Bondage in Egypt

Scripture Passage: 
Exodus 1:1-22

INTRODUCTION:  From Genesis to Revelation, Satan has attempted to destroy the people of God and the godly seed. This chapter records one of many such attempts. Yet, God blesses His people despite the opposition of the enemy. And, He uses affliction to bring His people to even greater good.

  1. BLESSINGS IN EGYPT (Exodus 1:1-7)
    1. The Seed Planted (Exodus 1:1-5)
      1. Their names are given (Exodus 1:1-4); God keeps up with our names (Luke 10:20; Philippians 4:3).
      2. Their souls are counted (Exodus 1:5).
    2. The Generation Passes (Exodus 1:6; Ecclesiastes 1:4).
      1. Joseph died.
      2. Joseph’s brethren died.
      3. All that generation died.
    3. The Fruit Multiplies (Exodus 1:7; Matthew 13:23; John 15:2, 5).
      1. Fruitful (cp. Acts 6:7; Acts 12:24; Acts 19:20)
      2. Increased abundantly
      3. Multiplied
      4. Waxed exceeding mighty
      5. Land filled with them
  2. BURDENS IN EGYPT (Exodus 1:8-14)
    1. The Fears of the New King (Exodus 1:8-10)
      1. A new pharaoh arises (Exodus 1:8).
      2. He knew not Joseph (Exodus 1:8).
        1. Since Joseph is a type of Christ, this pictures those who do not know the Lord (Judges 2:10).
        2. They fear those who do know God and are blessed by knowing Him.
      3. He feared the Israelites (Exodus 1:9-10).
        1. Their great population (Exodus 1:9)
        2. Their growing power (Exodus 1:9)
        3. Their potential as enemies (Exodus 1:10); notice, they are not enemies. He only fears what they might do if they were enemies. So, he establishes a policy that is sure to make them enemies.
        4. Their possibility of leaving (Exodus 1:10); they remembered the words of Joseph (Genesis 50:24).
      4. He took counsel for controlling them (Exodus 1:10; see Psalm 2:1-3).
        1. In verse 9, Pharaoh speaks to his people concerning the Israelites.
        2. In verse 10, Pharaoh requests the help of the people in dealing with the Israelites.
        3. Egypt is a type of the world, and it is common for the world to try to solve their problems by committees.
    2. The Enslavement of the People (Exodus 1:11-12)
      1. He makes them taskmasters (Exodus 1:11).
      2. The taskmasters are set to afflict the people of God (Exodus 1:11).
      3. He gives them burdens (Exodus 1:11).
      4. They build treasure cities for Pharaoh (Exodus 1:11).
        1. Pithom
        2. Raamses
      5. But they continue to grow (Exodus 1:12).
      6. And the Egyptians are grieved (Exodus 1:12).
    3. The Affliction of the People (Exodus 1:13-14)
      1. Their service was made hard (Exodus 1:13).
      2. Their lives were made bitter (Exodus 1:14).
        1. In mortar
        2. In brick
        3. In all manner of service in the field
    4. Examples of Growth through Affliction
      1. The Israelites (Exodus 1:12, 20)
      2. The early churches (Acts 8:1-4; Acts 11:19-21)
      3. Individual believers (Romans 5:3-5; James 1:2-4)
      4. The Lord Jesus Christ (Hebrews 2:10)
  3. BATTLES IN EGYPT (Exodus 1:15-22)
    1. The Charge to the Hebrew Midwives (Exodus 1:15-21)
      1. The command of the king (Exodus 1:15-16)
        1. To the midwives (Exodus 1:15); he came secretly.
          1. Shiphrah – means beauty
          2. Puah – means splendid
        2. To kill the male infants (Exodus 1:16)
        3. To spare the female infants (Exodus 1:16)
          1. It was common in time of warfare to spare the young women who had not known man.
          2. The females could be spared and eventually take Egyptian husbands.  This would still help to multiply the strength of Egypt.
      2. The refusal of the midwives (Exodus 1:17-19; Acts 4:19-20; Acts 5:29)
        1. Their fear of God (Exodus 1:17)
        2. Their encounter with Pharaoh (Exodus 1:18-19)
          1. The questioning of Pharaoh (Exodus 1:18)
          2. The deception of the midwives (Exodus 1:19)
            1. The Hebrew women are not as the Egyptian women.
            2. The Hebrew women are lively.
            3. The Hebrew women are delivered ere the midwives come in unto them.
      3. The reward of the Lord (Exodus 1:20-21)
        1. God dealt well with the midwives (Exodus 1:20).
        2. The Israelites multiplied (Exodus 1:20).
        3. The Israelites waxed mighty (Exodus 1:20).
        4. The Lord made the midwives houses (Exodus 1:21; Acts 16:31; 1 Timothy 3:4).
    2. The Charge to the Egyptian People (Exodus 1:22)
      1. An open announcement; secret devices eventually become open cruelty.
      2. To throw the Hebrew male infants into the river
        1. Note: It is interesting to note that God’s righteous judgment (Revelation 19:11-12) is demonstrated in the drowning of the Egyptians in the Red Sea.
      3. To save alive every daughter
    3. Possible Purposes of the Persecution
      1. To deter the mixing of God’s people with the Egyptians and to preserve them as a separate people (Exodus 12:38)
      2. To limit the degree to which the Israelites followed false gods (Joshua 24:14; Ezekiel 20:5-8)
      3. To encourage the Israelites to cry out to God (Exodus 2:23-25)
      4. To make the Israelites willing to leave the wealth and comfort of Egypt (Exodus 4:29-31)

CONCLUSION:  What are the afflictions your class faces? They will be different for different ages and situations. Help them to realize that God will use those very afflictions in order to bring about His good will.

David Reagan and Andrew Ray

Daily Proverb

Proverbs 8:1

Doth not wisdom cry? and understanding put forth her voice?