The Song of Moses

Exodus 15:1-21

The highest purpose of any song is to remember truth and worship God. To join gospel truth with the emotion that truth evokes, so that I may express them as one act of worship unto the Lord. To bring together my head and my heart, so that every part of my being can be unified in giving God praise.

After crossing the Red Sea, this was one of those moments the Hebrews knew never to forget. And what happens next…is a song. On the other side of the Red Sea, with God’s people still standing in amazement at the greatest miracle they had ever witnessed, Moses breaks out into a spontaneous song that he sings there on the shore, known today as “The Song of Moses”.

My Strength and My Song   (vv. 1-2)

The situation they were in, man’s strength could not have saved them. It was God alone. And through His deliverance, they had a reason to rejoice. We see that connection of God’s strength and our song all through Israel’s worship:

Psalm 59:17 – O my Strength, I will sing praises to you, for you, O God, are my fortress, the God who shows me steadfast love.

Psalm 21:13 – Be exalted, O LORD, in your strength! We will sing and praise your power.

Not only does God’s strength cause us to praise Him, but it also means through praising Him, He gives us strength. In the battle, in weariness, in difficulty, when God’s people praise Him, it gives us strength. The Holy Spirit on the inside of you pours forth praise through song, and the remembrance and recognition of that truth imparts encouragement and hope and life into a weary heart.

The Divine Warrior   (vv. 3-10)

As the people of Israel were getting to know God, this was a part of God’s nature they would need to know for sure. God is a “man of war”, a Divine Warrior, the one who would fight their battles.

Just a few weeks after this, the Hebrews would be fighting their first physical battle, against the Amalekites in ch. 17. They would need to be assured that God’s victory over the Egyptians was not just a one-time deliverance. That was no fluke. God did it before, and He’ll do it again. He will fight for His people.

Who Is Like the LORD?  (vv. 11-12)

The implied answer is “no one.” No false gods created by the hands and imaginations of men can compare to the One True God. God is victorious. There is none like Him. God is unsurpassingly unique, without equal. And what God had already done should cause them to trust Him for what He had yet to do.

God’s past faithfulness gives us a future hope. And it’s right about here, midway through the song, that we see that transition from what God has done in the past, to what God was going to do in the future…

A Prophetic Praise  (vv. 13-18)

A prophetic praise is thanking God for what has not yet happened. God has promised to lead His people to their final destination, and when God promises something, it’s as good as done. So Moses is singing and praising God as if it has already happened.

Add to that, all of the nations who oppose God and stand in the way of God’s people, they will be stricken with fear, unable to unite against Israel or prevent God’s people, God’s redeemed, from passing through their territories on the Promised Land. Moses sings about the defeat of these nations as if it has already happened, a foregone conclusion. Moses knew that because God was faithful yesterday, He is faithful today, and He would be faithful forever.

Don’t wait to see how God answers that prayer or what happens in your situation. Praise Him now. Give Him a prophetic praise, knowing that He is good, He does good, and He always will.

A Song Worth Repeating  (vv. 19-21)

Miriam, Moses’ sister, takes this song that Moses spontaneously sings, and she sings it again to the women, adds some tambourines and dancing, and all the women of Israel sing it together.

This underscores a few things:

-It reminds us this song was not just for Moses. It was meant for all of them to sing. All of the people who had been freed from Egypt had a reason to sing, to praise the God who had rescued them.

-It reminds us that this song was not just a history lesson. This was a celebration.

-It implies that they eventually taught the children, so that this song would be passed down through every home, and every generation.

And that’s exactly what happened. We see Moses Song again in the Psalms. We see it again in Isaiah. And because it’s a song worthy to be repeated, the Bible allows us to peer into the future, when all of God’s people are gathered around His throne in heaven, and we are still singing it there.

And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, “Great and amazing are your deeds, O Lord God the Almighty! Just and true are your ways, O King of the nations! Who will not fear, O Lord, and glorify your name? For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship you, for your righteous acts have been revealed.” (Revelation 15:3–4)


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