In today’s reading, we begin our journey through the great Book of redemption and liberty – Exodus. The Book of Exodus is a great revelation of God’s power, holiness and wisdom. It can be divided into 3 major sections: the Exodus, where the LORD brings Israel out from bondage to Pharaoh through mighty judgments of miraculous plagues and the parting of the Red Sea (Ex. 1-18).; the giving of the Law (Ex. 19-24) and; the instructions for the construction of the Tabernacle (Ex. 25-40).
In God’s deliverance of the Israelites from Egypt, He grants them a new beginning with a new life. In Ex. 12:2 we read: “This month (Nisan) is to be for you the 1st month, the 1st month of your year.” April becomes like January. The new life of God’s people is wrought by God’s redeeming grace and is marked by the beginning of a new calendar.
The Exodus not only meant a new life for Israel but also a new liberty. As Moses prepared to lead the great host of people to leave Egypt, he addressed them with these words: “Commemorate this day, the day you came out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery, because the LORD brought you out of it with a mighty hand.” The words “slavery” and “bondage” would be associated with Egypt for ever afterward in the memory of Israel. In the Exodus, however, Israel went out into liberty.
The Exodus not only meant new life and freedom for God’s people, but also new fellowship. This is symbolized in the “Festival” (or “Feast”) which was instituted in connection with the Passover. “This is a day you are to commemorate; for the generations to come you shall celebrate it as a festival to the LORD- a lasting ordinance” (Ex. 12:14). In the Old Testament the festival/feast is always the symbol of fellowship (Ex. 24:11). When God redeems us, it is for the purpose of walking in spiritual freedom from evil and for fellowship with God.
The Exodus under Moses is meant also to be a foreshadow or type of our greater Exodus in Christ. Just as the Exodus brought a mighty liberation or emancipation for Israel, so the Gospel of Christ brings deliverance from the guilt and penalty and bondage of sin. The Exodus centered in the Passover and the slain lamb whose blood was smeared on the door frames of the Israelites’ homes to avert God’s judgment. The Gospel centers on Jesus as the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. Christians commemorate this regularly through the Lord’s Supper/Communion celebration.
Christ’s Exodus goes beyond the Mosaic Exodus. The blood of actual lambs could only cover sin’s guilt and had to be repeated endlessly. Christ’s blood takes away sin’s guilt and He was sacrificed once and for all. The 1st Exodus led to an earthly Canaan/Promised Land, the second Exodus leads to a heavenly Canaan. The 1st deliverance pertained primarily to national Israel, the 2nd deliverance is universal in scope. That is “Whosoever calls on the name of the Lord Jesus will be saved.” Let us be ever thankful and ever mindful to walk in a manner that is worthy of the LORD and His great salvation.This is the Good News of Jesus Christ. Pastor John