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Exodus 15:26

And He said, “If you will give earnest heed to the voice of the Lord your God, and do what is right in His sight, and give ear to His commandments, and keep His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have put on the Egyptians; for I, the Lord, am your healer.”

There is, in this passage, a presumption of sickness. Do you agree? Why do we need a healer if there is not disease in the world? However, God makes a distinction here between the Egyptians (the world) and the Hebrews (believers). He reveals that believers are not subject to the curse.

Think about what was going on here. The Israelites were in slavery to the world, if you will. The Egyptians were their slave masters. God had called Moses out of exile to lead God’s people out of slavery and into the land of promise. The land of Egypt is cursed. God has sent plague, boils, gnats, frogs, locust, turned the river into blood, and rained down hail in such a violent storm that it killed everything which was outside, even trees. The curse is wreaking havoc in Egypt. God was available to remove the curse, even from the Egyptians if they would only obey His word. If Pharoah would only “earnest(ly) heed to the voice of . . . God” Egypt would be spared. However, Pharoah’s heart was hard, and he would not hear the Word of the Lord. His land was devastated as a result.

The curse is still operating in the world, but God would have us understand that the curse is for the Egyptians, not the Hebrews, i.e., for the world, not believers. When Moses lifted his staff in obedience to God, the plague struck Egypt. Meanwhile, over his shoulder, the land of Goshen, the place where the Hebrews lived, was untouched. God made a clear distinction. The thing which is interesting in this is that the land of Egypt didn’t have to suffer all those plagues either. God was willing to save them from their plight anytime they said so. Pharoah begged Moses to remove the frogs from the land. Moses agreed and told Pharoah, “You set the time!” (Exodus 8: 9) meaning that he would pray for the removal of the frogs whenever Pharoah wanted him to. Pharoah could have said, “Do it now!”, but he didn’t. He told Moses to pray tomorrow. What???? You see, Pharoah, like all people, had the right to remain under the curse or to be free of it. Why didn’t he say, “Pray now?” Why does anyone choose to live under the curse? See, even the Egyptians, even Pharoah himself could have chosen for the curse to leave his home. Instead, he opted for another day of frogs.

I know this is long but let me share one more bit from Exodus with you that goes right to the substance of today’s verse. I mentioned the hailstorm. You will find the account of it in chapter 9 of Exodus. What is so amazing about it is that God actually tried to save the Egyptians and their stock. He told them that a hailstorm was coming at “this time tomorrow.” He advised the Egyptians thusly, “Quick! Order your livestock and servants to come in from the fields. Every person or animal left outside will die beneath the hail,” (Exodus 9: 19). Isn’t that amazing? God warned the fools. He didn’t want to kill the Egyptians. He wanted them to listen to Him. They needed only to do as today’s scripture teaches, “Give earnest heed to the voice of the Lord your God, and do what is right in His sight, and give ear to His commandments.” Many people could have survived that day and their livestock too.

So, what is the message from today? Well, I believe it is in several parts and we will see them revisited. However, let us record these three points as we begin our journey. First, heed the voice of God. He is forever trying to steer us away from sickness and harm of every kind. I will say this now though we are sure to hear this again. Sometimes healing is in the advice God gives you and sometimes that comes through another person. It may be advice about diet, exercise or emotional well-being. If we ignore it, we get hailed upon and it is no fault of God’s. Second, the curse was never meant for believers. The curse is in the world, but you are supposed to be living in the land of Goshen, not Egypt. My advice, don’t go to Egypt. Don’t live in that space. Lastly, number three, God is our healer. He knows there is dis-ease in the world and that we need a healer. He has volunteered to be that person for us. That is not to say that He won’t use physical therapists and doctors and acupuncturists, etc., but first and foremost, He is our healer. He is the attending physician who coordinates all the other modalities.  We must begin with Him and constantly heed His advice.

This healing journey begins with these words, “Give earnest heed to the voice of the Lord your God, and do what is right in His sight, and give ear to His commandments, and keep His statutes.” The path of health starts here.

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