Today’s devotion comes from Exodus 13:17-22.

“Now when Pharaoh had let the people go, God did not lead them by the way of the land of the Philistines, even though it was near;  for God said, “The people might change their minds when they see war, and return to Egypt.”  Hence God led the people around by the way of the wilderness to the Red Sea;  and the sons of Israel went up in martial array from the land of Egypt.  Moses took the bones of Joseph with him, for he had made the sons of Israel solemnly swear, saying, “God will surely take care of you, and you shall carry my bones from here with you.”  Then they set out from Succoth and camped in Etham on the edge of the wilderness.  The LORD was going before them in a pillar of cloud by day to lead them on the way, and in a pillar of fire by night to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night.  He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people.”  Exodus 13:17-22.

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Today’s Scripture leads us to meditate on how God led Israel and how God likewise leads us.

First, we meditate on how God led Israel the long way from Egypt to Canaan through the wilderness, rather than by the shorter way through the land of the Philistines.  “…  for God said, “The people might change their minds when they see war, and return to Egypt.”  Verse 17. 

Likewise, when we experience delays in our progress, we can trust God that He has a good purpose for such delays.

“The steps of a man are established by the LORD,
And He delights in his way.” Psalm 37:23.

“8 I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you should go;
I will counsel you with My eye upon you.
9 Do not be as the horse or as the mule which have no understanding,
Whose trappings include bit and bridle to hold them in check,
Otherwise they will not come near to you.” Psalm 32:8-9.

Second, we meditate on how God led Israel in a pillar of cloud by day and in a pillar of fire by night to give them light.  “The LORD was going before them in a pillar of cloud by day to lead them on the way, and in a pillar of fire by night to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night.”  Verse 21.

Likewise, God leads us, guides us, and goes with us day and night, wherever we go.  

For You are my rock and my fortress;
For Your name’s sake You will lead me and guide me.
” Psalm 31:3.

“Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”  Joshua 1:9.

“7 Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?
8 If I ascend to heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there.
9 If I take the wings of the dawn,
If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea,
10 Even there Your hand will lead me,
And Your right hand will lay hold of me.” Psalm 139:7-10.

Likewise, God gives us the light of His Word to lead us.

“Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.” Psalm 119:105.

“2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
And in His law he meditates day and night.
3 He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water,
Which yields its fruit in its season
And its leaf does not wither;
And in whatever he does, he prospers.” Psalm 1:2-3.

Likewise, God gives us the Holy Spirit to guide us in all truth and to teach us and remind us of all things.   

“But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth;  for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak;  and He will disclose to you what is to come.”  John 16:13.

“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.”  John 14:26.  

Likewise, God gives us peace.  

“Peace I leave with you;  My peace I give to you;  not as the world gives do I give to you.  Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.”  John 14:27. 

Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | July 31, 2022

“because of what the LORD did for me”

Today’s devotion comes from Exodus 13:3-10.

“Moses said to the people, “Remember this day in which you went out from Egypt, from the house of slavery;  for by a powerful hand the LORD brought you out from this place.  And nothing leavened shall be eaten.  On this day in the month of Abib, you are about to go forth.  It shall be when the LORD brings you to the land of the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Amorite, the Hivite and the Jebusite, which He swore to your fathers to give you, a land flowing with milk and honey, that you shall observe this rite in this month.  For seven days you shall eat unleavened bread, and on the seventh day there shall be a feast to the LORD.  Unleavened bread shall be eaten throughout the seven days;  and nothing leavened shall be seen among you, nor shall any leaven be seen among you in all your borders.  You shall tell your son on that day, saying, ‘It is because of what the LORD did for me when I came out of Egypt.’  And it shall serve as a sign to you on your hand, and as a reminder on your forehead, that the law of the LORD may be in your mouth;  for with a powerful hand the LORD brought you out of Egypt.  Therefore, you shall keep this ordinance at its appointed time from year to year.”  Exodus 13:3-10.

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Today’s Scripture gives the reason for this rite. “You shall tell your son on that day, saying, ‘It is because of what the LORD did for me when I came out of Egypt.’” Verse 8.

We can consider that this reason, (“because of what the LORD did for me”), as one of the general reasons why we do a whole range of things in our Christian life.

Today, why are you going to church?

“because of what the LORD did for me”

Why do you celebrate the Lord’s Supper and Baptism?

“because of what the LORD did for me”

Why do you pray and sing and praise God?

“because of what the LORD did for me”

Why do you give offerings and do other good works?

“because of what the LORD did for me”

Why do you tell others of God’s works?

“because of what the LORD did for me”

“But as for me, the nearness of God is my good;
I have made the Lord God my refuge,
That I may tell of all Your works.” Psalm 73:28.

“We give thanks to You, O God, we give thanks,
For Your name is near;
Men declare Your wondrous works.” Psalm 75:1.

“4 One generation shall praise Your works to another,
And shall declare Your mighty acts.
5 On the glorious splendor of Your majesty
And on Your wonderful works, I will meditate.
6 Men shall speak of the power of Your awesome acts,
And I will tell of Your greatness.
7 They shall eagerly utter the memory of Your abundant goodness
And will shout joyfully of Your righteousness.” Psalm 145:4-7.

“Return to your house and describe what great things God has done for you.” So he went away, proclaiming throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him.” Luke 8:39.

“10 All Your works shall give thanks to You, O LORD,
And Your godly ones shall bless You.
11 They shall speak of the glory of Your kingdom
And talk of Your power;
12 To make known to the sons of men Your mighty acts
And the glory of the majesty of Your kingdom.
13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
And Your dominion endures throughout all generations.” Psalm 145:10-13.

Today’s devotion comes from Exodus 13:1-2 and 11-16.

“Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Sanctify to Me every firstborn, the first offspring of every womb among the sons of Israel, both of man and beast; it belongs to Me.”  Exodus 13:1-2.

“Now when the LORD brings you to the land of the Canaanite, as He swore to you and to your fathers, and gives it to you, you shall devote to the LORD the first offspring of every womb, and the first offspring of every beast that you own;  the males belong to the LORD.  But every first offspring of a donkey you shall redeem with a lamb, but if you do not redeem it, then you shall break its neck;  and every firstborn of man among your sons you shall redeem.  And it shall be when your son asks you in time to come, saying, ‘What is this?’ then you shall say to him, ‘With a powerful hand the LORD brought us out of Egypt, from the house of slavery.  It came about, when Pharaoh was stubborn about letting us go, that the LORD killed every firstborn in the land of Egypt, both the firstborn of man and the firstborn of beast.  Therefore, I sacrifice to the LORD the males, the first offspring of every womb, but every firstborn of my sons I redeem.’  So it shall serve as a sign on your hand and as phylacteries on your forehead, for with a powerful hand the LORD brought us out of Egypt.”  Exodus 13:11-16.

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The firstborn males of animals were devoted for use for sacrifice for God.  The firstborn males of people were devoted for use for service for God.

Today’s Scripture leads us to meditate on Jesus Christ and how He fulfilled both roles.  First, Jesus was the firstborn male of both people (Mary and Joseph) and God (His only begotten Son).  Second, Jesus was devoted for use for sacrifice for God.  God sent Jesus to die on the cross as a sacrifice for the sins of God’s elect.  Third, Jesus was devoted for use for service for God.  God sent Jesus to be His faithful servant, including being His faithful witness of Who He is.  

“And she (Mary) gave birth to her firstborn son;  and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.”  Luke 2:7.

“And when the days for their purification according to the law of Moses were completed, they (Joseph and Mary) brought Him up to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “EVERY  firstborn MALE THAT OPENS THE WOMB SHALL BE CALLED HOLY TO THE LORD”), and to offer a sacrifice according to what was said in the Law of the Lord, “A PAIR OF TURTLEDOVES OR TWO YOUNG PIDGEONS.”  Luke 2:24.

“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.”  Colossians 1:15. 

“and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.  To Him who loves us and released us from our sins by His blood—”  Revelation 1:5.   

Jesus was sent to the world to be “the firstborn among many brethren”.  “For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;  and these whom He predestined, He also called;  and these whom He called, He also justified;  and these whom He justified, He also glorified.”  Romans 8:29-30.

“He is also head of the body, the church;  and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.  For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross;  through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.”  Colossians 1:18-20.

Today’s devotion comes from Exodus 12:42-51.

“It is a night to be observed for the LORD for having brought them out from the land of Egypt;  this night is for the LORD, to be observed by all the sons of Israel throughout their generations.

The LORD said to Moses and Aaron, “This is the ordinance of the Passover:  no foreigner is to eat of it;  but every man’s slave purchased with money, after you have circumcised him, then he may eat of it.  A sojourner or a hired servant shall not eat of it.  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.  All the congregation of Israel are to celebrate this.  But if a stranger sojourns with you, and celebrates the Passover to the LORD, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near to celebrate it;  and he shall be like a native of the land.  But no uncircumcised person may eat of it.  The same law shall apply to the native as to the stranger who sojourns among you.”

Then all the sons of Israel did so;  they did just as the LORD had commanded Moses and Aaron.  And on that same day the LORD brought the sons of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their hosts.”  Exodus 12:42-51.

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Today’s Scripture leads us to meditate more generally on worship.  God has the right to regulate how we worship Him.  We are not free to worship God in any way we want.

Here is a link which explains the Regulative Principle of Worship through an article titled “Public Worship and the Reformed Faith” by Professor Barrett L. Gritters of the denomination Protestant Reformed Churches –

http://www.prca.org/resources/publications/pamphlets/item/598-public-worship-and-the-reformed-faith

“11 Worship the LORD with reverence
And rejoice with trembling.
12 Do homage to the Son, that He not become angry, and you perish in the way,
For His wrath may soon be kindled.
How blessed are all who take refuge in Him!” Psalm 2:11-12.

Today’s devotion is from Exodus 12:40-41.

“Now the time that the sons of Israel lived in Egypt was four hundred and thirty years.  And at the end of four hundred and thirty years, to the very day, all the hosts of the LORD went out from the land of Egypt.”  Exodus 12:40-41.

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When we seem to be stuck in a difficult situation, we may be tempted to murmur against God for being careless in not delivering us sooner.

We remember the foremen of the sons of Israel reported to Moses that Pharaoh forced them to do increased labor by requiring them to make the same quota of bricks, but now without straw, and even beat them.  The foremen blamed Moses.  See Exodus 5:15-20.

“Then Moses returned to the LORD and said, “O LORD, why have You brought harm to this people?  Why did You ever send me?  Ever since I came to Pharaoh to speak in Your name, he has done harm to this people, and You have not delivered Your people at all.”  Exodus 5:22-23.

But, we read from today’s Scripture that God’s timing is perfect, “to the very day”.  

The LORD is our keeper.  He does not slumber nor sleep.  Psalm 121:3-5.

The LORD delivers us from all of our troubles.  His work is perfect.  

“The righteous cry, and the LORD hears
And delivers them out of all their troubles.” Psalm 34:17.

“Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
But the LORD delivers him out of them all.” Psalm 34:19.

“O LORD, You are my God;
I will exalt You, I will give thanks to Your name;
For You have worked wonders,
Plans formed long ago, with perfect faithfulness.
‘ Isaiah 25:1.

“The Rock! His work is perfect,
For all His ways are just;
A God of faithfulness and without injustice,
Righteous and upright is He.” Deuteronomy 32:4.

When the LORD delays deliverance, He does so for a good reason, part of His work being perfect.

“And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance;  and perseverance, proven character;  and proven character, hope;  and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”  Romans 5:3-5.

“Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.  And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”  James 1:2-4.

In conclusion, the LORD is trustworthy.  Our times are in His hands.  The LORD has stored up goodness for us and has preserved us.  The LORD will deliver us at the perfect time.    

“14 But as for me, I trust in You, O LORD,
I say, “You are my God.”
15 My times are in Your hand;
Deliver me from the hand of my enemies and from those who persecute me.

19 How great is Your goodness,
Which You have stored up for those who fear You,
Which You have wrought for those who take refuge in You,
Before the sons of men!

21 Blessed be the LORD,
For He has made marvelous His lovingkindness to me in a besieged city.
22 As for me, I said in my alarm,
“I am cut off from before Your eyes”;
Nevertheless You heard the voice of my supplications
When I cried to You.

23 O love the LORD, all you His godly ones!
The LORD preserves the faithful
And fully recompenses the proud doer.
24 Be strong and let your heart take courage,
All you who hope in the LORD.” Psalm 31:14-15 and 19 and 21-24.

Today’s devotion comes from Exodus 12:37-39.

“Now the sons of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand men on foot, aside from children.  A mixed multitude also went up with them, along with flocks and herds, a very large number of livestock.  They baked the dough which they had brought out of Egypt into cakes of unleavened bread.  For it had not become leavened, since they were driven out of Egypt and could not delay, nor had they prepared any provisions for themselves.”  Exodus 12:37-39.

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Today’s Scripture leads us to meditate on God’s provisions for us.

Like Israel, but on a much smaller scale, there are times in our lives when, so to speak, we were driven out of some situation and into a wilderness and could not delay and did not prepare any (or insufficient) provisions for ourselves.  But, God took care of all that we needed to get us through that wilderness. 

As Christians, it happens to us, because we live by faith, not by sight.  “For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope;  for who hopes for what he already sees?  But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.”  Romans 8:25-25.

We know the outcome for Israel.

“19 You, in Your great compassion,
Did not forsake them in the wilderness;
The pillar of cloud did not leave them by day,
To guide them on their way,
Nor the pillar of fire by night, to light for them the way in which they were to go.
20 “You gave Your good Spirit to instruct them,
Your manna You did not withhold from their mouth,
And You gave them water for their thirst.
21 “Indeed, forty years You provided for them in the wilderness and they were not in want;
Their clothes did not wear out, nor did their feet swell.” Nehemiah 9:19-21.

“In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness;  for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words;  and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.  For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;  and these whom He predestined, He also called;  and these whom He called, He also justified;  and these whom He justified, He also glorified.

What then shall we say to these things?  If God is for us, who is against us?  He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?”  Romans 8:26-32.

Today’s devotion comes from Exodus 12:28-36.

“Then the sons of Israel went and did so;  just as the LORD had commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did.

Now it came about at midnight that the LORD struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of cattle.  Pharaoh arose in the night, he and all his servants and all the Egyptians, and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was no home where there was not someone dead.  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.  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.

Now the sons of Israel had done according to the word of Moses, for they had requested from the Egyptians articles of silver and articles of gold, and clothing;  and the LORD had given the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they let them have their request.  Thus they plundered the Egyptians.”  Exodus 12:28-36.

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It would have been good enough for the LORD to “only” deliver Israel out of the affliction of Egypt.  But, the LORD is so good that He planned and provided much more. 

From the very beginning when the LORD met Moses at the burning bush in the wilderness, the LORD planned this plunder.  “I will grant this people favor in the sight of the Egyptians;  and it shall be that when you go, you will not go empty-handed.  But every woman shall ask of her neighbor and the woman who lives in her house, articles of silver and articles of gold, and clothing;  and you will put them on your sons and daughters.  Thus you will plunder the Egyptians.”  Exodus 3:21-22.

There is hope for us too!

The LORD will also not send us out empty-handed.  But, the LORD will provide us with all that we need, and even more, every good thing.

“And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.  Now to our God and Father be the glory forever and ever.  Amen.”  Philippians 4:19-20.

“For the LORD God is a sun and shield;
The LORD gives grace and glory;
No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” Psalm 84:11.

“He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?”  Romans 8:32. 

And, there is much more!

From the very beginning when the LORD met Moses at the burning bush in the wilderness, the LORD planned to bring Israel “to a land flowing with milk and honey.” Exodus 3:17.

And, there is much more hope for us too!

“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.” Revelation 20:1-4.

Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | July 24, 2022

“What does this rite mean to you?”

Today’s devotion comes from Exodus 12:21-27.

“Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel and said to them, “Go and take for yourselves lambs according to your families, and slay the Passover lamb.  You shall take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood which is in the basin, and apply some of the blood that is in the basin to the lintel and the two doorposts;  and none of you shall go outside the door of his house until morning.

For the LORD will pass through to smite the Egyptians;  and when He sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the LORD will pass over the door and will not allow the destroyer to come in to your houses to smite you.  And you shall observe this event as an ordinance for you and your children forever.  When you enter the land which the LORD will give you, as He has promised, you shall observe this rite.  And when your children say to you, ‘What does this rite mean to you?’ you shall say, ‘It is a Passover sacrifice to the LORD who passed over the houses of the sons of Israel in Egypt when He smote the Egyptians, but spared our homes.’”  And the people bowed low and worshiped.”  Exodus 12:21-27.

———————

“Then it shall come about when the LORD your God brings you into the land which He swore to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, to give you, great and splendid cities which you did not build, and houses full of all good things which you did not fill, and hewn cisterns which you did not dig, vineyards and olive trees which you did not plant, and you eat and are satisfied, then watch yourself, that you do not forget the LORD who brought you from the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.  You shall fear only the LORD your God;  and you shall worship Him and swear by His name.  You shall not follow other gods, any of the gods of the peoples who surround you, for the LORD your God in the midst of you is a jealous God;  otherwise the anger of the LORD your God will be kindled against you, and He will wipe you off the face of the earth.”  Deuteronomy 6:10-15.

Beware that you do not forget the LORD your God by not keeping His commandments and His ordinances and His statutes which I am commanding you today;  otherwise, when you have eaten and are satisfied, and have built good houses and lived in them, and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and gold multiply, and all that you have multiplies, then your heart will become proud and you will forget the LORD your God who brought you out from the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.  He led you through the great and terrible wilderness, with its fiery serpents and scorpions and thirsty ground where there was no water;  He brought water for you out of the rock of flint.  In the wilderness He fed you manna which your fathers did not know, that He might humble you and that He might test you, to do good for you in the end.  Otherwise, you may say in your heart, ‘My power and the strength of my hand made me this wealth.’  But you shall remember the LORD your God, for it is He who is giving you power to make wealth, that He may confirm His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.  It shall come about if you ever forget the LORD your God and go after other gods and serve them and worship them, I testify against you today that you will surely perish.  Like the nations that the LORD makes to perish before you, so you shall perish;  because you would not listen to the voice of the LORD your God.”  Deuteronomy 8:11-20. 

“Only give heed to yourself and keep your soul diligently, so that you do not forget the things which your eyes have seen and they do not depart from your heart all the days of your life;  but make them known to your sons and your grandsons.”  Deuteronomy 4:9. 

But, there is hope!

Rites help us remember.  

For example, the Lord’s Supper helps us remember the Lord Jesus, His sacrificial death, and the life and the forgiveness of sins which He gave through His body and blood which are represented by the bread and the wine in the Lord’s Supper. 

“For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed took bread;  and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “This is My body, which is for you;  do this in remembrance of Me.”  In the same way He took the cup also after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood;  do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.”  For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.”  1 Corinthians 11:23-26.

“Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life;  he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst.”  John 6:35. 

“While they were eating, Jesus took some bread, and after a blessing, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat;  this is My body.”  And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you;  for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins.”  Matthew 26:26-28.

Today’s devotion comes from Exodus 12:14-20.

“‘Now this day will be a memorial to you, and you shall celebrate it as a feast to the LORD;  throughout your generations you are to celebrate it as a permanent ordinance.  Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread, but on the first day you shall remove leaven from your houses;  for whoever eats anything leavened from the first day until the seventh day, that person shall be cut off from Israel.  On the first day you shall have a holy assembly, and another holy assembly on the seventh day;  no work at all shall be done on them, except what must be eaten by every person, that alone may be prepared by you.  You shall also observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, for on this very day I brought your hosts out of the land of Egypt;  therefore you shall observe this day throughout your generations as a permanent ordinance.  In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at evening, you shall eat unleavened bread, until the twenty-first day of the month at evening.  Seven days there shall be no leaven found in your houses;  for whoever eats what is leavened, that person shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he is an alien or a native of the land.  You shall not eat anything leavened;  in all your dwellings you shall eat unleavened bread.’”  Exodus 12:14-20.

——————–      

“Your boasting is not good.  Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump of dough?  Clean out the old leaven so that you may be a new lump, just as you are in fact unleavened.  For Christ our Passover also has been sacrificed.  Therefore let us celebrate the feast, not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.”  1 Corinthians 5:6-8.

Today’s devotion comes from Exodus 12:1-13.

“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.  Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying, ‘On the tenth of this month they are each one to take a lamb for themselves, according to their fathers’ households, a lamb for each household.  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.  Your lamb shall be an unblemished male a year old;  you may take it from the sheep or from the goats.  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.  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.  They shall eat the flesh that same night, roasted with fire, and they shall eat it with unleavened bread and bitter herbs.  Do not eat any of it raw or boiled at all with water, but rather roasted with fire, both its head and its legs along with its entrails.  And you shall not leave any of it over until morning, but whatever is left of it until morning, you shall burn with fire.  Now you shall eat it in this manner:  with your loins girded, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand;  and you shall eat it in haste—it is the LORD’S Passover.  For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast;  and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments—I am the LORD.  The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live;  and when I see the blood I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt.”  Exodus 12:1-13.

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God did not save everyone.  God sent plagues against Egypt and made provision to save only His chosen people, Israel.  “For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments—I am the LORD.  The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live;  and when I see the blood I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt.”  Verses 12-13.

Jesus is the Passover Lamb Who takes away the sins of God’s elect so that they do not experience the wrath of God.  Jesus redeemed (purchased) God’s elect with His blood through His sacrifice on the cross, so that God’s elect can praise God for His mercy.

Consider the following from the Canons of Dordt in the section titled SECOND HEAD OF DOCTRINE Of the Death of Christ, and the Redemption of Men Thereby. 

Article 8.  For this was the sovereign counsel, and most gracious will and purpose of God the Father, that the quickening and saving efficacy of the most precious death of his Son should extend to all the elect, for bestowing upon them alone the gift of justifying faith, thereby to bring them infallibly to salvation:  that is, it was the will of God, that Christ by the blood of the cross, whereby he confirmed the new covenant, should effectually redeem out of every people, tribe, nation, and language, all those, and those only, who were from eternity chosen to salvation, and given to him by the Father; that he should confer upon them faith, which together with all the other saving gifts of the Holy Spirit, he purchased for them by his death;  should purge them from all sin, both original and actual, whether committed before or after believing;  and having faithfully preserved them even to the end, should at last bring them free from every spot and blemish to the enjoyment of glory in his own presence forever.

“What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction?  And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles.” Romans 9:22-24.

“But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God’s OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;  for you once were NOT A PEOPLE, but now you are THE PEOPLE OF GOD;  you had NOT RECEIVED MERCY, but now you have RECEIVED MERCY.”  1 Peter 2:9-10.

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