Table of contents
Like a good detective, let's examine this book.
The theme of Exodus is powerful because we can all relate in some way. The nation of Israel (also called Hebrews) came to Egypt to escape a massive famine. After several years, there was a civil war in Egypt. The winners began a new dynasty. Since the Hebrew's allies were of the old disposed dynasty, they became outcasts. Eventually, they became slaves. Now, it is time for freedom, but freedom comes at a price. Through signs and wonders, God delivers the nation of Israel. Then, through patience and instruction, He starts working on keeping them free by providing the law.
🙏 Jesus in this Book
(Every book reveals the glory of God, revealed in Christ Jesus)
- The Passover Lamb
- Suffering and liberation.
- God's Supremacy and Judgement.
- God's law taught a slave nation how to be free.
Who wrote it: Moses.
There is some dispute over whether or not Moses wrote every word. He likely dictated the contents to a scribe. The authorship remains the same.
Who is the original audience: The nation of Israel.
Where are we: The book begins in the land of Goshen. It ends with the nation of Israel in the Desert (Wilderness). This book was probably written by Moses while in the wilderness.
When was it written: When was it written: The time period of the exodus is disputed. A good estimate is between 1440-1400 BCE.
What is the big idea: Overall, Exodus is the story of freedom. The first several chapters are about getting a nation free on the outside. The final chapters are about the long walk of freedom on the inside.
Why is this book important: Several themes are worth exploring- Promises fulfilled- God promises Abraham to deliver his descendants. This book reveals that fulfillment. Deliverance- Israel had been in bondage for years, but when the time was right... deliverance came.
Freedom through order- Discipline equals freedom. God gave the law not to take away freedom but to help us see what true freedom really looks like. True freedom takes work.
How can I apply it?: The Exodus is the story of a lost nation being set free on the outside and on the inside. Just like Israel, we all have found ourselves in a place of broken bondage. This story reminds us that we can all find freedom through Jesus Christ.
Quick Thoughts on Each Chapter
(I'll be adding to this as we go along)
Exodus 1: The story of the Exodus is some of the most famous recorded history ever. Not only does almost everyone know about Moses, but the exodus is a foreshadowing of what Christ will eventually do for us… salvation from the slavery to sin.
Exodus 2: Moses tried to do God’s plan but his own way, his timing, and his plan. The results were disastrous. We must be careful not to do the same. Trust the Lord to open the right door at the right time.
Exodus 3: The Lord reveals His covenant name to Moses… Yahweh. The only Unique Sovereign Creator of All. Even to this day, many orthodox jewish people will not say the name of God in Hebrew. It is too sacred. They call him Adonai instead. That’s Hebrew for “My Lord.”
Exodus 4: Moses went from being headstrong in chapter two to now trying to talk God out of it in chapter 4. The years in the desert have humbled him. He is now ready for leadership.
Exodus 5: Can you imagine how horrible this would have been for the Israelites?! Moses has returned and has promised freedom. But, instead of things getting better, they become worse. When God starts moving, it can seem as though things get worse. Don’t give up. Freedom is on the way.
Exodus 6: It’s when things seemed as bad as they could get that the Lord said to Moses… “Now you will see what I will do.” It takes a test to form a testimony.
Exodus 7: Did you know there was more to the plagues that simply God creating chaos? There was a reason for the types of plagues. Each plague toppled one of the major false gods worshipped in Egyptian culture. God is exerting His supremacy over a false god the Egyptians thought was greater. For example, the Plague of Blood is against the Nile River itself. The Nile was seen as a gift from their gods.
Exodus 8: Plague of frogs- defeats the false goddess of fertility with the head of a frog, “Heket.”
Plague of gnats- defeats the false god over dust, “Geb.”
Plague of flies- defeats the false god of creation with the head of a fly, “Kherpi.”
Exodus 9: Plague against livestock- defeats the false god of protection with the head of a cow, “Hathor.”
Plague of boils- defeats the false goddess of medicine, “Iris.”
Plague of hail- defeats the false goddess of sky, “Nut.”
Exodus 10: Plague of locusts- defeats the false god of storms and disorder, “Seth.”
Plague of darkness- defeats the sun god, “Ra.”
Exodus 11: Now for the worst plague, the death of the first born of Pharaoh and all first born under his care. Pharaoh was the ultimate power in Egypt. He was considered untouchable. Yahweh’s final blow shows He reigns supreme over all.
Exodus 12: The first Passover. Such a powerful night full of symbolism eventually fulfilled in Jesus. One of the most striking is every house was to spread the blood of the lamb over the doorposts of their home. This would cause them to be spared from death. Just like that, when we apply Jesus’ blood to our hearts, we are transferred from death to life.
Exodus 13: Verse 18- God had done so much during the plagues. Not just to defeat the Egyptians but also to give faith to the Israelites. Their faith had increased so much they did not walk out looking like a beat up slave nation but like “an army ready for battle.”
Exodus 14: This is one of the most iconic moments in the Bible. God parts the Sea for Israel to cross. Some liberal scholars have tried to say the interpretation should be Reed Sea instead of Red Sea. They think this is important because Reed Sea was more shallow. Doesn’t matter. Either way, God used a body of water to completely destroy the Egyptian army. God defeats all our enemies.
Exodus 15: Notice the Lord promised He would bless them IF they would listen. It was up to them. The offer is still on the table today. God has so many adventures for us… IF we do things His way. The choice is ours.
Exodus 16: The Ten Commandments are the most amazing set of guide lines in history. They give dignity to our neighbor. They give honor to God. They show us how to maintain the freedom the Lord gives.
Exodus 17: To this day we are not exactly sure what manna is. We know this… it was a miracle and it continued to sustain the Israelites until they entered the promised land. For over 40 years they received this miracle every day.
Exodus 18: The slave nation had become a nation of warriors. We also allows Joshua first show his ability to lead the nation into battle. This will eventually become his main job. We see this in the book of Joshua.
Exodus 19: This is the one time an in-law gave good advice. Ha. Just kidding. Jethro gave sound advice that we can still use today. The main idea is to stop trying to do it all. Empower others to help. We were never meant to do everything alone.
Exodus 20: God warns the people not to get too close. He wants to be closer to His people, but they would be destroyed by His perfect holiness. I cannot decide if I would be curious to see more or be terrified and have no problem staying at a distance. What about you?
Exodus 21: The Ten Commandments are the most amazing set of guide lines in history. They give dignity to our neighbor. They give honor to God. They show us how to maintain the freedom the Lord gives.
Exodus 22: Fair warning - the next several chapters concern instructions for the articles of worship and laws to govern the nation of Israel. Since these instructions do not all apply to us directly, it can be easy to get bored. First of all, realize these were laws laid down to keep the nation free. God loves us enough to free us then teach how to keep it. Second, these sections are what the daily Proverb/Psalm is for. Lol.
Exodus 23: Verses 16-31: God teaches to use good justice and not take advantage of others. Also, you can see that He does not tolerate those who use and abuse others for personal gain or deception. God was stern in the Old Testament because He was correcting the slave mentality that had been instilled in this nation for years.
Exodus 24: Verse 1-13: God wants us to extend mercy when possible.
Verse 32-33: God warns why we must be careful about the company we keep.
Exodus 25: This is an amazing sight! The Glory of the Lord covered the mountain for six days. The Bible says it was like a consuming fire. The mental image I have is something like a volcano. Use your imagination and picture God’s glory resting on the mountain and then God calling to Moses to enter in. Would you have the courage to walk into the cloud?
Exodus 26: Do you remember the movie, “Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark?” In the movie, they are searching for the Ark of the Covenant talked about in this chapter. It was a visual representation of the presence of God. It doesn’t melt your skin, though.
Exodus 26: Verse 30- God instructed Moses to set up the tabernacle based on the pattern he saw while on the mountain. God showed Moses the tabernacle in Heaven and he made a replica on Earth.
Exodus 27: God instructed for their to always be light in His “house.” God is always available. He never sleeps. He is always alert.
Exodus 28: Verse 6-14: The ephod was a type of “under clothing.” This is what David stripped down to when he began to dance before the Lord as the ark of the covenant returned to Jerusalem. It embarrassed his wife because she didn’t think a king should get so excited. David didn’t care. The glory had returned.
Exodus 29: Verse 45: God promises to live among His people and be their God. It’s important to notice there is a lot of shedding of blood in these sacrifices. This is why Jesus came. These sacrifices could not be a permanent fix. Jesus was slain once for all time. He is our King.
Exodus 30: Lots of instructions to read today. Remember this is a different time and God is creating regulations that would last for generations. Notice how specific He is regarding the anointing oil. This will eventually represent the presence of the Lord as kings and priests would be marked by God with this oil.
Exodus 31: Verse 3: Notice how specific God is with describing Bazelel. He had been gifted by God to do the type of work required to build the Tabernacle. Perhaps he wondered what service he could be out in the desert far away from Egypt. Little did he know his whole life of training in Egypt was for this moment. What has God prepared you to do for His Kingdom?
Exodus 32: This is that moment when you want to hide you face behind your hand in embarrassment. The nation of Israel had experienced deliverance from Egypt. They had been rescued form the Egyptian army by miracles. They were receiving manna from Heaven daily. They had viewed the glory of God on top of the mountain……. And they build a golden calf as an idol to worship. Sigh.
Exodus 33: The Bible says God would speak with Moses “face to face.” The Hebrew translation directly to this is the verb to denote a friendly relationship. Moses felt “at home” in God’s presence. This is my heart’s desire. To be “at home” in the presence of God and daily see His goodness.
Exodus 34: Verse 29: Moses spent so much time in God’s presence that his shined. I have no words for this. So amazing. He literally had to put a veil over his face so he wouldn’t freak people out.
Exodus 35: As a slave nation now free, they were not used to rest. God is so concerned about us resting that He made it a command to follow. Sabbath actually means more than not working. It’s recovering, taking a deep breath, and trusting the Lord to work while you don’t.
Exodus 36: The people were so excited to provide for the house of God that Moses had to tell them it was enough. Can you imagine?! Stop being generous! Lol. May we always be this excited about the things of God.
Exodus 37: This chapter is about building the symbols of worship. These objects did not have power in themselves. It was what they represented. Ark- God’s Throne. Table- a place to meet with God. Lampstand- The illumination of God’s presence. Incense- continual prayer before the Lord.
Exodus 38: These articles were for the outer court. The bronze altar, specifically, is a symbol of the Cross. The sacrifices were brutal and terrible but they represented something holy and wonderful. Soon, the King would die once to save us all.
Exodus 39: Most of this chapter is talking about the clothes of the priests.The book of Hebrews calls Jesus our Great High Priest. This entire chapter symbolizes Jesus. My favorite is how the stones representing the 12 tribes of Israel were over the heart of the Priest. This reminds us that God’s people are always close to His heart.
Exodus 40: The glory of the LORD filled the temple! The presence of the LORD was visible and led the nation by a cloud and fire. Amazing!