Exodus: Model of Redemption
Understanding the Old Testament Lesson #008
February 20, 2000
Father, we do thank You that we have the Old Testament to look to to see how You have worked from the beginning of Creation in grace and in love constantly exercising Your grace initiative in human history; continuously working to reveal Yourself and to redeem mankind. Father, we pray that as we study these things and see how you work in bringing forth the nation Israel; that we might be challenged; that we might have our faith strengthened and confirmed in the study. We pray this in Jesus Name, Amen.
Today we come to our eighth class in this Old Testament orientation where we come to Exodus. Last time we finished Genesis. Exodus is perhaps, The Exodus, not just the Book of Exodus, but the event of the Exodus, is perhaps the significant event in the Old Testament. It is the defining event for the nation Israel. Everything in Genesis, everything preceding the Exodus fills up to the Exodus and lays the foundation for understanding its significance and why God has done this in human history. Everything following the Exodus, the rest of the Pentateuch, Joshua, Judges, all the way through the Minor Prophets; not only that but even into the New Testament itself. Everything following this event is built upon it and flows and develops out of the Exodus. So it is the Exodus event that is sort of a cornerstone, a linchpin in terms of the unfolding of God's redemptive plan in human history.
We are seeing in the Exodus that it is here in this event that the family of Abraham becomes the people of God and then the people of God will become a unique nation, a nation of priest, unique in all of human history. It is at the Exodus that they are redeemed, but it is at Sinai that they receive the Law. Just a little note, no extra charge for this observation this morning, it is amazing how many people always think that the Law is the way to salvation. You go back and that is how Israel is saved. Israel is saved, if you look at it typologically, you look at the unfolding of history; Israel is saved at the Exodus. It is Passover that is the picture of redemption. The Law comes after. The Law is how the nation now that they are viewed as a redeemed nation; it is how the nation is to live before God. It is not how they come into relationship with God. So, even if you look at this thing from a correct Old Testament perspective and see the unfolding of the typology, you'll understand that the significance here is redemption first, and then the Christian life, which is what we will look at as we develop our study this morning.
Last time we saw that God brought forth a nation and brought the nation into Egypt as a way of protecting and isolating them. And somebody asked a question last time (related to Genesis 38:13-30); about Tamar and thinking it really an absurd, perverted, incestuous relationship between Judah, the son of Jacob, and his daughter-in-law, Tamar. Remember, we saw that incident last time where his first and second son had died…; then Tamar disguised herself and stood outside the gates of the town. She disguised herself as a temple prostitute. (Pre-empting Judah) before he could come up to his responsibility. He was being irresponsible in terns of the cultural and moral mandates at the time in terms of bring his youngest son along to marry her. The oldest has died, the second has died, and now he won't bring the third one along (Judah was fearful of losing his third son.) In this process Judah does not recognize Tamar (and Tamar and Judah have sexual relation and) she becomes pregnant and has twins. There is this weird episode that takes place, if somebody asks you about this afterwards, as Tamar is giving birth to twins, the first one's hand comes out and the midwife wraps a red string around his hand. Why is that? Because in that culture you had the law of primogenitor; the oldest is the one who receives the inheritance, he first one out of the womb. So this is the first one out of the womb, but not fully; just his hand gets out; then he goes back in and the other one gets out. (He is called Perez, meaning "breakthrough." He is of the lineage of David and ultimately Jesus. Perez and Tamar are mentioned in Matthew's genealogy of Jesus, Matthew 1:3.)
Now the interesting thing is that it is the younger, the second one who is in the line of Christ; and that is what all of this leads to. If you read it in Genesis it is almost lost without significance. But what happens is his name is picked up in the genealogy of Christ in the New Testament. And the purpose is to show that even in the midst of a rank carnality and sexual perversion and incestuous relationship that God is still working in grace to bring about His redemptive plan. And remember, Jesus' title is what? He is the Lion of Judah. Yet our picture of Judah is that he does not care anything about the family anymore; he just wants to go out and completely assimilate with the pagan culture around him and he doesn't want to be distinct or follow God or worship God anymore. Yet, in God's grace God turns the whole thing around. So that is the purpose behind that odd episode.
Now we finished Genesis and we have come to the Exodus event. Deuteronomy 4:32-35 helps us understand or give the image of what is going on here. God has taken the family of Jacob down into Egypt, they are going to be enslaved; they are isolated in Egypt for a purpose and that is to protect them so that God can bring about His redemptive work through the nation. In fact, the analogy you see here is that of the fetus in the womb. It is infant, the fetal Israel that is in the womb of Egypt that will come forth and God will do great things. Deuteronomy 4:32 "Indeed, ask now concerning the former days which were before you…;' remember this is Moses addressing the second generation. The Exodus generation has all died off at this point because of their failure at Kadesh Barnea. They had died the sin unto death. It was at Kadesh Barnea at the entry into the land when the Exodus generation failed. They saw the signs; they saw the fortified cities; they saw the large number of people; and they all wailed and said we can't do it. They failed to trust God only. Joshua and Caleb trusted God. So God took the life in forty years of everyone in that generation. If you work out the numbers it is incredible. It is like 5,000 and 6,000 funerals a day. It is a daily reminder that they had failed to obey God and that death is the consequence.
So now Moses on the plains of Moab is reminding the second generation that it is positive to LORD and trusting the LORD of what has gone on in the past. He says, Deuteronomy 4:32-35, "Indeed, ask now concerning the former days which were before you since the day that God created man on the earth, and inquire from one end of the heavens to the other. Has anything been done like this great thing, or has anything been heard like it? Has any people heard the voice of God speaking from the midst of the fire, as you have heard it, and survived? Or has a god tried to go to take for himself a nation from within another nation by trials…." This is the image of birth, taking a nation within another nation "by trial, by signs and wonders and by war and by a mighty hand and by an outstretched arm and by great terrors, as the LORD your God did for you in Egypt before your eyes? To you it was shown that you might know that the LORD, He is God; there is no other besides Him."
So God is going to do a unique thing in the exodus event in bringing the nation out from this other nation that has enslaved them.
Let's review what we have seen already. These are those events, "the former days" mentioned in Deuteronomy 4:32:
1. First of all man was originally created in God's image and according to His likeness. What we saw was that that terminology indicated that man is created a certain way to represent God, His immaterial soul is a reflection of who and what God is in terms primarily of His intellect and His ability to fulfill a particular function. Man is distinct from all of the animals. That has implications to the whole animal rights crowd; so many of them want to treat man as just another animal. Yet Scriptures say that man is distinct. He is the only creature in the image of God. Man is created to represent God on the planet.
2. Secondly, we saw that Adam sinned and lost his initial standing before God; this is called the Fall. Man lost his standing before God and toward the creation. Now there is a curse on the creation and an antagonism between man and the creation.
3. We saw that the original covenant that God had established with Adam to subdue the earth and to multiply and fill the earth is reestablished with Noah. There is the judgment on mankind because of their sin, their failure to fulfill the original covenant; so God wiped out everyone but Noah and his immediate family. Eight survive and go into a new world, the postdiluvian world. It is at that point that God reestablishes His original covenant with Noah. We saw how Noah's descendants also failed. They unite in the first global community, sort of a proto United Nations. They attempt to unite against God and it is symbolized by building this enormous tower, a ziggurat, at Babel. Again God has to judge the human race by scattering the languages.
I made a note at that time that there was a man by the name of Arthur C. Custance* who wrote back in the 50s. He wrote a series of books called the Doorway Papers. ** Somebody emailed me just fortuitously at that time, they did not know that I was interested at all; they emailed me an Internet site. All of his writings are now out of print, but there is an Internet site that has all of his papers. If you are interested, some of you were asking about him; if you are interested in reading any of his stuff on the genealogy of Genesis 11 and the sons of Noah and how they relate to human history, you can probably type Arthur Custance into a search field at one of the search sites on the Internet and you can pull up those websites… It is fascinating stuff, for example, one of the little things is that one of the descendants of Ham was a man by the name of Sin, and even today, if you look at how we entitle certain agreements in wars that involve the Chinese people, what you call the Sino-Russian War; the Sino-Japanese War; the Sino-American Treaty. S I N, that goes back etymologically to that ancestor in Genesis 11. So that particular individual is the ancestor of the Chinese people. It is just fascinating reading.
God has to judge the nations through the scattering of the languages; that isolates people into different groups. As a result of the ethnic groups develop, certain genes become dominate and God at that point exercises another grace initiative and begins a new work through a new race, the Jews. He calls out Abram and through him he will redeem the remainder of mankind. He does this in basically three phases:
1. He started by calling out Abram in about 2100 BC. He called forth a new nation. He promised Abram that he would have a seed that he would be a father of many nations.
2. The new nation is called forth in 1446 BC at the time of the Exodus.
3. The third stage was that He would use that nation to bring salvation to every nation and that of course comes about through the incarnation, Jesus Christ, who comes to the earth fully God and fully man, goes to the Cross, and there He dies on the Cross as a substitute for all mankind and pays the penalty for all sin. In all of this God is working out His plan through human history, through all of these events in the Old Testament.
In order to develop a nation, to have a nation, you must have three things:
1. You need to have a people. It is not enough to have just Abram and Sarah. There has to be a son, there has to be descendants. It is not even enough with Jacob. Jacob goes down to Egypt in Exodus 1 there were only about 70 people with him. His immediate family and a few servants and that was it. So there needs to be more. So it is in the womb of Egypt that this nation develops and develops a group of people.
2. Secondly you need a constitution. To have a nation you need to have, a body of law to bind the people together. It is at Sinai that they are going to be given a constitution, the Mosaic law.
3. Third, a land. You can't just have a people without a place, so they have to have a land and that is promised to them. It is the land presently occupied by the Canaanites, presently being at the time of the early Exodus.
What we are going to see this morning is how God purchased or acquired His people out of Egypt in Exodus 1-18 and next Sunday we are going to look at how He provides the constitution, which is the old covenant. That will cover Exodus 19-Numbers 12 and all of that is rehearsed in a sermonic form in Deuteronomy. I am going to try to cover two basic things: the first is the acquisition of the people. Secondly, the request ritual that is involved in acquiring the people, which is the Passover.
1. So the first section we will look at is the acquisition of the people. First of all, there is a miraculous acquisition of the people in the Exodus event and we learn that it is through that event that they become the people of God. The Scripture compares the Exodus event to a birth process, coming out from the womb. Hosea 11:1 "When Israel was a youth I loved him, And out of Egypt I called My son." So throughout the Scriptures there is a birth metaphor behind the view of how God redeemed Israel, brings him forth from the nation Egypt. There is supernatural growth in the womb of the nation Egypt; there is a miraculous growth. At the beginning, according to Exodus 1:1, there are seventy persons, seventy souls who go down to Egypt with Jacob.
It is during that time of roughly 430 years that Israel grows from about 70 to 600,000 men in Exodus 12:37. They take a census in order to figure out what their military potential is and they number about 600,000 males above the age of 20 years who were ready for military service. They exercised the universal draft in those days. Every adult male went into military service. That is what they had to do in order to survive. Now if there are 600,000 men then you can figure there is probably one woman for every man; so that means 600,000 × 2 is 1.2 million. Now for every couple you could put in 2 children. If there are 2 children then you have 2.4 million and there were probably more children than that. In fact, in order to achieve the numerical growth there are several studies that have been done to show that this is not only feasible, but possible, and very likely there is a low death rate and God is miraculously protecting them in the womb of Egypt, and to accomplish this sort of growth, from 70 to 2.5 million, you would have to have about five children per generation. So you put all of that together and you probably had between 2 to 3 million Jews and slaves living in Goshen.
Let's put that into perspective. The population of Connecticut is 3.2 million. The population is as great in the Houston area; it is somewhere around the same, 3 million. Think about the logistics involved with that; how many people are involved; the feeding, the clothing, finding water for that large number of people as they are moving through basically desert, traitorous; all of those things are in the plan of God. I don't know that Moses necessarily paid attention to it, but if God could solve all those problems, then of course that is nothing like the problems you and I face in our daily life. God easily matured the nation in those 430 years. There was supernatural miraculous growth of the nation in the womb of Egypt.
2. Secondly, there was a miraculous preservation of the nation inside the womb of Egypt. There is a miraculous preservation because they are not ethnically akin to the Egyptians. The Egyptians are very segregationist, very racist in their views, and so it is somewhat miraculous that they survive. Of course the story at the beginning of Exodus tells us that Joseph had favor with the Pharaoh and they lived in Goshen and for a while the Pharaohs looked with favor upon the kinsmen of Joseph. But then a new Pharaoh came into power. Now we do not know who these Pharaohs are. The Bible does not name or identify who any of these people are, which is why I want to spend a little time on the question of when did this occur?
What we know is that there is a Pharaoh who is for several generations is kind to Joseph and his family and then a new Pharaoh comes along and he has hostility toward the Jews, how they have grown and how they swarm all over the land according to Exodus 1. They are viewed as a danger. So then they are enslaved by the Pharaohs and they go through several generations of slavery.
But we come to a problem when we try to identify in terms of secular and in terms of Egyptian history who these individuals are. I want to spend a little of time talking about that this morning. Personally I find it fascinating. Secondly, it is because Christianity is not just a religion of the spirit. You know, that is the term people use, religion is just something of the spirit. Christianity is grounded in objective history. It is God working in human history. It is based events. All of the principles of doctrine, principles of salvation, everything is grounded in real time historical events so that if those things did not happen to way the Scripture says they happen then there is no meaning to assign to those events. If those events did not happen then there is no meaning and it undercuts the veracity of everything else in Scripture.
Let's go through our timeline, a review of time that we've studied in previous weeks; let's set up our BC timeline extending backwards in time. The further back you go from the Cross the larger the numbers get. That is the same as counting backwards. We put in a timeline of about 1000 BC. We know with a fair amount of certainty that Solomon dedicated the temple in 966 BC. I spend a lot of time this last week in emails with guys who are really sharp in archaeology and doing a lot of study; and apparently the oldest uncontested date in ancient history is about 705 BC in Assyrian history. Everything beyond that is contested. About 7-8 years ago I was unable to attend the meeting, but there was a pastors' conference; doctrinal pastors normally get together every couple of years and have a pastors' conference. The subject was archaeology and there were three or four different Egyptologists there, all with their PhDs. None of them agreed on anything. The bottom line to understand is that anything you read about Egyptian history prior to 600 BC; anyone who comes along and says dogmatically beyond 600 BC is either ignorant or they have already made up their mind and they are sticking to one of a multitude of options. What has happened is that we have a tendency in certain circles to have to go with the dating of Cambridge Ancient History and taking those dates to identify the events of Exodus with Cambridge Ancient History; and as we will see, there are some real problems.
So we know that the temple was dedicated in 966 BC. The way dating takes place; they did not have a calendar; they did not know when Christ was going to come. So they did not have a calendar that said this is 966 BC and we are going to have New Year next month in 965 BC. Then next year we will have another New Year and it will be 964 BC. So the way you do Old Testament chronology is that you look at the king list. You can resurrect or reconstruct who reigned after whom. You know that so and so reigned for 30 years and then he died; and after he died his son became king and he reigned for 22 years and then he died; and then…. So you reconstruct the timeline based upon that. The confusing thing is that every country used different dating techniques. Some of the counted the session year of the king, when he became king as his first year, others did not; it was not until the next year that it became the first year. Sometimes they changed form one system to another. The Jews did that.
The Israelites used one method and the kings of Judah used another method. So it gets real confusing. If you go back and look at certain older works that were done; for example, there is a work called The Coming Prince by Sir Robert Anderson that dealt with Daniel 9; and he says that the Decree of Artaxerxes to send the Israelites back into the land was in 445 BC, but if you read anything today it will say 444 BC. All the dates change by one years. In the early 60s a scholar by the name of Edward R. Thiele wrote a book called The Mysterious Numbers of the Hebrew Kings and he reconstructed all the chronology of the Jewish kings and that is what is accepted by liberals, conservatives, and everyone; it is just backing using the biblical numbers and backing up form known events and then correlating some of the things, monument evidence and things like that to come up with the dates.
So we are pretty sure that plus or minus a year or two that the temple was dedicated in 966 BC. Now 30 years ago when I first started reading stuff on this it was 961 BC and so the date of the Exodus was 1441 BC. So I am just letting you know, don't bet the farm on these dates. They are not absolutely certain. We do know that the Scripture says that the Exodus occurred 480 years prior to Solomon's dedication of the temple. Now if that date is correct 966 BC, then the Exodus occurred in 1446 BC. I think this is probably pretty certain. At most all these dates have fluctuated over the last century 2-3 years one way or the other. So we are within 10 years of being correct.
The Jews were enslaved in Egypt for 430 years and that means that Jacob entered Egypt in roughly 1876 BC. 2066 BC would mark the birth of Isaac. 2166 BC would mark the birth of Abram. Now this is our benchmark chronology. This is based upon what the Scripture says; there is no correlation with anything else, other cultures or other events. This is just based strictly on the numbers given in the Scriptures in Chronicles, in Joshua, in other places where you have the chronological data given. You have father giving birth to a son and it was given the years that so and so lived; who lived X number of years and gave birth to a son. Now that is one way that genealogies are written. Other genealogies are written and use terminology like so and so was the descendent of such and such. Not that is real vague and that mean grandson, great grandson, and great-great grandson. You can find many gaps through it. That is the kind of genealogy we have in Matthew 1; in Luke 4; someplace in Deuteronomy, the descendants of Ham, the descendants of Japheth, but not the descendants of Shem. The descendants of Shem is much more precise terminology because you are marking the development there of the descendants of Shem and the heritage of the Jewish people.
Having set that as our benchmark, 966 BC, we have a major problem chronologically; what I will call the chronological conundrum. So we will set up our timeline. Now Exodus occurs in 1446 BC and we know that Abram was born in 2166 BC then the flood would have to end in 2533 BC based on the numbers in this genealogical record in Genesis 11. Now when I was a student at Dallas Theological Seminary, both in the ThM program and later in the doctoral program, one of my favorite professors was the chairman of the Old Testament department, Al Ross. Now Al had a fairly decent education and he had his PhD in Hebrew from Dallas Seminary and then he picked up his PhD form Cambridge in Hebrew and Rabbinical studies. So he was fairly knowledgeable and he wrote his doctoral dissertation or one of his doctrinal dissertations on the Table of Nations in Genesis 11.
One year I was in a work-study class with Al and I was talking with him after class and I asked him, what do you think in your opinion are there any breaks, any gaps in the genealogy in Genesis 5 or Genesis 11. And he said, on the basis of the strict exegetical evidence you can't find a gap in Genesis 5 or Genesis 11. The problem is that biblical archaeology disagrees with the biblical numbers. For example, in Egyptian history the earliest dynasty of Egypt begins in 2029 BC, which is 387 years plus or minus a year or two before the flood. That means that the pyramids were built a 100 years before the flood and, of course, if the Bible is correct and it was a universal flood as given in Genesis 6-9, then that would destroy the pyramids or at least give evidence of some kind of flood on the pyramid, a water line somewhere. But you do not have anything like that. So that is a major disagreement.
1. Now the problem is either the Bible is wrong or we have somehow misinterpreted the genealogical data so that we have calculated the time wrong, which of course is possible; or the chronological schemes of archaeologist are based upon faulty assumptions. Now I am going to go with the third option because there are a lot of archaeologists who challenge the dating system even in Egyptology. The reason Egyptian history is so important is because all the other chronologies form ancient Greece to Assyria, to Sumeria are all benchmarked on the Egyptian chronology. So if you are wrong on your Egyptian chronology then that is going to effect the entire development of chronology in the ancient world.
So let's put up our benchmark timeline again and we are going to see that Egyptian history is built on five assumptions. It is like a five legged table. In the development of Egyptology assumption was made at the very beginning when they discovered the Rosetta Stone after Napoleon led his armies down through the Mediterranean through Egypt and through Israel and they discovered the Rosetta Stone and Champollion translated it; the assumption was made that Rameses II was the Pharaoh of the Exodus. The reason they did that was because this was a biblically based culture in Victorian England, early 19th century, early 1800s. They were a biblically based culture and they wanted to find an evidence that substantiated the Scriptures. So they are coming at it from good motives.
Well, when they read Exodus they saw that the Israelites built the storage cites of Rameses and Python and when they built those cities they named one Ramses, it was typical to name a city after the Pharaoh at the time. So they just assume that it if they built a city called Rameses that it was built after a Pharaoh named Rameses. Rameses II was one of the greatest Pharaohs of the Egyptians history. He had tremendous amount of power, so they automatically assumed that this must be the Pharaoh of the Exodus, a false assumption, but that governed their assumption. They assumed that Rameses II was the Pharaoh of the oppression. It was later that they had to modify that and change it to the Pharaoh of the Exodus. That is why when you watch the Ten Commandments the Pharaoh in the movie, Yul Brynner, is Rameses. It goes all the way back to this assumption that was made in the early 1800s.
2. The second thing is Ashurbanipal invades the Saitiis the in 654 BC. We are going to discover that that is uncontestable and there is a tremendous amount of evidence to correlate that and that is the oldest certain date in history. Anything beyond 654 BC is highly debatable.
3. The third plank, the third leg on the table of Egyptian chronology is the equation of the Egyptian Pharaoh Shoshenq I with the biblical mentioned Pharaoh Shishak, 925 BC. 925 BC the Bible records that a Pharaoh named Shishak invades the land under the kingship of Rehoboam in the Southern Kingdom. So when Egyptologist and Champollion 1830s-1840s found the evidence of Shoshenq I, they immediately saw the similarity between Shoshenq and Shishak and correlated the two.
The problem is that lexical evidence today has found that when the 'sh' (sound) goes into Hebrew it goes from a 'sha' (sound) to 'cha' and when in Hebrew sh goes to Egyptian it goes to a 'shi'. So Shoshenq would be Soshak in Hebrew. You would drop the 'sh.' There are other reasons; the evidence of his battles are so messed up with the biblical evidence. But that was set in concrete and is an undergirding assumption of all of this in chronology. Of course, there is what is called the Everett's Calendar, which is a very based upon astronomical observations in ancient records and according to the Everett's Calendar they place the 18th dynasty of Egypt as beginning about 1550 BC. Based upon that chronological assumption they dated Rameses at 1279 BC. Hence they came up with the date of the Exodus at 1279 BC. However, biblical information seems to suggest the date of 1446 BC. And that is why we have a problem.
Because the Everett's Calendar is false and off, the Rameses date is off. There is plenty of evidence to indicate that Shoshenq I is not to be equated with Shishak. Everything after 664 BC is faulty. Now I have really tried to simply a lot of information. If you are interested in it I have a two volume video called Pharaohs and Kings done by David Rohl who was a contemporary Egyptologist who was challenged and put forth a very viable scheme of re-dating everything in Egyptology. He is not the only one to do it, but this was done on the Discovery Channel and it was pretty interesting. If you are interested in that you can ask and I will loan it to you.
Now this is how it works out. Here is our benchmark time, 966 BC, when we know that the temple was dedicated. 1446 BC is the date for the Exodus. 1526 BC is roughly the date for the birth of Moses. If you take conventional Egyptian chronology that you will find in Cambridge Ancient History, the new kingdom dates are roughly from Amos I in 1570 BC. I have two sets of dates on the timeline…. Now Kitchen comes along, Kitchen has published a luminous work in the late 80s where he re-dated the entire New Kingdom and his dates are moved up almost 30 years to 1539 to 1514 BC. If these dates change 5-10 years off of the dates in Cambridge Ancient History then when people come along and say, well Hatshepsut was the mother of Moses, Tuthmosis III was the Pharaoh of the oppression. Amenhotep II was the Pharaoh of the Exodus; if things even change 5 years all of that is wrong. My basic point is that we have to be very careful in identifying the biblical events with certain secular individuals because we don't have enough information.
Amos is the first Pharaoh; Hatshepsut is usually suggested to be Pharaoh's daughter who too Moses from the bulrushes; and then Tuthmosis III who is also her son and would be the adopted brother of Moses and probably the Pharaoh of the oppression and if not the Pharaoh of the Exodus. As you can see the Cambridge would make the reign would be 1504 to 1450, which would fit nicely because the Scripture suggest that the Pharaoh, after Moses killed the Egyptian overseer, that the Pharaoh who was trying to arrest him, which caused Moses to flee to Midian, that that Pharaoh died just before Moses returned to Egypt. So we come to Tuthmosis and we see a lengthy reign and he dies just before Moses returns, but wait a minute – Kitchen has re-dated Tuthmosis and now he is in 1479 – 1425 BC and that doesn't fit any of the biblical data at all. But then Kitchen is such a late date of 1279 BC for the Exodus.
But what David Rohl has done and other have done this too. He goes in and says and every one accepts it. He says it is the 21st or 22nd dynasties of Egypt did not follow one another, but there was one Pharaoh Thebes and one in Memphis, so they overlapped, were contemporaneous. Well they have done the same thing with the 25th and 26th dynasties. If they overlap instead of follow one another then you take out about 200 years. Rohl has worked through a lot of information. It is really fascinating reading, but he takes almost 350 years out of Egyptian chronology. Well what does that do? Watch carefully! We are going to have a little animation on the overhead… (it visually moved it down on Pastor Dean's screen..)
So the 18th dynasty in Cambridge Ancient History is right in the middle of this whole Egyptian period. But if Rohl is correct in taking 350 years out, then the Exodus occurs before the 18th dynasty. And so those people that were bending over backwards to try and identify with Moses and the Pharaoh and Moses' mother really didn't live at that time at all. This is helpful too because one of the problems with Egyptology is that you have all this correlation to the Bible between Egyptian history and what happens to the Israelites. And yet when you go and look in the 18th dynasty and you look in the 12th dynasty and you look in some of these other places for evidence of the Jews being there you don't find it. So people say, well the Jews just made all that up. Well if you are not looking in the right time place you are not going to find any evidence. If your chronological scheme is off you are not going to find any evidence.
Rohl comes up with a date with a Pharaoh called Dudimose, which he identifies as Josephus does as the Pharaoh of the Exodus. Dudimose was in the 12th dynasty. But there are still problems with that, so I just try to avoid all of that. So that is just our little chronological sidetrack to see what God has done in protecting Israel. Don't get off track trying to identify who the Pharaoh of the oppression was, who the Pharaoh of the Exodus was, who Moses Egyptian mother was. You will read that in a lot of conservative things, but there are a lot of problems. I think it is fascinating information and it is very important for us to understand that the Bible does place these things in a particular timeframe and if we misidentify that timeframe, what happens is that we build a case that the mother of Moses was Hatshepsut and that Tuthmosis was the Pharaoh and that proves to be false, what have we done? We have set the Bible up for attack and criticism. So we need to be very careful and very cautious in identifying these events. We just don't know enough. In fact, the entire 12th dynasty of the Pharaoh's is known from only one scrap of papyri. It contains eight names of the forty rulers in the 12th dynasty. That is how small the evidence is that we are building these mountains on. So we have to be very, very careful.
We have seen that there was a miraculous growth of the nation of Israel in Egypt, a miraculous preservation of the nation. There was a miraculous birth of the nation. Egypt is a reluctant mother. When it was time to give birth Egypt didn't want to give birth. Egypt doesn't want to release the Jews; so they go through the travail of the ten plagues like labor pain and God brings on these labor pains to force the Pharaoh to release the Jews from captivity.
4. Then fourth there was a miraculous protection of the new baby. Once she was born she was utterly defenseless. These were not trained military men, they did not have weapons and the mother now wants to kill the baby and mounts the army to destroy the Jews.
Let's look at a map. This is a map of the area that we are concerned with. I am going to show you some of the issues that are here. There is a lot of controversy over the route of the Exodus as well. If you look at this area here on the overhead, this is the Delta Region and Goshen is identified as being probably in this area here. When the Jews left, they headed out across the land toward the Red Sea, the Sea of Reeds. They cross the Red Sea and head South down into the Sinai Peninsula. Now we do not know where Sinai is. There is the traditional location that is at the tip of the peninsula, virtually nobody really believes that. No archaeologist worth his salt believes that is the historic sight. There are a lot of problems with it and a lot of suggestions with it. One of the recent suggestions that have come out is a book called The Gold of Exodus. These were gold seekers who were looking for the Egyptian treasures that the Israelites took out of Egypt with them…. It is real popular, but none of the archaeologist at the Pretribulation Conference bought the theory…. (More on the map...)
God's acquisition of His people, this miraculous redemption brings them out from the nation and this is tied into the tenth plague, which was the death of the oldest son. It was through the death of Pharaoh's oldest son that God actually was going to redeem His people. We see all of a sudden the tremendous analogy to salvation; it was through the death of God's Son that He was going to redeem all of mankind. What delivered from the death angel in Exodus chapter twelve is the ritual of Passover that God explained to them. So Passover must be understood and Passover is the background to the Lord's Table. Passover must be understood in the context of the tenth plague.
It is at this time that the entire world of Egypt is under a death sentence of God. The oldest son will die unless the Passover ritual is followed precisely. The Passover ritual is the only way to have life; otherwise God will kill the firstborn from Pharaoh's house to the handmaiden at the mill; that is what the Scriptures says; from one end of the country to the other; the highest in the land to the lowest born in the land. Whether you are a Jew or you are an Egyptian God is going to kill the firstborn in every household unless Israel is released. Of course God provided a redemption solution to Israel so that she could avoid this death sentence and it is a picture of their deliverance from death and from slavery; it is a picture of our deliverance from the slavery of sin. It portrays what God has done in saving us from sin. So it is only as the Israelites pass through this event nationally is it a picture of their redemption. At the heart of the ritual is the lamb; the lamb pictures the death of Jesus Christ.
Remember, John the Baptist, when he saw Jesus come said, "Behold the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world," John 1; 29. It is the lamb that pictures the death of Jesus Christ. 1n 1 Corinthians 5:7 we read, "Clean out the old leaven" that is part of the ceremony of Passover. At the beginning they were to sweep all the leaven out of the house because leaven is a picture of sin and so as a picture of cleansing of sin takes place through the death of the lamb. So, "Clean out the old leaven," Paul says, "So that you may become a new lump just as you are in fact unleavened." This is a reference to positional truth, the cleansing we have at the point of salvation. And then Paul says, "For Christ our Passover" Paschal literally, it means Passover Lamb, "also has been sacrificed." So the Old Testament Passover lamb is visual aid given to help us understand the dynamics of our salvation.
Turn in your Bibles to Exodus 12:1-2 "Now the LORD said to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, 'This month shall be the beginning of months for you; it is to be the first month of the year to you'." So this establishes the ceremonial calendar for Israel. This is the month of Nisan in Babylonian rendering, which is roughly March or April. Exodus 12:3 "Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying, 'On the tenth of this month they are each one to take a lamb," so there is very precise instructions on the ritual. The lamb is a type, a type in the Bible means an example from the Greek word TUPAS, which means an example. So you have a type, which is an Old Testament figure that means a New Testament truth. So the lamb is the type and the antitype is Jesus Christ the Lamb of God. The altar is a type of the Cross. Here we have the type of the selection of the lamb on the tenth of the month. Jesus entered into Jerusalem in the triumphal entry, what we call Palm Sunday, which was probably Palm Monday. It was not on Sunday. Jesus entered on the tenth, and it is on the fourteenth that Jesus is then taken to the Cross; so all of these dates are specifically fulfilled in the chronology of Christ. "On the tenth of this month each one is to take a lamb for themselves, according to their father's households, a lamb for each household."
Exodus 12:4 "Now if the household is too small for a lamb, then he and his neighbor nearest to his house are to take one according to the number of persons in them; according to what each man should eat, you are to divide the lamb." The first thing we need to observe is that the killing of this lamb portrays our salvation, a picture of our salvation. This is given in the first seven verses of Exodus 12. The eating of the lamb portrays our sanctification. This is covered in Exodus 12:8-11. So the killing of the lamb is a picture of our salvation and we have read the passage in Exodus 12:3-4 and there are two things that we should notice from there:
1. The supply is sufficient for everyone who wants to be delivered. There is plenty of lamb. The supply is sufficient for everyone who wants to be delivered. This relates to the doctrine of unlimited atonement, that Jesus Christ's death is sufficient to save every human being who ever lived in human history; Christ died as a substitute the Scripture says for all, 1 Timothy 4:10 says that Christ died for all especially those who are saved. There is a clear teaching in Scripture that Christ's death is sufficient for all but it is effectual or efficacious only for those who apply it, only to those who apply it. That is what we see here. There are plenty of lambs but the sacrifice is effective only to those who applied the blood to the doorposts of the house.
2. The supply is valuable; it is not to be wasted; it is not to be taken for granted. If the family was too small; Josephus tells us that a lamb would feed about eleven adults. So if the family is too small, go share with the family next door. Don't waste it; it is precious, valuable. Of course the New Testament refers to the blood of Christ as being precious blood of Christ; it is more valuable than gold and silver. So the lamb is very valuable and not to be treated lightly or wasted. Remember this is the idea in the Abrahamic Covenant that when God said "Those who curse you I will curse," that first word for "curse" we saw means to "treat lightly; to treat as if just something common," Hebrews 10:29 has the warning, "How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace?" So we are not to treat God's grace lightly. There is divine discipline for those who do so. The next thing we see is the standard for the lamb in Exodus 12:5-6 "Your lamb shall be an unblemished male a year old" this refers to the impeccability of Jesus Christ for He was without sin. He is undiminished deity and true humanity who was born of a virgin so He did not inherit the sin nature from Adam and because He was not born as a child of Adam but through the virgin Adam's original sin was not imputed to Him and so He was unblemished. It is an unblemished male, a year old that is mature; "you may take it from the sheep or from the goats. You shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month" so you take it on the tenth, keep it until the fourteenth "then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel is to kill it at twilight." It is at twilight that Jesus died, sometime between three and six in the afternoon. At twelve and three they are sacrificing lambs in the temple and probably not long after three o'clock Jesus died. They had to have His body down off the Cross and they had to have Him in the grave before the sun set. There were very precise instructions here and it is fulfilled exactly as Scripture states.
1. First of all we see that the lamb was perfect. Exodus 12:5-6; Leviticus 22 The lamb is isolated and proven; it is demonstrated between the tenth day when it is chosen and the fourteenth day when it is sacrificed. It is tested, evaluated to make sure it did not have spots or blemishes. This is the same way our Lord's life was laid open to all for observation during His three years of public ministry.
The slaying of the lamb itself, Exodus 12:6-7, "You shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month, then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel is to kill it at twilight.7 Moreover, they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses in which they eat it. The whole assembly of the congregation of Israel is to kill it at twilight. So we have the time, twilight; it was at exactly that time that Jesus fulfilled the type.
2. Secondly, no bones were to be broken. This is in Exodus 12:46 "It is to be eaten in a single house; you are not to bring forth any of the flesh outside of the house, nor are you to break any bone of it." Notice the emphasis, you don't break the bone. This was to set up a type and also indicate a respect for the body of Christ because His human body housed the incarnate God and the Father treats the physical body of the Lord Jesus Christ with respect. Isaiah 53:9 "His grave was assigned with wicked men, yet He was with a rich man in His death, because He had done no violence, nor was there any deceit in His mouth." It was prophesied that there would be no broken bones. He would be buried with the rich man.
"But coming to Jesus, when they saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs, John 19:36, for these things came to pass to fulfill the Scripture, 'NOT A BONE OF HIM SHALL BE BROKEN'." Psalm 34:19 reads "Many are the afflictions of the righteous; But the LORD delivers him out of them all." He keeps all His bones, not one of them is broken. So the clear evidence from the Old Testament is that there would be no bones broken.
3. What was to happen is described in the sprinkling of the blood in Exodus 12:7 "Moreover, they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses in which they eat it." Now, what does this look like? Here is a doorpost and here is the lintel. They were to take the blood and smear it on each doorpost and then over the top. If you connect the dots you get a Cross. It was very symbolic; representing what will eventually take place. Not that they would have understood all of this, they may have, they may have been more revelation along with this, but it is clearly to be fulfilled in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Now there were three parts to the meal.
1. The first seven verses of Exodus, the sacrifice of the lamb portrays portray our salvation; the meal itself portrays our sanctification, the spiritual life of the believer.
The blood has been applied and we as a family of believers are inside the house now as believers. We are saved and are secure and it really doesn't matter how we feel when we are inside the house. Think about that night, the screaming, and the wailing that you might have heard. Whatever else may have gone along with it? You are inside the house and you know that the Angel of Death is passing along. Will pass over your house? You may have doubts, you may be scared, it doesn't matter, you are inside the house, and the blood is applied. It doesn't matter how you feel; it doesn't matter how many dots you have; it doesn't matter how scared you are; it doesn't matter what your emotions are; you are still saved. You are in the house. Now, in the meal they would eat the flesh that same night roasted with fire and eaten with unleavened bread and bitter herbs. So the first part of the meal represents the roasted lamb. They were to eat the entire lamb, which represents feeding on the entire person of Christ.
Remember, we saw that same imagery in John 6:53-56 when Jesus said, "He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides with Me." That is not talking about salvation that is taking about ongoing fellowship and spiritual nourishment. So eating the roasted lamb represents feeding upon all of the doctrines related to the person of Jesus Christ. We are spiritually to meditate, to contemplate, to study every aspect of the person of Jesus Christ, the hypostatic union, the KENOSIS, His divine nature. We are completely saturated with the mind of Christ according 1 Corinthians 2:16, "But we have the mind of Christ." We are too think like He thinks; we are to react like He would react; we are to live as He lived and have the character He exemplified; and that can only be accomplished by internalizing His Word.
2. That is represented by the second thing that was eaten that night, the Matzah, the unleavened bread. "But He answered and said, 'It is written, 'MAN SHALL NOT LIVE ON BREAD ALONE, BUT ON EVERY WORD THAT PROCEEDS OUT OF THE MOUTH OF GOD,' " Matthew 4:4. Now the Matzah not only represents the Word of God but it also represents a particular attitude. Exodus 12:31-34 "Then he called for Moses and Aaron at night and said, 'Rise up, get out from among my people, both you and the sons of Israel; and go, worship the LORD, as you have said'." This is the Pharaoh telling Moses to take the Hebrews out of the land. "Take both your flocks and your herds, as you have said, and go, and bless Me also.' The Egyptians urged the people, to send them out of the land in haste, for they said, 'We will all be dead.' So the people took their dough before it was leavened, with their kneading bowls bound up in the clothes on their shoulders." The point is that they are in a hurry. They are leaving the old life and are going to the new life. They don't have time to leaven the bread, wait for it to rise and go through the whole process, they have some place to go. It a picture for us, what I teach called the personal sense of eternal destiny. It is recognition that we have a new destiny in Christ. That is where we are headed from salvation; don't look back to the old life, focus on the new life. We have a new direction, a new calling, and we are to leave the old life without making any provision or preparation. We are not to compromise with it; we are to go forward. It is a new life, it is lived on a new basis with new power, new provision, new promises and principles, and we are to learn what that is all about and advance in that direction. The bread represents the fact that they are in a hurry to leave the old and go to the new, just as we should be in the Christian life.
3. The third element of the meal is bitter herbs. This is a reminder of their slavery in Egypt, and to us it should be a recognition that there will still be hardship and suffering in this life. There is always suffering involved with our identification with Christ. If we are to be different, think differently from what we were, then we will suffer for it, people will question us, they might ridicule us. Christians have been thrown in prison; they have been martyred for their faith. That is what the bitter herbs represent; there will still be suffering associated with this spiritual life. And last, it pictures the fact that we should live our lives as if we are going somewhere. That is what they are doing; they are eating that meal standing up with their staffs in their hands ready to go somewhere. The image there for us is that we should live our new life as if we are ready to go somewhere. We are advancing in the spiritual life and we are putting behind us the old things. 2 Corinthians 5:17 "Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come." We have a new position in Christ. We have a new life. We are to advance in go forward.
With our heads bowed and our eyes closed. Father, we do thank you for the opportunity to look at Your Word this morning to see the tremendous things that are there and how You have worked throughout history to bring about our salvation and redemption. We pray if there is anyone here this morning who is without faith, without hope, without eternal life, uncertain of their salvation, that they would take this opportunity, right now and make that certain. Jesus Christ is the Lamb of God Who takes away the sins of the world. All that is required of salvation is faith alone in Christ alone. It doesn't demand moral reformation; it doesn't demand going to church; it doesn't demand giving money or anything else. All it asks is that we receive a free gift, something that was done for us on our behalf. Jesus Christ died as our substitute. For salvation is by faith alone in Christ alone. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved. Father we thank you for the things we have learned may we be challenged and encouraged by them. We pray this in Jesus' Name. Amen.