Chapter fourteen of the book of Exodus tells the story of the deliverance of the Israelites at the Red Sea. The Israelites had been led out Egypt by Moses. Making their way through the wilderness, toward the promised land of Canaan, their progress was halted as they arrived at the Red Sea. Little did they know but that Pharaoh and his army were in hot pursuit.
When the Israelites saw the approaching army, they instantly understood their deadly predicament. Behind them was Pharaoh and his army. In front of them was the Red Sea. Surely, they would all perish either by the swords of the Egyptians or by drowning in the sea.
The people cried out to Moses and to God. “Did you bring us out into this wilderness to die? Were there not enough graves in Egypt?” God told the people to be quiet and to watch for what he was about to do.
The glory cloud of God descended and stood between the approaching Egyptians and the Israelites. Then Moses raised his rod over the sea, and it began to divide, piling up the waters on the left and on the right, with a dry path down the center. The Israelites safely passed through the sea on dry land. When the last Israelite set foot on the other side, God released the waters and Pharaoh and all his army were destroyed in the crashing waters. “Thus Israel saw the great work which the Lord had done in Egypt; so the people feared the Lord, and believed the Lord and His servant Moses.”
We are surrounded by the sea of the new Corona virus. There is no place to hide. Wherever we turn, the virus is there. We might cry out to God, “Have you brought us to this point in life only to die in a pandemic?” But God will provide a way out, and one day soon we will step out on the other side. We will gather together again and lift our voices in thanks and praise to our gracious, merciful God. The Israelites were headed to the promised land. Without God’s deliverance, their journey would have ended as soon as it had begun. We too are making our way to the promised land- heaven. God in his providence has protected and kept us to this day. We must trust that he will continue to guard and lead us. With God at our side, we will complete the journey and arrive at the Father’s house.
Lord God, shed your mercy and grace on us, our neighbors, our state, and our nation. Help all those in government and the health system to battle and defeat this enemy. Bless and prosper all those working on new medicines and therapies. Relieve and comfort all those suffering from this virus. Give us all courage and hope, remembering how you powerfully delivered your people Israel, and trusting that by that same great power you can deliver your people today. Amen