He Leads You Into The Promises
“Behold, I send an Angel before you to keep you in the way and to bring you into the place which I have prepared.” Exodus 23:20 NKJV
God is leading the Israelites into the Promised Land after all those years of wandering in the desert. He tells His people that He will send an angel before them as they do their part and move forward to possess what He has prepared for them. As they move forward, His Angel will be going before them to keep them safe and deliver them victoriously into all that He has prepared for them in His goodness and love.
When we think of the Israelites moving ahead to possess the Promised Land we know what God promised them. We understand that they had to go and possess it, but we never really talk about the fact that they had the Angel of the Lord going before them as an escort assuring them of the victory. When you think about it, it is amazing that they never fully possessed the Promised Land. When you have the Angel of the Lord going before you, you just have to move ahead and take action. He will take care of everything else. Wouldn’t you like to know that there was an angel of the Lord going before you every day knowing what you were going to face and standing in front of you and behind you to safeguard you, and moving in power to assure your deliverance and victory in everything you face in the day? Well, you do! And guess what, it is not just any angel.
The Angel of the Lord spoken of in Exodus 23:20 is the pre-incarnate Jesus. And this Angel is no ordinary angel. We see that in the text that it is not a small or lower case “a” angel, but rather a capital “A” angel. It is not an atypical Old Testament occurrence. We see this person referenced several times in the passages and stories of the Old Testament. However, we never see those references in the New Testament because Jesus appears not in spiritual form but in the flesh.
When God says to the Israelites that He is sending an Angel before them, this is God saying He will personally lead them into the promises He has established for them. He will lead them to the good things He has promised them and He will guard them as they go out and possess it.
Now here is a fascinating realization. Jesus says the same thing to us in the New Testament. He promises to go before us as we go out into the day and He leads us to the good things He has for us and protects as we go “…and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them;” John 10:3-4. In verse 9, Jesus adds to this that He leads them out to find pastures. Jesus is saying that, like a shepherd leads his sheep out to pastures where their needs will be met, He will lead us into the promises He has for us in the day. He will meet our needs, fill us with His promises and protect us in the day. Jesus is and always has led His people into His promises. Follow Him today.
J Todd Hostetler