Exodus 14:25
And took off their chariot wheels, that they drove them heavily: so that the Egyptians said, Let us flee from the face of Israel; for the LORD fights for them against the Egyptians.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
Exodus 14:25. They drave heavily — They had driven furiously, but they now found themselves embarrassed at every step; the way grew deep, their hearts grew sad, their wheels dropped off, and the axle-trees failed. They had been flying upon the back of Israel as the hawk on the dove; but now they cried, Let us flee from the face of Israel.14:21-31 The dividing the Red sea was the terror of the Canaanites, Jos 2:9; the praise and triumph of the Israelites, Ps 114:3; 106:9; 136:13. It was a type of baptism, 1Co 10:1,2. Israel's passage through it was typical of the conversion of souls, Isa 11:15; and the Egyptians being drowned in it was typical of the final ruin of all unrepenting sinners. God showed his almighty power, by opening a passage through the waters, some miles over. God can bring his people through the greatest difficulties, and force a way where he does not find it. It was an instance of his wonderful favour to his Israel. They went through the sea, they walked upon dry land in the midst of the sea. This was done, in order to encourage God's people in all ages to trust him in the greatest straits. What cannot he do who did this? What will not he do for those that fear and love him, who did this for these murmuring, unbelieving Israelites? Then followed the just and righteous wrath of God upon his and his people's enemies. The ruin of sinners is brought on by their own rage and presumption. They might have let Israel alone, and would not; now they would flee from the face of Israel, and cannot. Men will not be convinced, till it is too late, that those who meddle with God's people, meddle to their own hurt. Moses was ordered to stretch out his hand over the sea; the waters returned, and overwhelmed all the host of the Egyptians. Pharaoh and his servants, who had hardened one another in sin, now fell together, not one escaped. The Israelites saw the Egyptians dead upon the sands. The sight very much affected them. While men see God's works, and feel the benefit, they fear him and trust in him. How well were it for us, if we were always in as good a frame as sometimes! Behold the end to which a Christian may look forward. His enemies rage, and are mighty; but while he holds fast by God, he shall pass the waves in safety guarded by that very power of his Saviour, which shall come down on every spiritual foe. The enemies of his soul whom he hath seen to-day, he shall see no more for ever.In the morning watch - At sunrise, a little before 6 a.m.in April.

Troubled - By a sudden panic.

24, 25. Lord looked … through … the cloud, and troubled them—We suppose the fact to have been that the side of the pillar of cloud towards the Egyptians was suddenly, and for a few moments, illuminated with a blaze of light, which, coming as it were in a refulgent flash upon the dense darkness which had preceded, so frightened the horses of the pursuers that they rushed confusedly together and became unmanageable. "Let us flee," was the cry that resounded through the broken and trembling ranks, but it was too late; all attempts at flight were vain [Bush]. Took off their chariot wheels; either burning them with lightning, or tearing them in pieces with thunder-bolts, or loosening them, and making them to fall off.

That they drave them heavily; Heb. and he made him, or them, the singular number for the plural, i.e. the Egyptians, or their chariots, to go heavily, hardly and slowly, either for want of wheels, or for breaches in them, or because the rain had softened the bottom of the sea, or because the lightnings and thunders affrighted and dispirited their horses.

For the Lord fighteth for them. Prodigious stupidity! They did not understand and consider this, though it was notorious, to them especially, by many great and fresh instances, till it was too late to prevent it; therein being a type of most sinners, who will not be convinced, nor repent, till they be past all benefit by it. And took off their chariot wheels,.... The Targum of Jonathan renders it "cut" or "sawed them off"; perhaps they might be broken off by the hailstones. Milton (s) seems to have a notion of Pharaoh's chariot wheels being broken, when he says, "and craze" (i.e. break) "their chariot wheels"; or, as Jarchi suggests, he burnt them, through the force of the fire or lightning:

that they drave them heavily; the wheels being off, the chariots must be dragged along by the horses by mere force, which must be heavy work; or, "and made them to go, or led them heavily", or "with heaviness" (t); and so to be ascribed to the Lord, who looked at the Egyptians, took off the wheels of their chariots, and stopped them in the fury of their career, that they could not pursue with the swiftness they had:

so that the Egyptians said, let us flee from the face of Israel; for by this battery and flashes of fire on them, they concluded that Israel, who they thought were fleeing before them, had turned and were facing them, and the Lord at the head of them; and therefore it was high time for them to flee, as follows:

for the Lord fighteth for them against the Egyptians; for they rightly took the thunder and lightning, the fire and hailstones, to be the artillery of heaven turned against them, and in favour of the Israelites. Jarchi interprets it, the Lord fights for them in Egypt, even in Egypt itself; but so he had done many a time before, of which they were not insensible.

(s) Paradise Lost, B. 12. ver. 210. (t) "et deduxit eos graviter", Vatablus; "et duxit eos cum gravitate", Drusius; so Ainsworth.

And took off their chariot wheels, that they drave them heavily: so that the Egyptians said, Let us flee from the face of Israel; for the LORD fighteth for them against the Egyptians.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
25. removed. The marg. bound (Sam. LXX. Pesh.; ויאסר for ויסר), i.e. clogged,—presumably by their sinking in the wet sand,—is probably to be preferred (so Di. Bä.).

and made them to drive (them) heavily. The marg. is preferable, for grammatical reasons.

and Egypt said, Let me flee. The same idiomatic and forcible singular as in v. 10. So frequently, as Numbers 20:18-19, Deuteronomy 2:27-29, Joshua 17:14 f., 17 f., besides often in the prophets (cf. LOT. p. 390).

fighteth] as v. 14.Verse 25.- And took off their chariot wheels. The Sept. has "clogged the axles of their chariots;" but this is from a reading not at present found in the Hebrew MSS. Most modern commentators, however, prefer the reading, which gives aThe words of Jehovah to Moses, "What criest thou to Me?" imply that Moses had appealed to God for help, or laid the complaints of the people before Him, and do not convey any reproof, but merely an admonition to resolute action. The people were to move forward, and Moses was to stretch out his hand with his staff over the sea and divide it, so that the people might go through the midst on dry ground. Exodus 14:17 and Exodus 14:18 repeat the promise in Exodus 14:3, Exodus 14:4. The command and promise were followed by immediate help (Exodus 14:19-29). Whilst Moses divided the water with his staff, and thus prepared the way, the angel of God removed from before the Israelites, and placed himself behind them as a defence against the Egyptians, who were following them. "Upon his chariots, and upon his horsemen" (Exodus 14:17), is in apposition to "all his host;" as Pharaoh's army consisted entirely of chariots and horsemen (cf. Exodus 14:18).
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