Exodus 13:17, 18, 20-22
The Lord is mindful of the infirmities of his people. He meant them to see many wars hereafter, but as yet they were all unused to fighting, and therefore were to be led by a quieter though a longer road. Blessed be God, our troubles shall not be ready for us till we are ready for them.
The pillar was their infallible conductor; it also screened them by day and lit up the camp by night. God’s mercies are many-sided. We can only do one thing well at a time, but the Lord accomplishes many devices at one stroke.
Exodus 14:1-5, 8-14
This seemed a strange direction, but Moses obeyed it without question. Let us go where the Lord bids us though the way be perilous.
God’s plagues had not changed the King’s rebellious nature. When he saw that he had lost his valuable slaves, his greed made him rush after them.
This unbelief was both unjust and cruel. Had they not seen the Lord’s works in the great plagues? Could they not believe that he who had wrought such marvels could and would deliver them? They were smitten with panic, and were willing to return to bondage; whereas true freemen never debate which of the two to choose, slavery or death.
Exodus 14:13, 14
This meekest of men answered the people meekly and believingly, for prayer enabled him to conquer his own spirit.
Forward! but whither shall we go?
The desert is on either side,
Behind us the Egyptian foe,
Before, the interposing tide!
Yet while we thy command obey,
Our road impassable pursue,
The ocean yields an open way,
And lets thy ransomed people through.