BibleProject Torah Series - Lesson 3

The Book of Exodus (Part 1) - BibleProject Torah Series

By exploring the Book of Exodus, you will gain a comprehensive understanding of the historical and cultural context, as well as the literary design and message of the book. The story is a continuation of Genesis, where God promises Abraham that his family will become a blessing to all nations. Exodus tells the story of Moses, who God appoints to lead Israel out of slavery in Egypt. After Pharaoh's refusal, God sends ten plagues, culminating in the death of the firstborn sons. The Israelites are saved by painting lamb's blood over their doors and the Passover meal commemorates this event. Despite their salvation, the Israelites struggle in the desert, but God provides for them. The significance of Exodus lies in its contribution to liberation theology and its foreshadowing of Christ's redemption.

Taught by a Team
Taught by a Team
BibleProject Torah Series
Lesson 3
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The Book of Exodus (Part 1) - BibleProject Torah Series

Book of Exodus - Part 1 of 2

I. Background and Context of Exodus

A. Introduction

B. Genesis Background

C. Israel's Enslavement

II. Moses and the Exodus

A. God Calls Moses

B. Pharaoh's Refusal and Plagues

C. Passover and Exodus from Egypt

III. Israel's Journey in the Desert

A. Wandering in the Desert

B. Provision from God

IV. Significance of Exodus

A. Liberation Theology

B. Foreshadowing of Christ's Redemption

  • This lesson provides a comprehensive understanding of Genesis Part 1, exploring creation, the fall, and early humanity, while examining key figures and events in biblical history.
  • In the second part of Genesis, you'll explore the story of Abraham's family and witness how God works through their dysfunction to fulfill His promises, ultimately turning their evil actions into good and using them to restore humanity.
  • You will gain a comprehensive understanding of the Book of Exodus, which tells the story of Moses leading Israel out of slavery in Egypt through the ten plagues and the Passover meal. Despite their salvation, the Israelites struggle in the desert, but God provides for them. The book's significance lies in its contribution to liberation theology and foreshadowing of Christ's redemption.
  • You will gain insight into the book of Exodus, its significance in the Old Testament, and its application to Christian life, emphasizing the themes of covenant, law, redemption, deliverance, God's faithfulness, and the presence of God in our lives.
  • You will learn about the book of Leviticus as a solution to the problem of living near God's holiness. Leviticus shows how Israelites can live near God's goodness without being destroyed through rituals, priesthood, and purity laws. The Day of Atonement is the center of the book, where the priests take two goats - one is killed and its blood symbolically covers Israel's sin, while the other, the Scapegoat, carries away the sins of Israel. Leviticus shows Israel's God as totally different from other gods in ancient times, providing a clear way for Israel to know they are forgiven and safe to live near His presence.

BP110-03 - The Book of Exodus - Part 1 of 2

Jon: Let's talk about the book Exodus now you're probably familiar with this book because the epic story of Moses leading Israel out of slavery in Egypt.
Tim: Yeah, but that's just the first half at the book. The second half has Moses giving the Ten Commandments to Israel along with these blueprints for making a sacred tent. Now right here in the middle is this story that connects these two halves together and it all takes place at the foot of a famous mountain.
Jon: OK, let's start back at the beginning.
Tim: So the first thing we have to remember is we're continuing this story from Genesis.
Jon: In Genesis God promised Abraham that through his family all the nations of the earth will be blessed. And Genesis ends with Abraham's family down in Egypt. When exodus begins, four hundred years have passed, the family grows and becomes the people group now called Israel.
Tim: But there's this huge problem because the Israelites are enslaved to this King of the Egyptians a guy called Pharaoh.
Jon: This guy is really bad news. 
Tim: Yeah, he is horrible. He disregards their humanity. He brutally enslaves them. And he even orders that all of the Israelite sons should be killed by throwing them into the Nile River. He wants to wipe these people out, he is the worst character in the Bible so far.
Jon: Here's where we meet an Israelite woman who wants to save her son.
Tim: And so she does throw him in the river, but safely in this little reed basket.
Jon: And Pharaoh's daughter finds this baby and takes him as her own. 
Tim: And this is the boy who grow up to become Moses, the man who will rescue Israel from slavery.
Jon: So Moses grows up, and one day much later in his life he has this crazy encounter with God where he comes across a bush thats on fire, but it isn't actually burning up.
Tim: And God speaks from the bush, and he appoints Moses as the man he will use to deliver Israel.
Jon: So Moses goes to Pharaoh to tell him this news that God wants His people free.
Tim: And Pharaoh, he just pretty much laughs at him, "Who is this God, Yahweh?" And, in fact he is so offended by this request he decides to make the Israelites work even harder.
Jon: So discouraged, Moses goes back to God and says, "Listen, this plan's not gonna work."
Tim: But God repeats His promise that He's going to rescue them. And in fact, it's right here for the first time in the Bible that we hear the word "redemption" it literally just means 'to purchase a slave's freedom' But God here uses this word to describe what He's going to do for enslaved Israel. 
Jon: And God knows Pharaoh is going to resist so he sends ten different plagues one after another... like turning water into blood...sending all sorts pests and disease...these plagues are really severe.
Tim: They are severe. But what we need to understand is that the story is presenting these as acts of divine justice against one of the worst oppressors in the story of the Bible. And they are aimed at the purpose of rescuing these enslaved people and defeating the God's of Egypt.
Jon: This all comes to a climax at the tenth plague...where God is going to kill the first-born sons across all Egypt, every house, it is pretty rough.
Tim: It is. But is also God's response for how Pharaoh killed the Israelite sons.
Jon: Now as you turn the page, you suddenly get two long chapters of detailed instructions for what's essentially throwing a dinner party with a recipe for lamb...?
Tim: Yeah, but this lamb is super important. God tells the Israelites to pick it out and to prepare it to be eaten. And they are supposed to take its blood and then paint it all over the door frame of their house. And anyone who is in that house will be spared from this final plague. And so this meal, which is called "Passover", it commemorates this key moment in the story where God brings his justice on human evil, but also shows mercy by providing this substitute. 
Jon: This final plague makes Pharaoh angry, and he demands that Israel get out of Egypt, which is great! But suddenly, as they leave, Pharaoh changes his mind- he has "a change of heart." 
Tim: But on top of that, we are also told that "God hardens Pharaoh's heart."
Jon: Why would God do that?
Tim: Well, what we need to remember is that over and over in the story Pharaoh has already chosen to harden his own heart...so at this point, Pharaoh, he's not just evil, he's become monstrously evil. Even his own advisers think that he has gone way too far.
And so how was God supposed to deal with such an extreme form of evil? And what we see in the story is that God uses his power to lure evil into its own destruction. 
Jon: Pharaoh and his army are destroyed in the Red Sea as Israel passes into freedom.
Tim: And after this we find the very first song of worship in the Bible as people praise God for redeeming them. And it is in this story that the word salvation is also used for the first time, which means simply, 'to be rescued from danger'.
Jon: Now that they're saved, you would think that everything should be great...
...but the story quickly turns. The Israelites start wandering in the desert. They are tired, hungry, lost. And you start to wonder what's God doing? What are they saved for?
Tim: And we learn the answer to that question in the very next story which ties the two parts at this whole book together.