Era 3: Egypt and the Exodus

Introduction to Egypt & Exodus (with Jeff Cavins)

Era 3: Egypt and the Exodus: Red for The Red Sea (Hmmm….I think I see the correlation)

Introduction: This era covers the Book of Exodus (Narrative Book)

(Leviticus is the supplemental book, it is the book of the Law)

The Second Book of Moses Commonly Called Exodus


  • Exodus is the second of the five books of the PENTATEUCH. As with the rest of the “Books of Moses,” it is a 6th Century B.C. re-editing of various materials, both written and oral traditions, compiled over the course of several centuries.

  • Some of the oral traditions date from the 13th Century B.C., the approximate date of the Exodus.


  • Exodus and the rest of the Pentateuch were edited around the time of the return of the exiles of Israel from Babylon in the 6th Century B.C.

  • These sacred books were presented to the people to help restore and purify Israel after its long and devastating division and the insidious influence of pagan neighbors and oppressors.

The Third Book of Moses Commonly Called Leviticus


  • Leviticus, like all of the first five books of the Old Testament, was likely edited into its present form in about the 6th Century B.C. with materials taken from a number of sources dating back several hundred years.


  • The entire Pentateuch in its final form was intended for ALL OF ISRAEL, both the returning exiles and the people who had remained in Judea during the Exile, as a means of aiding the faithful restoration of Israel as a people. (*The Didache Bible RSV-CE, Ignatius Edition 2006)

  • Begins in the 19th century B.C.

  • Jacob (Israel) and his family live in the land of Egypt as Pharoah’s guests

  • It takes place 400 years after GENESIS with their descendants about to be liberated from slavery and setting out from Mount Sinai for the Promised Land


  1. The Exodus from Egypt

  2. The Sinai Covenant

  3. The building of the Tabernacle

  • This is the first complicated area of the story of Salvation History (oh man…..Genesis seemed a bit complicated already)

  • The new Pharaoh is kind of a jerk

  • The people of Israel are slaves now in Egypt

  • You could say they were “quarantined” for 400 years

  • They cry out to God for help and He sends some dude named Moses aka Moshe which means “To Draw Out” (think I’ve heard of him, reminds me of Charlton Heston)

  • What are some stumbling blocks with reading the Book of Exodus?

  • We are going to be introduced to a number of new major things in the story

  • God sends Moses to break the Israelites from Egyptian bondage

  • Not just slavery

  • They eat like Egyptians

  • They worship like Egyptians

  • They dress like Egyptians

  • They even WALK LIKE EGYPTIANS (Thank you, thank you I’ll be here all week)

  • They were ADDICTED to Idolatry

  • God had to do something AMAZING to draw them out and turn them to Him

  • He does this through the ten plagues and the exodus through the Red Sea

  • For 3 months they travel down to Mt. Sinai

  • God even provides food for them (Manna)

  • “Man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.” (Jesus also said this to Satan in the 40 days fast in the desert)

  • They remain at Mt. Sinai for ONE YEAR and everything changes so pay close attention

  • God is taking these people who are addicted, and SETTING THEM FREE

  • This is going to be a painful freedom

  • Freedom comes at a cost

  • The Israelites start thinking that maybe life wasn’t so bad back in Egypt with their addictions and they start to blame Moses

  • At Mt. Sinai God makes a COVENANT with the people of Israel (repeated theme)

  • Adam & Eve (one holy couple) -------> Noah (one holy family) -----> Abraham (one holy tribe) ------> The People of Israel (ONE HOLY NATION)

  • It goes south (AGAIN VERY QUICKLY)

  • The craziness is in the midst of three of the most important things to understand in this period:

  1. THE LEVITES - Laicization of the nation with one tribe rising up as the PRIESTS *This happens in Ch 32 of Exodus and technically, this is where the Book of Leviticus belongs

  2. THE TABERNACLE - comes about from Moses having a Heavenly Vision of what it looks like to worship at the top of the mountain (We also see this in The Book of Revelation, and also at Mass at Catholic Church)

  3. THE LAW (TORAH) - it is not meant to put the Israelites down, it is not meant to control their lives, it is meant to get the people to FOCUS ON THEIR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD

  • Once you grasp the above three things, it will be easier to understand books like Hebrews in the NT, the works of Jesus as High Priest, and how Jesus FULFILLS EVERY SINGLE THING THAT WE ARE READING

  • We will also be reading The Book of Leviticus concurrently

  • What should we pay attention to in this book?

  • In Jesus’ day, all children who started their Biblical studies in Israel started with LEVITICUS

  • Not Genesis

  • Not Exodus

  • Not Numbers

  • Not Deuteronomy


  • God brought Israel out into the desert TO DO SOMETHING

  • Six different times, God says to the Israelites “Be Holy as I am Holy”

  • God also says they need to learn to discern between the good and the bad, that which is clean and that which is unclean

  • God also tells them not to obey the laws of the place they came from, nor the place they are going


  • This is the foundation of DISCIPLESHIP

  • God is discipling a nation which has come out of bondage and addiction

  • If you want to be my people and you want to truly live free, you have to imitate ME

  • I am going to be with you in your midst in the Tabernacle

  • Listen carefully for how God is forming a nation

  • What they wear

  • What they eat

  • Who they hang around with

  • How they treat their neighbors


  • This lesson carries on to the New Testament with Jesus

  • We have the same temptations that the people of Israel had

  • We want to be like everyone else (secular world)

  • The law God gives them is how they will live out a relationship with God, not to control them

  • God knows their hearts and how they want to NOT be like God, but like the Egyptians

  • Leviticus is not just about distant rules that don’t have much to do with us today

  • It is a key for DISCIPLESHIP

  • God is laying the groundwork for WORSHIP IN SPIRIT AND TRUTH that Jesus will eventually fulfill

  • When you read these books, it’s good to look in the mirror and ask ourselves : “What is it in my life that God is trying to bring me out of? Are there addictions? Are there ways of thinking? Are there habits that are keeping me from the relationship with God that He wants?”

  • Take these principles and apply them to YOURSELVES

  • The Bible is for YOUR ENCOURAGEMENT

  • Pay attention to the 3 important things in this era: The Levites, The Tabernacle, and The Law

  • Ask God to illuminate those 3 things and to recognize them in Church, in life, and give thanks to God for ALL THREE