Taught April 15 2018 in the Sherwood Hills Ward, Provo Utah
After teaching key thoughts:
- God is in charge of this world and He see’s the big picture regarding peoples, nations, cultures. He knows and loves the individual, but manages the entire world (and worlds). Fostering and incubating the family of Israel (Jacob) required a special pathway – through Egypt for 430 year so they would grow in strength, numbers and wealth – from 70 to possibly 2 million. Their situation as slaves helped them stay united and pure with their unique identity as God’s covenant people. GOD IS IN CHARGE – ALL WILL WORK OUT.
- After 430 years in a idolatrous culture, God had the challenge of bringing them to an understanding of one true God – and his strength and character. This required paradigm shifting experiences (miracles) for the Israelites – and they got them. But interestingly, after all the miracles, they went back to their idols (golden calf) in the wilderness. ARE WE LIVING IN THE MIDST OF AN IDOLATROUS CULTURE?
- Moses was meek and unsure of his ability to lead Israel out of Egypt. His biggest concern was being slow of speech – maybe stammering from a footnote. God’s response is the best – Moses, who made your mouth? I will be with your mouth. God is with us. In his strength we can do all things. I CAN DO ALL THINGS IN THE STRENGTH OF THE LORD.
- Moses leads the Israelites to the Red Sea – their backs against and impassable obstacle. Egyptian armies arrive. They are seemingly trapped. They murmur. Moses murmurs to God. It appears to be a disastrous situation. What does God say? Fear ye not, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord… Then tells Moses to tell the people to move forward. Move forward? Where? There’s no forward – until…… WHAT IS MY ‘FORWARD’ RIGHT NOW?
- This all relates to following the prophet – who speaks with God. Were are we now in our world? Do we have enemies on the way? Do we live among idol worshippers? What is our ‘move forward’? It might help to carefully read and process the words of the prophets from General Conference. WHAT DO I NEED TO LEARN AND APPLY FROM GENERAL CONFERENCE?
Acts 17:26 READ – God has determined times and bounds of habitations
Covenant Israel – path set by God
Why leave Canaan?
(9-2) Exodus 1:7. “The Children of Israel Were Fruitful, and Increased Abundantly”
“The fulfillment of God’s promises to Abraham required that Israel should become numerous. To accomplish this, the little family, numbering only 70 persons (Genesis 46:26–27), needed sufficient time and a peaceful place in which to grow. Egypt was that place. …
“… Palestine was a battleground for warring nations that moved back and forth in their conquests between the Nile and the Euphrates. Israel would have found no peace there. They required stable conditions for their eventual growth and development. …
“Their bondage certainly was not all on the negative side. It too served a good purpose. The cruelty of the taskmasters, the hatred that existed between the Hebrews and the Egyptians, and the length of their trying servitude fused Jacob’s children into a united people. …
“The hatred they felt toward the Egyptians prevented intermarriage between the Hebrews and their neighbors. To reap the benefits of the Abrahamic promises, Israel had to remain a pure race, and the Lord used this means to achieve it. …
“Yes, Egypt had her role in the Lord’s mighty drama, and she played it well.
“At the end of 430 years, the Lord now decreed that the time had arrived for Israel to occupy her own land and there become that ‘peculiar people’ who would await the coming of their Messiah.” (Petersen, Moses, pp. 27–30
Israelites had been in Egypt 430 years. During that time, a Pharaoh arose who enslaved them and imposed heavy burdens on them.
How long is 430 years – 1588 for us. What was happenng?
- mona lisa 1503
- Henry 8th 1509
- 1520 Luther excommunicated
- 1558 Queen Elizabeth ascends to throne
- 1607 Jamestown Virginia established
- 1620 Mayflower lands
How many Israelites?
Started as 70
12:37-38 The figure given here of six hundred thousand men agrees approximately with the official census of the Israelites given in Numbers 1:45–46. There, however, men means only the males twenty years and older who were capable of going to war. This fact means that the total company could easily have been over two million people. (See Enrichment Section E, “The Problem of Large Numbers in the Old Testament.”)
but there may have been textual errors in the documents –so maybe less
3.1 million people in Utah
193,000 in slc
116,000 in provo
Houston Texas has 3 million
How to turn them to the true God? Had to be something that clearly taught them the nature and power of God.
Know the dealings of god – 1 Ne 2:12
Lectures on faith – “a correct knowledge of God’s character and attributes”
Israel didn’t know God. How to teach them as a nation in a way that would cement their identity as God’s people
Who was Moses?
Q- What do you know about Moses?
It was into this environment that Moses was born, sentenced to death before he had drawn his first breath. But in the way we are all familiar with, his mother saved his life and he made his home at the palace. In spite of the presentations in The Ten Commandments and Prince of Egypt. Moses did not learn of his heritage when he was a young man. He always knew he was of Israel.
The Egyptians knew who and what he was (see Exodus 2:6). He was nursed until weaned by his own mother, a Hebrew (Exodus 2:7–9). And he was named Moses. The JST contains a prophecy written by Joseph that tells us about the significance of the name Moses.
JST Genesis 50:29 (p 799) READ: “And I will make him great in mine eyes, for he shall do my work; and he shall be great like unto him whom I have said I would raise up unto you, to deliver my people, O house of Israel, out of the land of Egypt; for a seer will I raise up to deliver my people out of the land of Egypt; and he shall be called Moses. And by this name he shall know that he is of thy house; for he shall be nursed by the king’s daughter, and shall be called her son” (JST App. Genesis 50:29, emphasis added).
His name told him that he was Israelite. It was apparently not until he was forty however, that he went to visit his brethren. But when he went, he knew they were his people.
“And when he was full forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his brethren the children of Israel. And seeing one of them suffer wrong, he defended him, and avenged him that was oppressed, and smote the Egyptian: For he supposed his brethren would have understood how that God by his hand would deliver them: but they understood not” (Acts 7:23–25).
In Midian, Moses met Jethro, the priest of Midian, a man with seven daughters. The identification of Jethro as a priest is significant. The Doctrine and Covenants tells us of “the sons of Moses, according to the Holy Priesthood which he received under the hand of his father-in-law, Jethro” (D&C 84:6).
Jethro was the priesthood leader of a group of righteous people whose story is not recounted in the scriptures. Moses married a daughter of Jethro and settled down in Midian for 40 years.
Calling of Moses
PGP experience after burning bush, before Exodus
What do you learn?
Jehovah converses with Moses, calling him to the work and teaching him who he is, and what God can do. Jehovah illustrates his power by involving moses in two miracles – the staff/serpent and the leprous hand.
“Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth” (Numbers 12:3).
LDS living Ted L Gibbons
- 3:11 READ Who me??? – who am I that I should bring forth Israel. Let me work in nursery instead of Gospel Doctrine
- 3:13 Who are you? We don’t know how clear a concept the Israelites had of God
- 4:1 They won’t believe me
- 4:10 READ I am not eloquent. Later on Moses raises his concerns again READ 6:12 and footnote – impaired speech and 6:30 and footnote – stammering lips. God’s response: READ 4:11-12 – who made man’s mouth
- 4:13 Please send someone else
Discuss principles – 1 ne 3:7
Whom the Lord calls, he qualifies
Q – How has the Lord helped you in callings for which you felt inadequate?
Increased burdens – opt
- 5:1-9 – people had to make more bricks and were not given straw to make them
- 5:15-21 – Israelites complained to Moses
- 5:22-23 – Moses asks why, seems that evil comes from the plan
- 67:1-8 – READ God’s response, covenant, he will bring them out and be their God
- 6:9 – peoples response – didn’t listen to Moses for ‘anguish of spirit’ and ‘evil bondage’
Q – What can we learn from this account? (One thing we can learn is the need for patience in adversity. The Lord will fulfill his promises, though he may not do so at the time or in the way we expect.)
Q – Why do some of us stop listening to the prophets and believing God’s promises during times of trial? How can we maintain faith in God during adversity?
Blood, frogs, lice, flies, livestock, boils, hail, locusts, darkness, death of firstborn
Read 12:13-14 – blood is a token, will pass over the homes, will be a memorial
Read 12:25-27 – when children will ask – also 13:8-9
Explain that in addition to reminding Israel that God had protected them from the plague of death and delivered them from the Egyptians, the Passover also symbolized an important future event. What was this event? (The atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, which delivers us from sin and death. See 1 Corinthians 5:7.) How did the Passover symbolize the Atonement?
Elements of the Passover
- Passover lamb, male without blemish, no broken bones even after death
- 12:22-23 READ – Blood of lamb to be put on side posts and upper door post of houses
- Feast of unleavened bread, hurriedly prepared – east roasted lamb with unleavened bread and bitter herbs
- Eat in haste
“It symbolized initially the passing of death over the children of Israel, and their ability to have new life,”
Over time, Passover became associated and combined with the Festival of Unleavened Bread. Today, traditional Passover lasts seven to eight days.
Latter-day Saints do not observe Passover because it falls under the Law of Moses
Passover and the Sacrament
At the Last Supper, the Savior instituted the sacrament in place of the Passover (Matthew 26:19, 26–28).
READ “Perhaps we do not always attach that kind of meaning to our weekly sacramental service. How “sacred” and how “holy” is it? Do we see it as our Passover, remembrance of our safety and deliverance and redemption?
“With so very much at stake, this ordinance commemorating our escape from the angel of darkness should be taken more seriously than it sometimes is. It should be a powerful, reverent, reflective moment. It should encourage spiritual feelings and impressions. As such it should not be rushed. It is not something to “get over” so that the real purpose of a sacrament meeting can be pursued. This is the real purpose of the meeting. And everything that is said or sung or prayed in those services should be consistent with the grandeur of this sacred ordinance” (Jeffrey R. Holland, “This Do in Remembrance of Me,” Ensign, Nov. 1995, 67–68).
Elder Howard W. Hunter
said that just as the Passover was a covenant of protection for ancient Israel, the sacrament is a “new covenant of safety” for us (in Conference Report, Apr. 1974, 24; or Ensign, May 1974, 18). How is the sacrament a covenant of safety for us? (The sacrament reminds us of the Savior’s atoning sacrifice, which brings eternal safety by freeing us from the bonds of sin and death. The covenants we renew as we partake of the sacrament also help provide us eternal safety.)
Teach our children
In his instructions about the Passover, the Lord emphasized the need for parents to teach their children its significance (Exodus 12:26–27; 13:8, 14). Why was it important that Israelite parents do this? How might this apply to our day? (Like ancient Israel, we should teach our children the significance of the sacrament and other ordinances that remind us of the Lord’s hand in delivering us from sin and death.)
Conclusion – Crossing the Red Sea
Note that the Lord placed Israel in the predicament from which their appeared to be no escape. When the Israelites found themselves trapped between the sea and the Egyptians, they panicked.
They had experienced the power of God – but still didn’t quite get it=
Fear ye not, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord…
14:15 Told to go forward. Forward? Red sea was forward
Sea on one side, enemy on the other – what do we do?
Know God’s dealings and Remember
- The children of Israel were to use a firstborn male lamb without blemish in the Passover (Exodus 12:5). The Savior is the firstborn Son of God, the Lamb of God without spot or blemish (1 Peter 1:19).
- The children of Israel were to sprinkle the blood of the lamb on their doorposts to save their firstborn from death (Exodus 12:7, 22–23). The Savior’s blood, which he shed in Gethsemane and on the cross, cleanses the faithful and saves them from spiritual death (Mosiah 4:2).
- The children of Israel were to eat unleavened bread (Exodus 12:8, 15–20). “Leaven, or yeast, was seen anciently as a symbol of corruption because it so easily spoiled and turned moldy. … For the Israelites, eating the unleavened bread symbolized that they were partaking of the bread which had no corruption or impurity, namely, the Bread of Life, who is Jesus Christ (see John 6:35)” (Old Testament Student Manual: Genesis–2 Samuel , 119). The removal of leaven also suggested repentance, or the removal of sin from a person’s life.
- The children of Israel were to eat the Passover meal in haste (Exodus 12:11). Like the Israelites, we need to respond eagerly and immediately to the deliverance that the Savior offers us.