I think it is probably safe to say that there are two great peaks in the mountain range of God’s rescue and restoration of the earth. What the cross-resurrection event is to the New Testament, the exodus is to the Old Testament. In each case, the great redemptive salvation act (exodus/cross) produces the covenant community of God’s people (Israel/church) who are called to serve God and his universal mission. (I suppose one could argue a third peak: his culminating rescue of us when King Jesus returns and consummates his kingdom.)
This last Sunday we looked at that first peak: the great salvation act of the exodus that produces the covenant community of Israel, who are called to serve God and his universal mission. Further, we discovered the reason God did all this in Exodus 6:6-7:
“Say therefore to the people of Israel, ‘I am Yahweh, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will deliver you from slavery to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great acts of judgment. I will take you to be my people, and I will be your God, and you shall know that I am Yahweh your God, who has brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians.”
There it is: that they (and we) will know that Yahweh is our God. He is the one who has brought us out from the burdens of our slavery, for his glory, and our joy. What a God we serve!
If you would like to continue exploring this section of The Whole Story found in Exodus 1-18, the resources below are a great place to start:
- Review last week’s sermon on Exodus 1-18.
- Click here to find a whole page of videos, milestones, study resources, and recommendations for further reading and study on Exodus 1-18.
- This coming Sunday, 28 January, we will be studying Exodus 19-40, where we will find the next step in a line of God’s covenant dealings with us as his people and family: the Mosaic Covenant. You could watch this 5 minute video from the Bible Project to get a great overview of the bible’s covenant theme.
- Download the study guide found here (scroll down the page a bit when you get there) to study the bible’s covenant theme.
And remember our sentence summary for Exodus 1-18, with the emphasis placed on Yahweh:
YAHWEH rescues the Israelites from slavery in Egypt and confronts the evil and injustice of Pharaoh.
One final suggestion and reminder for keeping up on your bible reading as we make our way through The Whole Story sermon series. One of the best ways to do this is listening to the Bible. While you are on a commute, making dinner, shoveling the walk, or on a run, you can listen to the Bible reading that day. Yes, listening counts! My favorite website and app for that comes from ESV.org. Check it out.
As always, please feel free to email me with questions or ideas for The Whole Story. I look forward to seeing you on Sunday, when we will begin the next chapter of the drama by studying Exodus 19-40. Be sure to read it before you come!
Seeking Jesus, the point of The Whole Story, with you,
Samuel Johnson was born on September 18, 1709, and was an English writer who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer.
How Can We Pursue A Long Repentance In The Same Direction?
This last Sunday, in Calvary’s morning gathering, we studied the book of Haggai together as part of God’s Whole Story. Together we heard God speak through his prophet to his people after the exile, challenging them to remain faithful and to rebuild the temple.
The book of Haggai is the second shortest book in the Old Testament. It has 4 oracles (think: sermons), 2 chapters, and about 1,100 words.
In the book of Jeremiah we read of God’s intention for Daniel and all of those with him who have been exiled from the land of promise.
We are in a sermon series called The Whole Story, so named because we started off with the assumption, and belief really, that the whole Bible is a unified story that leads to Jesus. Each and every book is a bit like a chapter that contributes to the overall story that God is telling.
We Are Calvary
To say that we live in times of rapid change may be the very height of understatement. Our culture, and its norms, is changing at an unprecedented rate, making it increasingly challenging for the church to remain relevant—and faithful—in proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God, in a way that will bring about the expansion of that kingdom.
This past Sunday we (finally) made it out of the weighty, dark, somber, and serious writings of the Prophets of the Exile, and stepped into the Return from Exile of the people of God. Our first look into this aspect of the redemptive drama comes via three courageous servants of Yahweh—Zerrubabel, Ezra, and Nehemiah. There story is found in the book of Ezra-Nehemiah (although our English Bibles separate them, through the centuries the Jewish people have always treated them as one book; so we will too.)
Especially When You Don't Feel Like It
Sunday is just about my favorite day of the week (“just about”…because my day off each week, our family’s Sabbath Saturday, is a tie or really close second). I love getting up that morning, making my smoothie, sitting in my favorite chair in our fireplace room, and pulling my Bible onto my lap. I relish the time spent listening to my Father speak, and I delight in those moments spent talking with him about the morning’s ministry, the people in our gathering that I hope he will transform, as well as the eleven other pastors (and their congregations) on whom I pray his blessing every Sunday.