The way out
If you think my 30-year-old Bible is tattered and torn, then take a look at my husband's.
Published in 1976 by Thomas Nelson, it's the King James Version with phrases like "beseech thee" and "thou hast made my days as an handsbreadth." Although this particular kind of English is difficult to comprehend, we both cherish this Bible because his great-uncle gave it to him way back in the 1980s, and because the notes that introduce each book are beyond enlightening.
I loved these notes so much, that I copied many of them by hand into my easier to understand New Kings James Bible, wherever I could find blank space. Like so...
This was enormously helpful to me in my early days as a believer. Sometimes reading the Bible can leave you feeling a little confused. The times during which its books were written differed greatly from the times in which we live today. The customs and lifestyles are so unfamiliar to us. And, much of what we read has no context. These notes helped me to understand the significance of many of the events I was reading about. And they still help me today, 30 years later.
If they're helpful to me, perhaps they will be helpful to whomever stumbles across this blog. (Of course, I believe if you're reading this it's not because you stumbled, but because you were led.)
Today's chapters continued with Pharaoh's severe case of "cardio-sclerosis" aka "hardening of the heart." Moses wasn't asking Pharaoh to let his people go completely. All this time, he was just asking for three days so that the people could go and worship the Lord.
It appears that, had Pharaoh agreed, the people would've gone and come back after three days. So, either Pharaoh didn't believe that they'd return, or he was unwilling to give up that many days of their labor. Either way, he suffered a much greater loss than he would have if he had just complied with Moses' request.
After taking another look at the notes on Exodus, which I'll share below, Pharaoh really had no choice but to hold fast to his own self-importance. Everything that occurred was according to God's plan, which He told Abraham about hundreds of years prior.
Exodus means "the way out"
Exodus continues the account which was begun in Genesis, although there was a lapse of at least 3½ centuries.
Genesis 15:13 says that the seed of Abraham would spend 400 years in Egypt. Exodus 12:40 says that it was 430 years and Galatians 3:16,17 confirms it.
Exodus means “the way out.”
Seventy souls of Jacob entered Egypt (Gen. 46:27). It is conservatively estimated that 2,100,000 left Egypt at the time of the Exodus.
Moses’ life is divided into three 40-year periods:
40 years in Pharaoh’s palace.
40 years in Midian.
40 years in the wilderness as leader of Israel.
God trained Moses for 40 years in the desert to reveal to him that he could not deliver Israel alone.
Each plague was directed at a particular god in Egypt (Ex. 12:12).
Nile – The life blood of Egypt and sacred to Osiris (turned to blood).
Frogs – Heka was the frog-headed goddess. It was an offense to the goddess to kill frogs.
Lice (gnats) – Geb was the earth god.
Flies (beetles or scarabs) – Sacerd to Ra, the sun god, Ra-Ammon & Khepara.
Murrain (plague) on cattle – Egypt worshiped animals. Apis was the black bull that was worshiped.
Boils – The priests were spotless. They could not serve in their temples with boils.
Hail – Egypt is a land of no rainfall. There is less than one inch a year in Cairo. Isis was the goddess of the air.
Locusts – A judgment from God (compare locusts in Joel and Revelation).
Darkness – Egyptians worshiped the sun, Ra.
Death of first-born – The first-born in Egypt were set aside for the service of the gods.
For anyone who really wants to grasp what they're reading, I strongly suggest buying a study Bible with notes like these. I'd also suggest incorporating some documentaries and movies into your tool chest, like the one I watched recently called "Walking the Bible" by PBS, (currently streaming for free on Amazon Prime Video).
And, last but certainly not least, always ask God to help you understand what you're reading by speaking to your heart and by guiding you to the right resources. That's what I do, and it works!
What tools do you use to help in your Bible study? Feel free to comment below, or by visiting my Facebook page.
*Welcome to my one-year trip around the world of Scripture. You’re invited to take this journey with me, as I meditate on God’s Word day and night. Each morning, you’ll find a post on my Facebook page encouraging my new #Biblebuddies along the way. And each night, I’ll be writing my impressions right here at listen2leslie.com. I’d love it if you’d share your comments, to spark some fruitful discussion. The only passport you’ll need for this journey is the Read Scripture app which provides us with our daily itinerary. You’ll love this app because it contains videos by The Bible Project that serve as our tour guide. Traveling is so much better when you have someone to share the experience with, so please join me, will you?
(In case you were wondering, this blog is a labor of love for me.❤️ The links contained in my posts are NOT affiliate links. I include them in order to share with you the actual pages and apps I use during the course of my own personal journey. Money muddies the waters, and I like my water clear. Amen? 😉)