Today’s Reading: Ex. 5:1 – 8:32
Wow! We completed one book – Genesis – and we moved onto the second book, Exodus! Congratulation for those made it! Don’t forget – if you miss a day or two or a week, just start reading the portion for TODAY. “Yesterday can’t be altered, tomorrow can’t be predicted and today can’t be controlled”, but you can certain read today’s 4 pages!
In general, those who love Class movies made in 1950’s and 1960’s recall the movie, “Ten Commandments”. That’s how I remembered Moses, until I finally read the bible more carefully. Moses was a classic “why me?” person as Mr. Rob stated yesterday. He came up with so many excuses why he could not do what God wants him to do, until such point God finally said “Just Go”! We usually say to ourselves or others – “I don’t know what God wants me to do or what is his plan for me in this life, but if I know, I would certain do what he tells me to do”. I actually disagrees after growing more in my faith. In many cases, I already know what God wants me to do, but I just don’t want to do it! So I justify myself with many excuses and see if God “buys” my justification – for those who have not done yet, it does not work….
So Moses did what God asked him to do, along with Aaron. Surprise! Pharaoh exactly did what God told Moses already! But, don’t you love what Moses does? He goes back to God and complains – “Oh Lord, why have you brought troubles upon this people? Is this why you sent me?” I mean, Moses already knew his mission – “get his people out of Egypt”; Moses already knew what’s going to happen because God told him in yesterday’s reading – “why are you doing this?”; Moses already knew Pharaoh would not release his people at the first attempt. Isn’t it almost seeing your own children learning something new? “mom, I can’t do this (although you told me it would take several practices to get it done)!”
After two initial miracles (snake & water turning blood), Pharaoh did not even acknowledge God – after all, human magicians were able to do those as well. After 3rd one (frog), Pharaoh at least acknowledge God, by saying “pray to your God”. And he makes a compromise – “I will let you go tomorrow”, but he did not carry his promise. After gnats and flies, Pharaoh again compromises – “ok, do the sacrifice in this land”. His heart was hardened more and more.
I find it interesting that God actually said that to Moses – “I will harden Pharaoh’s heart” so that he will not let you go easily. I find it interesting that God makes Moses’ job harder than easier! Don’t you find yourself in such situation in your life? You are trying to do God’s work, but you get all kinds of difficulties, even from your friends or families or church families. Does that make you feel “God, come on! I am trying here; can you not help me a little by changing their heart?” I do that all the time, whenever I need to meet tough clients! Sometime, he does and sometime, he makes it harder. It hurts at such time, but I usually find that God had a good reason, which I could not see or comprehend at the time.
So let’s use our picture-it method…. If you picture yourself as Moses, do you feel frustrated? How can you get it out and concentrate on God’s business, not on your business? If you see yourself as Pharaoh, is your heart hardened? What can you do to soften it? If you see yourself as Aaron, can you actually believe your brother, Moses?
Keep it up everyone! We are only half way – we got more curses coming down on Egyptians (those poor people with a poor-judgement leader) and my favourite scene of opening the Red Sea! Don’t miss it!