January 29 - Set Apart
The signs and wonders the Lord did in Egypt served one purpose: to show that there is not another Jehovah or another God on earth. He is the only One and there is not another. This is what “holy” or “set apart” mean. He is the holy God who sets Himself apart for His people and His people should set themselves apart for Him. They are to be holy because God is holy. It is God for His people and His people for God. Such is the content of the covenant God made with the Israelites.
God’s people cannot be under another master. Jesus says that no one can serve two masters and so the Israelites could not be in Egypt under Pharaoh and serve Him there. They needed to be free, leave Egypt and serve God. God’s people were not Pharaoh’s people and God made it very clear during the plagues. When the flies came to the land of Egypt, no flies were found in the land of Goshen where the Israelites were. The hail, boils and darkness that came to Pharaoh’s people did not affect God’s people at all. This showed physically the difference between God’s people and Pharaoh’s people. God’s people were set apart and under God’s protection.
Pharaoh, a type of the devil, would not want the Israelites to be free. Time and again Pharaoh changed his mind and made some forms of compromise. They were allowed to serve God but under his terms. God told Moses to serve Him in one way but Pharaoh tried to alter the true worship of Israel into devil-directed worship. Today, we have man-made rules about Christian worship and many forms are not from God but have come as compromises. In order to be so-called “seeker-sensitive”, we have done away with God’s instructions and gone into compromises. If we want to worship God, we must worship Him on His terms.
The setting apart is not just for our own protection, it is also a declaration of the greatness of Jehovah to the Egyptians. People around us need to know about the greatness of our God and by setting ourselves apart for God, then people might come to know Him. If there is no distinction between the people of God and the people of Pharaoh, how may anyone come to know the one true God?
After our conversion, we begin a journey of sanctification. The meaning of sanctification is to set apart, or to become holy. One must bring all his being and every part of his life for God’s use, to set apart everything for Him in full dedication. This is what the Lord requires of us, to leave Egypt and our former ways of life and come over to be God’s people. Are you being tucked by your former life to compromise in your worship of God?
Ps 18:1-6 Exo 7:25-9:35 Matt 19:13-30 Prov 6:1-5