God rescues the Israelites from slavery and confronts Pharaoh’s evil.
How does God respond when his people cry out to him? The first part of the book of Exodus recounts a powerful confrontation between God and the injustice of Pharaoh. This section is a fast-paced narrative that leads to divine justice, rescue, and deliverance.
Exodus 1-18 Overview
Let My People Go
Abraham’s family has fulfilled God’s original command to be fruitful, multiply, and fill the earth (Exodus 1:7). But instead of ruling alongside God in his good world, the Israelites find themselves enslaved to a cruel leader in the land of Egypt.
In response to their cries, God raises up Moses as his representative to deliver the Israelites. Moses confronts Pharaoh and the gods of Egypt through ten plagues, culminating in the Passover. God strikes down the firstborn sons in the land but provides a way of escape through the blood of lambs.
When the Egyptians pursue the fleeing Israelites, God parts the waters of the sea for the Israelites to cross and swallows Pharaoh's army behind them. The first song of praise exalts God as their king and redeemer. However, shortly after, the Israelites begin grumbling, showing their own hardness of heart.
Slavery in Egypt
Pharaoh is depicted as the most evil character in the biblical story so far. He enacts forced labor and child murder. The Israelites cry out to God for help, and God raises up Moses.
God vs. Pharaoh
God offers Pharaoh many chances to let the Israelites go. He brings ten plagues that show his power over all creation and Egypt’s feeble gods.
The introduction of the Passover festival accomplishes Israel’s redemption through the offering of a sacrificial substitute, a spotless lamb.
The Sea Crossing
God works a mighty miracle, and Israel worships God for his deliverance. They sing and look forward to the promised land.
The Wilderness Wanderings
Once free, God’s people begin to grumble and complain about their situation, showing their hard hearts toward the God who delivered them.
Let’s be honest, Exodus 1-18 is a super intense part of the biblical story, which raises some heavy theological questions. The epic showdown between God and Pharaoh over the fate of the enslaved Israelites is a page-turner. Pharoah is a really bad man—actually the worst pers...
Related Podcast Series
Torah Crash Course
3 Episodes •
This set of lectures was my effort to condense the first five foundational books of Jesus’s Bible because they introduce the Plot conflict and storyline that Jesus believed he was bringing to fulfillment.
Torah Crash Course Episode 1
Torah Crash Course: Genesis
This is the first of a three part series called the Torah Crash Course, exploring the book of Genesis. This important biblical book sets the basic plot line and core themes of the entire biblical storyline.
Torah Crash Course Episode 2
Torah Crash Course: Exodus
This is part two of a three part series called Torah Crash Course. This episode explores the important stories of the exodus and giving of the law at Mt. Sinai.
Torah Crash Course Episode 3
Torah Crash Course: Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy
This is Part three of a three part series called the Torah Crash Course. If you haven’t listened to Parts 1 and 2, I highly recommend it. We finish by exploring the books of Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy and how they develop the storyline that Jesus believed he was bringing to fulfillment.