The Logical Way was the Dangerous Way
Much can be learned by analyzing well-known historical events. Such an incident may be found in the Bible book of Exodus, as the Israelites made their exciting but illogical escape from Egypt and slavery. Here’s a short recap starting with how they became slaves.
Israel’s Family Welcomed in Egypt
One of 12 Jacob’s (Israel’s) sons, Joseph was hated by his brothers. They sold him to traders who again sold him in Egypt. Unjustly accused, he spent time in a prison. Able to interpret Pharaoh’s dreams, he warned of a coming 7-year famine. As a reward he was put in charge of the country’s food supply. To get food Joseph required the people to sell their land, property and later themselves to Pharaoh.
To obtain food his father, 11 brothers and their families moved to Egypt, settling and prospering in the fertile land of Goshen, increasing to over 1 million. A new Pharaoh didn’t know Joseph but was afraid of the Israelites, so sought to kill all newborn boys. One, Moses, was adopted and grew up in the royal family. After killing an Egyptian, he fled and started a new life, then encountered God in a burning bush.
God told humble Moses to return to Egypt and demand the new Pharaoh to free the Israelite slaves. As a convincer for the Israelites and Pharaoh, HE equipped Moses with a rod which turned into a snake. But this Pharaoh liked things just as they were! Life was good, having control with his many gods, he gave no respect for the one true God, Moses, Aaron (Moses’ brother), or the Israelites.
If Pharaoh wouldn’t set God’s people free, so HE told Moses to infest Egypt with plagues; Pharaoh promised to release the Israelites, then refused each time. Pharaoh just wouldn’t free God’s people. It took 10 plagues to convince Pharaoh his gods were false and powerless.
Egypt’s Plague Egyptian “gods” Mocked
1- All water turned to blood Hapi and Nu
2- Frogs everywhere Heket (Heki)
3- Lice everywhere Geb Seb
4- Invasion of Flies Uatcht Khepi
5- Killed all livestock Hathor (4 other gods)
6- Painful Boils on everyone Isis, Healag
7- Hail & Fire ruined crops Isis, Seth, Nut, Shu
8- Locusts destroyed crops Seth Serapia
9- Days of total darkness RA (the sun god)
10- Death to all first born Pharaoh himself
Finally, Pharaoh was fed up and demanded the Israelites leave immediately. The fastest, most logical route for Moses to lead the people to freedom, was northeast to the 6.8-mile-wide, Gaza-strip trade route, and the only land connection from Africa to Israel and all of Asia. However, God instructed Moses to lead his unarmed, vulnerable Israelite families southeast to the impassable Red Sea.
Why did God have Moses lead his children into this dangerous trap?
God knew Pharaoh couldn’t be trusted, for he repeatedly broke his promises to free God’s people. Eventually he’d send his fully-equipped army on the Gaza land bridge, to kill or capture them. So, HE had Moses lead the Israelites east into a seeming trap at the Red Sea. Yes, it was a trap, but for Pharaoh’s army! (God always has a plan for the good of HIS people.)
God’s Way is always the Best Way
Surprise! God parted the Red Sea 1-2 miles wide to allow the 1-million-plus Israelites to cross over on dry ground in only one night. When Pharaoh’s entire army tried to follow, God collapsed the walls of water and they drown. This miraculous escape not only saved the Israelites, but devastated the Egyptian army so they couldn’t recover for years. It provided 40 years of safety to teach the Israelites trust, follow HIS direction and become a nation.