Saturday, September 14, 2013

Exodus 12:1-29

Today's reading in our daily plan is Exodus 12:1-29. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
  • In the previous chapter, God warned Pharaoh through Moses that he one last plague in store for Egypt.  In the beginning of this chapter, we see God giving Moses instructions on how to prepare for this last plague.
  • God creates the Jewish feast of Passover.  The is a festival that Jewish people still celebrate to this day.
  • God instructs the Jewish people to take an year old, unblemished male lamb and kill it.  They were to take some of the blood and spread it on the door frame, above and on both sides.  Then they were to roast the lamb and eat all of it along with bread made without yeast (or unleavened bread), and bitter herbs with sandals on their feet, their cloak tucked in their belt and their staff in their hand. 
  • At the end of this section, God makes due on his promise and kills the first born of every human, from the greatest to the least, and livestock in Egypt that did not honor God by observing the Passover.

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
  • God makes a big deal about not using yeast in the bread they prepare.  This is for a very specific reason.  God is preparing them for a hastily exit from Egypt.  He's telling them that they may not always know the exact time or date that they will be leaving so they need to be prepared.  They don't have time to allow the yeast to work it's way through the bread and cause the bread to rise.
  • God asks his people to obey him and promises that, if they do, he will protect them.  
  • God makes no exception for those who disobey him.  God warned everyone that this was coming, yet only the Israelites listed and obeyed him.  Because of this, both the rich and poor, the free and the inmate, the old and young were not discriminated.  God was not prejudiced in his judgement.
  • (This section of reading has a lot of theology in it.  If this is something that interests you, maybe you can look deeper into how God uses this event to foreshadow his son's sacrifice for us.)

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
  • The Bible references this act of God quite often as a reminder that our time on this earth is short.  We never truly know how long we have, so we must make the most of every opportunity to tell others about God's love.
  • We may not always understand God's plan or his will for our lives, but obedience to him always leads to a more fulfilled life.
  • It's never fun to talk about the judgement of God, but it is a reality we must deal with.  Because God is so perfect, he can only have perfection surrounding him, which includes Heaven.  We know we are far from perfect, so God made a way by sending his son (what the Bible sometimes calls the 'Lamb of God' in reference to this very passage) so take all our imperfections so we can be 'passed over' by God's judgement.