Why are you crying out?
Exodus 14:10-31 from the daily reading in the One Year Bible
As Pharaoh drew near, the sons of Israel looked, and behold, the Egyptians were marching after them, and they became very frightened; so the sons of Israel cried out to the Lord. 11 Then they said to Moses, “Is it because there were no graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you dealt with us in this way, bringing us out of Egypt? 12 Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, ‘Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.”
13 But Moses said to the people, “Do not fear! Stand by and see the salvation of the Lord which He will accomplish for you today; for the Egyptians whom you have seen today, you will never see them again forever. 14 The Lord will fight for you while you keep silent.”
15 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to Me? Tell the sons of Israel to go forward. 16 As for you, lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, and the sons of Israel shall go through the midst of the sea on dry land. 17 As for Me, behold, I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they will go in after them; and I will be honored through Pharaoh and all his army, through his chariots and his horsemen. 18 Then the Egyptians will know that I am the Lord, when I am honored through Pharaoh, through his chariots and his horsemen.”
19 The angel of God, who had been going before the camp of Israel, moved and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud moved from before them and stood behind them. 20 So it came between the camp of Egypt and the camp of Israel; and there was the cloud along with the darkness, yet it gave light at night. Thus the one did not come near the other all night.
21 Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord swept the sea back by a strong east wind all night and turned the sea into dry land, so the waters were divided. 22 The sons of Israel went through the midst of the sea on the dry land, and the waters were like a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. 23 Then the Egyptians took up the pursuit, and all Pharaoh’s horses, his chariots and his horsemen went in after them into the midst of the sea. 24 At the morning watch, the Lord looked down on the army of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and cloud and brought the army of the Egyptians into confusion. 25 He caused their chariot wheels to swerve, and He made them drive with difficulty; so the Egyptians said, “Let us flee from Israel, for the Lord is fighting for them against the Egyptians.”
26 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea so that the waters may come back over the Egyptians, over their chariots and their horsemen.” 27 So Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to its normal state at daybreak, while the Egyptians were fleeing right into it; then the Lord overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea. 28 The waters returned and covered the chariots and the horsemen, even Pharaoh’s entire army that had gone into the sea after them; not even one of them remained. 29 But the sons of Israel walked on dry land through the midst of the sea, and the waters were like a wall to them on their right hand and on their left.
30 Thus the Lord saved Israel that day from the hand of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore. 31 When Israel saw the great power which the Lord had used against the Egyptians, the people feared the Lord, and they believed in the Lord and in His servant Moses.
God had revealed His power, performing signs and miracles to Pharaoh and against Egypt, to secure the release of the Israelites. The greatest miracle was yet to be done. God would part the sea allowing the Israelites to cross on dry land, but the army of Egypt would be overcome. What stood out to me about this event, even more than the miracle itself, was what God said to Moses: Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to Me? Tell the sons of Israel to go forward. As for you, lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, and the sons of Israel shall go through the midst of the sea on dry land. Moses had encouraged the people that God would indeed fight for them. He said: “Do not fear! Stand by and see the salvation of the Lord which He will accomplish for you today; for the Egyptians whom you have seen today, you will never see them again forever. The Lord will fight for you while you keep silent.” God was visibly present with the Israelites. The text says: The angel of God, who had been going before the camp of Israel, moved and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud moved from before them and stood behind them. God wanted the Israelites to walk in faith. Surely He could have defeated the army of Egypt in the open, on dry ground. God wanted the Israelites to work and to walk with Him, not merely to cry out, wait and watch.
In the same way God wants us to learn to walk with Him. We are not to be people who only cry out to Him, waiting and watching for Him to do great things. Like the Israelites, we walk with the presence of God around us and even within us. Jesus says: “ I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever; that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you.“ (John 14:16-17) In Luke 17:21 Jesus says: “Behold, the kingdom of God is in your midst." In your midst literally translates; within. Jesus is saying that we have within us all the power and all the authority of God’s kingdom. In Matthew 16:19 Jesus says: “I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.” Being in communion with God is important. It’s important that we spend time in worship and prayer. But if we want to see the miraculous hand of God, if we want to see God fight our battles, if we want mountains moved, seas parted and storms calmed, we need to be people who do more than just cry out to God. Jesus says: “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father. Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it.” (John 14:12-14) Jesus also says: “Truly I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says is going to happen, it will be granted him.” (Mark 11:23)
We pray and we ask Jesus, but if we want to see the results, if we want to see the miraculous hand of God, we need to speak to the mountain. We need to more than cry out, waiting and watching. We need to walk in the power of the presence of God. The psalmist says: The heavens are the heavens of the LORD, But the earth He has given to the sons of men. (Psalm 115:16) In Matthew 28:18-19 Jesus says: “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore…” Jesus has all authority, yet God has chosen and ordained, Jesus has called and commissioned, that what is done on earth would be done through us.
“Why are you crying out?” Speak and walk in the power of the presence of God and His kingdom within You.
Heavenly Father. Lord Jesus Christ; precious Holy Spirit thank You for fighting for me. Thank You even more for the privilege of working and walking with You. May I have the faith to do all that You call me too. The faith to speak with authority and the faith to walk with confidence, the faith to speak to mountains and walk through oceans because I walk in Your presence. Amen.