June 28, 2018

I truly learned from Israel’s exodus out of their slavery in Egypt:

1. Truly, God didn’t want His covenanted people to live as slaves in Egypt

Although as slaves they didn’t live in lack, but they must labor day and night to fulfill their daily needs. In the end, many of them love that kind of life. Their mindset have been molded to such an extent to become slaves of this world.

Israel’s mindset was exposed when they were cornered by the sea by Pharaoh and his army (Exodus 14:11-12). They prefer to return as slaves in Egypt rather than being free! Probably Israel is the only nation who were colonized and tortured to such an extent, but still refused God’s gift of freedom.

400 years in Egypt (Genesis 15:13) have molded the Israelites to such an extent according to Egpyt’s philosophy and system, that they love Egypt. Imagine, Pharaoh dared to increase their workload by not giving them straw to make brick. Pharaoh knows that however heavy the work he gives will not make Israel run from Egypt. Pharaoh knows that Israel has become very dependant on the slavery system! Egypt has successfully molded Israel’s mind to believe that such kind of life in Egypt is their end. Somehow, the life God promised to Abraham (Genesis 15:13-21) has been successfully taken from the hearts and mind of the Israelites!

2. God wants the Israelites to live by their faith, to walk in their belief in Him, and to live only from His word

Israel found this drastic change of life difficult to do. Their unbelieving heart and mind kept being exposed when ‘death’ threatens them, and when their stomach affairs (food and drinks) arise. If Israel touched these two aspects, their heart straight away desire to return to Egypt! This is regardless of them having witnessed the 10 plagues while they were perfectly cared by God in Goshen! Won’t God care for them in the wilderness too?

It turns out, God’s miraculous deeds and great signs won’t guarantee a transformation in people’s conviction, mindset and heart attitude! I believe, if not for God’s promise to Abraham, He has surely left Israel. Because there are many other nations who will easily believe God by witnessing just a single miracle!

I also think, if not for God’s promise to Abraham, God has surely struck Israel with the 10 plagues just like Egypt, for they are both hard-hearted and unbelieving of Him. The difference is, God hardened Pharaoh’s heart, while Israel hardened their own heart! If God didn’t harden Pharaoh’s heart, he will surely worship God right away when witnessing His miraculous deeds – it’s the custom of kings to worship ‘gods’ who are more superior!

Now I truly realize that God didn’t choose me to walk in faith only because He loves me, but also because I have a covenant with someone He has chosen! Through the covenant, I could be united with the spiritual tribe He has set me to join. Because of the covenant, I have to live according to the ways and promises He has set (Galatians 3:14), which is to live from the work of His word and Spirit just like our forefathers did (Hebrews 11).

It’s the work of the word and Spirit which will keep molding our mind to depart from this world’s mold (Romans 12:1-3). When we persevere to experience the work of His word and Spirit, the nature of our mind will transform (Ephesians 4:22-24). We will no longer love this world; we will love God and His will!

Our part is only to ask His Spirit for a meek, moldable, teachable, and changable heart! Therefore, our mind could be aligned easily according to God’s divine pattern. How amazing is the Spirit He gives to us!

Ezekiel 36:26-27 (NASB) Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.

In essence, don’t waste our covenanted life. Because in the covenant, His word and Spirit connects us to the throne room, enabling us to live by faith alone! We could rise as heroes of faith. Our part is only to believe in His word, obey His voice, and be led by His Spirit! #iLoveGod

Ps. Steven Agustinus