The Story of Patriarchs and Prophets
by Ellen G. White
Chapter 25: The Exodus
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"I will sing unto Jehovah, for He hath triumphed gloriously;|
The horse and his rider hath He thrown into the sea.
The Lord is my strength and my song,
And He is become my salvation:
This is my God, and I will praise Him;
My father's God, and I will exalt Him.
The Lord is a man of war:
Jehovah is His name.
Pharaoh's chariots and his host hath He cast into the sea:
And his chosen captains are sunk in the Red Sea.
The deeps cover them:
They went down into the depths like a stone.
Thy right hand, O Lord, is glorious in power,
Thy right hand, O Lord, dasheth in pieces the enemy. . . .
Who is like unto Thee, O Lord, among the gods?
Who is like Thee, glorious in holiness,
Fearful in praises, doing wonders? . . .
Thou in Thy mercy hast led the people which Thou has redeemed:
Thou hast guided them in Thy strength to Thy holy habitation.
The peoples have heard, they tremble. . . .
Terror and dread falleth upon them;
By the greatness of Thine arm they are as still as a stone;
Till Thy people pass over, O Lord,
Till the people pass over which Thou hast purchased.
Thou shalt bring them in, and plant them in the mountain of
The place, O Lord, which Thou hast made for Thee to dwell in."
|Exodus 15:1-16, R.V.|
Like the voice of the great deep, rose from the vast hosts of
Israel that sublime ascription. It was taken up by the women of
Israel, Miriam, the sister of Moses, leading the way, as they went [p. 289] forth with timbrel and dance. Far over desert and sea rang the
joyous refrain, and the mountains re-echoed the words of their
praise—"Sing ye to Jehovah, for He hath triumphed gloriously."
This song and the great deliverance which it commemorates,
made an impression never to be effaced from the memory of the
Hebrew people. From age to age it was echoed by the prophets
and singers of Israel, testifying that Jehovah is the strength and
deliverance of those who trust in Him. That song does not
belong to the Jewish people alone. It points forward to the destruction
of all the foes of righteousness and the final victory of the
Israel of God. The prophet of Patmos beholds the white-robed
multitude that have "gotten the victory," standing on the "sea
of glass mingled with fire," having "the harps of God. And they
sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the
Lamb." Revelation 15:2,3.
"Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto Thy name give
glory, for Thy mercy, and for Thy truth's sake." Psalm 115:1.
Such was the spirit that pervaded Israel's song of deliverance,
and it is the spirit that should dwell in the hearts of all who love
and fear God, In freeing out souls from the bondage of sin, God
has wrought for us a deliverance greater than that of the
Hebrews at the Red Sea. Like the Hebrew host, we should praise the
Lord with heart and soul and voice for His "wonderful works to
the children of men." Those who dwell upon God's great mercies,
and are not unmindful of His lesser gifts, will put on the girdle
of gladness and make melody in their hearts to the Lord. The
daily blessings that we receive from the hand of God, and above
all else the death of Jesus to bring happiness and heaven within
our reach, should be a theme for constant gratitude. What
compassion, what matchless love, has God shown to us, lost sinners,
in connecting us with Himself, to be to Him a peculiar treasure!
What a sacrifice has been made by our Redeemer, that we may
be called children of God! We should praise God for the blessed
hope held out before us in the great plan of redemption, we
should praise Him for the heavenly inheritance and for His rich
promises; praise Him that Jesus lives to intercede for us.
"Whoso offereth praise," says the Creator, "glorifieth Me."
Psalm 50:23. All the inhabitants of heaven unite in praising God.
Let us learn the song of the angels now, that we may sing it when
we join their shining ranks. Let us say with the psalmist, "While [p. 290] I live will I praise the Lord: I will sing praises unto my God
while I have any being." "Let the people praise Thee, O God;
let all the people praise Thee." Psalms 146:2; 67:5.
God in His providence brought the Hebrews into the mountain
fastnesses before the sea, that He might manifest His power
in their deliverance and signally humble the pride of their
oppressors. He might have saved them in any other way, but He
chose this method in order to test their faith and strengthen their
trust in Him. The people were weary and terrified, yet if they had
held back when Moses bade them advance, God would never
have opened the path for them. It was "by faith" that "they
passed through the Red Sea as by dry land." Hebrews 11:29. In
marching down to the very water, they showed that they believed
the word of God as spoken by Moses. They did all that was in
their power to do, and then the Mighty One of Israel divided the
sea to make a path for their feet.
The great lesson here taught is for all time. Often the Christian
life is beset by dangers, and duty seems hard to perform. The
imagination pictures impending ruin before and bondage or death
behind. Yet the voice of God speaks clearly, "Go forward." We
should obey this command, even though our eyes cannot penetrate
the darkness, and we feel the cold waves about our feet. The
obstacles that hinder our progress will never disappear before a
halting, doubting spirit. Those who defer obedience till every
shadow of uncertainty disappears and there remains no risk of
failure or defeat, will never obey at all. Unbelief whispers, "Let
us wait till the obstructions are removed, and we can see our way
clearly;" but faith courageously urges an advance, hoping all
things, believing all things.
The cloud that was a wall of darkness to the Egyptians was to
the Hebrews a great flood of light, illuminating the whole camp,
and shedding brightness upon the path before them. So the dealings
of Providence bring to the unbelieving, darkness and despair,
while to the trusting soul they are full of light and peace. The
path where God leads the way may lie through the desert or the
sea, but it is a safe path.
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