Then Jacob arose from Beersheba; and the sons of Israel carried their father Jacob, their little ones, and their wives, in the carts which Pharaoh had sent to carry him. So they took their livestock and their goods, which they had acquired in the land of Canaan, and went to Egypt, Jacob and all his descendants with him. (Genesis 46:5-6)
Then Jacob arose from Beersheba; and the sons of Israel carried their father Jacob, their little ones, and their wives, in the carts which Pharaoh had sent to carry him. So they took their livestock and their goods, which they had acquired in the land of Canaan, and went to Egypt, Jacob and all his descendants with him.
Under the guidance of Jacob, the seed of Abraham, Israel went down into the land of Egypt. In Hebrew, Egypt is called Mitzrayim, a name that implies being pressed and squeezed. It was here that the few would become many, and in that context, Egypt serves Israel in the same manner the womb serves a newly conceived child.
First there must be the seed of the father that impregnates egg in the mother’s womb. Once conception occurs, the child will begin to grow, one cell becoming two and being further multiplied into millions. For the duration of the pregnancy (40 weeks for a human baby; 40 being the number of testing) the womb serves the baby by allowing it to form and develop until it is time for it to come forth.
In this case, Jacob and his family are the “seed” while Egypt serves as the womb. For the entirety of the time Israel was in Egypt, the primary purpose was that the nation who was to be a light to the gentiles could form and develop according to the Father’s purpose. But at the set time, like a child being born, they would come forth from Egypt. As it is written:
“When Israel was a child, I loved him, and out of Egypt I called my son.” (Hosea 11:1)
Just as a child can’t be born without travail and labor, so it was when it was time for Israel to emerge from the womb of Egypt. Furthermore, when the child is born, it becomes clear that the womb has served its purpose; the child must exist outside of the womb or else the womb would have become its tomb. Likewise, had Israel remained in Egypt past the set time, it is likely that Israel would have continued to assimilate into Egyptian culture and eventually vanished from history. That could not be and, thus, the plagues, signs and wonders that squeezed Israel out of the land of Mitzrayim.
There are many situations in life that God uses to shape and form us, however, there comes a time that, having served their purpose, those situations and circumstances change. Sometimes it is a peaceful transition, and sometimes it comes with great travail and labor. Regardless of the intensity, the objective is the same — to bring us into the place God always intended us to be. So if you find that things in your life are changing dramatically, it might be that certain situations and relationships have served their purpose. It might be that something new is being birthed in and through you.
Blessings and Shalom,