"On the same day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, 'To your descendants I have given this land... the Kenites, the Kenezzites, the Kadmonites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Rephaim, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites and the Jebusites."Genesis 15:18-21
Text: Exodus 3 : 17
AN ANCIENT PROMISE RECALLED
Moses was to help the elders of the children to recall and to have faith in an ancient promise that God had given to Abraham on one occasion. The children of Israel must never lose faith in the word of promise that He had given them.
“And I have said I will bring you up out of
the affliction of Egypt to the land of the Canaanites
and the Hittites and the Amorites and the Perizzites
and the Hivites and the Jebusites, to a land flowing
with milk and honey.”
TWO DIFFERENT LISTS OF TRIBAL GROUPS
The list of the groups of people mentioned in the Exodus text is a little different from that found in Genesis. How do we understand the difference? The answer is fairly simple. At the time of Abraham the dominant groups were quite different. There were more “tribal groups” mentioned in the Genesis text.
With the passage of time, some groups became weaker while other groups became more dominant. That was natural and not unexpected. Disease, leadership skills, war, natural disasters – these were things that could account for the smaller number of tribal groups that existed in the time of Moses. (There is no scribal error in the Biblical texts)!
THE PROMISE OF DELIVERANCE
Moses’ was to encourage the elders of the children of Israel to believe that God would indeed deliver them out of their affliction. This was no easy message to preach to the children of Israel! When people have suffered for many years, despair tends to set in deeply. Faith and hope are the twin sources of strength that need to be preached powerfully!
“A LAND FLOWING WITH MILK AND HONEY”
Could the elders of the children of Israel imagine a land that was “flowing with milk and honey”? Yes, there would be enemies to conquer in the land promised to Abraham! But the challenge was to see beyond all the obstacles that stood in their path. The immediate obstacle was of course the Egyptians. Then the inhabitants in the land of Canaan would also have to be fought. Could the children of Israel find enough faith to believe that the Lord could and would bring them to such a land?
“BY FAITH WE UNDERSTAND”
The promises of God can only be understood by faith. Only through the exercise of faith could the impossible be achieved! The same call to faith is issued today!