In the book of Exodus, Moses is called to be the leader of God's people, and, very specifically, to lead them from slavery in Egypt to freedom in the Promised Land. This is not an easy task, to say the least.
Pharaoh doesn’t want to let the people go, but he is compelled to. When the Hebrews have left Egypt, Pharaoh changes his mind and his army chases them down at the Red Sea. At a point of crisis, with the water, seemingly impassable in front, and the Pharaoh's army behind, the Hebrew people appear on the verge of defeat.
But these are God's people, called by Him for His purposes. And so throughout their entire journey He is with them and He provides for them. The crisis at the Red Sea is no exception. God separates the waters so that the Hebrews can pass through and then He allows the waters to close up and defeat the army of Pharaoh.
In response to this saving action by God, Exodus 15:1 tells us that Moses and the people sang a song to the Lord, which includes these words in verse 2:
"The Lord is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation;
this is my God, and I will praise him, my father's God, and I will exalt him."
"He has become my salvation." This seems to be the heart of this verse, and of the whole song of praise. The Hebrews were in grave danger. They needed to be saved, and they were in a position of complete vulnerability. They were unable to do a single thing to save themselves. They were God's people, and God saved them.
God is still in the business of saving His people today, something we remember as Advent begins and Christmas draws near. Without Jesus we would be in the kind of danger the Hebrews faced at the Red Sea, with no apparent reason to think that anything besides our end was near. They were confronted with the end of their earthly lives, and the fuller story of the Bible teaches us that without Jesus our death in this life will end in eternal separation from God.
But God is a God who saves, and true salvation comes through Jesus, and no one else. The salvation that came to the Hebrews at the Red Sea, and at every other crisis in their journey, points us to the better salvation that comes through Jesus.
As we journey through Advent and towards Christmas may you see that your salvation is in Jesus, and no one else.
Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.