Tag: Exodus 7-10

One more night with the frogs!

Scripture reading for January 21st: Exodus 7-10

When I was younger, we would hunt frogs each fall on a late October night that was lit by a full moon.  It was an annual ritual that our neighborhood used to enjoy.  The men would go out after dark with flashlights, spears, and burlap sacks and head for the farm ponds.  The frogs would be gathering in clusters, getting ready to head down into the mud for the winter.  They were easy picking!  After harvest, the neighbors would gather to eat fried frog legs and pot-blessing, play cards and swap stories about the harvest.  It was great food and a good time!

In our reading today we have another story about frogs.  Moses had decreed a plague of frogs on the land of Egypt because Pharaoh would not let the Israelites go to worship God.  Frogs filled the land.  They were in the fields, houses, marketplace, Pharaoh’s palace, and even in the bedrooms!  Pharaoh summoned Moses to ask him to pray to God to get rid of those frogs.  Moses, trying to be polite, allowed Pharaoh to set the time when the frogs would be gone.  Pharaoh’s answer was, “tomorrow”.  Why tomorrow?  Did Pharaoh want one more night of frog hunting too?  Did he enjoy sleeping with the frogs?  Maybe one of his magicians had turned one of his kids into a frog?  These are some silly questions to ponder about this story! There are more serious ones.

It amazes me that when God offers us freedom to ask Him for anything, (John 14:13) we often answer just like Pharaoh: “tomorrow”.  Do we want one more night with our addiction?  Do we want to be sick one more night?  Do we want one more night to be angry and bitter?  Tomorrow never really comes.  When we procrastinate, we are saying that we love our sin or problem more than we love God.  We want one more night with the frogs!

Ask the Lord to help you break the bondage of procrastination.  Sit down with him today and get it taken care of!  Frogs may be tasty animals, but you don’t need another night with them!

“Let him return to the Lord, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.” Isaiah 55:7

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Hardness of Heart

Scripture reading for January 21st: Exodus 7-10

The story of the ten plagues is an interesting study in human reaction to the miraculous.  We often think that if unbelievers could just see a miracle, then they would believe.  If God would do something spectacular, then the unbeliever would take notice and start to follow God.  However, miracles done in front of the willfully blind have the effect of hardening them even further!

To most people, Pharaoh was the most powerful man on earth during the time of Moses.  He was the head of the most powerful nation and had a large army with many chariots.  He, himself, was worshiped as a god.  When Moses came before him with just his staff and Aaron his brother to demand that Pharaoh let the Israelites go, Pharaoh was less than impressed.  When Moses threw his staff down before Pharaoh and it became a snake, he summoned his wise men and magicians and they did the same thing with their magic arts.  (Exodus 7:10-13)  Moses’ snake swallowed all their snakes, however.  This miracle only hardened Pharaoh’s heart and he would not listen to them as the Lord had predicted.

Hardness of heart comes from hearing truth and rejecting it.  Refusing to listen to God’s word and warning is the root cause of this fatal disease.  The more truth we hear and know, the more responsible we are to respond in faith to that truth.  If we reject the truth God is bringing us, our hearts harden by our own choice and attitude.  We see Pharaoh repeatedly rejecting Moses’ appeal to let God’s people go to worship.  Every time for the first five plagues, Scripture states that Pharaoh hardened his own heart. (Exodus 7:22; 8:15, 19, 32; 9:7)  After the sixth plague, the Scripture says that God hardened Pharaoh’s heart.  (Exodus 9:12)  This tells us we can cross a line with God when we reject His truth.

The ultimate result of hardness of heart is deception and finally destruction.  Proverbs 29:1 speaks of the person who is stiff-necked after many rebukes.  This person will suddenly be destroyed without remedy.  That is exactly what happened to Pharaoh.  It is wise to give heed to God’s word and His correction.  He will not judge without warning.  He would rather show mercy than wrath.  Don’t let hardness of heart afflict you!

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