By Joe Slater
The Israelites felt boxed in at the Red Sea. Mountains loomed in both sides with the water ahead. Pharaoh’s host was closing in behind them. Where could they go? As they had done before and would do again, the people complained, blaming Moses for leading them to disaster.
“Do not be afraid,” Moses exhorted them. “Stand still and see the salvation of the Lord” (Exodus 14:13). Not long ago they had witnessed the Lord’s power over Pharaoh and his idols in ten plagues that devastated the land of Egypt. Oh, how quickly we forget!
There is a time to stand still. But two verses later God ordered Moses to “tell the children of Israel to go forward” (14:15). But wait! “Forward” led straight into the water! No worries – the Lord will simply part the water. You’ll go through on dry ground. Problem solved!
We, too, must stand; and we, too, must go forward. “Take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand” (Ephesians 6:13). As a soldier must stand and fight, so we must engage in spiritual warfare. The Lord fought for Israel (Exodus 14:14), and He will fight for us too!
Yes, we must stand – but we must also go forward!
Even the great apostle Paul acknowledged that he had not yet “arrived.” “But one thing I do: forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13b-14).
The goal is up ahead. Let us stand still (remain calm), stand fast, and go forward! Soldiers of Christ, arise and put your armor on!
- Joe Slater serves as minister of the Church of Christ in Justin, TX. He may be contacted through the congregation's website: http://justinchurchofchrist.com