The wayyyyyy too brief overview of Exodus
I promise I won’t say every book of the Bible is action-packed, but yet again, Exodus is! Exodus starts the story of Moses leading the Israelites on their journey to the promise land. There are tons of golden nuggets in this book of the bible for us millennials, Gen-X, Gen Z, etc. Christians that we can use in our everyday lives. But first, here’s a usual way too brief overview of Exodus.
Exodus picks up where Genesis left off. The Israelites (Joseph’s brothers and family) are living in Egypt and continue to multiply. After Joseph’s death and a new Pharoah comes to the throne, he enslaves the Israelites.
Afraid of the significant number of Israelites, the Pharoah decides to kill every baby boy, but one escapes the wrath and ends up being found by the Pharoah’s daughter and raised in the Kingdom.
When Moses killed an abusive slave owner, he fled Egypt.
The hero must always be defeated and return in a good story, right? And that’s what Moses did. Four decades later, Moses with the help of his brother Aaron (more on this later), journies back to Egypt to free his people, the Israelites.
Moses/Aaron muster the famous words in front of Pharoah, “Let my people go!” but Pharaoh refuses. So God uses Moses to send down the ten plagues on to the Egypts, and the final tenth plague ends up killing Pharaoh’s firstborn son (this is the start of the Passover). Pharaoh then allows them to leave.
The Israelites celebrate and head out on their journey in the desert towards Canaan, the promise land. While this happens, Pharaoh changes his mind and decides to send an army after the Israelites to recapture and kill them.
This is where Moses and the Lord famously part the Red Sea as the army draws close, allowing the Israelites to pass through dry while the Egyptian soldiers chased behind. But once the Israelites were through, Moses put his arms down and splash! The entire Egyptian army was washed away in the Red Sea.
The Israelites then make their way to Mount Sinai on foot.
As they reach Mount Sinai, the Israelites camp there as Moses ascends the mountain to speak with God.
On top of Mount Sinai, God creates a covenant, a promise, with Moses and the people of Israel. For if his people obey his laws, he will give them the promise land and be with them to ensure success and a beautiful life after being enslaved. Here is where God gave all the laws that the Israelites are to follow: the most important being the ten commandments.
As Moses comes down from the mountain, he sees that the entire camp has already turned on the Lord and started worshiping a golden calf. God’s definitely not happy with this and is about to burn the whole camp and everyone in it. But Moses pleads with him to give his people another chance.
With that, God has them create a portable tabernacle, church, or holy spot, so to speak. So the Israelites do as he says, and they follow his laws so the Lord will continue to bless them as they journey across the desert to the promise land.
And that’s the way too brief overview of Exodus. You can also check out Overview Bible as they have some tremendous high-level content on each book of the Bible or decide to dive in yourself!
But let’s dive into how to use these stories in our every day lives as young adults in the 21st century!
Big Takeaway #1 – Even the greatest leaders can’t do it alone
Exodus 6:30 & 7:1 – But Moses said to the lord, “Since I speak with faltering lips, why would Pharaoh listen to me?” Then the Lord said to Moses, “See, I have made you like God to Pharaoh, and your brother Aaron will be your prophet.”
This verse comes directly after Moses argued with the Lord. He had self-doubt as many of us do, asking “Why me?”, “I’m not worthy,” “I’m not qualified.”
As you can see, Moses, possibly the greatest leader of all time, still has self-doubt and weaknesses. And he isn’t even a great speaker. So it’s okay for us to have weaknesses and flaws. It’s time we embrace those weaknesses and admit to them.
Only then can the Lord help fill those gaps and provide others that are strong where we are weak.
This passage also goes to show that no one can do great things alone. Steve Jobs couldn’t have created Apple without Steve Woz, Jordan would be nothing without Pippen, and Moses needed Aaron.
We were meant and built to do great things together, not apart. We were meant for relationships in business, church, school, or wherever we are in life. But relationships that lift us up. That helps us towards our ultimate goal and ultimately brings strength to a part where we are weak.
The big takeaways for us young adults from Exodus 6:30 & 7:1
We got two big takeaways from this verse and story in the Bible here.
Number one, it’s okay to have self-doubt, it’s okay to have weaknesses. So many times, we put on a strong face, act as nothing bothers us, and we aren’t scared of anything. But you’re not able to get the help from God or others that you need in order to overcome those weaknesses. When we admit our faults and weaknesses, because none of us are perfect, we’re able to get the help we need and go further faster.
And number two is that you can’t do this alone. No one is a self-made man, including the greatest leader of Biblical times, Moses. He still needed his brother to cover for his weaknesses and give him strength. Surround yourself with Godly people on the same mission as you that will continue to lift you up and push you farther. If you can’t find them, ask God to place him there for you.
Big Takeaway #2 – Seek the Lord first, and he’ll always meet your worldly needs
Exodus 16:4 “Then the Lord said to Moses, “I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people will go out each day and gather enough for that day (no more). In this way, I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions.”
Now let’s give a little context here on bread raining from the sky. #getthatbread
As the Israelites were journeying through the desert, naturally, they became hungry and thirsty, running low on food. The hangry Israelites were mad at Moses for leading them out of Egypt to starve in the desert.
Moses brought the Lord these issues, and this is what the Lord spoke back, “I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people will go out each day and gather enough for that day (no more). In this way, I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions.”
This is God basically saying if your people truly trust me and follow my instructions, I will bless them and provide for them food every single day (out of nowhere may I add!). But to show that they trust me, they must not grab more than they need for a single day. They must believe that I will bring them food tomorrow and store nothing.
And what do ya know??
God doesn’t lie. For anyone that grabbed and stored food, it ended up being eating by maggots. But every single morning, there was a fresh layer of bread waiting for them on the ground to pick for that day.
If God can provide for thousands of starving hangry people every single day for 40 years, don’t you think he can provide for you as well?
The big takeaway for us young adults from Exodus 16:4
Whether it be financially, emotionally, a relationship, or food like the Israelites, God can and will provide for your Earthly needs. It’s said that he’ll never put you through something that you can’t handle. And each situation he knows that you can come out victorious. But you need to seek him and trust him first.
It’s easy to get sucked into following some influencer on Instagram, some business guru, or Gary V shouting at you that it’s all about your hard work. And yes, you need to work hard and sacrifice but do it in God’s name and trust that he will provide when you put in the work and seek him first. Listen and follow him, not some “life coach” shouting at you about how you can travel the world and make $10k/month.
If God can take care and provide every single day for thousands of people out of nowhere. Think about how amazing he can provide for you financially, mentally, relationshiply, and more even you decide to trust and seek him first over yourself and others.