By Pastor Travis Lauterbach
Prince of Peace Lutheran Church

In the book of Exodus, God appeared to Moses in a burning bush and promised deliverance to the Israelites enslaved in Egypt.

When Moses and Aaron told them all that the Lord had said, they believed, bowed their heads, and worshiped the Lord. As you can imagine, they excitedly looked forward to their promised freedom.

When Moses and Aaron told Pharaoh, king of Egypt, the news, he didn’t share in the excitement.

Instead, Pharaoh saw that the excitement took the Israelites away from their forced labor and he became angry. He called them lazy and made their work more difficult.

Instead of making bricks using straw that the Israelites were given, they now had to find their own straw and make the same number of bricks.

The Israelite leaders then went to Pharaoh, begging him to change his mind. Pharaoh stubbornly refused. Instead of being freed from their slavery, things seemed worse. Much, much worse.

Moses prayed to the Lord, “O Lord, why have you done this evil to this people? Why did you ever send me? For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has done evil to this people, and you have not delivered your people at all.” (Ex. 5:22-23)

Sometimes things seem bleak, even with God’s promises.

The followers of Jesus were saddened after His crucifixion. Their hope that He would redeem Israel seemed lost.

We live in a world filled with suffering, sin, and the awfulness of death. Sometimes it seems that God is doing evil. Sometimes it seems that He has forsaken His children. Sometimes it seems that all hope is lost.

But things aren’t always as they seem. The Lord God responded to Moses, saying, “Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh; for with a strong hand he will send them out, and with a strong hand he will drive them out of his land.” (Ex. 6:1)

He did it.

Jesus’ triumphant resurrection from death overjoyed His grieving disciples.

And Scripture promises that nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus (Rom. 8:39).