When we cry out to God, he hears our groans and he remembers his promises. After the Pharaoh died, Israel groaned and cried out. God’s response changed the course of their history, yet I am amazed that they even called upon God. Would we after 400 years?
23 During that long period, the king of Egypt died. The Israelites groaned in their slavery and cried out, and their cry for help because of their slavery went up to God. 24 God heard their groaning and he remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac and with Jacob. 25 So God looked on the Israelites and was concerned about them.
“Surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Maybe the thought that it would be a time of potential change, as happens in governments when a new leader comes into power. Maybe things will be different. And so Israel groaned for relief from their slavery.
They called out to God.
After 400 years of slavery, I’m actually surprised that they even remembered the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. That’s a long time to be trusting and calling out to a God who left you in slavery in a foreign land… Isn’t that the reality? Isn’t that how we work as people in the 21st century? How many of us would follow God for another 400 years if we experienced anything Job-like or like the slavery of Egypt?
Our children’s children would grow up only knowing slavery. Never experiencing freedom. And yet Israel still called out to God.
Our relationship with God through Jesus – our status as children in the family of God – doesn’t make us immune from trouble to the point of slavery or death. There are no blanket promises that we will not experience trouble.
God promises, however, to be with us in Jesus. In Israel’s case, he promised them the land of Canaan. And he was about to deliver on that promise. For us, God promised the Holy Spirit now and the promised land of heaven later. And he has delivered on his promise.
Draw near to God and he will draw near to you.