The Sharp Knife of Affliction

And God heard their groaning, and God remembered His covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. – Exodus 2:24

It was God’s intention and covenant purpose to give Israel the Land of Canaan, a land that flowed with milk and honey. But it is not very easy to induce a nation, numbering some millions, to leave a country in which they have been born and nourished and found a home. Only some very fearful evil can induce them to expatriate themselves. Had Moses gone to the children of Israel before the time of their bondage, and said, “Up and get you hence unto the land which the Lord swears that He will give it to you,” he would have seemed to them as one that mocked: they would have laughed him to scorn. In order to cut loose the bonds that bound them to Egypt, the sharp knife of affliction must be used; and Pharaoh, though he knew it not, was God’s instrument in weaning them from the Egyptian world and helping them as His church to take up their separate place in the wilderness and receive the portion which God had appointed for them.

Whenever God holds in one hand the rod of affliction, He has a favor in the other hand; He never strikes a child of His, but He has some tender blessing in store. If He visits you with unwonted affliction, you will have unusual delight; the Lord will open new windows for you and show His beauty. As your tribulations abound, so also shall your consolations abound in Christ Jesus…Rejoice, therefore, in your afflictions, if so be you have faith to believe that they shall be blessed for your good. ~ C.H. Spurgeon

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