Yesterday, we talked about the Patriarch Era, which was all about how the nation of Israel began. Today, we’re going to examine how God freed the Israelites from their Egyptian slavery, and how the Israelites were able to head toward the land that was promised to Abraham under the leadership of a man named Moses. Anders calls this the Exodus Era.
Anders makes a point of mentioning that the reality of the exodus wasn’t anything like its usual movie portrayals. It involved the mass movement of about 3 million people. Remember, the Hebrews had grown so great in number while they were living in Egypt that Pharaoh feared they could overthrow him and the overall Egyptian way of life. That is why the Israelites found themselves being forced into slavery. It’s also why Pharaoh was on a mission to kill all the Hebrew baby boys. The people had to be subdued.
As is the case with the other chapters, we start with a brief review of what we’ve learned so far about the other historical Old Testament eras, and then we build on it.
Then Anders breaks the Exodus Era down into four major events:
- The Law
- Kadesh Barnea
- 40 Years of Wandering
And then he gives some background information about each event, which is especially helpful if you’re new to the story. It’s also a good refresher for those who are familiar with the story.
Then these event descriptions are followed by, of course, another self test.
I didn’t learn a lot of new information in this chapter, just because I’m fairly familiar with the Exodus story and the story of what happens after that – Israel’s disobedience and everybody being kept out of the Promised Land because of it (except for Joshua and Caleb). But, like I said, this was an excellent review even if you are familiar with the story.
And I really appreciated Anders’s emphasis on the massive size of the actual group involved in the exodus. I’d read the numbers before, but they’d never really sunk in. I still had the picture of the movie version of the exodus running through my head (not nearly as impressive).
Three million people all moving at one time is a whole lot more than what is usually depicted when people try to visually recreate the exodus. Basically, we’re talking everyone living in the cities of Dallas and Houston all moving together at the same time. Kind of amazing, when you think about it!
Tomorrow, we’re going to look at what happened after the exodus … and after Moses died. Joshua took over as the new leader of the people … and he led them in the conquest of the Promised Land, Canaan. It’s going to be awesome!