Exodus wonders

Yesterday I was reading in Exodus- where Moses is asking Pharaoh to let the Israelites go, and Pharoah says no again and again.  Or he says yes, sometimes- but then as soon as the plague is lifted, his heart is hardened and he says no. 

God sends all these plagues: the water in Egypt turns to blood, He sends frogs and gnats and flies to cover the land, He brings a plague onto the livestock of the Egyptians, He causes boils to break out on the people and animals, and more.   Throughout these chapters is the phrase "the Lord hardened Pharaoh's heart and he would not listen", or "he and his officials hardened their hearts", or "he hardened his heart and would not listen".

In chapter 9 we read that God tells Pharaoh: "I have raised you up for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth."

Then in chapter 10, after several plagues- the Lord says to Moses:

"Go to Pharaoh, for I have hardened his heart and the hearts of his officials so that I may perform these miraculous signs of mine among them that you may tell your children and grandchildren how I dealt harshly with the Egyptians and how I performed my signs among them, and that you may know that I am the LORD."

Pharaoh was raised up by God for "this very purpose"- he, in his unbelief and hardening of heart, was used by God in order to show God's greatness. 

His heart was hardened by God so that God could perform all of those miraculous signs; because God wanted to show what He was able to do, because this would be a better story for people to pass on to their children and grandchildren. 

How amazing is that?   I just love it that while God could have caused Pharaoh to say yes right away and let the Israelites go already, He chose instead to create this grand drama with suspense, complete with all these signs and wonders so that our kids get to hear this story and marvel at the power and greatness of God.  I love the way God works!  

And this is such a FUN story to tell them, too- my kids love to imagine Aaron's staff-turned-to-snake swallowing up all the snakes of the magicians, and what it would be like to have flies everywhere and in everything.  All of it- it's ripe for the minds of our children.  I love having the privilege of getting to tell them!


  1. Of course we are reading the same thing! I got my reading plan from you. My first thought was wow! we are in the same place in our Bible reading.
    I am loving how God showed such power in Is distinction between the Isrealites and the Egyptians. Total darkness for one and normal days for the other.

    1. ~smile~
      YES! I love that, too, Carolynn! The kids and I talked a lot about that: what it must have been like for the Egyptians to see that this was only happening to *them*, but the Israelites were protected by God. Love that.

  2. Yes, and then Paul quotes that same passage in Romans 9 to answer the "imaginary objector" who might be saying, "But that's not fair, God can't control what people do and then judge them for not doing what He commands". Paul shuts that idea right down by saying, "Who are you, O man to reply such to God?" Doesn't the potter have the right to do with the clay as He wishes?
    The OT is just one example after another of God working out His purposes. We read through Joshua and now through Judges and the message is loud and clear: God does as He pleases with the nations of the earth.
    Thanks for sharing this, Stacy. I rejoice in God's power as well.


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