“Let My People Go”


And afterward Moses and Aaron went in, and told Pharaoh, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness.”                       (Exodus 5:1)


As God’s servants, Moses and Aaron, stood before Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, they had only one thing to say. Their issue before the king of Egypt is the singular, unambiguous demand of the King of Heaven. — “Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness!


      What a volume of rich instruction those words contain! It is given in plain and forcible language. It sets before us the purpose of the Lord God of Israel to have his people completely delivered from Egypt and separated unto himself, in order that they might feast with him in the wilderness. Nothing could satisfy his heart with regard to his covenant people, but their complete emancipation from the land of death and darkness. He would free them not only from Egypt’s brick-kilns and task-masters, but from its gods and its temples, its altars and its customs, and its people and their way of life. The Lord God was determined to deliver the chosen nation from Egypt, from the land of Egypt, the bondage of Egypt, the people of Egypt, and the life of Egypt. In a word, they had to be thoroughly separated from Egypt, before they could worship him in the wilderness.


      Thus it was with Israel, and thus it is with us. We, too, must be a fully and consciously delivered people before we can worship, serve, and walk with God. We cannot worship God until we are sanctified by him, separated from Egypt by his omnipotent grace. We must know the forgiveness of our sins and our entire freedom from guilt, wrath, judgment, and condemnation. But there must also be a separation, a complete deliverance from this present evil world.


      The world is to us what Egypt was to Israel. As Israel left Egypt, we must leave the world. God demands a real, out-and-out, thorough separation of our hearts from Egypt. He says, “Let my people go, that they may hold a feast to me in the wilderness.”


      In a word, our God demands, and will not rest until he has accomplished the complete sanctification of his elect, the complete separation of his people unto Christ. This separation from the world may involve physical things, but it is not a physical separation. It is not a separation to be displayed before men by the clothes we wear, the things we eat and drink, or places in which we eat and drink. That kind of separation is nothing but a pharisaical show of hypocrisy. The separation (sanctification) of God’s elect to Christ is a spiritual separation, a separation of our hearts to our Savior. It is a separation touching every aspect of our lives. He says, “Give me thine heart” (Proverbs 23:26). What does the husband want from his wife? — Her heart. What does the wife want from her husband? — His heart. And that which Christ wants, and will have, from his people is their hearts. If he has my heart, he has everything. If my heart is not his, nothing about me, nothing possessed by me is his.




Don Fortner



Listen to sermons at FreeGraceRadio.com