February 28, 2014 by Chris French
Israel has just left Egypt. God has decided to not take them thru Philistine territory because when they encountered a fight they’d turn around and run to Egypt so He leads them south into the Wilderness of Egypt. If you’re Pharaoh you can see the proverbial rock and hard place Israel has been put in. They were moving north, somewhere along the middle of the Red Sea, but God tells them to turn around and go back over land they’ve already crossed. They were to set up camp at the base of the V the two sides of the Red Sea make. Tactically they’re backs are against the wall. There’s no where to run! Pharaoh’s army with all his horses and chariots are going to come down from the north and Israel’s 603,000 warriors are going to be pinned against his army and the Red Sea to their backs. It’s going to be a slaughter! The guys at the back of Israel’s army aren’t even going to be able to help their brothers who are in the front. There’s not enough room to sweep around for side attacks and there’s no where to run. And they came back to this place! Are you beginning to see why some of the people in Israel were mad at Moses? Apparently some of them had mentioned wanting to stay in Egypt and keep up the status quo which was obviously overruled my majority vote, but now it looks like the minority might have been on to something.
Moses’ reply to them is inspiring. Don’t be scared. God is going to fight this battle for you. He’s got something He wants to prove to the Egyptians. You can read how the story turns out for yourself, but I want to draw your attention to these moments of panic when Israel thinks all is lost. Have you ever been there? Maybe it was a heartbreak for you, maybe it was fear, but most of us have had times where we honestly didn’t know what we would do next. We felt trapped and we would rather be in any other situation as long as it got us out of the one we were currently in. It’s during those times that God can build a rock solid trust in us. I’m convinced this is the reason He had Israel turn around. He wanted to give them a vivid memory of His salvation. Had they learned this lesson they would have marched into the Promised Land, killed all the Canaanites and life would have been nice. Instead He has to wait until this generation dies and teach the lesson to their children.
It’s during the times when we’re between a rock and a hard place that our own trust in God can grow exponentially. I’m certainly not saying that it will be easy. Most of the time when we’re in that position we’re reacting to the situation, usually in blind fear or heartbreak, but now that you’re aware of the spiritual potential in these situations you can prepare your knee jerk reaction to be one of trust that God will bring good and deliverance for you out of this situation.