The Story of Moses Parting The Red Sea

Exodus Chapter 14


Moses on his way out of Egypt decides to pitch camp by the Red Sea and god mentions that he isn’t finished screwing with Pharaoh yet.



For Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel, They are entangled in the land, the wilderness hath shut them in.


And I will harden Pharaoh's heart, that he shall follow after them; and I will be honoured upon Pharaoh, and upon all his host; that the Egyptians may know that I am the LORD. And they did so.


So, just in case you are sitting there with an incredulous dopey kind of look on your face like I do every time I read this, let me clarify.

God tells Moses to free the Israelites – which he does - after god hardens Pharaoh’s heart so he won’t comply so god can whoop Pharaoh’s and Egypt’s ass – which he did – several times.

This god sends the man back with pestilence and what not until finally after destroying everything in Egypt; god allows Pharaoh to let the Israelites go free which he wanted to do back with the frogs, but god kept hardening his heart.


Now, Egypt is in a mess recovering from things like the stench of dead frogs, curdled stinking blood flowing in the rivers and the associated environmental implications, black leprosy, a severe case of delusory parasitosis (still feeling like bugs are crawling over them), incendiary-monster-hail annihilation, and death of the first-born to name a few.


Pharaoh is going about making funeral arrangements for his now dead first-born.  Lucky for him he is the Pharaoh and got preferential treatment because the funeral homes were booked solid for weeks after that doozie. Pharaoh obviously has some heavy stuff on his mind and needs some time to well… heal, grieve, drain the blood out of his pool, all kinds of issues in the aftermath of the almighty smiting. The guy is busy, preoccupied with some very personal and public issues – it’s a very sensitive time in Egypt. 


The Pharaoh did not become so because he was an idiot – he was doing pretty good for himself before Moses came along.  I think it is safe to say, he was at least of average intelligence.


What kind of an idiotic, brain-dead imbecile would even consider pissing off Moses or his god after all the crap they put him through?  Obviously, nobody, drunk or sober would do that.  But this god has an agenda and a very very creepy need to throw his weight around and flaunt his omni-whateverness in very sick and twisted ways.  For some reason known only to god (literally) he feels like he hasn’t dealt out enough smite and he hardens Pharaoh’s heart AGAIN. 


What the hell?!


Moses was gone, Egypt in ruins, Israel was on their way to more adventures of biblical proportion – it was over – the point was superbly made.  The god of Isaac, Jacob and Joseph has shown his true colors and kept his promise and was off the hook.  It was over. He won! We are all fearing him – shitless.  His divine intervention worked fabulously. The heart hardening spell, while a bit cliché after the third or fourth time, worked like a charm. It was OVER!


But NO, oh oh oh!  He is going to do it again and enchant the Pharaoh with his hard heart charm and get him to go after the Israelites for another ass whoopin’ so he can be “honoured upon Pharaoh” and the Egyptians know he is LORD. 


Now surely mister all-knowing, all-seeing, had to have SEEN that the Egyptians pretty much agreed that he was anyone he wanted to be to them when he finally released his spell on Pharaoh, and they let the Israelites go.


Im no scholar and I don’t claim to know in what context god would be honoured upon Pharaoh – hell, I don’t know what that means at all.  What I do know is that whatever he calls what he did to Pharaoh, there was no honor in it. Nor was there love, or kindness, or any quality whatsoever that a father would have with his children.


But god went and hardened the Pharaoh’s heart yet again and Pharaoh rounds up 600 chariots which he was able to acquire very cheap due to the scorching hail damage.  After rallying the leper troops, they all drag their boil-infested ass (many strait from burying their first-born) into the chariots and off they go to get the Israelites back so they can REALLY piss off the smiter-in-chief.


As the Israelites see the oncoming army of scabby, sore oozing zombies in used, hail-damaged chariots, they were not only incredulous but very distraught by the prospect of being consumed by the living dead or whatever was about to go down.  They start screaming and running and severely questioning Moses’ divine calling and prophet-ness.

As one would expect, the Israelites are saying things like “damnit Moses, you should have stayed the hell out of it.  We were better off back in Egypt alive than here in the wilderness dead!”


Moses, tells everyone to relax and stop yelling and running because god has it under control, he will deal with the army, and they will never see them again after today. Besides that they were scaring all the little kids and livestock and he didn’t want to cross the wilderness eating bloody eggs.



And the LORD said unto Moses, Wherefore criest thou unto me?


It seems our hero was either in a deep sleep, too busy smiting other parts of the globe or due to some heavenly virus he lost his omni-ness, but he actually had the part where he doesn’t know what’s going on with the Israelites printed in the final edition of his holy handbook. He had to get Moses to remind him what he needed. Wasn’t it god that cast the hard heart spell? I think god smokes pot.  If he sees all, why didn’t he see the Pharaohs chariots bearing down on the screaming masses? Would anyone you know watching say from the top of a hill, wonder what Moses wanted at that particular moment? I rest.



But lift thou up thy rod, and stretch out thine hand over the sea, and divide it: and the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea.


And I, behold, I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians, and they shall follow them: and I will get me honour upon Pharaoh, and upon all his host, upon his chariots, and upon his horsemen.


And the Egyptians shall know that I am the LORD, when I have gotten me honour upon Pharaoh, upon his chariots, and upon his horsemen.

So while Moses prepares to smite, god places a pillar of fiery dust in the way of the Egyptians so they can’t get by.  This gives Moses time to take the snake stick out and command the red sea to part, which it does by the next morning and they cross on dry ground.  I guess if the Red Sea is parting with walls of water raging on either side of the swath of seabed you are walking across, you don’t wonder why the wagons aren’t getting stuck in the mud.


The Israelites start trekking along the seabed and eventually the fiery dust devil subsides and the Pharaohs troops charge after them.  Being Omni-creative as well as comical, god toys with the Egyptians before striking the fatal blow…



And took off their chariot wheels, that they drave them heavily: so that the Egyptians said, Let us flee from the face of Israel; for the LORD fighteth for them against the Egyptians.


Like that was news at this point – come on now!  So why take off the wheels of the chariots? Is this guy really that obsessed with – among several other things – dramatics? Why not just zap them with lightning or give the horses colic so they slow down?  Why not give Cheribum a break from guarding the stupid tree back at the abandoned garden and let him slay them with his flaming sword?  I can think of a thousand things a god could do to slow down the Egyptians before I would make the wheels fall off their chariots. I have an idea - Why not just stop hardening hearts and stop the genocide?


Once across, god tells Moses to reach out with the old snake stick and have the Red Sea engulf the Egyptians and that is exactly what happened.  He drowned every single one of them horses and all. Not one Egyptian survived the holy tsunami.



Thus the LORD saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians; and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the sea shore.


I am sure there is a clinical name for the disorder described above but I don’t know what it is.  What I do know is that sort of thing still happens today by people who are promptly removed from society or committed to asylums for creating a crime or desperate situation to solve it and be the hero.


The Lord saved Israel from himself not the Egyptians – or did I read something wrong or misunderstand something?


And that my dear friends is the inspiring story of Moses parting the Red Sea.


I could not make this shit up.


Honestly, I would end the story at this point, but if you read one more chapter, the fodder is intoxicating and its draw is too much for me to ignore. Like a shit-magnet I am compelled to attract and reject and my north pole just got caught in the field of the south end of this story so I have to address the chapter I like to call “The Divine Gloat” or “Humility Hath No Bounds”.


Genesis Chapter 15


After the Tsunami of 1550 BC and the mass drowning of the Pharaoh and his armies, Moses and company have cause for jubilation and Moses breaks into song.  This chapter and the canticle contents are eloquently referred to by some as the Song of The Sea.



Then sang Moses and the children of Israel this song unto the LORD, and spake, saying, I will sing unto the LORD, for he hath triumphed gloriously: the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea.


The LORD is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him an habitation; my father's God, and I will exalt him.


The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name.


So, we have the Israelites chanting and singing praise to Genghis-god the original “war lord” and reiterating what he made very clear through monotonous repetition – he is LORD, he is LORD, yep his name is Lord.


Then they break into the gloat verse of this melodious cantata with…



Pharaoh's chariots and his host hath he cast into the sea: his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea.


The depths have covered them: they sank into the bottom as a stone.


Thy right hand, O LORD, is become glorious in power: thy right hand, O LORD, hath dashed in pieces the enemy.


And in the greatness of thine excellency thou hast overthrown them that rose up against thee: thou sentest forth thy wrath, which consumed them as stubble.


The fact that it was far from a fair fight detracts - in my mind at least - from the merits of almightiness when this god literally picked the fight with Pharaoh by not releasing the spell he kept casting on him.  By constantly hardening his heart, god ensured that he would have an opposing combatant or more accurately a sacrificial King to grand stand his almightiness on.  Don’t we call that bullying when it happens say in grade school?



And with the blast of thy nostrils the waters were gathered together, the floods stood upright as an heap, and the depths were congealed in the heart of the sea.


The enemy said, I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide the spoil; my lust shall be satisfied upon them; I will draw my sword, my hand shall destroy them.


Thou didst blow with thy wind, the sea covered them: they sank as lead in the mighty waters.


I got nothin’ for the above – it spews for itself quite adequately.  However, the next verse is very interesting on several levels:



Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?


Well, first of all, since I am writing this, I will give my answer to that question – hopefully nobody!  Do we really need a bellicose, vengeful, manipulating, fear-inspiring deity dude among the gods?  Yes, I did it – I pluralized the unpluralizeable, I committed the highest sacrilege and yet it’s a direct quote from the holy text!   The Christian Holy Bible states in various locations including the aforementioned that there is more than one god among the gods.  This one just happens to be the “fearfully praised, glorious in holiness, wonder-doer” who amazingly, gloriously, whooped the crap out of people he would not allow to not engage him in conflict by hardening their hearts unlike any lord among the gods.


And the biblical cantata continues…



Thou stretchedst out thy right hand, the earth swallowed them.


Thou in thy mercy hast led forth the people which thou hast redeemed: thou hast guided them in thy strength unto thy holy habitation.


The people shall hear, and be afraid: sorrow shall take hold on the inhabitants of Palestina.


Again we are celebrating but no mention of love, joy, peace, kindness, etc. no, we celebrate the fact that all fear this god.



Fear and dread shall fall upon them; by the greatness of thine arm they shall be as still as a stone; till thy people pass over, O LORD, till the people pass over, which thou hast purchased.


“Fear and dread, fire and brimstone, doom and gloom, death and destruction, screw up and die! Good vs. evil, us against them, chosen trumps gentile, cheat to win, image is everything, smite over all!” sounds like the mantra of this so-called song of the sea. I can see it becoming another Gregorian hit among the Gothic-Christian crowd.  Set it to a Libana-esque pagan drum background to stay true to biblical form and we have a chart-buster.



The LORD shall reign for ever and ever.


For the horse of Pharaoh went in with his chariots and with his horsemen into the sea, and the LORD brought again the waters of the sea upon them; but the children of Israel went on dry land in the midst of the sea.  


Nah, nah, nah, nah, naaaaaaaaah! Goes the holy gloat over whatever that was.



And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand; and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances.


How the hell did that tidbit of heresy get by the holy editor in chief?  Did I read the word “prophetess” as if women may actually have a role in religion and spirituality by the very word of god?  While some religions are joining the human race and including women in the clergy where they naturally excel, most deny women any ecclesiastical or authoritative position and yet Miriam was a prophetess of god. How exactly do they explain where god changed his mind and stripped women of their prophetic potential?


Anyway, the prophetess and all the women took timbrels, or in today’s jargon tambourines, and they sang and danced the night away as guests to Miriam’s first ever Desert Rave.


While everyone was all happy and dancing and singing praise to the deliverer Genghis-god, not to allow frivolity or any similar sins against his whateverness, he throws in one last promise with very threatening undertones if you ask me; but who am I to question the holy bible?



And said, If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the LORD that healeth thee.


But if you happen to slip and slack in one some or god forbid all of the above, you can pretty much count on all hell breaking loose on you, just like it did them. 


From what we have read so far, it is obvious it doesn’t go so well for anyone that goes against this god be it on his own or otherwise heart-hardened. It is made very clear who is lord and what he expects, so as long as you hearken to a voice only Moses hears, do what is right in god’s sight, follow the commandments, and keep ALL his statutes (whether you know them or not), he wont put any of the plagues of Egypt on you.


But just you dare to screw up, in fact I dare you to even slip a bit.  I double-dog-dare you to even think about screwing up ANY “statutes” and apparently, according to the holy word of god, the plagues of Egypt will be yours as well.


I love you too father.


You know I have to ask…but Ill give you the honors…


{Insert incredulous, profane and irreverent inquisitive by reader here}


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Power of Fear
Abraham & Isaac
The Creation
Adam & Eve
Evolution vs. Creation
Cain & Abel
Noah's Ark
The Tower of Babel
The Story of Moses
Moses Parts The Red Sea
Sodom & Gomorra
Jonah and The Whale
Samson & Delilah
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