January 29, 2023 | Doug Sauder
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“Then the Lord said, ‘I have surely seen the affliction of my people who are in Egypt and have heard their cry because of their taskmasters. I know their sufferings, and I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land to a good and broad land, a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. And now, behold, the cry of the people of Israel has come to me, and I have also seen the oppression with which the Egyptians oppress them. Come, I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring my people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt.’”—Exodus 3:7–10 (ESV)
In today’s passage, we see a God who isn’t passive or unaware of His people’s condition; rather, He’s fully aware and ready to take action. In this conversation, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob assures Moses of His existence and His heart for His people. The God of the Israelites had been silent for the past 400 years, but not in any way absent.
God was reminding His people of His love for them, the promise He had made, and His plan of redemption. The God of Israel was revealing Himself as a God who steps into the suffering, injustice, and oppression of His people. Perhaps the Israelites had lost hope thinking God had forgotten them or that the promise their ancestors spoke of was a lie, but God’s promises remain true despite our circumstances, and His purposes do not depend on our timing.
Despite the 400 years of slavery and oppression, God had never forgotten His people. God was not late, nor delayed, but was right on time to accomplish His sovereign plan of redemption and, through it, reveal His glory and power to the world!
We see God present and active in the Israelites’ story as:
God sees the Israelites’ hardship.
God hears their cry of distress.
God knows their sufferings.
God has come down to deliver them.
God will bring them to freedom.
God will send Moses.
We also know this to be true for us today.
God saw our spiritual bondage to sin and Satan.
He heard our cries of distress.
He knew our sins and sufferings.
Jesus came down to deliver us from our sins.
He will bring us to the Promised Land of heaven.
Friend, if you’re going through deep suffering, remember this truth: God sees you, hears you, knows you, and promises to bring deliverance. Your pain has not made this untrue, nor will it ever make it so.
Be encouraged today that you can come to God with your deepest pain, and He will turn to you with mercy. God doesn’t only see your pain, but He’s already intervened on the cross. On the cross, Jesus took on our pain so we could have freedom. His death and resurrection has secured our eternal destiny, and it also guarantees our hope in the present. Be encouraged and renewed with hope that the same God who spoke from a burning bush, delivered His people from slavery, and defeated death and the grave will also come through for you in your time of need.
Pause: How do you respond to times of suffering? Do your circumstances shape your view of God or does God’s Word shape how you view your circumstances?
Practice: Listen to the song “Son of Suffering” by Bethel Music and reflect on what Jesus’ suffering means for you.
Pray: God, thank You that You are a God who draws near in my time of need. I confess that my hardships can lead me to doubt Your goodness, but my doubt doesn’t change who You are. Teach me to trust that You are near and at work even when it’s hard for me to do so. Amen.
Gabriella Bemis serves as a volunteer for Calvary’s communications and worship teams. She holds an M.A. in psychology from Fuller Theological Seminary and is passionate about integrating her knowledge of human behavior with the truth of God’s word. When she is not writing resources or singing at church, Gabi loves to paint, cook, and enjoy time outdoors with her family and friends.