Scripture: “Then Moses said to the people, “Commemorate this day, the day you came out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery, because the LORD brought you out of it with a mighty hand. Eat nothing containing yeast.  Today, in the month of Aviv, you are leaving.” (Exodus 13:3-4)

Observation: The ten plagues have occurred.  Pharaoh’s heart is hardened.  There is a wake of God’s destruction in an unbelieving nation. And God’s people are free.  After 430 years in captivity (Ex. 12:40), the people of God are freed from slavery.  They have made unleavened bread and eaten it in haste, and they have left Egypt with wealth as the Lord made the Egyptians give them their articles of silver, gold and clothing.  But the words that strike me are the words of Moses to the Hebrews: “Today, you are leaving!”  430 years later, dozens of generations, and just like that, they are now set free. After years of bondage, with a simple statement, God tells them about their entirely new reality – “you are leaving!”  They undoubtedly had prayed for the day, waited for the day, hoped for the day, and perhaps given up hope for the day… but now it is here… “Today, you are leaving.”

Application: Why is it so hard to believe that God can set us free with a word?  If he created light with a word, and spoke the universe into existence with a word, why can’t he set captives free with a word?  I imagine that there were many of the Hebrews that scoffed at Moses’ message from God, “Today, you are leaving.”  And yet it was God’s will.  God did not ask, He did not bargain, He did not call them into a committee to deliberate, He simply declared “Today you are leaving!”  I wonder how hard it was for them to believe that it really was happening.  I wonder how frightened they were to leave Egypt – their familiar land of chains.  And I wonder how difficult it is for the forgiven sinner to leave their life of bondage.  They are just as much a slave, and also just as familiar with its constriction.  I wonder how challenging it is to believe the message of God, when He says to you and me, “Today, you are leaving” … when He declares to us that we are no longer the property of the devil.  How hard is it to accept the spoken Word of God that assures us that sin and slavery is no longer our home, and that today He is setting us free and leading us out?  Because that is God’s Word to you and me today, no matter what bondage we find ourselves held captive by – “Today, you are leaving!”

PrayerFather, thank you for speaking your Word of freedom to me today!  Thank you for declaring to me through your Son Jesus that I am free to leave my land of slavery.  Help me to trust you completely that you are calling me out of the darkness into your marvelous light – Today.  Amen!