To kick off an 8-week series on the first 12 chapters of Exodus, I did my best to show though the Lord brought His people to Egypt (end of Genesis); and, after years in Egypt, His people were slaves and forced to drown their male children (Exodus 1); God was working out His sovereign, good, and loving plan (Exodus 2:1-10). You can find it here.
The point was that even though we often find ourselves in situations we never would have planned, we must bank our hope in the reality that God is good and God is love.
To close the message, I quoted Rachael Denhollander. She is one of the far too many victims of Dr. Larry Nasser. Denhollander’s testimony in court went viral in evangelical circles the week of his trial. Christianity Today reached out to her for an interview. Something she said in the interview took my breath away. Yes, for my own soul. But it also captured the essence of Exodus 1 and 2.
Here is a portion of the interview. . . the portion I used to end the sermon:
CT: You were first abused by Larry Nassar in 2000. It took 18 years for him to be convicted of sexually abusing girls. What have the past two decades been like for your faith?
RD: In the beginning, I wrestled with God’s perspective on abuse, where he was, why he didn’t do anything, and whether or not I was guilty or stained by it. I worked to get to a place where I could trust in his justice and call evil what it was, because God is good and holy.
CT: Do you remember reaching a point where you doubted God’s goodness?
RD: My biggest struggle was understanding God’s perspective on sexual abuse, ultimately a conclusion I really had to come to myself through a lot of wrestling, a lot of tears, and a lot of studying.
CT: Where did you find an answer?
RD: Going to Scripture directly.
CT: Was there a particular Bible verse or passage that you felt spoke to your situation?
RD: One was from John 6, where Jesus asks Peter, “Do you want to leave too?” Peter says, “Where else would I go, Lord? You have the words of life.” There was a point in my faith where I had to simply cling to the fact that although I didn’t understand or have the answers, I knew that God was good and that he was love. Whatever else I didn’t understand couldn’t be a contradiction to that.
Outside the Bible, that is one of the best quotes I have perhaps ever read to help me when life and life’s circumstances do not make sense.
“. . . I knew that God was good and that He was love. Whatever else I didn’t understand couldn’t be a contradiction to that.”