Don’t Forget to Remember

Whitney Capps

Day: 13 | Plan: Exodus

Today's Reading: Exodus 13

Exodus 13:9 (NIV) “This observance will be for you like a sign on your hand and a reminder on your forehead that this law of the LORD is to be on your lips. For the LORD brought you out of Egypt with his mighty hand. You must keep this ordinance at the appointed time year after year.”

Today’s chapter features an important word that appears in the book of Exodus more often than in any other book of the Bible. It’s the Hebrew word “oth,” which means “sign,” like in our key verse. 

This word is used 16 times in Exodus alone, and communicates a major theme of the book: God expects His people to remember His faithfulness. In Exodus 13, God tells Moses how the people should remember and celebrate His deliverance from Egyptian slavery.

In this case they were to eat a special meal, offer a sacrifice and hold a festival to the Lord. And as a critical part of this ceremony, the people were to tell their children and future generations in detail how God dramatically saved them from the Egyptians.

They aren’t just to recall that God saved them. No. They are to explain, “With a mighty hand the Lord brought us out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. When Pharaoh stubbornly refused to let us go, the LORD killed the firstborn of both people and animals in Egypt” (Exodus 13:14a-15a).

He doesn’t want them to just remember that He’s “mighty,” but how He proved His might to them.

God performed miraculous signs for the people to demonstrate His faithfulness. And He required that they remember His works to demonstrate their gratitude.

But don’t mistake God’s desire for gratitude as pride. Remember that God is completely sufficient. He doesn’t need anything from us. He isn’t some insecure leader who needs His people’s adoration to prop Himself up. No, this requirement, like all of His law, is for our benefit.

Remembering God’s faithfulness in the past let’s us embrace the difficulties of the present and the uncertainties of the future with hope and confidence. Our faith falters when we forget. And remembering the specific ways He’s been faithful in the past, trains us to look for evidences of His goodness, might, faithfulness, love, mercy and protection in the future.

Don’t forget to remember.

Prayer: Father God, You have been so good to us. Remind us often to remember. To rehearse for ourselves and others the ways You have been faithful. We want to be people who give You thanks and retell Your stories so others will know that You can be trusted. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Go deeper with today’s First 5 by writing in your Study of Exodus Experience Guide. Don’t have one? Get yours here! Digital Download option now available for $8.

More Moments:

Exodus 13 also reveals the wisdom of God as He cares for His people. Here, we get special... Read More

Download the First 5 app to get the full experience

Join the Community