When we lived in South Carolina we were a little over an hour from the beach. We heard a lot about beach music and in fact, Pat Conroy later wrote a book with that title. The music was associated with Myrtle Beach and for a while (the eighties and nineties), it was quite popular. It’s still around but its day has come and gone.
About 3,500 years ago, there was a different kind of music—let’s call it Red Sea music. It debuted when the fledgling nation of Israel walked through a suspended wall of water and then watched as Pharaoh and his army were buried by the waves when they tried to do the same. Israel’s “baptism” (1 Corinthians 10:1-2), transported them out of a nightmarish existence and into freedom and a future. But before all of that began there was the small matter of music . . . You could make a good argument that nothing could possibly beat walking across the floor of the Red Sea and then watching it wash away an enemy who had ground you and your loved ones down and I don’t know that there would be anything to say against that. For me though, to stand on the other side of the Red Sea, in the company of the redeemed, and to join with them in a song of pure praise to God—well that would be unbeatable.
The text points to several reasons for their singing.
• They sang because they believed. We’re told in 14:31 that “the people feared the Lord and put their trust in him and in Moses his servant.” Faith makes a difference— of this we are sure. It puts a spring in our step and a song in our heart.
• They sang because God is great. In 15:11 they ask, “Who among the gods is like you, Lord? Who is like you—majestic in holiness, awesome in glory, working wonders?” The answer is—no one!
• They sang because God is good. He’s not just good when we are pleased with His ways toward us, He’s good all of the time. His love is “unfailing”(v. 13). Things really haven’t changed much, have they? The reasons Moses and Israel had for singing are the same ones that we have today. And singing is still just as powerful and profound as it was at the Red Sea. With that in mind, let’s “make music from your heart to the Lord,” (Ephesians 5:19). We need to sing and the world needs to hear our song.