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Wednesday in the Word

Second Baptist Church

June 7, 2017

Exodus  12:15-30

  1. Beloved as we continue our study in Exodus, we are making a transition from the oppression of Pharaoh to the Worship of the almighty God. The book started out detailing how oppressive this Pharaoh had become to the people of God. We highlighted that it was never God’s intention for the Israelites to remain in Egypt. Egypt was just supposed to be a temporary relocation during the time of famine, but never a permanent residence. There was a time when living near Egypt might have been appropriate, but that time had long passed. For many years the Hebrews had been under the oppression of a mean Pharaoh. This Pharaoh is a picture of what sin is like. Sin will lure you to stay longer than you should to the point where something that seemed like a good thing, has now become a bad thing. Sin will enslave you to its purpose and deprive you of fulfilling your divine purpose. Sin will oppress you to work hard for nothing with little to show for your hard work. This is Pharaoh. Pharaoh had complete control over the people, but God is about to deliver his people. God is about to save the people from the oppressive hand of Pharaoh. This is a picture of God’s salvation in Christ. God desires to deliver or save us from the punishing effects of sin. Moses becomes a symbol of Christ in that he was sent to deliver the people. This whole exodus experience is a picture of our salvation experience. God’s goal for our salvation is that we be free from sin so that we can truly worship God. This was the very reason Moses gave Pharaoh for wanting days off for the people. The reason was so that they could worship God. Pharaoh only wants the people to worship him and any other object of worship would be to dethrone Pharaoh of his importance as almighty in the eyes of the Hebrew slaves. Pharaoh is the symbol of how the devil knows that, if we start to really worship God, we won’t be his slaves anymore. So God hardens Pharaoh’s heart to demonstrate the impotence of Pharaoh and the power of God. It was necessary for the people of God to see the seemingly powerful Pharaoh brought to his knees by the unseen God the Great I AM. God couldn’t rush this process because to rush the process would be counterproductive to the building up of the faith of the people. Faith is built up over time, and it cannot be rushed. God would need a people who could trust over time, and not be quick to fall apart when faced with trials and challenges. So now that Pharaoh has been brought to his knees, the focus turns to worship. The first element of worship that is introduced is the Passover. This is the idea that a sacrifice must be made for life to go forth. The sacrificial Passover lamb must proceed the sparing of many lives. This obviously is a picture of Christ. Christ is what the Passover lambs were pointing to. Jesus is the Passover lamb that makes a sacrifice so that lives might be spared. God initiates this Passover Celebration to show the people that they must recognize that a sacrifice is required for their saving. They are saved not by their efforts, but because God sees the blood on their doorpost. The blood is what blocks judgment, not their works. And this is why we preach salvation through faith and not works. This Passover celebration also points to the fact that it must be personal. Each home had to have its doors covered in blood. In the same way the doors to our hearts, must be blood stained. I mean this metaphorically pointing to Jesus being in our hearts through Faith. From the Passover meal, God instructs Moses to another celebration called the Feast of Unleavened Bread. The Feast of the unleavened bread happens immediately after the Passover.

  2. Verses 15-20. Early in the chapter. God told Moses that this month would now be their first month. They would now base their yearly calendar on this month as month number one. On the tenth day of the month the people were to select a lamb and examine it for four days concluding on the fourteenth day of the month. They would celebrate the Passover on that day and that day would start a seven day period called the Feast of Unleavened Bread. For seven days the people were not to eat anything with leaven in it. All bread eaten during this time was to be yeast-free/unleavened. For seven days the people are to consume bread and food without leaven. This is a picture of consecration. Leaven is a picture of sin (Matt 16:6, Matt 16:11; Mark 8:15; l Cor 5:7-8. The unleavened bread is a picture of Christ as one who was sinless. For seven days the people are to consume the bread that has no yeast foreshadowing the receiving of Christ by faith. Verse 15 highlights the command to remove the yeast from their houses. In the same way we are called to remove sin from our lives after we are born again. Notice the progression that the Passover lamb is slain before the command to remove yeast. We need Jesus’ sacrifice before we can adequately remove sin from our lives. Seven days is a picture of perfection (Phil 1:6). The seven days of consuming the unleavened bread is a picture of the complete work of Christ to remove the sin from your life through sanctification. Verse 16 shows us that they celebrate on the first and the seventh day. These would be considered holy days and there wouldn’t be any work on those days. This is important to note that in the future these days would be considered Sabbath days. This would mean that at certain times in the year there would be more than one Sabbath in the week. This is important when we discuss the week leading up to the crucifixion. We are further told that this is to be a lasting ordinance and that whoever eats yeast is to be put out of the community. Notice how verse 19-20 highlights that even aliens or non-Hebrews could be included in the feast. The feast was for whomever wanted to be included in the community of faith. We will see this theme of inclusion more and more.

  3. Verses 21-23. Now Moses moves from instructions to the execution of those instructions. The people are commanded to select the lambs for the Passover and follow the instructions of placing the blood on the doorpost and staying inside until the morning after the Destroyer passes through their part of the city.

  4. Verses 24-28. The people are instructed that this too is a lasting ordinance that is to be followed even when they reach the promise land. This is the first time that I believe the idea of a promised land is introduced. Moses is now sharing God’s intent that they will never return to Egypt. God is not going to deliver them for a few days, but for a lifetime. The people are told that this celebration is to remind them and their children’s children about the deliverance that God brought about in Egypt. This celebration would serve as a regular reminder that the Lord brought them out. And even today we need constant reminders of how God brought us out of the bondage of sinful living and sinful thinking. In verse 28, the people hear Moses instructions and they all bow and worship. This is important that they worship before they are delivered. They are worshiping based on a promise. Do you worship God before he brings you out, or do you wait until he delivers you? I would encourage you to worship ahead of time in faith demonstrating that you believe God can.

  5. Verses 29-30. The time has come for judgment. Just as Moses predicted, the Lord judged the entire land. The only people that were spared the loss of their first born were those who were under the blood. The judgement was so severe that there was loud wailing throughout Egypt.

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