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We will begin this lesson in Exodus 14:1 “And the LORD spake unto

Moses, saying,” Exodus 14:2 “Speak unto the children of Israel, that

they turn and encamp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea,

over against Baal-zephon: before it shall ye encamp by the sea.”


“Pihahiroth” means mouth of the gorges. We know that God was

instructing Moses to tell the people to stop there before the Red Sea

so that God could be magnified in this exit from Egypt (type of the

world) to their promised land. “Migdol” is the Canaanits word for

Watchtower. We can, possibly, assume that this was an outpost to keep

watch against an invasion from this side of Egypt.


Exodus 14:3 “For Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel, They

[are] entangled in the land, the wilderness hath shut them in.”


We need to remember, again, that this was close to 3 million

people (by all estimates). They had changed their directions on

instructions from God, and it now appeared to Pharaoh, that they were

cornered. The Red Sea was on one side and Pharaoh saw an opportunity

to attack and destroy them, while they were trapped in these close

quarters. In all reality, God had put them in this impossible

situation, so He could save them with a miracle. We are like these

Israelites many times. We will not cry out to God, until there is an

impossible situation. Miracles only happen when there is an

impossibility with man; otherwise, it would not be a miracle. This

whole scenario was set up to glorify God, and to teach the Israelites to

depend on God. This lesson was not only hard for these Israelites to

learn, but Christians, as well. For out Christianity to work, it must

be God with the miracles in our lives.  Salvation, as well as healing

can be classified as a miracle, because we do not deserve it.  God

saved us, in spite of ourselves.


Exodus 14:4 “And I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, that he shall

follow after them; and I will be honoured upon Pharaoh, and upon all

his host; that the Egyptians may know that I [am] the LORD. And they

did so.”


We see, here, that God was not totally through with Pharaoh. Notice,

that God had total control over this evil Pharaoh, even though Pharaoh

was lost. God hardened Pharaoh’s heart. The Pharaoh of Egypt was treated

as a god. God was about to topple this false god of Egypt. God, here,

was not just proving to these Israelites who He was, but this Scripture

said, so that the Egyptians would know. There will come a time when all

the world will know who Jesus is, and every knee will bow and every

tongue confess. Philippians 2:10 “That at the name of Jesus every knee

should bow, of [things] in heaven, and [things] in earth, and [things]

under the earth;” Philippians 2:11 “And [that] every tongue should

confess that Jesus Christ [is] Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

You see, God required total loyalty of these Israelites, as Jesus

requires total loyalty of the Christians. Notice, the last of verse 4

just simply said, “And they did so”.


Exodus 14:5  “And it was told the king of Egypt that the people

fled: and the heart of Pharaoh and of his servants was turned against

the people, and they said, Why have we done this, that we have let

Israel go from serving us?”


The shock of the loss of the firstborn had worn off, and they soon

forgot that God fights for Israel. the whole of Pharaoh’s people had,

now, become alarmed at the loss of such a vast work force (near an

estimated 600,000). They saw this, perhaps, as a terrible blow to

their economy; and even worse, it gave a signal of their weakness to

the surrounding countries. Again, here, we see God about to strike a

terrible blow, not only on the false god of Egypt, but also, on those

who worshipped this false god. Worship of a false god, then and now, will

bring the wrath of God.


Exodus 14:6 “And he made ready his chariot, and took his people

with him:”


Some estimate that Pharaoh’s army was, perhaps, about 100,000 men.

Israel had many times that many, but very few weapons, and no training

for battle. Israel would, also, be at a disadvantage, because their

children were with them. Pharaoh, possibly, wanted to scare them into

surrendering to him.


Exodus 14:7 “And he took six hundred chosen chariots, and all the

chariots of Egypt, and captains over every one of them.”


These 600 chariots were used to estimate 100,000 soldiers. Most of the soldiers were on foot. It appears, here, that Pharaoh not only used the 600 chosen chariots, but that he used the private citizens’ chariots, as well.


Exodus 14:8 “And the LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh king of

Egypt, and he pursued after the children of Israel: and the children

of Israel went out with an high hand.”


We see that these Israelites had not gone out of Egypt in shame;

but had left Egypt as the victor, even though God had won the victory

for them.


Exodus 14:9 “But the Egyptians pursued after them, all the horses

[and] chariots of Pharaoh, and his horsemen, and his army, and

overtook them encamping by the sea, beside Pi-hahiroth, before Baal-



You can see, here, clearly in verse 9, that all of Pharaoh’s army

came to get these Israelites. It was not just those with chariots.

Shure enough, they had encamped where God told Moses to take them, and

there was no place to retreat, but into the sea.


Exodus 14:10  “And when Pharaoh drew nigh, the children of Israel

lifted up their eyes, and, behold, the Egyptians marched after them;

and they were sore afraid: and the children of Israel cried out unto

the LORD.”


Speaking of soon forgetting, can you believe these Israelites

had so soon forgotten that God brought them out by the ten plagues He

brought on Egypt? Fear is not of God. Fear is the opposite of faith.

At least, they knew who to cry to for help. They cried out to God for


Rev. Dr. M. Hamilton Stevens