Christy

The Book of Exodus Overview – Part 2 of 2 by The Bible Project

In the second half of Exodus Israel meets God at Mt. Sinai. They make a covenant with him, receive rules by which to live, build a tabernacle where God will dwell with them, but things go terribly wrong.

This video talks about God’s covenant with the people of Israel. If you’d like to learn more about God’s covenants (like a business contract), take a few minutes to watch An Animated Explanation of ‘The Covenants.’

 

 

 

 

Outline of Exodus

Exodus 1-18     Moses Leads the People out of Egypt

Exodus 19     Mount Sinai

Exodus 20-40     God’s Instructions

 

Video Transcript

0:02
Jon: The first half of the book of Exodus tells the story of ancient Israel
0:05
being rescued from slavery.
0:06
And when people say ‘the Exodus story’ those are the chapters they’re referring to.
0:10
Tim: But the book has a second half where Moses gives the Ten Commandments to Israel
0:15
along with these instructions about building a sacred tent.
0:17
Jon: And what links these two halves together is this crucial story:
0:21
the people of Israel, they’re out in the middle of nowhere,
0:24
they find themselves at the foot of this mountain called Sinai.
0:26
And here God’s presence comes dramatically down the form of a violent storm cloud.
0:31
Tim: Now let’s stop a second and talk about this concept of God’s presence
0:35
because it is really important for the rest of the book.
0:36
At the beginning of the Bible, in the Garden of Eden, humanity was in God’s presence
0:41
they had this close relationship with Him and it was good.
0:44
But humanity rebels and the relationship is fractured and access to God’s presence is lost.
0:50
But God promised Abraham that he would restore His blessing to all of the nations
0:55
and that includes this restoration of relationship
0:58
and access to God’s presence.
1:01
Jon: So here at Sinai, God’s presence is now right here in front of them
1:05
and it’s actually quite frightening.
1:07
And He’s here to invite Israel into this unique and close relationship with Him.
1:12
Tim: The word used to describe this relationship is ‘Covenant’.
1:15
It’s like a legal agreement between God and Israel.
1:17
And it’s unique because up till now God hasn’t asked Israel to do anything in return. ..
1:23
… just to trust Him.
1:24
But here on this mountain God is going to ask Israel to do something…
1:29
… a lot of things actually. He gives them a whole set of laws
1:32
it includes the Ten Commandments, and if they obey these commandments
1:36
they will become the people who will represent God to the nations of the world.
1:41
Jon: Like a priest would…
1:42
Tim: Yeah, in fact that is what God calls them to become, ‘A kingdom of priests.’
1:45
And this is all connected back to the promise to Abraham
1:48
that his family would become a blessing to the nations.
1:51
Jon: Okay, but obeying these laws is going to be difficult
1:54
because there’s a lot of them and they set really high standard.
1:58
Tim: Though if you think about it, I mean of anybody in the world who should be able to do it,
2:02
it is these people
2:03
who experienced first-hand God’s grace and his power when He rescued them from slavery.
2:08
Jon: And they agree to obey the terms
2:11
but then they refuse to go into God’s presence because it’s still a bit frightening.
2:16
Tim: And since the people won’t go up, Moses goes up to the mountain by himself to meet with God.
2:22
But God still wants to be with all of His people, and so he says…
2:26
Okay if the people won’t come up here to me I’ll come down off this mountain to be with you all.
2:30
And that’s why he orders Moses to build this elaborate tent
2:33
as a place where God’s presence can be among his people.
2:36
Jon: And that’s why the next thing we get is
2:38
seven chapters of extremely detailed architectural blueprints for this tent.
2:42
It’s really, really … really long
2:45
Tim: But every details important and has some kinda symbolic value.
2:49
For example there is all this garden of Eden imagery inside the tent
2:53
And it is to remind you that when you’re in the tent you are in God’s presence.
2:58
Jon: Then we get another six chapters describing how they built the tent
3:01
which is really just repeating the same blueprints word-for-word.
3:04
Tim: Now, let’s back up because before the tent is finished there’s this super important story.
3:08
Moses is coming off the mountain with the Ten Commandments and the blueprints in his hands.
3:13
and he finds Israel breaking the first two commands of the Covenant.
3:17
Jon: (1) Don’t have any other gods before me
3:18
and (2) Don’t worship idol statues.
3:21
Tim: Right. And so here we are immediately after agreeing to the Covenant
3:24
they’re throwing this ritual party. They’re worshipping an idol.
3:27
And so God says to Moses, you know what, this is not going to work.
3:31
I should just wipe these people out and start over with you.
3:33
Jon: But Moses reminds God of his promise to Abraham
3:37
and he pleads with God to spare them,
3:39
which is a really weird conversation,
3:42
why would God need to be reminded of something?
3:44
Tim: Yeah it does seem odd. But this dialogue is inviting us into God’s experience of grief and pain
3:50
due to Israel’s actions.
3:52
And he really could walk away.
3:54
But instead this God chooses faithfulness to His own promises
3:58
Even though He knows it’s going to cost Him.
4:01
Jon: So we come to the end of the book.
4:02
The tabernacle is built. God’s presence comes down off the mountain to fill it.
4:07
And in the final scene Moses goes to enter the tabernacle to be in God’s presence…
4:11
Tim: But he can’t. He is actually not able to go inside
4:15
and that’s how the book ends.
4:16
Jon: Why can’t he go in? That was the whole point.
4:18
Jon: So when Israel worshiped the golden calf it was like a slap in the face to God’s faithfulness.
4:24
And so Moses can’t just waltz into the tent like everything’s just fine.
4:28
There’s a deeper problem still in this relationship.
4:31
Jon: Will they ever be able to fix the relationship and go into God’s presence?
4:35
Tim: Well that is what the next book, Leviticus, is all about.
Christy

The Book of Exodus Overview – Part 1 of 2 by The Bible Project

The Book the first half of the book of Exodus is the story of Moses leading Israel out of Egypt. It is the first place the words “Redemption” and “Salvation” are used in the Bible. Find out how this epic story fits into the entire Biblical Narrative.

 

 

 

 

Outline of Exodus

Exodus 1-18     Moses Leads the People out of Egypt

Exodus 19     Mount Sinai

Exodus 20-40     God’s Instructions

 

Video Transcript

0:00
Jon: Let’s talk about the book Exodus now you’re probably familiar with this book
0:04
because the epic story of Moses leading Israel out of slavery in Egypt.
0:08
Tim: Yeah, but that’s just the first half at the book.
0:10
The second half has Moses giving the Ten Commandments to Israel
0:14
along with these blueprints for making a sacred tent.
0:16
Now right here in the middle is this story that connects these two halves together
0:21
and it all takes place at the foot of a famous mountain.
0:24
Jon: OK, let’s start back at the beginning.
0:26
Tim: So the first thing we have to remember is we’re continuing this story from Genesis.
0:29
Jon: In Genesis God promised Abraham that through his family
0:33
all the nations of the earth will be blessed.
0:36
And Genesis ends with Abraham’s family down in Egypt.
0:39
When Exodus begins, four hundred years have passed, the family grows
0:43
and becomes the people group now called Israel.
0:46
Tim: But there’s this huge problem because the Israelites are enslaved to this King of the Egyptians
0:51
a guy called Pharaoh.
0:52
Jon: This guy is really bad news.
0:54
Tim: Yeah, he is horrible.
0:55
He disregards their humanity. He brutally enslaves them.
0:59
And he even orders that all of the Israelite sons should be killed
1:03
by throwing them into the Nile River. He wants to wipe these people out,
1:07
he is the worst character in the Bible so far.
1:10
Jon: Here’s where we meet an Israelite woman who wants to save her son.
1:14
Tim: And so she does throw him in the river, but safely
1:18
in this little reed basket.
1:20
Jon: And Pharaoh’s daughter finds this baby and takes him as her own.
1:24
Tim: And this is the boy who grow up to become Moses, the man who will rescue Israel from slavery.
1:30
Jon: So Moses grows up, and one day much later in his life he has this crazy encounter with God
1:36
where he comes across a bush thats on fire, but it isn’t actually burning up.
1:40
Tim: And God speaks from the bush, and he appoints Moses as the man he will use to deliver Israel.
1:45
Jon: So Moses goes to Pharaoh to tell him this news
1:50
that God wants His people free.
1:52
Tim: And Pharaoh, he just pretty much laughs at him,
1:55
“Who is this God, Yahweh?”
1:57
And, in fact he is so offended by this request he decides to make the Israelites work even harder.
2:03
Jon: So discouraged, Moses goes back to God and says, “Listen, this plan’s not gonna work.”
2:08
Tim: But God repeats His promise that He’s going to rescue them.
2:13
And in fact, it’s right here for the first time in the Bible
2:16
that we hear the word “redemption”
2:17
it literally just means ‘to purchase a slave’s freedom’
2:20
But God here uses this word to describe what He’s going to do for enslaved Israel.
2:25
Jon And God knows Pharaoh is going to resist so he sends ten different plauges
2:30
one after another… like turning water into blood…
2:33
sending all sorts pests and disease…
2:36
these plagues are really severe.
2:38
Tim: They are severe.
2:39
But what we need to understand is that the story is presenting these as
2:42
acts of divine justice against one of the worst oppressors in the story of the Bible.
2:48
And they are aimed at the purpose of rescuing these enslaved people and defeating the God’s of Egypt.
2:54
Jon: This all comes to a climax at the tenth plague…
2:56
where God is going to kill the first-born sons across all Egypt, every house, it is pretty rough.
3:02
Tim: It is. But is also God’s response for how Pharaoh killed the Israelite sons.
3:07
Jon: Now as you turn the page, you suddenly get two long chapters of detailed instructions
3:12
for what’s essentially throwing a dinner party with a recipe for lamb…?
3:16
Tim: Yeah, but this lamb is super important.
3:19
God tells the Israelites to pick it out and to prepare it to be eaten.
3:23
And they are supposed to take its blood and then paint it all over the door frame of their house.
3:28
And anyone who is in that house will be spared from this final plague.
3:33
And so this meal, which is called “Passover”,
3:36
it commemorates this key moment in the story where God brings his justice on human evil,
3:41
but also shows mercy by providing this substitute.
3:46
Jon: This final plauge makes Pharaoh angry, and he demands that Israel get out of Egypt, which is great!
3:51
But suddenly, as they leave, Pharaoh changes his mind- he has “a change of heart.”
3:56
Tim: But on top of that, we are also told that “God hardens Pharaoh’s heart.”
4:00
Jon: Why would God do that?
4:02
Tim: Well, what we need to remember is that over and over in the story Pharaoh has already chosen to harden his own heart…
4:08
so at this point, Pharaoh, he’s not just evil, he’s become monstrously evil.
4:12
Even his own advisers think that he has gone way too far.
4:15
And so how was God supposed to deal with such an extreme form of evil?
4:19
And what we see in the story is that God uses his power
4:23
to lure evil into its own destruction.
4:26
Jon: Pharaoh and his army are destroyed in the Red Sea as Israel passes into freedom.
4:30
Tim: And after this we find the very first song of worship in the Bible
4:34
as people praise God for redeeming them.
4:37
And it is in this story that the word salvation is also used for the first time,
4:42
which means simply, ‘to be rescued from danger’.
4:44
Jon: Now that they’re saved, you would think think that everything should be great…
4:47
…but the story quickly turns.
4:50
The Israelites start wandering in the desert. They are tired, hungry, lost.
4:54
and you start to wonder what’s God doing? What are they saved for?
4:58
Tim: And we learn the answer to that question in the very next story
5:02
which ties the two parts at this whole book together.