Advent Day Six: Crossing the Red Sea

“I will sing to the LORD, for he has triumphed gloriously; horse and rider he has thrown into the sea.  The LORD is my strength and my might, and he has become my salvation; this is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him.”  (Exodus 15:1-2).

There are events that change the course of history.  Time has been divided into B.C. and A.D. because of the birth of Jesus.  Regardless of nation, faith or politics, we all live in 2020. 

For the Jews, the exodus out of Egypt is just as significant.  It was the birth of the nation.  The crossing of the Red Sea is mentioned 87 times in scripture.  It is used as a rallying cry for God’s people when they are facing insurmountable odds. 

To be released from captivity only to be trapped against the Red Sea must have been terrifying.  They couldn’t swim across, there were too many of them to take a boat, and they couldn’t turn back.  The Egyptians were in hot pursuit. 

Moses was instructed to stretch out his hand over the sea and the waters parted, giving a temporary dry path for over a million people to cross.  They were instructed to take twelve rocks from the bottom of the sea to the other side. 

Jesus showed his divinity when he spoke a word and calmed the storm on the Sea of Galilee. Then Jesus got up and rebuked the wind and the sea. “Silence!He commanded. “Be still!” And the wind died down, and it was perfectly calm. “Why are you so afraid?” He asked the disciples. “Do you still have no faith?” (Mark 4:39-40) .

When the Israelites were safely through the waters, they built an altar from the 12 stones they had gathered as a reminder of God’s act of deliverance.  For Christians, the cross is our symbol of remembrance.  The angels proclaimed: “For unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Savior who is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:11). 

“Holy God, we cannot rescue ourselves from death.  You alone have the power to take us through those waters.  Keeping the cross before us, we rely on your promise to lead us to the other side.”  Amen

Mindi Oaten’s painting “The Commander” is from God’s Garden of Grace collection.

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Paul was a preacher and teacher until he retired in 2015. He continues to write and listen to what God is saying to him in the ordinary and extraordinary things of life. Elaine was a public school teacher and administrator until she retired in 2018. She is using her retirement to reflect on God's work in her life and to share insights with her family and friends.

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