Slaves to Freedom – Who were the Israelites?

The people are always referred to as the people of Israel meaning the man, not the geographical location.  But it’s interesting that by referring to them that way is who they became geographically.  I like the idea of the people of God being identified not by a place on this earth.  The people of God were identified by the promise given by God, the line of the covenant.  The people themselves, I wonder how they thought of themselves.  They new themselves to be slaves of Egypt with no rights and no land of their own.  Did the fathers pass down the stories of who their God was.  There is evidence of elders/leaders within the communities, which God instructed Moses to seek out first.  How did they sow hope?  Was their an anticipation of when deliverance would come?

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