Who Is This God?

August 30-September 3


The God Who Redeems: Watch and Learn

But the Lord said to Moses, “Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh; for with a strong hand he will send them out, and with a strong hand he will drive them out of his land.” – Exodus 6:1 (ESV)

There is a story about a humble monk walking with a Roman Catholic cardinal at a time in the Middle Ages when the Roman Catholic church was at its zenith of power, prestige, and wealth. The cardinal pointed to the opulent surroundings and said to the monk, “We no longer have to say, silver and gold I do not have.” The monk replied, “But neither can you say, In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.” (Guzik)

God has always been a powerful God and He has always used His people in powerful ways. Exodus 6:1 begins with “But.” Don’t miss the context which is “hidden” by a chapter break. Moses has just accused God in Exodus 5:22-23. Moses had asked God two questions – why have You brought harm to this people? Why did You ever send me? God never does directly answer Moses’ question. God in His great mercy does not respond negatively to Moses’ accusation, but in great kindness, God says you will see what I will do. Pharaoh was in God’s hands and God was in control.


God wanted Moses to take His focus off of Pharaoh and put His focus on Him. With your most recent challenge, did you focus more on the problem or on God?


Praise God for His unchanging omnipotence. Ask God to help you keep your focus on His ability to protect and provide for you.


The God Who Redeems: In His Hands

But the Lord said to Moses, “Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh; for with a strong hand he will send them out, and with a strong hand he will drive them out of his land.”  – Exodus 6:1 (ESV)

G. Campbell Morgan said, “Waiting for God is not laziness. Waiting for God is not going to sleep. Waiting for God is not the abandonment of effort. Waiting for God means, first, activity under command; second, readiness for any new command that may come; third, the ability to do nothing until the command is given.”

A girl had a nice little piggy bank. Her father wanted to teach her about saving, so he talked to her about putting her money into a savings account at their bank. He very carefully explained to her that when she put money into her account, the bank would pay her interest on her money and that her money would grow that way. The big day came. They went to the bank. She gave her piggy bank to the woman opening her account. Then she just stood there and stared at the woman. “Is there something else I can do for you?” the woman asked. The little girl answered, “No, I’m just waiting on my interest!”

In Exodus 6 God was about to provide His people with a big payout of redemption. And He was going to use a pagan leader to accomplish His will. When Exodus 6:1 says “with a strong hand” it refers to an irresistible force, forcing, constraining or driving them to do something. How did Pharaoh drive them out? He pursued Israel to the Red Sea and in that sense Pharaoh drove them out. Of course behind the scenes, we see God as the causative force.


God’s delays aren’t necessarily God’s denials. God is in control even when we are waiting. Most of us can relate to the prayer, “Dear God, please grant me patience. And I want it right now!” When has God delayed answering a prayer that you could later understand why it was best to wait?


Isaiah 30:18 says, “The Lord longs to be gracious to you; He rises to show you compassion.  For the Lord is a God of justice.  Blessed are all who wait for Him!” Praise God for His grace, compassion, justice, blessings, and timing.


The God Who Redeems: The Power of His Name

God spoke to Moses and said to him, “I am the Lord. I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, as God Almighty, but by My Name the Lord I did not make Myself known to them. – Exodus 6:2-3 (ESV)

An anesthesiologist often plays an important role when a woman is going through labor. One woman was so grateful for her anesthesiologist’s help that she told him, “I’m so happy about how well everything went that I’m going to name my son after you. By the way, what is your first name?” “Thorndike,” he said. She paused for a minute, then said, “Do you have a middle name?”

A person’s name matters. “In the Name,” means everything that God is now and forever, and in context speaks especially to His authority, in His power, to be demonstrated for His glory. It was going to be very clear that only God delivered the nation of Israel from Pharaoh’s rule. God is telling Moses, Moses, I have revealed and will reveal to you things about Myself I did not even reveal to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. In other words, these negative circumstances would permit God’s people to see another side to God that had never been seen or experienced before.


That is encouraging to us. When we go through terrible things, we may expect to see and experience things from God we never did before. We will get to know Him better and deeper. It is an act of grace when God reveals Himself and His Name to us. God’s Name can be a source of comfort and peace for you if you will think about all that He is.


Praise God for the things you have learned about Him through difficult circumstances.


The God Who Redeems: Promise Keeper

Moreover, I have heard the groaning of the people of Israel whom the Egyptians hold as slaves, and I have remembered My covenant. – Exodus 6:5 (ESV)

Pastor Jack Graham tells of a speaking engagement in Philadelphia and slipping downtown to Independence Hall to reflect on the founding of our nation. He said, “As you move around the historical sites of that city you see the Word of God everywhere. It’s etched on buildings and even on the Liberty Bell itself, which says, ‘Proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof (Leviticus 25:10). Scriptures are forever written into the history, the heart, and fabric of America. You see, the early Americans were patriots, but they were also believers. Those who settled this nation came here to advance the Christian faith and to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ. But we have to admit that America has strayed far from those years of patriotism and spiritual revolution. In fact, it’s time for a spiritual revolution, a new American revolution that would help transform our culture and our country.”

Our Founding Fathers believed God had sent them on a mission and God was faithful to see that mission through. There has never been a nation that has demonstrated God keeping His promises more than the nation of Israel. God reassures Moses in Exodus 6:5 that He is keeping His covenant with Israel. And since God had remembered His covenant, the implication was that Moses was to remember His God and the promises He made in that covenant which were a direct response to Moses’ accusation in Ex 5:23 “You have not delivered Your people at all.”


Can you recall a time when you didn’t feel “heard” by someone? God wants you to know that He hears you and He hasn’t forgotten you. God has a long fuse and a long memory for His promises and a short memory when we confess our sins!


Thank God for hearing your cries. Praise Him for keeping His promises.


The God Who Redeems: Broken People

Moses spoke thus to the people of Israel, but they did not listen to Moses, because of their broken spirit and harsh slavery. – Exodus 6:9 (ESV)

Two boys were eating some grapes. One of them remarked, “Aren’t they sweet!” “I guess so,” the other replied, “but they’re full of seeds.” Wandering into a garden, the first boy exclaimed, “Look at those big, beautiful red roses!” The other commented, “They’re full of thorns!” It was a warm day, so they stopped at the store for a soft drink. After several swallows, the second youngster complained, “My bottle’s half-empty already.” The first quickly responded, “Mine’s still half-full!”

In Exodus 9 the people of Israel could only see a half-empty glass. Pharaoh had broken their spirit and weakened their faith. Once when Martin Luther was feeling depressed, his wife asked if he’d heard God had died. Luther replied angrily that she was blaspheming. She retorted that if God had indeed not died what right had he to be without hope! But this is the same thing that happened with the Israelites.


There are times when we are all tempted to respond as if God has died. Are you more likely to point out the possibilities or the problems?  Are you more likely to get excited or discouraged?  Are you more likely to motivate others or discourage them?  Are you more likely to challenge or criticize?  Are you more likely to be hopeful or pessimistic? When I am asked to serve God in a task, do I compare myself to the task before accepting it or do I compare God to the task? Do you evaluate what you are capable of or what God is capable of?   The question should never be “CAN I DO IT?” but “Am I willing to let GOD DO IT through me?”


Thank God for not abandoning you even when your faith is weak and your spirit seems broken. Ask God to renew your strength and your faith in Him.