It was quite a choir singing back there in Israel’s day as they walked out of the Red Sea and came onto the dessert, as they watched the waters pile back on their enemies and saw chariots, shields floating and sinking and men dying beneath the waters where they had passed through safely.
You saw here God’s attributes and God’s actions. His excellencies and His activities. That’s the theme of any good worship. Who God is and what He does — you say that back to Him. You notice it. You say it and approve of it and love Him for it, and tell Him so. Then you have worshiped. It’s like in a marriage. You notice. You approve of it. Then, you put it into words. Then, you get somewhere.
It’s that way with God. It’s to be a love relationship. The relationship of praise and acknowledgement. Right in the middle (v. 11): “Who is like unto thee, O Lord, among the gods? Who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?”
I love this verse. It’s been a favorite of mine for many years. I wonder, are you affected by the excellent character and the wonderful activities of God? Do you notice God? Do you live with Him in a spiritual marriage through the Lord Jesus Christ? Are you affected by Who God is and what He does? Does it alter the way you walk through life, the expression on your face, your activities, what you do? The goals you have in life? Or, are you simply altered by excitement? When there’s fun and excitement, that’s for you and you are happy? Or, are you altered and lifted and challenged by money and things? Or, does God Himself really mean something to you?
Now, I know that ice cream means something to some of you. I see you keep looking. (Wagon going by ringing bell — ding, ding, ding.) But, I’m going to serve you something different today and I’m wondering, do you notice this?
The grand view of God should affect people. When you see God as He is pictured right here, then you are going to be affected. Maybe you don’t see Him. You can look and not see God. Lot of people read the Bible and don’t see Him. That’s why they give up because they say I don’t get something. To be taken up with God is a great thing. This is a comprehensive song.
You will notice that as they are singing it, and Moses leads out, he begins with centering on God. “I will sing unto the Lord. He has triumphed gloriously. The horse and his rider has He thrown into the sea. (You could see those enemy riders and horses strewn all over.) The Lord is my strength and He is my song.”
Only moments before they were on the other side and had known nothing but misery and torment. This is the first recorded real song from Israel. They had been in the furnace of affliction, they had been beaten until they had said, We don’t know who God is. He’s not delivering us. Get away Moses. Leave us in our misery. Then, finally in a burst of glorious signs and wonders, God marched them out of Egypt, got them to the Red Sea. Low and behold (and that’s the way God wanted it, to show them from the first to the last what He could do) all of the enemy had changed their mind and they were marching and roaring ahead with hundreds of chariots, coming after them. Like huge tanks coming after people with nothing but their Boy Scout uniforms. There are all these men, women, children, with all their possessions, right there on their back with the Great Red Sea in front of them. They can’t go forward nor back — the enemy is thundering down on them. They cry out to God and He says, one place to go – forward. Lift up your rod, Moses. Moses obeyed and God opened up that sea, they marched through, the enemy tried it and they drowned.
As Israel walked out on the other side they had, as the Scripture says, been baptized. They had come through the waters of baptism in the cloud and the sea. They stood there with this great sea separating them from their enemies and from Egypt. There in their first step of their journey toward toward the promised land through the wilderness, they sang this great song of praise to God. (Exodus 15:1-18) It is centered on God. It tells of His mighty works. One of the things they said in the theme verse (11) is, “Lord, (his place), He is above all gods. Who is like Him among the gods?” (gods: the mighty ones of authority in all the universe) There are none like God. He has no peer. His place is here described as being above all other authorities.
Egyptians worshiped the sun. There smiling on their corpses at that early hour was the sun, shining and blessing Israel and lighting up and exposing the enemies’ destruction. The sun is no god. He is put there by the God.
My wife and I visited the Ganges River in India. There people were by the hundreds of thousands coming and going and washing in the muddy murky Ganges. I recall, as we went along in this small boat, one man particularly out of the crowd. He was standing in the water, getting the water on him, and then worshiping toward the east where the sun was rising as a red ball. There was his god coming up, waking up for the day. It was sad to see that, to realize how Satan can reduce people to that. In our own country you will hear people talking about the force, the power, etc. They do not know the personal God. I find Christians who sometimes say, Isn’t that great? They are all worshiping and everybody has it. Some think of God in one way, some in another way, but I’m glad……those are not Gods. There are no other gods like our God who is the personal God. Who showed Himself in the Lord Jesus Christ.
John 5:18 – Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill Him (Jesus) because He had not only broken the Sabbath, but He said also that God was His Father, making Himself equal with God.
How wonderful that Jesus is now available and shows Himself to be God the Son. You can know God by knowing the Lord Jesus Christ. He is above all other gods — especially the God of the Unitarians, the liberals, and those who will not believe in Jesus Christ our Lord.
HIS PERFECTION — He is glorious in holiness. Holiness means His absolute overpowerness. The inscrutable majesty of God – above all others. The Great God of the universe. He is perfect in every way.
Holiness has the idea of severing, cutting something. If you have a log and you set it upright and lift the top part away from the lower part you would be making it holy, so to speak. You would separate this part from that and it means that God is of a different cut. He is separated off from us. He is holy. He maintains His own excellent perfection and purity separated from all sin. God cannot look upon sin nor fellowship with it. He is absolutely holy, glorious in His holiness. In every way God is absolutely perfect and full of glory and holiness.
The Scripture tells us here that if you understand God that way, you sense His holiness. Everything He makes is perfect, pure and right. Then, you will be blessed yourself. It will affect you and bring you to praise like it did these people. It further states He is fearful in praises.
HIS PRAISE — He is awesome in the praise that is due His name. This choir had over 600,000 men alone with all the others. They all began to join in. What a great song it was to the God who had rescued them. Psalm 92:4 “For thou, Lord, has made me glad through your works. I will triumph in the works of your hands.”
Have you ever triumphed in the works of God’s hands. That means, being rescued by His hand. Also, to just say, Glory to God, I praise you for what you have done. Being blessed in your heart, you say so back to Him. That will affect other people. Sometimes we are too stiff. We perhaps should pullout the stops even more in our congregational singing. I don’t mean just in human excitement. There should be an affect upon us by who God is. The Scripture says He is awesome in His praises. God’s people are to triumph precisely for what He does. Moses later in this book got on his knees and said, “Lord, you are going to lead us out to this great land you have promised us. I have really had enough of the trials we are running into. I need more of You. Then, I can have the strength when you show me yourself and let me know you are with me. Then, I’ll be ready to go.”
So he said in affect, show me your glory. God answered, “No man can see my face and live. But I will show you a part and you can see my hinder parts from a distance and I will hide you and shield you with my hand in the cleft of the rock.” That rock is Jesus. Jesus is the one in whom you can hide and then get a close up look at God. This means that in order to see God’s glory, triumph in Him, His actions, His attributes, Who He is and what He does, you will have to come closer to Jesus. Otherwise, you would be slain by the view of God. But, as you come by the Cross, then you can look back and where the Red Sea is, picture Calvary, where Jesus dies for your sins and rises again. You believe in Him and hear Him cry to the Father, My God, you have rejected me because I have taken the sin of the people. God punished His Son when He took on sin. I was there and I know now that God loves me. I know there God will forgive me because He took His own Son as a substitute and I can claim that. Then, I can be assured of my life and relationship with God. I can hide in the wounds of Jesus as Moses hid in the crack of the rock and looked out and saw the glory of God. In the wounded Christ (bringing Him before the Father) say, Now, Lord, for Jesus sake show me Yourself. I believe in your Son. As you get to know Christ you hear Him say, He that has seen me has seen the Father.
Ecclesiastes 3:14 — A strong, good verse. “I know that whatsoever God does, it will be forever. Nothing can be put to it nor anything taken from it. And, God does it that men should fear before Him.”
Calvary and its benefits flow forever. When you believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, two things will happen: 1) Your name will be written forever in the Lamb’s Book of Life and 2) You will be progressively changed. You will know your name is up there because God is at work in your life. If God is not at work in your life, you are not being affected. You’ve not bumped into the Almighty.
Exodus 15 – What God does is forever. Maybe you have become weak in your faith. Look away to Jesus and begin to worship God for who He is. Notice who He is.
Exodus 15:11 – ““Who is like You, O Lord, among the gods? Who is like You, glorious in holiness, Fearful in praises, doing wonders?”
His performances, His praise, His perfection, His place, all of these are here for our uplifting. It could be that some of you have felt, we could have some healing services. Wouldn’t it be great if people would come right down here and people would heal them? And, then they would go out whole. Perhaps you have read articles about President Carter’s sister who was deep into healing, a special kind of counseling that she did. Now, if the article is accurate, she gave it up (and the article gave extensive quotations) the view of the absolute, one way through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. So then anything else like that is heresy, it’s wrong, it’s error and Jesus said if you believe not that I am He, you shall die in your sins. Don’t be deceived. We are going to see many, many miracles. I heard a pastor say the other day, “Boy, I know that this certain healer lady, great woman of God, because I saw somebody go there, throw their crutches away, and walk away healed.” Doesn’t prove one thing. There are people who preach against Jesus who perform those miracles. If it is according to this Word, that is what proves that it is the Truth. The way to get to know God is not by a sort of a sideshow approach. Some people want to “hawk” God by saying we have a bigger miracle going over here. That is not the way to discover the great God we are talking about. I’ll tell you where to find God. He is near to a person who is humble and afflicted. The broken and contrite heart He will not despise. You have to go to the place God appoints to you, the cleft of the Rock, and there He will meet you. Make a lot of Jesus dying for you. The open wounds of Christ that pay for your sins, thank God for that. Learn to worship Him and then you will not only see the holy God, you will be partakers of His holiness and you will become like Him — not just like in Moses day when his face shown with God’s glory — your personal character will be transformed from one degree to the other. The Scripture tells of Moses’ glory and that we have a greater glory. Ours is permanently etched in our character. We are changed.
Frederick Faver – one of the old mystics of the past — wrote these words. May this poem of worship help you to look higher. Imagine that you and I are standing on the cross. This is the position from which I am going to read this poem to you. Think of Jesus dying, realizing that He is God’s own Son. God is so holy that He requires the death of His Son in order to forgive you. At the same time remember He loves you enough that He will do that. What a God of holiness and love.
“How dread are thine eternal years, O everlasting Lord.
By prostrate spirits day and night incessantly adored.
How beautiful, how beautiful the sight of Thee must be
Thine endless wisdom, boundless power, and awesome purity.
O how I fear Thee, living God, with deepest, tenderest fears,
And worship Thee with trembling hope and penitential tears.