Aardvark Alley

Lutheran Aardvark

Confessional Lutheran theology, hagiography, philosophy, music, culture, sports, education, and whatever else is on the fevered mind of Orycteropus Afer

04 September 2015
  + Moses, Prophet and Deliverer +
4 September, Old Testament

Red Sea Crossing Today we commemorate Moses, who was born in Egypt several generations after Joseph brought his father Jacob and his brothers there to escape a famine in the land of Canaan. Although Joseph certainly delivered Egypt from the effects of the famine, at some later time, a change in regimes brought a change in Egyptian attitude toward the Hebrews in their midst. As this happened, the sons of Israel began to know affliction.

By the time Jacob's descendants had lived in Egypt for 400 years, they were in slavery. Because they were worried about a rapidly expanding population of Hebrews, the Egyptians ordered the Israelites to kill their male children. When Moses was born, his mother had his elder sister put him in a basket and set it afloat among the reeds in the Nile River. Pharaoh's daughter found him and raised by her as her own son (Exodus 2:1-10). At age forty Moses killed an Egyptian taskmaster and fled to Midian, where he worked as a shepherd for most of his exile. There he married Zipporah, daughter of Jethro the priest of Midian (2:11-22).

After another 40 years had passed, the Lord called him through the burning bush to go back to Egypt and tell Pharaoh to release Israel from its bondage (Exodus 3). The Lord appointed his brother Aaron to assist him before Moses came to Pharaoh and told him that the Lord said, "Let My people go, that they may hold a feast to Me in the wilderness. (5:1)" After a series of plagues, the Israelites celebrated the first Passover, the Lord struck down the first-born males throughout Egypt, Pharaoh capitulated, and Moses led them out. Often, Moses and Aaron were aided by their sister Miriam.

10 Commandments At the Red Sea the Egyptian army was destroyed and the Israelites passed to safety on dry land (Exodus 12-15). At Mount Sinai they were given the Law and then erected the Tabernacle (19ff.). Because of disobedience, they had to wander in the wilderness for forty years. Moses himself was not allowed to enter the Promised Land because of his own sin of failing to uphold the Lord "as holy in the eyes of the people of Israel" (see Numbers 20:10-13), although God allowed him to view it (Deuteronomy 34).

Before Moses' death, the Lord appointed his faithful assistant Joshua to assume the mantle of leadership for Israel. It was he who led Israel into Canaan and directed the conquest of many of the hostile peoples who occupied Palestine.

In the New Testament Moses is referred to as lawgiver and prophet. Before his death, Moses promised Israel that the Lord would "raise up for you a prophet like me from among you. (Deuteronomy 18:15)" This prophecy found fulfillment in Jesus Christ. The first five books of the Bible, sometimes called the Pentateuch, are attributed to Mosaic authorship.

Q: Who is the world record-holding chiropractor?
A: Moses. He dealt with a million stiff-necked people.


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