“My liege, the dark cloud that settled between us at the Israelites last night remained. There’s no way the Israelites could have moved in this darkness.”
“Good. Prepare the soldiers. As soon as the cloud lifts, we move.”
Pharaoh ate his breakfast staring to the east. “How could such a great cloud darken the sky and sit over our camp so long? At least I know those Israelites can’t escape.”
He turned to set his cup down then looked back. The cloud rose high into the sky. Pharaoh stooped to look underneath. As the cloud rose, he uncurled his body until he stood. He stared at the valley where he last saw the Israelites. “Where are they?”
A strong wind from the east pushed against his face. Pharaoh shielded his eyes from the sun and looked toward the sea. “What’s happened?” He blinked twice then stared at the water. “There’s a path--a path in the sea? How was it made? And the Israelites, look--they’ve walked through the path--they’re getting away! Mount everyone. Now. After them!”
Pharaoh climbed on his chariot. The horsemen and foot soldiers followed with their weapons ready to attack. As they approached the sea Pharaoh waved them forward. “Don’t let one escape. Capture every man, woman, and child. Don’t let even one animal escape.”
The army bolted across the dry riverbed until each soldier, horse, and chariot touched the bottom. The men shouted their war cry to scare the Israelites into submission. The soldiers watched the Hebrews turn toward them from the other shore. They screamed their war cry again when the Israelites faces showed fear.
Pharaoh cheered his men forward. He raised his voice and looked toward the sky until he felt a sploosh of water on his face. His eyes darted to the right and left. “The wall of water is falling! Go to the closest shore. Retreat, I say. Retreat!”
He screamed the instructions again then hurried his chariot back to the shore. The water roared and slapped the riverbed filling in the dry path. His best soldiers cried out then he heard them no more.
Waves continued to slap into each other and reaching out to the shore to pull sand and rock into the river. Pharaoh’s jaw fell open. He looked across the Red Sea to the other shore. Even though they were far and seemed small, he could see them move as though dancing and singing.
Pharaoh fell to the ground and lowered his head. For the second time since he knew Moses he allowed himself to cry.
The first time Pharaoh might have cried was when his son died in the tenth plague.
1. Why couldn’t Pharaoh see the Israelites move?
2. Why couldn’t Pharaoh’s army capture the Israelites?
3. How did God help the Israelites escape?
4. God gave Pharaoh many chances to change his mind and to follow Him. Why didn't Pharaoh trust in God?