Believers Live in the Land of “Goshen!”
I want to give you some encouragement today that the Lord is going to take care of you as a dedicated believer during these tumultuous times of change. We’re in the time period just prior to what is commonly called the tribulation, a seven year period of incredible hardship that is coming to this planet just prior to Jesus’ second coming.
Regardless of the challenges ahead of us before Jesus takes us to heaven in the rapture, we can be confident that the Father will shield, defend, protect, and provide for us all of our days! Let me give you the basis for my confidence in the Father to help us.
Our Father is a covenant God. He has covenanted His care for us. He has obligated Himself to watch over us. Hebrews 8:6 tells us that we have a better covenant with God in the New Covenant than the Old Testament saints enjoyed. Our covenant with God has been placed in force by the shed blood of Jesus Christ when He died for us!
Galatians 3 tells us that Christ became a curse for us, so that the blessings God promised Abraham would also belong to the New Covenant believer (Galatians 3:13-14)! In fact, Galatians 3:26-29 goers so far as to tell us that we actually become sons of Abraham by faith in Jesus Christ. And as Abraham’s sons, all of God’s promises to Abraham belong to us!
Now let me take you back to God’s dealings with Israel during Joseph’s and Moses’ time. In Genesis 12:1-3, God cut a covenant with Abraham and promised that He would bless Abraham and His descendants, and that God would bless the world through Abraham.
God knew that His promises to Abraham would be tested during a severe famine in Joseph’s time. At age seventeen, Joseph had a dream and saw his family bowing in obeisance before him. Joseph unwisely told his eleven brothers about his dream. They kidnapped him and sold him to a caravan of slave traders. Thirteen years later, Joseph became prime minister of Egypt, second in command over all the land under Pharaoh.
A severe famine hit the Middle East in Joseph’s day and God gave Joseph a plan that would save thousands of people from starvation. In addition, Joseph’s family, Abraham’s descendants, were moved to the land of Goshen in Egypt where they were amply provided for by Joseph during the seven year famine (Genesis 45:5-10).
In Moses’ day, hundreds of years after the Israelites moved to Egypt, the Israelites had basically become slaves under Egyptian leadership that knew nothing of Joseph. God saw the plight Israel was in, and remembered His covenant with Moses. That covenant moved God to action (Exodus 2:23-25).
Moses was directed by God to approach the Egyptian leadership with ten plagues against their pagan gods if the Pharaoh would not release Israel from slavery in Egypt. The Pharaoh hardened his heart and refused to let Israel go free, and the plagues began.
And here is the heart of the entire story. God supernaturally provided for and protected Israel throughout the entire duration of each of these ten plagues that came on Egypt Listen to the language in the following verses, and keep in mind that if we are heirs of God’s promised to Abraham, then we today must be provided the same care by our Father God. We have a better covenant!
If you refuse, then I will send swarms of flies on you, your officials, your people, and all the houses. The Egyptian homes will be filled with flies, and the ground will be covered with them. But this time I will spare the region of Goshen, where my people live. No flies will be found there. Then you will know that I am the Lord and that I am present even in the heart of your land. I will make a clear distinction between my people and your people. This miraculous sign will happen tomorrow (Exodus 8:21-23- NLT)
Go back to Pharaoh,” the Lord commanded Moses. “Tell him, ‘This is what the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, says: Let my people go, so they can worship me. If you continue to hold them and refuse to let them go, the hand of the Lord will strike all your livestock—your horses, donkeys, camels, cattle, sheep, and goats—with a deadly plague. But the Lord will again make a distinction between the livestock of the Israelites and that of the Egyptians. Not a single one of Israel’s animals will die! The Lord has already set the time for the plague to begin. He has declared that he will strike the land tomorrow.'”And the Lord did just as he had said. The next morning all the livestock of the Egyptians died, but the Israelites didn’t lose a single animal (Exodus 9:1-6 –NLT)
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Lift your hand toward the sky so hail may fall on the people, the livestock, and all the plants throughout the land of Egypt.”So Moses lifted his staff toward the sky, and the Lord sent thunder and hail, and lightning flashed toward the earth. The Lord sent a tremendous hailstorm against all the land of Egypt. Never in all the history of Egypt had there been a storm like that, with such devastating hail and continuous lightning. It left all of Egypt in ruins. The hail struck down everything in the open field—people, animals, and plants alike. Even the trees were destroyed. The only place without hail was the region of Goshen, where the people of Israel lived (Exodus 9:22-26-NLT).
Moses had announced to Pharaoh, “This is what the Lord says: At midnight tonight I will pass through the heart of Egypt. All the firstborn sons will die in every family in Egypt, from the oldest son of Pharaoh, who sits on his throne, to the oldest son of his lowliest servant girl who grinds the flour. Even the firstborn of all the livestock will die. Then a loud wail will rise throughout the land of Egypt, a wail like no one has heard before or will ever hear again. But among the Israelites it will be so peaceful that not even a dog will bark. Then you will know that the Lord makes a distinction between the Egyptians and the Israelites (Exodus 11:4-7 -NLT).
Summary: If God in His sovereignty provided for Israel during a drought, and during these ten plagues, and if we have a superior covenant with God as New Testament believers than they did, then is not God obligated to provide for us during times of severe worldwide turmoil? Yes He is! Today, see yourself as living in the spiritual land of Goshen. Expect you Covenant Father God to take care of you. You’re a son and daughter of Abraham!
I’ll continue tomorrow!