Greetings in the name of the father, the son, and the Holy Spirit.
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonian 5:16-18)
Then Moses and the people of Israel sang this song to the LORD:
“I will sing to the LORD,
for he has triumphed gloriously;
he has hurled both horse and rider
into the sea.
The LORD is my strength and my song;
he has given me victory.
This is my God, and I will praise him—
my father’s God, and I will exalt him! (Exodus 15:1-3)
It is the greatest praise that the Israelites had ever given to God. Two million people sang together in one voice. They saw what God did. The Pharaoh army’s bodies were washed up on the shore, reminding their memory of oppression, unfairness, sorrow, misery, fear, and even death. The mighty army of Pharaoh was always the object of fear. Even one mistake could have caused them to lose their life by the edge of the sword of the Pharaoh’s army. Thus, the Pharaoh’s army always looked tall and overpowering, but now they were motionless corpses. They always had stern faces, but the faces contained the last-moment terror of impending death and the death pain.
Surely, there was no more fear and running from the Pharaoh’s army. God had utterly punished them with His mighty hand, and they were all dead. God protected the Israelites, who watched the dead bodies of the mighty Pharaoh’s army washed up on the shore.
Before the scene of the endlessly many dead bodies of the mighty Pharaoh’s army, a great awe struck the Israelites. The Israelites fixated on the scene because the magnitude of what God did for them was indescribable. No words could capture what they felt at that moment. Thus, none said anything. All became motionless before the scene.
Then suddenly, one raised the voice. “Yes, God did. Yes, God did it. He did it. God protected us from all the harms Pharaoh and his army were about to bring us. Finally, we are saved!” Then he started singing and dancing while praising God. All two million Israelites rushed to join the praise. They raised their hands and shouted in joy. Who could even resist at the moment? Some shed tears of joy over what God did for them.
The two million Israelites praised with the loudest voice and danced. The earth was shaken, and the ocean echoed. On the other side of the shore, Pharaoh stood and watched his entire army being swept away by the hand of God. He was in fear of God. Then Pharaoh heard the joyful noise made by the Israelites. It was so loud that he could feel the magnitude of the joy that the Israelites had made. At the sound of the thundering noise of the praise echoing over the vast Red Sea, even some horses jolted and stepped back against the will of the rider on the back.
Few of the Pharaoh’s army barely escaped from God’s hand. They were still trembling from the terror of God’s hand. The loud praise of the Israelites made them more fearful because it reminded the horrible chaotic scene of the returning water of the Red Sea. There was no place to escape the immense power of the gushing water on them as the two gigantic walls collapsed. No one could escape from the massive power of the returning water, which shallowed up all things in the path and crushed down on the entire Pharaoh’s army deep into the Red Sea.
Horses, chariots, and the rest of the fellow Pharaoh’s army bodies looked like kid’s toys, which were swept away and drawn down into the Red Sea. The few survivors also thought they would die, but somehow they were thrown back onto the shore alive where Pharaoh was standing, watching, and trembling before the scene in fear of God that he had never had before. God made them survive to give testimony of the terror to Pharaoh, and Pharaoh was even more fearful of God. After all, God was not a human but God who Pharaoh had to fear. Pharaoh witnessed God’s power with his own eyes, and he never forgot God’s power for the rest of his life.
“I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, But now my eye sees You. (Job 42:5)
On the other hand, God was the Israelites’ awesome God, but God was the most fearful God to Pharaoh. Pharaoh was almost frozen and motionless for a while. Then he returned to himself and clearly understood what to do next.
He firmly decided not to compete against God ever again. God was able to make the immense Red Sea against him, and before His power, he lost his entire elite army. He had no choice but retreated, not because they were too strong to enslave them again, but because the almighty powerful God was with the Israelites. Pharaoh was utterly defeated and left the scene with very few survivors.
What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? (Romans 8:31)
Indeed, initially, Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, chased after the people of Israel. He left with fists raised in defiance with all the forces in Pharaoh’s army—all his horses and chariots, charioteers, and troops. Then Pharaoh quickly caught up with the people of Israel, but Pharaoh did not know what would come next. He trusted in his earthly power and his formidable army, but God utterly destroyed his army. Then he realized that he was also just one mere human before God who had limitless power over everything. Even the massive water body of the Red Sea obeyed God. Yes, even the Red Sea obeyed God. He turned back to his palace in humiliation and fear of God. It was the last confrontation with God for Pharaoh till his death. The Israelites were finally freed and completely released from Pharaoh. The Israelites knew Pharaohs would not be a threat ever again.
Then the Israelites praised God, who destroyed the Pharaoh’s fearful army while singing and dancing before God:
The LORD is a warrior;
Yahweha is his name!
Pharaoh’s chariots and army
he has hurled into the sea.
The finest of Pharaoh’s officers
are drowned in the Red Sea.
The deep waters gushed over them;
they sank to the bottom like a stone. (Exodus 15:3-5)
The LORD, the God, was a true warrior who destroyed the Pharaoh’s elite formidable and fearful army. They saw God’s mighty hand completely wiping out the Pharaoh’s army from the surface of the earth. Then why couldn’t the Israelites shout for joy? Why couldn’t they stop telling the marvelous thing that God had done? They were on the brink of death by the edges of the swords of the Pharaoh’s army, but God hurled the Pharaoh’s army into the sea. They eye-witnessed the finest of Pharaoh’s officers drowning in the Red Sea as God returned the water. They sank to the bottom like a stone, and the deep waters of the Red Sea rushed over them. None left. The Israelites eye-witnessed the horrific scene from high ground on the other side of the Red Sea.
“Your right hand, O LORD,
is glorious in power.
Your right hand, O LORD,
smashes the enemy.
In the greatness of your majesty,
you overthrow those who rise against you.
You unleash your blazing fury;
it consumes them like straw.
At the blast of your breath,
the waters piled up!
The surging waters stood straight like a wall;
in the heart of the sea the deep waters became hard. (Exodus 15:6-8)
Yes, God’s power was endless. God made the water stand like a wall, and the Red Sea obeyed. It exposed the heart of the Red Sea so that the Israelites could walk on dry ground through the Red Sea. The water stood up to provide a safe passage to the Israelites to the other side of the Red Sea. Who could hold the Red Sea to form two gigantic walls of water for the Israelites? Wasn’t it God who dearly loved the Israelites, His most beloved children?
“The enemy boasted, ‘I will chase them
and catch up with them.
I will plunder them
and consume them.
I will flash my sword;
my powerful hand will destroy them.’
But you blew with your breath,
and the sea covered them.
They sank like lead
in the mighty waters. (Exodus 16:9-10)
On the other hand, the enemy, the Pharaoh’s army, always boasted their power and strength. They had confidence in their horse, and their pride was in their chariots, which were never defeated. The Pharaoh’s army was almighty, and they swept away nation after nation with their power and strength by achieving victory after victory. The Pharaoh’s army was so much accustomed to destroying and conquering wherever they went. None could resist before their power and strength. All were subdued before the Pharaoh’s army. Pharaoh was confident, as was the Pharaoh’s army. However, Pharaoh did not know God was watching and looking after the Israelites. Then God blew with His breath, and the sea retreated to give way for the Israelites. Then God breathed again to return the sea as the Pharaoh’s army followed deep into the Red Sea. The mighty unbeatable Pharaoh’s army sank like a lead deep into the Red Sea’s bottom.
The Israelites kept singing, dancing, and praising God:
“Who is like you among the gods, O LORD—
glorious in holiness,
awesome in splendor,
performing great wonders?
You raised your right hand,
and the earth swallowed our enemies. (Exodus 15:11-12)
They sang, “who is like God, the LORD, among the gods to which people believed and dedicated their lives?” Of course, there was none, which is still true today. How many people in the world still believe and dedicate all their lives to the gods who cannot save themselves? Those gods are mere idols.
Their idols are merely things of silver and gold,
shaped by human hands.
They have mouths but cannot speak,
and eyes but cannot see.
They have ears but cannot hear,
and noses but cannot smell.
They have hands but cannot feel,
and feet but cannot walk,
and throats but cannot make a sound.
And those who make idols are just like them,
as are all who trust in them. (Psalm 115:4-8)
No idols provide any true protection because they are mere man-made objects or creations of human imagination. All seem reasonable and make sense because human logic is involved in creating such gods, but they are just idols that cannot talk, see, hear, or smell. No sympathy, no heart, and nothing in the man-made idols, because they only exist in the mind of those who falsely created and believed. When it needs most, the idols cannot give help, protect, and rescue them, although they might earnestly believe and pray. Why? All idols do not have ears. How can idols hear earnest prayers given to them? After all, those who trust in their idols will be like the idols as the idol makers will become.
Our God is one and only true God who truly cares for us and loves us. His love is unfathomable. The Israelites’ truly experienced God’s unfathomable love and praised:
“With your unfailing love you lead
the people you have redeemed.
In your might, you guide them
to your sacred home.
You will bring them in and plant them on your own mountain—
the place, O LORD, reserved for your own dwelling,
the sanctuary, O Lord, that your hands have established.
The LORD will reign forever and ever!” (Exodus 15:13, 17-18)
God’s love never fails under any circumstances. God redeems His own people whom God dearly loves as His own beloved children. That is not all. God keeps guiding His people to God’s sacred home prepared for us, where God will wipe every tear from us, His beloved children. There will be no more death, sorrow, crying, or pain. Only the glory of God is there without darkness at all.
He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.” (Revelation 21:4)
God’s blessing is not only for the eternal home prepared for us but also the blessings now on His own mountain where God resides and has reserved for us, His own people, to share His love with us. How much does God love us? God loves us, His Children, much more than any human parents have ever loved.
It is the season of thanksgiving. Please look back and count our blessings. Countlessly many things that God did for us. God has protected, provided, and cared for us. Our existence today is the very proof of His love. Why not give thanks to God? Let’s say with one loud voice and shout joy in Him while giving our greatest thanks to God from the deepest part of our hearts. One thing that we can be sure about is that God’s joy is much greater than all our thanksgiving joys combined.
And you will say in that day:
“Give thanks to the LORD,
call upon his name,
make known his deeds among the peoples,
proclaim that his name is exalted.
“Sing praises to the LORD, for he has done gloriously;
let this be made known in all the earth. (Isaiah 12:4-5)