hebrew prophets foretell an earth reeling because of catastrophes and natural disasters. They predict that nations will experience upheaval and strife. There will be no lasting peace. There will be signs in the heavens. All reminiscent of the judgements seen in the land of Egypt.

Clearly, just as the God of the Hebrews, in Moses's day, remembered His covenant and redeemed His people, so too today, the God of Israel has remembered His covenant, and will redeem His people from the great exile and bring them safely into their own land.

Moses and Aaron witnessed the power and hand of God culminating in the people of Israel's redemption and possession of the Land. So too, may we be blessed to see His power and the hand of God in today's events, which will culminate in the nation of Israel's promised redemption and possession of the Land.