(Exodus 1:1-7) A Promise Given, A Promise Kept

Exodus  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
0 ratings
· 162 views

The first 7 verses of exodus may not be the passage that we rank as our favorite. But it’s role in connecting Genesis and pointing us to God’s work in Exodus is essential. But even more so, when we understand God’s faithfulness to a generation who has forgotten his name – we are stricken with praise and love for our God.

Notes
Transcript
This morning I have a $20 bill.
Fresh, crisp, and wrinkle free.
May I suggest,
for every one of these we possess we are trusting our government to keep their promise.
You see a $20 bill - is a promise.
I hate to tell you today - but It's not really worthy anything.
It is a tender.
It is a tender.
A Public note.
In fact, as I read it – this note is the legal tender for all debts, public and private.
In other words it's an insurance document.
The only real money out there silver and gold, diamonds.
But - in order to help us not have to carry around bars of gold everywhere
our government holds a bar of gold and instead issues us an insurance document.
In this case a $20 bill.
This morning I'd like to begin with verse I think all of us can appreciate.
Every time I use a $20 dollar bill
I am trusting my government to keep its promise that this will be worth $20 worth of gold.
In fact, we are so trusting of our government we don't even use $20 bill that much.
We rely on plastic cards that say we have $20 instead of actually holding the paper document.
We rely on plastic cards that say we have $20 instead of actually holding the paper document.
Our entire monetary system is based on trust.
Our entire monetary system based on trust.
Numbers 6:24–26 ESV
24 The Lord bless you and keep you; 25 the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; 26 the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.
Today - I am challenging us to trust the promises of a $20 dollar bill.
:
But even more importantly - to trust the promises of God
Today we are about to begin a new study through the book of Exodus -
A Book that ushers in a new age in the history of humanity.
I wanted to preach on the book of Exodus for a long time.
And why not – the book of Exodus contains some of the greatest display of God's power anywhere in the Bible.
It is a book that points us to the power and majesty of God.
And as we jump into the first chapter … Moses is going to help us understand that everything that is going on - is about God keeping his promises.
The Genealogy,
the formula,
the details he includes
are all meant to help us remember the promises God gave to Israel
And to help us realize that God is faithful to those promises.
God has given promises… And we are going to watch God magnificently keep those promises.
Doesn't that sound wonderful!
God as the creator shines sunshine on our faces every day.
But all of us desire more than just God's common grace.
We want God’s particular grace.
We desire God's blessing, the person whom all blessings flow.
It’s an understandable desire
It’s a common desire
Of those who place their trust in God… Is that God would shed his blessings upon them.
This is why we have so many songs about God's blessing.
God bless America
Count Your Many blessings.
The Showers of blessings.
Praise God, From whom all blessings flow.
We want God’s particular grace.
We are beginning the book of Exodus.
We want God’s blessings.
I wanted to preach on the book of Exodus for a long time.
And why not – the book of Exodus contains some of the greatest display of God's power anywhere in the Bible.
************************PRAY*****************PRAY********************
But may I warn you
God's blessings do not always come in the packages we expect.
We often assume that if God is blessing my life,
everything is going great.
everything is fine.
This is the good life.
I have peace.
First of all,
the peace the Bible speaks of his more often than not describing the comfort that God gives,
while our world is in the midst of chaos.
But further… Some of the greatest blessings we can obtain in this life often come as blessing in disguise.
What do I mean by that?
The greatest blessing we can receive often come through the greatest trials.
This morning I have the privilege to begin a new series of the book of Exodus.
Book of Exodus been a long time goal of mying to preach on.
Book of Exodus been a long time goal of ming to preach on.
And how can it not be – the book of Exodus contains one of the greatest displays of God's power.
And how can it not be – the book of Exodus contains one of the greatest displays of God's power.
These miracles are so profound… That the critics have flocked to deny that it is truly from God.
They have tried to deny Moses.
They have tried to deny the date of its writing.
They have tried to deny the Red Sea Crossing.
Because what this book describes, the God of Exodus, is nothing short of breath taking.
Life changing.
This morning we jump into .
And what might surprise us - is that it starts out describing God blessings Israel through persecution and genocide.
It starts out with describing blessings in disguise.
************************PRAY*****************PRAY********************
Exodus 1 ESV
1 These are the names of the sons of Israel who came to Egypt with Jacob, each with his household: 2 Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah, 3 Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin, 4 Dan and Naphtali, Gad and Asher. 5 All the descendants of Jacob were seventy persons; Joseph was already in Egypt. 6 Then Joseph died, and all his brothers and all that generation. 7 But the people of Israel were fruitful and increased greatly; they multiplied and grew exceedingly strong, so that the land was filled with them. 8 Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who did not know Joseph. 9 And he said to his people, “Behold, the people of Israel are too many and too mighty for us. 10 Come, let us deal shrewdly with them, lest they multiply, and, if war breaks out, they join our enemies and fight against us and escape from the land.” 11 Therefore they set taskmasters over them to afflict them with heavy burdens. They built for Pharaoh store cities, Pithom and Raamses. 12 But the more they were oppressed, the more they multiplied and the more they spread abroad. And the Egyptians were in dread of the people of Israel. 13 So they ruthlessly made the people of Israel work as slaves 14 and made their lives bitter with hard service, in mortar and brick, and in all kinds of work in the field. In all their work they ruthlessly made them work as slaves. 15 Then the king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other Puah, 16 “When you serve as midwife to the Hebrew women and see them on the birthstool, if it is a son, you shall kill him, but if it is a daughter, she shall live.” 17 But the midwives feared God and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but let the male children live. 18 So the king of Egypt called the midwives and said to them, “Why have you done this, and let the male children live?” 19 The midwives said to Pharaoh, “Because the Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women, for they are vigorous and give birth before the midwife comes to them.” 20 So God dealt well with the midwives. And the people multiplied and grew very strong. 21 And because the midwives feared God, he gave them families. 22 Then Pharaoh commanded all his people, “Every son that is born to the Hebrews you shall cast into the Nile, but you shall let every daughter live.”
Exodus 1:1–5 ESV
1 These are the names of the sons of Israel who came to Egypt with Jacob, each with his household: 2 Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah, 3 Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin, 4 Dan and Naphtali, Gad and Asher. 5 All the descendants of Jacob were seventy persons; Joseph was already in Egypt.
Exodus 1:1–7 ESV
1 These are the names of the sons of Israel who came to Egypt with Jacob, each with his household: 2 Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah, 3 Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin, 4 Dan and Naphtali, Gad and Asher. 5 All the descendants of Jacob were seventy persons; Joseph was already in Egypt. 6 Then Joseph died, and all his brothers and all that generation. 7 But the people of Israel were fruitful and increased greatly; they multiplied and grew exceedingly strong, so that the land was filled with them.
The First Seven verse of Exodus remind us -
God bless America

God is a promise keeper

And this text will help us understand how we can trust God to be faithful to his promises.

will introduce us to the Israelites situation in Egypt and give us three realities.
Three realities that will help us understand that sometimes God's blessings are blessings in disguise.
Three realities that will help us understand that sometimes God's blessings are blessings in disguise.
God is faithful and we should wait on the perfect plan of God.
The first understanding we should have from Exodus is that -

1) Israel was promised bound. ()

There are several reasons from this text
that we should understand the book of Exodus as being about God keeping promises.
> To begin with,
why does Moses restate the genealogy of Jacob?
Exodus 1:1–5 ESV
1 These are the names of the sons of Israel who came to Egypt with Jacob, each with his household: 2 Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah, 3 Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin, 4 Dan and Naphtali, Gad and Asher. 5 All the descendants of Jacob were seventy persons; Joseph was already in Egypt.
Each of these names are the households of Jacob.
What eventually called the 12 tribes of Israel.
Why does he place this genealogy here?
It's not because we can get it from anywhere else,
because all of these names could have been found in the book of Genesis.
And it’s the same author - Moses.
So the genealogy is intended to make us consider what God is doing with the children of Jacob.
> Further,
Moses explicitly tells us that Jacob, Joseph, and all of his generation died in Egypt.
Exodus 1:6 ESV
6 Then Joseph died, and all his brothers and all that generation.
What is the significance of that?
- We're supposed to realize Jacob's children dying in Egypt is a problem.
- Were supposed to realize there is more to the story then just an >>> exit, right stage to Egypt.
It is almost as though God’s plan has been derailed.
And finally,
Exodus is meant to be sequel to Genesis.
You cannot understand either the book of Exodus or without understanding it is a sequel to the book of Genesis.
Exodus picks up where Genesis left off.
The first five verses of Exodus record genealogy the children of Jacob.
Exodus is meant to continue the story from Genesis.
If we can trace the story of Genesis
- we realize that Exodus begins the the process of God keeping his promise.
In other words
– we cannot understand the book of Exodus
>>>>>>>>>>>>without understanding how God is keeping the promises he made in Genesis.
The first understanding we should have is that Israel is promised bound.
God has made promises to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
… and thus the tribes of Israel are promise bound.
Consider the promises from the book of Genesis, that are partially fleshed out in Exodus.
Let’s first consider

a) The promises to Abraham. (, , )

He will make his children into a great nation, and bless the nations.
Genesis 12:1–3 ESV
1 Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you. 2 And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”
Genesis 12:
Children will number the stars.
Genesis 15:4–6 ESV
4 And behold, the word of the Lord came to him: “This man shall not be your heir; your very own son shall be your heir.” 5 And he brought him outside and said, “Look toward heaven, and number the stars, if you are able to number them.” Then he said to him, “So shall your offspring be.” 6 And he believed the Lord, and he counted it to him as righteousness.
Genesis 15
His children will
Further, lets consider,

b) The promises to Isaac. ()

Genesis 26:23–25 ESV
23 From there he went up to Beersheba. 24 And the Lord appeared to him the same night and said, “I am the God of Abraham your father. Fear not, for I am with you and will bless you and multiply your offspring for my servant Abraham’s sake.” 25 So he built an altar there and called upon the name of the Lord and pitched his tent there. And there Isaac’s servants dug a well.
In essence, the promises to Abraham were extended to Isaac.
And Finally, consider

c) The promises to Jacob (also called Israel). (, )

Genesis 35:9–15 ESV
9 God appeared to Jacob again, when he came from Paddan-aram, and blessed him. 10 And God said to him, “Your name is Jacob; no longer shall your name be called Jacob, but Israel shall be your name.” So he called his name Israel. 11 And God said to him, “I am God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply. A nation and a company of nations shall come from you, and kings shall come from your own body. 12 The land that I gave to Abraham and Isaac I will give to you, and I will give the land to your offspring after you.” 13 Then God went up from him in the place where he had spoken with him. 14 And Jacob set up a pillar in the place where he had spoken with him, a pillar of stone. He poured out a drink offering on it and poured oil on it. 15 So Jacob called the name of the place where God had spoken with him Bethel.
In essence, God extends the promises of Abraham to Jacob.
========================================================================================
So what does Genesis teach us that is important for us to remember as we begin Exodus.
What is Moses pointing us back to?
So what does Genesis teach us that is important for us to remember as we begin Exodus.
God has promised Abraham that he will
bless his children
make his children to number the stars
make his children a great nation
and bless all the nations through him.
That is extended that promised to Isaac, then to Jacob.
And extended that promise to Isaac, then to Jacob.
c) The request of Jacob to be buried in Canaan.
And so,
the departure of Abraham’s children to Egypt seems like a derailment of God’s plan.
the departure of Abraham’s children to Egypt seems like a derailment of God’s plan.
Has God forgot about his promises?
Is God slack in keeping his promises?
[[[[[ Those are some of the questions posed at the end of Genesis and the beginning of Exodus. ]]]]
It causes us to look to the pages of Exodus - to find out how God is going work things out.
And as we understand how God keeps his promises - we will learn and understand why we should
Another understanding, teaches us is -

2) Israel had forgotten their God.

I admit that this is an argument from silence.
And I recognize that arguments from silence are not the strongest argument that can be used.
And you will often hear me say, be careful because that's an argument silence.
What you don’t know, can kill your theory.
But I use it here because I think it is a strong argument from silence,
and there's a lot from the rest of Exodus in the book of numbers that reinforce it.
And,
Fortunately the ideas not my own invention,
but a reality that many scholars have noted.
And an important question we have to ask,
is what is the spiritual state of Israel at this time?
As we enter this point,
So what is the basis that I can say-
Israel has forgotten their God.

a) and 2 has a shocking absence of the name, LORD.

It is found all over the place in the book of Genesis.
From and on it has a major role.
> and 2 are surprisingly absent.
and 2 are surprisingly silent.
Where is the name of the LORD?
In fact the closest reference to God at all is in .
Exodus 1:17 ESV
17 But the midwives feared God and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but let the male children live.
I must admit this is a little more difficult to follow.
> Additionaly,

b) Moses asking the name of the Lord in shows Israel has forgotten.

Exodus 3:14 ESV
14 God said to Moses, “I am who I am.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel: ‘I am has sent me to you.’ ”
Exodus 3:13–14 ESV
13 Then Moses said to God, “If I come to the people of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?” 14 God said to Moses, “I am who I am.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel: ‘I am has sent me to you.’ ”
Exodus 3:14–15 ESV
14 God said to Moses, “I am who I am.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel: ‘I am has sent me to you.’ ” 15 God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel: ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is my name forever, and thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations.
Why does Moses ask by what name he is to share with his people?
It implies he doesn’t know it.
It implies he doesn’t know it.
> And Finally,

c) It is surprising and 2 do we see Israel crying out to their God.

it strange that no where in and 2 do we see Israel crying out to their God.
Given the ruthless slavery
and male genocide of
>>>> we would expect that those who trust in the LORD, to call upon the Lord for help.
> And Finally,
The LORD’s name is strangely absent in .
How do we account for the absence of the name of the Lord?
How do we account for the absence of the name of the Lord?
How do we account for the absence of the name of the Lord?
I think a balanced reflection on Exodus and Numbers is .... that much of the rest of the book describes God as working to get the culture and ideas of Egypt out of Israel.
Further, we realize that much of the rest of Exodus and the book of numbers deals with Israel like Egypt and less like the faith of their fathers.
I am trying to pull together several points from across Exodus,
rather then finding it in our primary text - .
What does this all teach us
I typically p
So you might wonder, why are we looking at it?
Afterall - remember the Golden Calf they worshipped in ?
Why go down this rabbit trail?
What did they call it?
I would normally avoid a rabbit trail like this,
but I think it is necessary part of understanding what is happening in .
Exodus 32:4 ESV
4 And he received the gold from their hand and fashioned it with a graving tool and made a golden calf. And they said, “These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!”
===================================================================================================
What this surmounts too is is that Israel likely had forgotten the name of the LORD.
They had forgotten who the LORD was.
How the LORD blessed Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and even Joseph and his brothers.
The memory of their ancestors was probably fading.
But even more important- their memory of the LORD was fading.
It was literally dying in Egypt.
There are many points in Israel's history we might expect them to disappear.
To cease as a nation and as a people.
The Promises are a fading memory of their ancestors.
To cease as a nation and as a people.
But even their very beginnings was doubtful.
From an ethnic standpoint it looks like Israel is going to die in Egypt.
In all accounts -
From a spiritual standpoint looks like Israel is going to die in Egypt.
we should expect Israel to disappear.
In all essence
By what nobody expected was the birth of a nation.
The promises of God to be forgotten forever.
Another understanding, teaches us is -

3) The unexpected fulfillment: The birth of a nation. ()

From an outside perspective Israel should have been swallowed up by the Egyptians.
a) The reason for persecution - Fear of God’s blessing of Israel. (v. 8-10)
The death of Jacob and his children
b) The foolish attempts to stop persecution. (v. 11-22)
should have been the end of Israel as the people - not the beginning.
(1) Plan A: Hard Slavery.
But something strange has happened.
Result: Greater prosperity of Israel and greater fear in the Egyptians.
Look down at .
(2) Plan B: Ruthless escalation of slavery.
Result: Greater prosperity of Israel and greater fear in the Egyptians.
Exodus 1:7 ESV
7 But the people of Israel were fruitful and increased greatly; they multiplied and grew exceedingly strong, so that the land was filled with them.
(3) Plan C: Male genocide.
The intensity of the language here sometimes is missed by us.
In English you can see that bit repetitive.
But in the Hebrew uses four separate verbs to describe how they were prospering.
But in the Hebrew uses for separate verbs to describe how they were prospering.
One of these words is really interesting.
Our ESV translates this increased greatly,
which in most cases is talking about swarms or fish or other animals.
You can imagine swarms of frogs coming out of a lake ... and now you have the picture of Israel growing in swarms.
It uses the word strong twice to intensify this idea that they are growing.
This verse uses what is perhaps the strongest language you could use to describe Israel abundantly growing.
They are feeling the land like a swarm of bee's.
They are feeling the land like a swarm of bee's.
But remember –
they were a people who are forgetting their ancestors
and even more likely forgetting their God.
The death of the sons of Jacob in Egypt, should have amounted to the end of Israel.
The death of the sons of Jacob and Egypt, should have amounted to the end of Israel.
Yet there growing in swarms.
How?
Why?
While and 2 do not properly give credit to God ...
- Being the sequel to Genesis
- and given that God has given Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob promised to bless their children
... I think we know how and why they are growing like swarms.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Because the Lord is blessing them just as he promised.<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
Result: Greater prosperity of Israel and greater fear in the Egyptians.
CONCLUSION:
God is a promise keeper
And this text help us understand how we can trust God to be faithful to his promises.
We as Christians rest in the promises of God.
We trust that God will be-
Merciful and gracious
steadfast and faithful
never forsaking us
abounding in love
always working things for our good
always with us
giving us strength when we are weak
And we trust that one day he will keep his promise to return
and take us with him to a place
>>>>> where Christ had already won the victory over everything - including sin and death.
>>>>>>>>>>>> A Place where we can rest in a perfect world, illuminated by the very magnificence of Christ.
A Place where we can rest in a perfect world, illuminated by the very magnificence of Christ.
Our faith is built on nothing less… then the promises of God.
Sometimes we struggle with
Sometimes we struggle with remembering, trusting, and rejoicing in those promises.
remembering,
trusting,
and rejoicing in those promises.
Don’t we?
We doubt God's
love,
goodness,
wisdom,
presence,
his power.
Heck,
sometimes we get so distracted with our selves that we forget about God's love, goodness, wisdom, presence, his power.
I don't say that to make us feel guilty.
Because there is a great irony in the text.
Because there is a great irony in the text.
>>>> Don’t take this as a sermon to make us feel guilty.
This text should be a powerful comfort to us,
even if we are praying, I believe LORD, help my unbelief.
even if we are praying, I believe LORD, help my unbelief.
I want you to zone in on this today - because when I realized the irony of this, I was blown away.
Consider
God is not keeping his promises to people who have simply forgotten about the promises he made.
God is keeping his promises to a people who don't even know his name, much less the promises he made to them.
God is keeping his promises to a people who don't even know his name, much less the promises he made to them.
Wow
God could have said … you forget about me … I don’t have to keep my promises.
But he didn’t - he is keeping them.
If God will keep his promises to a people who doesn't even remember his name or the promises -
Don't you think he's going to keep his promises to his adopted children
Don't you think he's going to keep his promises to his adopted children
the ones he sent his very son to die for.
Exodus starts out with 7 fairly small insignificant verses.
There not as flashy as what we are about to read.
But in there own way … they teach us that we worship a great and mighty God.
The God of the Bible is not like other Gods.
The God of the Bible is not like any God we would make up.
He is so much better.
Ladies and gentlemen -
our God is a promise keeper and we ought to trust God to be faithful to his promises.
Every one of us more often than we want to admit fails to be but we ought to be.
Every one of us more often than we want to admit doubts or forgets what we ought never to doubt or forget.
We do that … we are a people prone to wonder from the God that we love.
But May remember we worship a God who keeps his promises,
even for the people who forget his name.
Lets leave here today
resting,
When we leave here today resting, remembering, and rejoicing that our God is faithful to his promises.
remembering,
and rejoicing
that our God is faithful to his promises.
I
God is faithful and we should wait on the perfect plan of God.
Related Media
See more
Related Sermons
See more