Reflection of the Week - 21st November 2023

By Mark Woods

Posted in Faith

Risk-taking and the faithfulness of God

Exodus 14

The crossing of the Red Sea is an event of tremendous drama. Older generations might remember Charlton Heston in the famous scene in the movie The Ten Commandments (1956), in which the water literally forms walls in the sea on either side of the fleeing Israelites. It probably wasn't much like that: the 'Red Sea' was really the 'Sea of Reeds,’ an area of lakes and marshes at the head of the Gulf of Suez. But the point of the story is that God did something remarkable and rescued his people.

So, the story is about risk-taking and the faithfulness of God. The Hebrews despaired, saying of their life in Egypt that it would be 'better to be slaves there than to die here in the desert' (verse 12). Humanly speaking, they were right: while life in Egypt was hard, at least it was life. But no, says Moses – God called us to freedom, and he won't let us down.

Faith often looks ridiculous. It means looking for hope in a different direction – or as one writer says, 'believing in spite of the evidence, and watching the evidence change.’

That doesn't mean we're excused from being wise and sensible in what we undertake or how we plan things. But it does mean that we don't let 'common sense' dictate what we do. If God can part the sea for the Israelites, he can do it for us.

God, help me not to be always ruled by what other people tell me is reasonable and sensible, but to trust in your power to work miracles.


Woods, M 2020, Risk Taking and the Faithfulness of God, Bible Society UK,

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