God's Blood Covenant
Topic: Expository Scripture: Exodus 4:18–4:31
The following study guide is to be used to discuss
the Friday, October 12, 2018 sermon.
ECC Sermon Study Guide
Introduction: In this passage, we see God’s commitment to save his chosen people but also his sovereignty and justice–He will harden Pharaoh’s heart and kill the firstborn of Egypt to redeem Israel, his firstborn. We also see God’s holiness — He seeks to put Moses to death because Moses has not been faithful to the covenant by leaving his son uncircumcised. The bloody rite of circumcision turns away God’s wrath. Throughout the passage, we see shadows of Christ — the theme of Israel as “firstborn” points to Jesus as the true pre-eminent chosen Son of God, who dies to save God’s people. Moses as a flawed mediator points to Jesus as the perfect and faithful mediator who keeps God’s covenant. And the blood ritual of circumcision points forward to the “cutting off” of Jesus, who pours out his blood to save sinners and circumcises the hearts of God’s people.
READ Exodus 4:18–20. What does Moses’ request to Jethro tell us about his obedience to God’s call?
READ Exodus 4:21. What do we learn here about God’s character and his plan for redemption?
Application: How do we respond to God’s sovereignty and the hardening of Pharaoh’s heart?
READ Exodus 4:22–23. How is God’s relationship to Israel defined? And what is the purpose of redemption?
What is the significance of the “firstborn” here within Exodus (see Exodus 12:21–32) and how does it ultimately point us to Christ?
READ Exodus 4:24–26. Also read Genesis 17:9–14. Why is God seeking to kill Moses? What do God’s actions in seeking to kill Moses tell us?
What is significant about Zipporah’s actions and her calling Moses a “bridegroom of blood”?
How does the episode in Exodus 4:24–26 point us to Christ? (might be helpful to read Colossians 2:11–12 and Romans 2:28–29).
Application: The incident in Exodus 4:24–26 reminds us of the importance of “heart circumcision” (truly knowing Christ), without which we face judgment, and the critical importance of identifying with God and his people through the covenant sign (circumcision, for believers today, baptism). Do you know Christ as your “bridegroom of blood” and redeemer? Have you had your heart circumcised by Him? Do you need to be baptized? How does reflection on this incident in Exodus help you reflect on these realities in your own life?
READ Exodus 4:27–31. What does Moses tell Aaron, and what do Moses and Aaron speak to the people of Israel?
How do the people respond to Moses and Aaron?
Application: How does the response of the people of Israel to Moses instruct us in our response to Christ? (helpful to read Hebrews 2)