Thursday, February 10, 2011

Battle Resolve On the Way to Higher Places

If I had known what my drive home was going to be like on Monday afternoon, I would have been petrified to leave my house that morning. As the snow fell rapidly and road conditions quickly declined, I turned my little car in the direction of home for a drive that, on a normal day, takes about 15 minutes. Not this day. That fifteen minutes quickly transformed into a two hour journey as I slipped and slid up and down hills and around curves. It was not a fun experience, but like I said, if I had known what was to come, I would have been fearful all day long, possibly even never leaving the comforts of my home. Instead of fear that morning though, I left my house with a divide and conquer resolve toward the week. I guess you could say, for a Monday morning anyway, my head was held high, ready for battle.

When Pharaoh finally let the Israelites go, God didn’t take them on their fifteen minute drive either. He didn’t take them on the easiest route to their new home, the Promised Land.

Exodus 13:17 says:

When Pharaoh finally let the people go, God did not lead them along the main road that runs through Philistine territory, even though that was the shortest route to the Promised Land.

Immediately I thought to myself, “I wonder why He did that. Why didn’t He just lead them from point A to point B and be done?” Well, I didn’t have to ponder long because His first explanation immediately followed in that same verse.

God said, “If the people are faced with a battle, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.”

If the Israelites had been faced with a battle, they might have changed their minds and returned to Egypt. God did not lead them on the shortest route of escape, He took them on a round about way. Sometimes life doesn’t make sense to us and God takes us on a round about way because He knows how we are. He knows if we are faced with a battle we are likely to return to our Egypts, and Egypt was a place of slavery.

Slavery is not His desire for us. In slavery they were not allowed to freely worship God, but in freedom they could. The freedom to worship Him was the whole reason they wanted to leave Egypt anyway.

Here’s another little nugget found within the way He led them out of Egypt, verse 18:

….thus the Israelites left Egypt like an army ready for battle. NLT

An army that is ready for battle moves forward boldly, head held high, and because of God’s protection in changing their route, they were able to be bold as they left Egypt, bold as an army ready for battle. No fears. So, sometimes our routes in life don’t make sense, but they often are exactly how He planned them so that we can be bold for Him and avoid battles early on in the trip.

One more thing about this verse 18, the NASB version words it a little differently:

The sons of Israel went up in martial array from the land of Egypt.

I looked up the phrase “went up”, just knowing there was something great tucked in the meaning of those words, and there was, or at least to me there was. In its most generic meaning that phrase “went up” is a verb that means an ascension to a higher place.

Hmm, when we are in an Egypt, a place of personal struggle or slavery, and God draws us out and away from that place, our departure will always lead us to a higher place with Him if we follow His lead. Following God always takes us to a higher place.

Royal Princess Daughter Of The King
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  1. Thanks Amy. Powerful! God knows exactly what we need. He knows our weaknesses. What ever He has for us is so much more than we could ever imagine! We just need to trust Him.
    Now--- "Restore to me the joy of thy salvation & sustain me with a willing spirit" Psa 51:12

  2. So...I apparently have memorized the ESV version...not the one you posted...just fyi...
    Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.


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