Verse 37 The Israelites journeyed from Rameses to Sukkoth. There were about six hundred thousand men on foot, besides women and children.
Yesterday the Israelites were packing up and heading out. Today the journey starts.
Rameses and Sukkoth are small cities believed to be in the land of Goshen. This makes sense since Goshen was the area given to Joseph’s family when they came to live in Egypt (Genesis 47:5-6). They had continued in the land of Goshen the entire 430 years they were in Egypt. This was another way that God had shown His providence towards His people. This was a prime piece of land and God had blessed them and grown them and their livestock in this place over the centuries (Genesis 47:27). In fact when Jacob and his family had moved to Goshen there were about 70 members (Genesis 46:27) and as they are leaving the men alone numbered at about 6 hundred thousand!
With about 600,000 men you can imagine that the number was at least doubled in this caravan when the women and children were added! And that isn’t counting the droves of animals also along for the journey. This was a major undertaking! We can understand why Moses felt a bit overwhelmed by God calling him to lead this many people. But that is another way God had His providence on display.
Here is Moses. He was a baby that was supposed to be eliminated because he was a boy. His mother and father allowed him to live and then adopted him out to the princess of Egypt. This allowed him the knowledge of palace rules that would aid him in meeting with the pharaoh without making a faux pas that would have had him banned from seeing the leader of the country. He became aware of the plight of his birth nation which lead to him killing someone and fleeing to the wilderness for 40 years where he learned some skills that would help him as he led God’s people through the wilderness for another 40 years.
God was working out the details years before Moses was commissioned with leading God’s people. God is working the same providence in our lives. Not just for our personal lives but also for the lives of our communities. Not everything that Moses experienced was a pleasant experience but God had a purpose for it for the good of the whole Israelite nation. God can use experiences in our lives for the good of our faith community too.
Making It Personal
Have you ever been helped by someone else’s experience? What are some experiences in your life that God could use for the good of the Church community? Has He taught you something that You could share with someone to encourage them?
Making It Personal Kids
What is something that has happened to you that may help you encourage one of your friends? Has someone ever helped you deal with something in your life because they had already been through it? How does Jesus help you through scary times?
Father, thank You for having the foresight to give us experiences to help later in our lives or to help others. Please help us see the times we can help others go through something we have gone through. In Jesus’ name, amen.