The Real “First Thanksgiving:” The Pilgrims Meet the Egyptians

May 6, 2011 at 10:27 am | Posted in Genesis | 16 Comments
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It’s fairly easy to pick up on the soteriological symbolism behind the true historical events of God calling His people out of the land of Egypt and into the promised land of Canaan, as they are recorded in the Bible. In the book of Exodus God uses Moses to get his people out of Egypt. Egypt is a picture of the “world.” During the first “Passover,” the people – by the application of blood – are set free from the bondage of the world, and come out of it. This is a picture of salvation through the blood of Jesus Christ. Then, God’s people pass through the Red Sea. This is a picture of baptism, God’s first step of obedience for every believer. Then comes the book of Leviticus, which is full of rules for helping God’s people stay clean in their freedom. In Exodus, God gets His people out of Egypt. In Leviticus, God gets Egypt out of His people.

As we approach the end of a series of posts on Genesis, it is interesting to see how God’s people – the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob – end up in Egypt in the first place. The answer lies in the adventures of Jacob’s son, Joseph. His brothers sold him into slavery, and he wound up a ruler in Egypt. Through God’s providence, he was able to relocate his family there in a time of famine, so that they would survive.

There are many metaphors for life: a contest; a war; a game; a race; a battle; a trap; a puzzle. You were probably taught in school that the first Thanksgiving occurred when the Pilgrims met the Indians. But when Joseph brought his father, Jacob, to meet the Pharaoh of Egypt, Jacob explained that he saw life as a pilgrimage.

And Jacob said unto Pharaoh, The days of the years of my pilgrimage are an hundred and thirty years: few and evil have the days of the years of my life been, and have not attained unto the days of the years of the life of my fathers in the days of their pilgrimage.

Genesis 47:9

Christians truly are pilgrims in this life, for our ultimate home is not in this world. We are just passing through it on our way to our real home in Heaven. Vagabonds have no home. Fugitives are running away from home. Strangers are visiting someone else’s home. Pilgrims are on their way home. Are you living the pilgrim life today?

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  1. […] was a pilgrim. He did not take Sarah’s body back to Ur of the Chaldees because by faith he knew that the […]

  2. […] ministers are not to seek glory for themselves. The Christian life is a race and a battle and a pilgrimage, not a parade or an awards […]

  3. […] had experienced much evil, but he recognized that he was on his way home. “The Angel” may be a reference to Jesus Christ. And when Joseph saw that his father laid his […]

  4. […] Admonition Check Your Sack Before Jesus Comes Back Nominative Repetition: Warning and Comfort The Real “First Thanksgiving:” The Pilgrims Meet the Egyptians The Redeemer Is Prophesied The End of the […]

  5. […] home. A stranger is one who is away from home. A vagabond is one who does not have a home. But a pilgrim is one who is on his way […]

  6. […] Christian life can be compared to a puzzle, a battle, a challenge, a race, a treasure hunt, or a pilgrimage. None of these are monotonous or boring. They are the stuff of true […]

  7. […] Christian life can be compared to a puzzle, a battle, a challenge, a race, a treasure hunt, or a pilgrimage. None of these are monotonous or boring. They are the stuff of true […]

  8. […] The Old Testament of the Bible contains true historical accounts, and it is accurate, but it is also contains numerous types and shadows of what God would do in Christ to save His people. Joseph is one example. He was used to rescue God’s people from famine, and they wound up in Egypt in the Land of Goshen. Joseph became second in command in Egypt, answering only to Pharaoh. But eventually Joseph died, and that particular pharaoh died. Other pharaohs came along that didn’t remember Joseph, and God’s people wound up as slaves. God, through Moses, subsequently delivered them out of bondage, parting the Red Sea and giving them His law. We may discern from this true historical account the following types and foreshadowing: […]

  9. […] Christian life can be compared to a puzzle, a battle, a challenge, a race, a treasure hunt, or a pilgrimage. None of these are monotonous or boring. They are the stuff of true […]

  10. […] Christian life can be compared to a puzzle, a battle, a challenge, a race, a treasure hunt, or a pilgrimage. None of these are monotonous or boring. They are the stuff of true […]

  11. […] Israelites had begun their sojourn in Egypt as legal resident aliens, but had now become slaves. Pharaoh planned to control their population, […]

  12. […] had placed the Jewish people in Egypt to survive a famine. They prospered there at first, but eventually were placed into bondage and servitude by the […]

  13. […] had brought his nephew along on the pilgrimage to which God had called him. Sodom being a Biblical picture of the “world,” events […]

  14. […] shall inherit in Christ Jesus. We are to think of Heaven as our home, and to think of ourselves as foreigners in this world. A faithful ambassador of his king, when visiting a foreign land, does not set […]

  15. […] as He follows Christ through this earthly life is still ultimately on his your way to Heaven. One Scriptural analogy for the Christian life is that it is like a race, but when the race is over, as a true Christian, […]

  16. […] Who is both the Author and the Finisher of our journey, we remember that we are sojourners and pilgrims, not homeless wanderers. All through this journey, we are being prepared for glory as we go, and we […]


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