Exodus 12:1-13, 29-42

Exodus 12:1-13, 29-42


Ask God to guide your discussions and to experience his presence as you read his word together.

Share a tradition among your friends or family that you celebrate. Describe its origins and significance. What does celebrating a practice like this do in your heart?

The book of Exodus continues the story of Genesis. In a nutshell, Genesis tells the story of how God created the heavens and the earth, and everything God created was good.

At the pinnacle of this good world, God created humanity to live in a perfect love relationship with him and to image his glory to the world. The first man and woman were given a mission: to multiply and fill the earth with image-bearers of God so that the glory of God would cover the earth like the waters cover the sea (Gen 1:26-27). But an enemy crept into God’s creation, that ancient serpent, the Devil. And he deceived the man and woman, and the world was plunged into sin and death. God promised that one day a descendant of Eve would come as a deliverer, and he would crush the serpent’s head and lead humanity back into God’s presence forever. But until that day, there would be a battle between the Serpent's descendants and Eve's descendants (Gen 3:15).

The rest of Genesis tells the story of how God began to fulfill this redemptive promise through a specific descendant of Eve named Abraham. God came to Abraham and promised that through his family line, all the peoples of the world would be blessed (Gen 12:1-3). In other words, God was telling Abraham that the promised descendant of Eve, who would crush the serpent’s head and bring humanity back to God, would come through his line. Abraham had a son named Isaac, and Isaac had a son named Jacob, and Jacob had twelve sons, and God began fulfilling this redemptive promise.

But Genesis ends with a threat. A famine comes upon the land, and this family, chosen to be the family through whom the deliverer would come, is threatened with extinction. It appears that God’s promises hang in the balance. So they flee to Egypt and find relief there for the next 400 years. The chosen family is spared. This is where Exodus picks up. 

In Exodus 12, we read of the first Passover, an important feast that will form a crucial part of Israel’s traditions. It foreshadows the Lord’s Supper. In chapter 12, we see the salvation of Israel side by side with God’s judgment of Egypt. At the end of the chapter, a mixed multitude leave Egypt after 430 years of enslavement.


Read Exodus Chapter 12:1-13 and 12:29-42 aloud.


Begin by examining the text together. What do you notice? What stands out? Who are the main characters? How are they characterized in the passage? What is surprising or hard to understand? 1


  • In Exodus 12, God saves his people from slavery to the Egyptians and into his presence, to serve him. As Christians, we are set free from sin's terrible and enslaving power to serve God in righteousness (Romans 6:18). How have you experienced freedom from sin recently? Share ways you have seen each other grow in your walk with God.
  • In Exodus 12, the Israelites are passed over because of the blood of an unblemished lamb. Jesus, as the unblemished lamb of infinite value, died for us so that we might be saved. Exodus 12 features the theme of remembrance. How can we individually and corporately remind ourselves of the Gospel, that Jesus died for our sins?
  • In Exodus 12, the mixed multitude reminds us that the Gospel is for all. How can we hold the Gospel out to the mixed multitude of Denver?


Close your time by thanking God for Jesus’ atoning sacrifice as our Passover lamb. Pray for your continued growth in the Gospel that sets you free from the power of sin and for opportunities and the confidence to share the Gospel with your neighbors.
 1Example Observations:
  • A young and unblemished lamb is sacrificed (12:3-6).
  • This meal points forward to the Lord’s Supper, instituted at Passover with the same elements (cf. Mark 12:12-25, 1 Corinthians 11:23-26).
  • God gives clear instructions to the Israelites, who were to be spared with a symbol of blood on their doorposts (12:3-13, 7).
  • The people of Israel were saved to serve God. They were saved out of Egypt, into God’s presence. (12:31).
  • Pharoah requests a blessing from Moses and Aaron upon their departure (12:32).
  • The Israelites' lives are saved, while the Egyptians’ are judged with the deaths of their firstborn (12:12-13).
  • The mixed multitude (12:38) would have included Egyptians who called on the LORD to be their God. Not all Egyptians were judged, as many of them joined Israel. Everyone in the story had an opportunity to repent and turn to God.
  • The plundering of the Egyptians promised in 3:22 is fulfilled in 12:36.
  • God provides clothing for the now homeless Israelites (12:35b).
  • More than 600,000 people left Egypt (12:37).
  • The mixed multitude left Egypt without enough provisions to sustain them (12:39). God would later provide Quail and Manna (ch. 16).
  • The Passover is a meal of remembrance (12:42). Remembrance is a theme in the Old Testament, as God reminds his people to remember his promises and his laws that he gave them, so that they might flourish.
  • The Passover is a meal of watching and anticipation (12:42). Similarly, at the Lord’s Supper, we proclaim Jesus’ death until he returns to judge and make all things new (cf. 1 Corinthians 11:26, Revelation 19:11-16, 21:1-5)
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