Life-Study of Exodus

Life-Study of Exodusby Witness Lee

ISBN: 0-7363-0397-9
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry

Currently in: Chapter 16 of 185 Section 1 of 3

LIFE-STUDY OF EXODUS

MESSAGE SIXTEEN

GOD’S DEMAND AND PHARAOH’S RESISTANCE

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The book of Exodus is a book of pictures, not a book of philosophy. The pictures in the first part of Exodus present a portrait of life in the world under Satan’s usurpation. By means of these pictures the nature of such a life is exposed. The pictures in this book also unveil the desire of God’s heart with respect to His chosen people. God said to Pharaoh, “Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness” (5:1). God’s people had fallen into a worldly life under Satan’s usurpation. As the book of Exodus reveals, God delivered them from this and brought them into the wilderness and to the mountain, where they received a heavenly vision of the pattern of God’s dwelling place on earth. God wanted the tabernacle to be His dwelling place. This was the desire of His heart.

In order to expose the real situation of life in the world under Pharaoh’s usurpation, the book of Exodus describes twelve conflicts between Jehovah and Pharaoh. In the first conflict there were no miracles, plagues, or judgments. Instead, there was simply the negotiation between Jehovah and Pharaoh. God demanded that Pharaoh let His people go into the wilderness a three days’ journey to hold a feast unto Him. But Pharaoh refused to acknowledge Jehovah or to hearken to His demand.

In the second conflict there was a miracle, but no plague; there was exposure, but no judgment. In 7:9 the Lord said, “When Pharaoh shall speak unto you, saying, Show a miracle for you: then thou shalt say unto Aaron, Take thy rod, and cast it before Pharaoh, and it shall become a serpent.” The purpose of this miracle was to expose the actual situation of life in the world. For this reason, the second conflict involved exposure, but not judgment.

After the first two conflicts, the plagues began to come upon Pharaoh and his people. In Exodus there are two groups of ten items: the ten plagues that came upon the Egyptians and the Ten Commandments that were given to God’s people. The ten plagues can be grouped into four categories. The first group includes the plagues of blood, frogs, and lice; the second group, the plagues of flies, murrain, and boils; the third group, the plagues of hail, locusts, and darkness; and finally, the plague of the killing of the firstborn. Each plague was more severe than the one before. The plagues in the first group were troublesome, but they were not injurious. The plagues in the second group caused harm both to beasts and to men. The plagues in the third group destroyed the environment, and the last plague terminated the worldly life. In the last plague, all the firstborn in the land of Egypt died, from the firstborn of Pharaoh to the firstborn of the maidservants (11:5).

In Revelation 16 we see the seven ultimate plagues that God will send upon the earth, plagues that will come toward the end of the great tribulation. These seven plagues will be “the seven bowls of the fury of God” (Rev. 16:1). In many respects, the seven plagues in Revelation are similar to the ten plagues in Exodus. By means of the ten plagues God was able to accomplish the exodus of His chosen people from Egypt. During the great tribulation, the seven plagues will enable God’s people to make their final exodus from the world. At the end of this age, most of God’s people will still be in Egypt, that is, in the world. In their time, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob had no need of an exodus. In like manner, the overcomers at the end time will have no need of an exodus. Therefore, they will be raptured before the tribulation. The majority of Christians, however, will need an exodus. By the seven last plagues, God will bring His people out of the world.


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