“Now Joseph and all his brothers and all that generation died, 7 but the Israelites were exceedingly fruitful; they multiplied greatly, increased in numbers and became so numerous that the land was filled with them. 8 Then a new king, to whom Joseph meant nothing, came to power in Egypt.” Exodus 1:6-8 NIV
“Now the length of time the Israelite people lived in Egypt was 430 years. 41 At the end of the 430 years, to the very day, all the LORD's divisions left Egypt. 42 Because the LORD kept vigil that night to bring them out of Egypt, on this night all the Israelites are to keep vigil to honor the LORD for the generations to come.” Exodus 12:40-42 NIV
Statistics tell us that the Church in America has some work to do! According to an article on CBN.Com, and written by Deborah Bunting, a new study from the Cultural Research Center (CRC) at Arizona Christian University shows that some 58% of Americans surveyed no longer believe that truth is found in God or the Bible. Instead, they say it's up to the individual to decide what is true or moral. The Pew Research Center in 2019 stated the decline of Christianity in the United States is declining at a “rapid” pace. I think with the current political and religious landscape that is before us, no one can argue with either one of the above findings. The question is, will there be a generation that steps up and dedicates itself to changing the pathway of decline?
While reading the first 12 chapters in Exodus as part of my Chronological Bible Study, I came across something that I had never thought of. There was a forgotten generation or two that didn’t forget. Let me explain. In Chapter 1, there is a king or Pharaoh in power who had no idea who Joseph was or at the very least, cared for what he did. There was absolutely no appreciation for saving Egypt from the famine years before. During the time between the death of Joseph and the current situation in Exodus 1, the Hebrews grew into a small group of about 2 million people. Pharaoh considered them a threat and dealt “shrewdly” with them. (Ex. 1:10) This means that he put policies in place to check the increase of their fruitfulness and to force them to work in a way that would oppress. A lesson to learn... if you see cyclical patterns that keep knocking your feet our from underneath you, you might want to ask God for some help. The enemy is trying to keep you from being fruitful and fulfilling your purpose.
Any who, lets move forward. God hears the cries of the Hebrews who are oppressed. God has been working on a plan for a while. He had told Abraham in Genesis 15 that his descendants would be in bondage in a land not their own, but they would come out of that land and bondage with great possessions after 400 years. God sends His deliverer named Moses. He was a man who did not have a lot of confidence in his delivering abilities, nevertheless, God chose him. In negotiating his position as leader, Moses has a concern. Will the people know this God who Moses talks about? Moses wanted to know who he should say sent Moses to them. God’s response? “I AM has sent me to you.” He later tells Moses that the elders of Israel will listen to him. The Bible says that when Moses told them about God and His plans for them, they bowed down and worshipped. Ok... so what? So what????? Do you see it?
400 years! 430 to be exact. Many of them being in bondage to slavery, mistreated and I am sure felt like they were forgotten, but in those 400 years, there were generations that did not forget to tell others about the God they serve. They relayed the promises of God from one generation to the next until the news of “I AM WHO I AM” was heard in the ears of the elders. They recognized the delivering hand of God because a generation who lived and died in slavery faithfully told the truth, the stories and the promises of a God who was coming to rescue them.
This is what we are to do. We are a generation commissioned by the Lord to prepare the next generation to hear the voice of God. They can be ready. They can be waiting, but it is up to us to tell them, show them and pray for them. Let us do everything we can in this hour to be a generation that does not forget.