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Obedience precedes God's work

Loyal
As I was reading in Exod 14 today, several things came to my attention.
The Israelites are running from Pharaoh's army here.

In verse 2... God leads them to a place with no way out.
"before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol, and the sea; you shall camp in front of Baal-zephon, opposite it, by the sea.

They between two steep mountains (hills) here. The Egyptians are behind them. (600 chariots) and the red sea
is in front of them. Out of all the places God could have taken them... why here? Why would He lead them here to be trapped against the sea between two mountains? There is no way out.

I think sometimes... God leads us to these places, or at least allows us to be trapped by circumstances.
Sometimes we have to come to the place where there is no way out.

Of course the Israelites are quick to blame Moses for their predicament. ( verses 11 and 12 )
Sometimes we are like the Israelites... sometimes when it becomes difficult to follow God, we say
to ourselves... why didn't you just leave us were we where. It was more comfortable back there.
Even though the Israelites were slaves, beaten and whipped with no freedom....
Sometimes it seems we think we were better off being slaves to sin.

In verse 13, Moses tells them.. "do not fear". If only we could "not fear" when we come to those places
that seem to have no way out. Moses tells them... "the Egyptians you have seen today, you will never
see them again forever".

I can imagine being an Israelite here... trapped against the sea, between two mountains.. thinking to myself.. why am I here. How did I get here? Then you see 600 soldiers in chariots bearing down upon you at full battle speed. I would think most of them didn't have a lot of hope here.
It seems many of them didn't trust in God here. I'm thinking most of them thought they would die here.

Then we have the famous verse 14... one of my favorites. The Lord will fight for you while you are silent.
Amen!! He does this more than we know.. especially when we aren't trying to "help" Him.

Often when we are trapped, and see no way out... we want to pray about it. (not a bad idea)
then maybe attend a seminar about it. Then maybe go to counseling about it, Then maybe have our
friends pray about it. These aren't really bad things. But sometimes there comes a time when
the praying, and counseling need to be done with. It's time for action. God is waiting for us to do something.

In verse 15 God tells Moses to tell the Israelites to "go forward".
Hmmm... go forward? Forward where? There is nothing but water in front of us.
Then God tells Moses.. "lift your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it".

Notice God didn't part the sea until two things happened here. The Israelites had to start off in
the direction God told them to go. Also Moses had to raise the staff towards the sea.
Raise the staff towards the sea? Did the power to part the red sea come from the staff?
Did it come from Moses? No.... it came from God. But Moses and the people had to be
obedient to what God told them to do before before He parted the sea.

Are you stuck? What is your red sea today? Is there no way out? Is God telling you to go a certain
direction?

Maybe instead of waiting for God to open the door first... we need to start off in the direction first...
then, and only then will He open the door. I'm not saying it always has to happen this way.
But sometimes I think God wants to see our obedience first, before He does His miracles in life.

It's interesting to note here.... not only does God give them a way out... (that's all they really wanted)
but He also destroys their enemies... He doesn't only leave the Egyptians on the other side of the sea,
He lets them come into the sea.... and then they are no more.

I wonder if the Israelites were expecting that? What are you expecting from God today?
Why isn't He doing it? Maybe He waiting on you. Maybe He will do more than you expect.
 
Loyal
As I was reading in Exod 14 today, several things came to my attention.
The Israelites are running from Pharaoh's army here.

In verse 2... God leads them to a place with no way out.
"before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol, and the sea; you shall camp in front of Baal-zephon, opposite it, by the sea.

They between two steep mountains (hills) here. The Egyptians are behind them. (600 chariots) and the red sea
is in front of them. Out of all the places God could have taken them... why here? Why would He lead them here to be trapped against the sea between two mountains? There is no way out.

I think sometimes... God leads us to these places, or at least allows us to be trapped by circumstances.
Sometimes we have to come to the place where there is no way out.

Of course the Israelites are quick to blame Moses for their predicament. ( verses 11 and 12 )
Sometimes we are like the Israelites... sometimes when it becomes difficult to follow God, we say
to ourselves... why didn't you just leave us were we where. It was more comfortable back there.
Even though the Israelites were slaves, beaten and whipped with no freedom....
Sometimes it seems we think we were better off being slaves to sin.

In verse 13, Moses tells them.. "do not fear". If only we could "not fear" when we come to those places
that seem to have no way out. Moses tells them... "the Egyptians you have seen today, you will never
see them again forever".

I can imagine being an Israelite here... trapped against the sea, between two mountains.. thinking to myself.. why am I here. How did I get here? Then you see 600 soldiers in chariots bearing down upon you at full battle speed. I would think most of them didn't have a lot of hope here.
It seems many of them didn't trust in God here. I'm thinking most of them thought they would die here.

Then we have the famous verse 14... one of my favorites. The Lord will fight for you while you are silent.
Amen!! He does this more than we know.. especially when we aren't trying to "help" Him.

Often when we are trapped, and see no way out... we want to pray about it. (not a bad idea)
then maybe attend a seminar about it. Then maybe go to counseling about it, Then maybe have our
friends pray about it. These aren't really bad things. But sometimes there comes a time when
the praying, and counseling need to be done with. It's time for action. God is waiting for us to do something.

In verse 15 God tells Moses to tell the Israelites to "go forward".
Hmmm... go forward? Forward where? There is nothing but water in front of us.
Then God tells Moses.. "lift your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it".

Notice God didn't part the sea until two things happened here. The Israelites had to start off in
the direction God told them to go. Also Moses had to raise the staff towards the sea.
Raise the staff towards the sea? Did the power to part the red sea come from the staff?
Did it come from Moses? No.... it came from God. But Moses and the people had to be
obedient to what God told them to do before before He parted the sea.

Are you stuck? What is your red sea today? Is there no way out? Is God telling you to go a certain
direction?

Maybe instead of waiting for God to open the door first... we need to start off in the direction first...
then, and only then will He open the door. I'm not saying it always has to happen this way.
But sometimes I think God wants to see our obedience first, before He does His miracles in life.

It's interesting to note here.... not only does God give them a way out... (that's all they really wanted)
but He also destroys their enemies... He doesn't only leave the Egyptians on the other side of the sea,
He lets them come into the sea.... and then they are no more.

I wonder if the Israelites were expecting that? What are you expecting from God today?
Why isn't He doing it? Maybe He waiting on you. Maybe He will do more than you expect.

Hi Bac,
I used to think God allowed us to get behind circumstances to teach us or something along that line. Over the years I have learned that the circumstances I face are results of choices I made. God showed me it is a lot easier on me if I seek His guidance on things Before I do them then After I do them. So I try ( still a learning process) to put that into practice on every choice I need to make.

I am learning it is better in many situations to take the attitude of - I am not going to do anything until I hear from you on it. The hard thing here is actually following through and NOT doing something until you hear from Him.

Thank You for the awesome post Brother..
God Bless and have a great week end
James W
 
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