Jared Smith's Bible Reading

16 Bible Reading – The Book Of Exodus

A Transcript Of The Video Study

According to the Chronological Chart Of Bible Books, Exodus is the third book to appear on the timeline. We believe it was written by Moses, sometime after the events recorded in the book, which would have been after the year 1491 BC. It is a divinely inspired book. That is, God breathed out His words through Moses, which means the words of this book are the words of God. They are able to make the Lord’s people wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. They are profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the Lord’s people might be mature in the faith, throughly furnished unto all good works. (2 Tim 3:15-17)

The Greek translators labeled this book ‘Exodus’, which means “departure, going out (exit)”. It is a record of the children of Israel’s exodus, or exit, from Egypt.

The book has been divided into 40 chapters, and it takes approximately two hours and fifty-five minutes to read in a single sitting.

According to Adams’ Time Chart, the book of Exodus immediately follows that of Genesis, and fits within a time period between 1635 BC to 1426 BC, a total of 209 years. You will observe, the next four Bible books fit within this same period—Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy and Joshua. However, the book of Exodus only covers the first 145 years of this time period. In fact, the events recorded in (1:1-2:10) cover the first 144 years, whereas the events of (2:11-40:38) occurred within a single year—1491 BC. This overview should help set in order the historic context into which the content of the book unfolds.

Content wise, the book can be divided into two main sections:

(1-18) The Exodus From Egypt: A Scattered People Living In A Foreign Land – Moses And Pharoah’s Palace (Jehovah Delivering The People From Bondage And The Tyrannical Laws Of Egypt)
—(1-4) In The Process Of Time, Moses Is Called
—(5-11) At The Appointed Time, Pharoah Is Hardened
—(12-18) In The Fulness Of Time, Children Of Israel Are Emancipated

(19-40) The Law To Israel: A Gathered People Constituted A Special Nation – Moses And Mount Sinai (Jehovah Giving The People Freedom And The Gracious Laws Of Israel)
—(19,20) The Moral Law: Israel Was To Be A Holy Nation – Ten Commandments
—(21-23) The Civil Law: Israel Was To Be A Righteous Nation – Six Sets Of Judgments
—(24-40) The Ceremonial Law: Israel Was To Be A Religious Nation – Tabernacle And Ordinances

I. Let’s see how the people recorded in the book fit within the framework of sovereign grace.

There are at least 13 men and women numbered among God’s elect people—Jacob, Joseph, Shiphrah, Puah, Amram (Moses’ father), Jochebed (Moses’ mother), Moses, Aaron (Moses’ brother), Miriam (Moses’ sister), Jethro/Reuel (Moses’ father-in-law), Joshua, Bezaleel, Aholiab

There are at least 3 names connected with the non-elect—Pharoah (king of Egypt before Moses’ ministry), Pharoah (king of Egypt during Moses’ ministry), Amalek (king who fought against the children of Israel)

There are approximately 165 men and women of whom the scriptures do not give sufficient information to know whether they are numbered among the elect or the non-elect.

II. This division between the elect and the non-elect is illustrated in the book of Exodus by the division God put between Israel and the other nations of the earth.

Take, for instance, the occasion when God sent the tenth and final plague upon the Egyptians—the first born of every household and of all beasts were killed. We read in Exodus 11:6,7: “And there shall be a great cry throughout all the land of Egypt, such as there was none like it, nor shall be like it any more. But against any of the children of Israel shall not a dog move his tongue, against man or beast: that ye may know how that the LORD doth put a difference between the Egyptians and Israel.” Do you see? The division God put between Israel and the Egyptians, is illustrative of the division He has put between the objects of His special love (the elect) and those He loves less (the non-elect). And, you will find this teaching illustrated repeatedly throughout the book of Exodus. (see Ex 6:6-8; 12:48,49; 14:19,20; 14:28,29; 15:18; 19:3-6)

III. With particular reference to those numbered among the special objects of God’s love, I would like to point out some of the leading testimonies recorded in the book:

1. The Testimony Of Shiphrah and Puah’s Salvation—Exodus 1:15-20: ”And the king of Egypt spake to the Hebrew midwives, of which the name of the one was Shiphrah, and the name of the other Puah: and he said, When ye do the office of a midwife to the Hebrew women, and see them upon the stools; if it be a son, then ye shall kill him: but if it be a daughter, then she shall live. But the midwives feared God, and did not as the king of Egypt commanded them, but saved the men children alive. And the king of Egypt called for the midwives, and said unto them, Why have ye done this thing, and have saved the men children alive? And the midwives said unto Pharaoh, Because the Hebrew women are not as the Egyptian women; for they are lively, and are delivered ere the midwives come in unto them. Therefore God dealt well with the midwives: and the people multiplied, and waxed very mighty.”

2. The Testimony Of Amram and Jochebed Salvation. Although their testimony of salvation is referenced in the book of Exodus, the clearest statement of their faith is given by the Apostle Paul in Hebrews 11:23: “By faith Moses, when he was born, was hid three months of his parents, because they saw he was a proper child; and they were not afraid of the king’s commandment.”

3. The Testimony Of Moses’ Salvation. Although his testimony of salvation is recorded in many parts of the book of Exodus (see Ex 33:17-23), a summary of it is given by the Apostle Paul in Hebrews 11:24-28: ”By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter; choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward. By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible. Through faith he kept the passover, and the sprinkling of blood, lest he that destroyed the firstborn should touch them.”

4. The Testimony Of Miriam’s Salvation. This was the young girl who followed down the river the ark into which Moses had been placed. She was the older sister of Moses, and is later identified as a prophetess. After the Lord brought the children of Israel through the Red Sea on dry land, they sang of song of praise, part of which Miriam composed—Exodus 15:20,21: “And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand; and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances. And Miriam answered them, Sing ye to the LORD, for he hath triumphed gloriously; the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea.”

5. The Testimony Of Jethro’s Salvation. This was the father-in-law of Moses, the man he met after fleeing from Egypt when he was forty years old. It was after Moses had led the children of Israel out of Egypt, that Jethro gave the following testimony—Exodus 18:10-12: “And Jethro said, Blessed be the LORD, who hath delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of Pharaoh, who hath delivered the people from under the hand of the Egyptians. Now I know that the LORD is greater than all gods: for in the thing wherein they dealt proudly he was above them. And Jethro, Moses’ father in law, took a burnt offering and sacrifices for God: and Aaron came, and all the elders of Israel, to eat bread with Moses’ father in law before God.”

6. The Testimony Of Bezaleel and Aholiab’s Salvation. After God gave instructions to Moses for the building of the Tabernacle, we are told that the Lord filled these men with His Spirit, resulting in wisdom, understanding and knowledge. I believe this is a reference to the new birth, whereby these men, having been regenerated by the Spirit of God, were enabled to exercise the fruit of the new nature, among which is spiritual wisdom, understanding and knowledge. It was this that equipped the men to carry out the command of the Lord by constructing the Tabernacle according to the Lord’s design—Exodus 31:1-6: “And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, See, I have called by name Bezaleel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah: and I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship, to devise cunning works, to work in gold, and in silver, and in brass, and in cutting of stones, to set them, and in carving of timber, to work in all manner of workmanship. And I, behold, I have given with him Aholiab, the son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan: and in the hearts of all that are wise hearted I have put wisdom, that they may make all that I have commanded thee.” (See also, Ex 35:30-35; 36:1,2)

IV. Now, apart from these testimonies of salvation, there are a couple of verses which illustrate the way in which God’s regenerate people are to treat the unregenerate.

If Israel represents God’s elect and regenerate people, and the stranger represents the unregenerate and/or non-elect, then God commanded Israel in Exodus 22:9: “Also thou shalt not oppress a stranger: for ye know the heart of a stranger, seeing ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.” And again, God commanded Israel in Exodus 22:21: “Thou shalt neither vex a stranger, nor oppress him: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.” In other words, if you have been regenerated by the Spirit of God, then you are not to vex or oppress the unregenerate, for you know the heart of the unregenerate, seeing you were at one time unregenerate sinners too in the world.

V. Again, if Israel represents the regenerate elect, then the book of Exodus also illustrates the fickleness and fearfulness of God’s regenerate people.

For instance, when Moses went into the mountain to meet with the Lord, we read in Exodus 32:1: “And when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down out of the mount, the people gathered themselves together unto Aaron, and said unto him, Up, make us gods, which shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him.” Does this not remind us of the Lord’s disciples, when He told them to watch and pray, while He communed with the Father in the garden of Gethsemane, yet they fell asleep within a matter of minutes? And so it is with all of us—the sinful nature is strong and we are inclined to frequently draw away from the Lord. As Robinson described it:

Oh, to grace how great a debtor,
Daily I’m constrained to be;
Let Thy goodness like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.

Prone to wander, Lord I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, oh take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

And then, of course, not only are we a fickle people, but we are also quick to gripe and complain when things don’t go the way we have planned. We tend to doubt the goodness of the Lord and question His faithfulness to us. Such was the case with Israel. When the people had been led by the mighty hand of God to the waters of the Red Sea, we read in Exodus 14:10-12: “And when Pharaoh drew nigh, the children of Israel lifted up their eyes, and, behold, the Egyptians marched after them; and they were sore afraid: and the children of Israel cried out unto the LORD. And they said unto Moses, Because there were no graves in Egypt, hast thou taken us away to die in the wilderness? wherefore hast thou dealt thus with us, to carry us forth out of Egypt? Is not this the word that we did tell thee in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.” And yet, the Lord would soon prove His goodness, and faithfulness and power by dividing the waters and delivering the children of Israel to the other side, while closing the waters upon the Egyptians, giving to them all a watery grave. (See also, Ex 5:19-23; 14:24; 17:2,3)

VI. And, aside from this deliverance, each and every time Israel complained about their circumstances and charged God foolishly with their unbelief, the Lord proved His goodness, and faithfulness and power by fully and freely providing all things needed by the people.

For instance, when they complained they had no food to eat or water to drink, the Lord caused water to flow from a rock, and quails to fall from the sky, and bread to appear in the morning dew. Regarding the bread, we read in Exodus 16:31-35: “And the house of Israel called the name thereof Manna: and it was like coriander seed, white; and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey…And the children of Israel did eat manna forty years, until they came to a land inhabited; they did eat manna, until they came unto the borders of the land of Canaan.” And aside from these basic provisions, the Lord also led the people for forty years by a pillar of cloud during the day and a pillar of fire during the night—Exodus 13:21,22: “And the LORD went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night: he took not away the pillar of the cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people.”

You will remember, the Apostle Paul wrote, in his letter to the church at Rome, that “whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.” (Rom 15:5) My dear brethren, I trust you can see how the incidents recorded in the book of Exodus, between God and the children of Israel, are illustrative of the experiences and events which unfold in our lives. We are such a fickle and fearful people—Oh, we of little faith! But the Lord is so good, and gracious, and wise, and powerful—He provides for us, the special objects of His love, in even greater ways than He did for the children of Israel three and a half thousand years ago. May He be pleased, through the reading of the book of Exodus, to increase our faith, calm our fears and silence our murmurings!

Jared Smith