The Opening of the Red Sea

By Ashlee Price

The pillar of cloud hovered above little Bethany’s head, and she sighed with relief. She looked up with her big brown eyes and took her mother’s hand. “Mother, I’m so glad that God gave us this cloud,” she said.

“Why is that?” her mother asked kindly.

“Because otherwise we would be dying in this heat,” she exclaimed.

The entire camp of Israel was walking through the wilderness following their great leader, Moses. Pharaoh had given them permission to leave Egypt, and now Bethany and her whole family were rejoicing that God delivered them out of their slavery. Each day, God was with His people in a pillar of cloud, to protect them from the heat of the sun, and at night, He was with them in a pillar of fire, so they could see the path ahead of them. Thousands and thousands of people walked around Bethany, and she looked down at her little legs and walked fast to try to keep up with the adults, even though their legs were much longer. To Bethany it seemed as though they had been walking for years without stopping, even though it had only been a couple of days.

Bethany heard loud groans suddenly echo from the very front of the group. Slowly, everyone began to stop walking. Bethany was grateful that they had stopped walking, because she was very tired.

“What is it? What’s going on?” Bethany tugged on her mother’s hand.

Mother stood on her tippy toes to see over the heads of the tall men ahead of her, and she gasped. “There’s a great big sea in front of us, and we can’t get past it!”

“Oh no,” Bethany whispered.

Suddenly, someone from the back of the group cried, “Look, it’s the Egyptians! They’ve come to get us again!”

Bethany saw everyone’s heads turn to look behind them, and she tried to peek past the people to see what was going on. As she looked, she saw the flash of the Egyptian army’s armour reflecting in the sun’s bright rays. Bethany remembered how those soldiers had whipped and beaten her parents when they lived in Egypt. Fear rose up inside her.

“Moses, is this what you had in mind?” a man’s voice yelled from somewhere in the crowd. “Did you really lead us out here into the desert to die?” There was a chorus of angry shouts, and Bethany shuddered.

Bethany was scared, but she was upset that the man was angry at Moses, because she liked Moses. She remembered how he was always kind to her whenever he came to visit her family back in Egypt.

“What are we going to do?” Bethany asked her father.

Father knelt down to Bethany’s height and put his hands on her shoulders and looked her in the eye.

“Now Bethany, even though everyone else is blaming Moses for what is happening, we are going to pray. Because God knows what’s happening and He will help us.”

Mother knelt down as well, and they all took each other’s hands and closed their eyes.

“Dear Lord, we know that You are still with us. Please help us now, and deliver us from these Egyptians we pray, amen.”

“Amen,” Bethany and Mother echoed.

They stood up and then heard Moses speaking. Everyone became silent as they listened.

“Hear me, O Israel,” he cried. “Fear not. Stand still and you will see the salvation of the Lord. These Egyptians that you see today, you will never see again. The Lord will fight for us!”

Bethany’s fears went away, and her heart thumped with excitement. She couldn’t wait to see what God would do for them!

She looked up and saw the pillar of cloud above them rise higher into the air, and then it lowered so it was right between the Israelites and the Egyptians! She gasped with excitement. She could no longer see the Egyptians, and she knew that the Egyptians could no longer see her.

The day wore on, and soon evening came, and the pillar of cloud turned into a flaming wall of fire between Bethany and the Egyptians. It was so bright that Bethany could see all the way down to the edge of the sea in front of the band of Israelites.  

Bethany looked through the crowd and saw Moses lift his hands into the air, and she knew he was praying. Then Moses raised his rod over the sea before him, and the children of Israel walked forward, and as they did, Bethany saw the huge sea waves part with a loud roaring sound. She couldn’t believe her eyes! What a wonderful thing God had done for her and her people.

Bethany looked at the ground she was stepping on as everyone walked between the huge walls of water on either side of them. It was dry ground! And it had been under the water just moments before! She looked at the water to her left and saw a school of fish swimming in the waves. The light from the pillar of cloud illuminated the ground and the torches of all the people shone on their pathway.

But as the people walked through the parted water, Bethany turned and through the crowd, she saw the pillar of cloud rise and the Egyptians started to come after the Israelites in their chariots. She let out a short scream, but her mother reminded her that God had said that He would not let them be killed by the Egyptians.

Above her head, Bethany heard lightning crack and thunder boom. She held tightly to her father’s hand, and together, they made it safely to the other side. Bethany beamed with joy.

Bethany glanced behind her, and as she watched the last of the Israelites climb onto the rocks safely on the shore with her, she saw the most incredible thing happen. The mighty walls of ocean began to collapse onto the Egyptians, who were racing through the path between the water, and rain poured onto them, and then they were no more, because the sea had washed them away.

Bethany and all the Israelites cheered, and Miriam, Moses’ sister, began to lead them in a song of praise to God. Bethany sang as loud as she could.

It is amazing to see all the wonderful things God has done, and just as He parted the Red Sea for the Israelites, He will make impossible things happen for us too, if we will only believe.

PICTURE CREDIT – Free Bible Images

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