Dear Cornerstone brothers and sisters,
What riches the psalms are for the people of God. As we considered last week in Psalm 32, our God is the God who forgives. When we confess our sin, the Lord forgives. As Matthew Henry said, “God is far more willing to forgive than we are to repent.” May we be a people and a church who rejoices in the forgiveness that is ours in Christ and who longs to share that message with a lost world!
*Remember we have a congregational meeting after worship this Sunday for the purpose of approving the nominating cmte.
*We will begin an Inquirer’s class next Sunday (7/6) during the adult Sunday school hour.
*Our prayer meeting is scheduled for next Wednesday (7/2). Location TBA.
*This week’s devotion is a reflection from Exodus 6 on the patience and the promises of God to his church.
God bless and I look forward to seeing all of you this Lord’s Day,
From the Pastor’s Desk
“Promises and Patience”
Exodus 6:5, “Moreover, I have heard the groaning of the people of Israel whom the Egyptians hold as slaves, and I have remembered my covenant.”
God had promised to deliver his people from the slavery and bondage they have endured for centuries in Egypt (Gen 15:13-14; Ex 2:23-25; 3:7-9). And the Lord raised up Moses as his appointed deliverer – calling him to go to Pharaoh and to confront Pharaoh with God’s salvation (Ex 3:10). Pharaoh responded to Moses’ challenge, however, with indignation and by leveling even greater burdens on the Israelites (Ex 5:1-22). Moses, frustrated and discouraged, takes his despair to the Lord and – in effect – challenges the very character of God: “Why are you doing this, Lord?” “Pharaoh has not let the people go.” “Pharaoh is now seeking to do them greater harm.” “Where are you, Lord?” How would God respond to his despondent leader? How would God respond to the frustrations leveled at him by the one He called and raised up to lead his people? God’s glorious response is recorded in Ex 6:1-8; and there are three particular points that I want to highlight.
First, we need to see and to appreciate God’s patience in dealing with Moses. It could be argued that Moses actually accuses God of being in league with Pharaoh (compare 5:22 with 5:23). But God does not condemn Moses; rather he reveals to him more of his glory and his character. God’s response to Moses is bracketed by the revelation of his divine name, Yahweh (vv. 2, 8). God wants Moses to see and to know more of who he is! And what rich application this has to our own lives. As God was patient with Moses, so he is patient with us. And when doubt and discouragement creep in to the Christian life, God’s desire for us is to see more of who he is in his goodness, wisdom, and mercy!
Second, we need to see the content of God’s revelation. God wants Moses to understand that Yahweh is the God who keeps his promises and who is sovereign in redemption. God remembers his covenant promises to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob (vv. 3-5), and he is now going to act as the promise-keeping God. The covenant God of Israel is the God who makes and keeps promises. Moreover, the initiating, sovereign activity of God permeates his revelation to Moses in these verses. “God appeared … God established … God heard … God remembered … God will bring out … God will deliver … God will redeem … God will take his people … God will be their God … God will bring them into the land” (Ex 6:2-8). God made promises to the patriarchs. And God is sovereign over Pharaoh and he will deliver his people!
Finally, we will consider the third important truth communicated in these verses in next week’s devotion. What does the Lord mean when he says, “But by my name the LORD I did not make myself known to them” (Ex 6:2-3).
Dear brothers and sisters, how patient is God with us! And with what glorious certainty has he kept his promises to us. Indeed, every promise the Lord makes to his people is ‘yes’ and ‘amen’ in Christ (2 Cor 1:20). When you despair, meditate on the riches of God’s promises to his bride – the church. And look to Christ – in whom every promise is AMEN!!