Monday, November 21, 2011

God Came Down To Rescue His People

In the famous passage about the burning bush (Exodus 3) God Almighty appears to Moses. He tells Moses that he has seen his people's affliction in Egypt and has heard their cries, and knows their suffering. And he is about to do something about it: God himself has come down to rescue his people!

It is God who will rescue. God himself has come down to rescue his people! Israel could not rescue themselves. Moses had tried to rescue the people and failed (Ex 2:11-15). A new king has risen to power, but did not rescue Israel (2:23). God is Israel’s only hope, and he has come down to rescue them!

But next we see that, though God himself will rescue Israel, God has chosen to do it through a mediator. God had said that he had come down to deliver Israel, but then he told Moses, “Come, I will send you…” (v10). So who will rescue Israel, God or Moses? Yes. God will rescue, but he has chosen to do it through a man who will serve as a mediator between God and his people. Oh, the gospel implications here (which we will highlight below)!!

God then revealed his covenant name to Moses. “I AM WHO I AM." He said, “Tell the people of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you." So the God who IS - the unchanging, constant, uncreated God - has revealed his rescue plan for his people! And this plan is not a rescue attempt; rather Israel's rescue is certain. God gives his word: "I promise that I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt" (3:17).

How is this relevant to us?
In these events we see clear pictures of Jesus Christ, the ultimate Rescuer of God’s people, to whom the whole Bible points; Jesus said Moses wrote about him (John 5:39, 46; Luke 24:25-27; 44-45; Acts 10:43)! Notice these glorious fulfillments of types and pictures we see in Exodus 3, beautifully realized in Christ:

1. God Rescues us through a Man, who is Mediator between God and men. Just as Moses served as mediator between God and Israel, Christ is the God-Man:

• For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus 1 Timothy 2:5

2. Moses was sent by I AM; Jesus is I AM! Jesus clearly claimed to be God, using the name revealed to Moses in Exodus 3, the I AM.

• Your father Abraham rejoiced that he would see my day. He saw it and was glad.” [57] So the Jews said to him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?” [58] Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” [59] So they picked up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple. John 8:56-59

See also John 6:35(“I am the bread of life”); 8:12 (“I am the light of the world”); 10:7 (“I am the door of the sheep”), 10:11 (“I am the good shepherd”); 11:25 (“I am the resurrection and the life”); 14:6 (“I am the way, the truth, and the life”); 15:1 (“I am the true vine”).

3. In Christ, God Has Come Down to Rescue! God has come down to us in the Person of his Son, Jesus Christ, to rescue his people from every nation! We could not come up to God, so he humbled himself and came for us!

• In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. …And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us… John 1:1, 14a

• No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. John 3:13

For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me. And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day. [40] For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.” John 6:38-40

• I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh. John 6:51

4. Rescue is Certain. I Promise I Will Rescue You (Ex 3:17). Just as God promised to rescue Israel, so we have God's word that he will rescue all who comes to him through Jesus Christ.

• All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out. John 6:37

• And this is the promise that he made to us—eternal life. 1 John 2:25

• So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he guaranteed it with an oath, so that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us. We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul... Hebrews 6:17-19a

Praise God! Though we were helpless in our sins, God has come down to rescue us in the Person and Work of Jesus Christ! Believe the Promise. Rescue – eternal rescue and blessedness with God – is certain for all of God’s people; those who have believed on Christ. Cry out to God for rescue: from our sins, from his just wrath, from our vices and lusts and idols and self-righteousness; from Satan, the world system, death, hell and the grave. Cry out to the Rescuer to be delivered from these things, and rescued to the eternal enjoyment of God in Christ!

No comments: