This week we have some Give Thanks! devotions and then we will start Advent with our scratch-off Advent 2016 Calendar.
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Give Thanks! - The Song of Moses
Tuesday, November 22
The Song of Moses - Exodus 15:1-19 (NRSV)
Then Moses and the Israelites sang this song to the Lord:
"I will sing to the Lord, for he has triumphed gloriously; horse and rider he has thrown into the sea. The Lord is my strength and my might, and he has become my salvation; this is my God, and I will praise him, my father's God, and I will exalt him. The Lord is a warrior; the Lord is his name.
"Pharaoh's chariots and his army he cast into the sea; his picked officers were sunk in the Red Sea. The floods covered them; they went down into the depths like a stone. Your right hand, O Lord, glorious in power - your right hand, O Lord, shattered the enemy. In the greatness of your majesty you overthrew your adversaries; you sent out your fury, it consumed them like stubble. At the blast of your nostrils the waters piled up, the floods stood up in a heap; the deeps congealed in the heart of the sea. The enemy said, 'I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide the spoil, my desire shall have its fill of them. I will draw my sword, my hand shall destroy them.' You blew with your wind, the sea covered them; they sank like lead in the mighty waters.
"Who is like you, O Lord, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness, awesome in splendor, doing wonders? You stretched out your right hand, the earth swallowed them.
"In your steadfast love you led the people whom you redeemed; you guided them by your strength to your holy abode. The peoples heard, they trembled; pangs seized the inhabitants of Philistia. Then the chiefs of Edom were dismayed; trembling seized the leaders of Moab; all the inhabitants of Canaan melted away. Terror and dread fell upon them; by the might of your arm, they became still as a stone until your people, O Lord, passed by, until the people whom you acquired passed by. You brought them in and planted them on the mountain of your own possession, the place, O Lord, that you made your abode, the sanctuary, O Lord, that your hands have established. The Lord will reign forever and ever.
When the horses of Pharaoh with his chariots and his chariot drivers went into the sea, the Lord brought back the waters of the sea upon them; but the Israelites walked through the sea on dry ground.
It looked hopeless. After a long spiritual struggle against their Egyptian masters, the Israelites had finally won their freedom from slavery. But just as freedom was within reach, just as Moses was leading them out of captivity... "Pharaoh and his officials changed their minds." An entire army swept out of Egypt in pursuit of the Israelites.
What happened next... God staged one of the most spectacular rescues in the Bible. This Scripture looks at the way Moses and the Israelites responded to God's miraculous intervention.
Things to think about:
- Has God ever intervened in your life to rescue you - from physical danger, from a bad decision, from a personal crisis?
- Did you recognize God's hand at the time? If not, when did you make the connection?
- Notice the sheer, exuberant joy in Moses' prayer of Thanksgiving. Have you ever just marveled aloud at God's majesty?
- Have you ever prayed simply to thank and praise God?