•  3 min. read  •  grade level: 8
We can hardly pass by the reference to the little ones that Pharaoh wanted left in Egypt (Ex. 10:10). It was a true father’s heart that replied: “We will go with our young and with our old, with our sons and with our daughters, with our flocks and with our herds will we go.” How many parents there are who are content to be out of Egypt themselves, but satisfied to let their children remain in it. May God give to us parents grace to make a clean cut with the world for our children, as well as for ourselves, and for all we possess.
The awful judgment that cost Pharaoh his eldest son, was entirely the result of his unbelief. Should the eye of any unbelieving parent fall on this page, may you pause and consider, before it is eternally too late, what price your children may have to pay for your unbelief.
Before we go on to consider Aaron’s family, let us pause for a moment and catch a glimpse of family life in Egypt in the years preceding the time when Israel left Egypt. We see Moses in his natural zeal standing up for his own nation against their oppressors, for “he supposed his brethren would have understood how that God by his hand would deliver them: but they understood not.” (Acts 7:25). Evidently the expectation of deliverance filled Moses’ heart forty years before the time was ripe for Israel to leave Egypt. Indeed it may be that the Spirit of God was stirring the hearts of many in Israel at this time, and turning them to the God of their fathers. If we read the names of those who were “the renowned of the congregation” in Numbers and remember that “EI” means “GOD”, we cannot but be struck with the number of names of which this forms a part. For example, Num. 1:5, Elizur means “God is my rock”; Verse 6, Shelumiel means “Friend of God”; Verse 8, Nathaneel means “Given of God”. Verse 9, Eliab means “My God is Father”. And so we might continue.
These men had been born many years before the deliverance from Egypt came, and though their parents would seem to have been godly people, whose hope was truly in God, yet they had a long wait, and no doubt many of them passed off the scene, before the expected deliverance appeared. And there is a deeply important lesson for us in this wait. We are by nature so impatient. It is so hard for us to wait. Our expectation is in God, and if it is His will, He will bring it to pass; but often He permits us to wait long before turning our expectation into reality. What an encouragement to pray on, and to hope on. Jacob could say, “I will not let Thee go except Thou bless me.” (Gen. 32:26); and in Hos. 12:4 the Spirit of God gives us His comment on this act. “Yea, he had power over the angel, and prevailed; he wept, and made supplication unto him.” We so easily grow weary of the waiting and “let go”. The urgency of the desire passes away from us, as it did with Moses; and when at last the command comes to go and do the very thing he had tried to do forty years before, he all but refuses. But those forty years had not been wasted years, and now he goes in the strength of the Lord, whereas before he was going in his own strength. And we will find that the weary years of waiting have not been wasted years, but rather that God has taught us lessons in this waiting time, that could not have been learned in any other way.