Then Moses and the Israelites sang this song to the LORD:
I will sing to the LORD, for he is gloriously triumphant;
horse and chariot he has cast into the sea. (Exodus 15:1)
The third reading for the Easter Vigil is one central to the sacrament of Baptism and I think presented well in this scene from the movie Lord of the Rings. In this scene, Frodo has been mortally wounded by the Nazgul. Their poison has begun to make its way deep into his veins and he is dying. It is only through the heroic ride of Arwen that he is saved. She rides furiously away from the powers of evil and towards the healing waters of her home. When she arrives at the waters, she dares the Nazgul to enter the waters to claim Frodo. They enter, and are destroyed.
The account of the crossing of the Red Sea is the same story. The powers of Egypt, who always represent the slavery of sin, pursue the Israelites to the Red Sea. They believe the Israelites are trapped, but in the end, it is they who perish in the waters of the Red Sea.
Every Easter, we spend 50 days celebrating Baptism and the new life that comes forth from it. We remember the poison of sin and the life giving waters that have saved us. We renew our promises when we rejected Satan and affirmed God. We once again enter battle with the powers of darkness knowing our savior has already won the battle. We dare those same powers to enter into the waters of Baptism along with us, knowing that when they do, they will be destroyed.
May this season of Easter be a time of healing for us all.