In these verses the psalmist deals with the 400 year period the Israelites were in Egypt, and he sees God’s overarching sovereignty in it. Being a different people in the world’s culture needn’t work against us (23). In this strange and often threatening environment, we can flourish and grow (Remember verse 12, and consider what a change God can make). We may be ”aliens and strangers in the world” (1 Peter 2:11) but that should not be seen as a drawback. If God is on our side, who will be against us (Rom. 8:31)?God gives the growth (1Cor.3:6, 7).
So it was in that ”alien” place that God gave huge population growth to His people, which was a matter of grave concern to the Egyptians (Ex.1:6-10). They oppressed the children of Israel until God raised up a deliverer (24-26). ” God gave his people lots of babies; soon their numbers alarmed their foes.” The Message. It was in that self-same place that God performed His miracles through Moses and Aaron. ”They worked marvels in that spiritual wasteland, miracles in the Land of Ham.’’ Once, in this passage we read about what ”They” did (27). But even there ”They performed his miraculous signs…his wonders… Thereafter the emphasis is repeatedly on ”He” (7 times in 28 -36 in the NIV. See also ”his” in 28) God was the One who struck the Egyptians with plagues (In 26-36 eight of the ten plagues are mentioned), and they finally caused Pharaoh to free the Israelites from bondage (Exodus chapters 7-11).
In the New Bible Commentary, Alec Motyer makes the point that the people of Israel did not enter Egypt due to any sin on their part, but by God’s command and under His promise (Gn.46:3, 4). Nor was it for any sin of their own that they experienced Egyptian hostility. Indeed (25) it was by an act of God! Here is the mystery of divine providence. His thoughts and ways are not ours, but higher (Is.55:8). But how marvellous His ways are (Rom.11:33-36)! He brought them into an atmosphere of intimidation, danger and pressure, and there He revealed His great power. God always, it seems, has a man or woman ready when a job needs to be done. He waits to hear you say: ”Here am I! Send me!” (Is.6:8)
Some people argue that we now live in a ‘post-Christian’ culture. There is a growing indifference on the part of many, and even antagonism, and a shrug of the shoulders that says, ‘This is just irrelevant to me.’ But let us take heart, for if God could do such a mighty work in Egypt, He can do it here in our day. He is the same God for all time, and eternity. Nothing will ever change Him.
Prayer: Thank you Almighty Lord that you still show your wonders in ‘Egypt’.