Personal studies Exodus 7:14-24

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Exodus 7:14-24

My heart is heavy regarding the election results, but encouraged by reading Exodus. It seems like wherever we read in the Bible is applicable to where we are in our lives. In Exodus we see a pompous Pharaoh who thinks he is god, and can do what he wants, regardless of what God says. Well Pharaoh will find out who God is, and Pharaoh will realize that his choices have deadly consequences. If I did not know about Matthew 24 and 25 I would be heartsick over some of the choices our country made yesterday, but knowing that Jesus predicted what would happen, and Paul illustrated it with the book of Romans, I at least know that nothing happens outside of God’s sovereignty. Right now I am studying Beth Moore’sLiving Beyond Yourself and we are dealing with God’s faithfulness. God will be with us in the midst of this. I only hope that this is God letting our country come to the end of itself, so that it finally realizes it needs God, the God our country was founded on.

A few extraneous thoughts about Exodus 7 – Exodus is a book about redemption, and God redeemed Israel in spite of itself – I am fervently praying God redeems our country in spite of ourselves.

I still am impressed that Moses and Aaron (two witnesses – kind of reminds me of the two witnesses in Revelation), did all that God commanded. There are warnings for those who do not do as God says, God does not randomly judge without warning. We just need to read the signs of the times and the writing on the wall. Daniel 5, Belshazzar’s decision to use the holy vessels to serve wine at a party was met with a hand and finger writing on the wall, “Mene, mene, tekel, upharsin. Dan 5:26 This is the interpretation of each word. Mene: God has numbered your kingdom and finished it. Tekel: You have been weighed in the balance and found wanting. Peres: Your kingdom has been divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.Do we want God to judge us and find us and our country lacking?

2 Timothy 4:3-4 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap upon themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.

What also crossed my mind is that God WILL redeem Israel, but it will not be a redemption that is easy, they will face some of the same tribulations that Pharaoh and his people faced, there will be challenges and hardships along the way to the Promised Land. But God will use the same redemption of Israel to show Egypt (the world) and Pharaoh (world leadership and a symbol of antichrist) who He is. It is God giving them a chance to change their ways too.

What also impresses me about Moses is that all of a sudden he too is speaking to Pharaoh, and he is not that shy, fearful person he was at the burning bush. It seems that doing God’s will gives confidence we do not expect. I suspect that Moses realized that God came through for him. Kind of reminds me of a kid facing a bully and thinking that he backed the bully down when the bully turns and runs, not realizing that his father is standing behind him and the bully is running from the father, not from the kid. We see this transformation in many people’s lives. Saul becomes courageous, David stands strong, Peter is transformed, and of course Saul/Paul was a major transformation, as is the transformation in all the the disciples once the Holy Spirit empowered them.

This is the classic contest of good and evil God is Good (white hat) Egypt is evil (black hat). We will see that Egypt represents the world and Pharaoh is a representative of satan on the earth. And there will be the triumph of God, and it is not conditional.

What is interesting is that there are other cases of hardened hearts in the Bible. Deuteronomy 2:30 -Sihon would not let the people pass through his land, and because of that action, God hardened his spirit and made his heart obstinate, so that God could deliver them into the people’s hands. Also mentioned in Numbers 21:22-23

Joshua 11:19-20 The Hivites and Gibeon did not make peace with Israel, so God hardened their hearts and they came against Israel in battle and lost.

Romans 9:18 Therefore He has mercy on whom He wills, and whom He wills He hardens.

Revelation 17:17 For God has put it into their hearts to fulfill His purpose, to be of one mind, and to give their kingdom to the beast, until the words of God are fulfilled.

Pharaoh probably felt God did not do anything for 400 years, so why should Pharaoh shake in his sandals? Well, just like today, Pharaoh should have realized that just because God did not immediately act does not mean that God condones what is going on. God sometimes lets things go on hoping that a few more souls will be saved. Today, people are seeing many “new” understandings of God’s Word, seeing people pick and choose what they will believe. People are living lives that are morally corrupt, and God is not pleased. He is waiting, hoping that they will change, but if not, one day a judgment will come down.

When God passed judgment on Egypt, He did it with a series of plagues, many of which are mirrored in Revelation. One day, God will pass judgment on us, and it is important now for us to decide where do we stand. I choose God.

Although Exodus does not tell us much about the magicians who will for the first three plagues be able to imitate what God is doing, the scripture does give us further information. We can best find out about scripture by searching scriptures.

2 Timothy 3:8-9 Now as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so do those also resist the truth; men of corrupt minds, disapproved, concerning the faith; but they will progress no further, for their folly will be manifest to all, as theirs also was.

Now we know the names of the magicians, and we will see that after the plague of lice they mention to Pharaoh that God is God, and then the magicians are seen no more. Their folly was made manifest to all including Pharaoh when they could no longer duplicate God’s plagues. I hope that they realized their folly and repented.

In Exodus 7 the magicians resisted Moses by imitating his signs and wonders. That is what satan will do. As these end times come upon us we too will see an increase in signs and wonders. What is important to ascertain is by whose authority are these signs and wonders being done and who gets the glory. Only if God ordains them and God gets the glory are they true, if not they are imitations set out by satan to confuse the people and pull them away from God.

Another example of satan imitating God is in Revelation, there will be two mouthpieces for the antichrist, and Pharaoh had two magicians. God has two witnesses in Revelation and also Moses and Aaron were God’s two witnesses to Pharaoh. These are just a few examples of satan imitating God.

Exodus 7:14 So the LORD said to Moses, “Pharaoh’s heart is hard; he refuses to let the people go.

God knew this would happen, and Pharaoh will become more hardened as time goes on. I think in this he is not much different from us when life presents us with a lot of challenges. I know that when I lived through my abuse, instead of trusting God through it (although I didn’t know God back then like I know Him now), I turned angry at God, hardened my heart and refused to communicate with Him for 40 years. I am so glad God got through my hardened heart by sending Pastor Don into my life to help me break down that hard heart. But I know that at some point, if I had refused to respond to Pastor Don, God might have sent someone else, but there would have come a time when God would have said, ok, Heather wants her hardened heart, I will give her the desires of her heart, and I would have been lost forever. God sent these plagues to Pharaoh (yes, God is sovereign and knew that Pharaoh would choose to stay hardened, but God loved even Pharaoh enough to give him a choice). The other thought that just came to my mind is that Pharaoh knew Moses, was raised with him, and I know that Moses knew about his people, was trained about God, so Pharaoh also had some of that input as a child. God extended a lot of chances to Pharaoh which were refused. Please, if you have hardened your heart to God, if you have listened to false teachers, if you have issues with God, bring them to Him. Let Him minister to you, let Him reach into your heart and heal these issues. God does care and He really doesn’t want anyone to be lost. He sent Jesus to die for us ALL, but if we refuse the gift that Jesus gives us, God will honor that. There will be no second chances, our choice here on earth is binding for eternity.

The Egyptians worshipped water. They were dependent on the two growing seasons, which were linked to rain (the former and the later rains). The Nile would flood and leave fertile soil which produced abundant crops. During the times of flooding, the pharaoh would travel the kingdom in a barge, and people would worship him because they thought he was god on earth. They would also bring statues of various idols on the barges for the people to worship. So it is fitting that God would first bring attack on their provision.

Exodus 7:15-18 Go to Pharaoh in the morning, when he goes out to the water, and you shall stand by the river’s bank to meet him; and the rod which was turned to a serpent you shall take in your hand. And you shall say to him, “The LORD God of the Hebrews has sent me to you, saying, “Let My people go, that they may serve Me in the wilderness”; but indeed, until now you would not hear. ‘Thus says the LORD: “By this you shall know that I am the LORD. Behold, I will strike the waters which are in the river with the rod that is in my hand, and they shall be turned to blood. And the fish that are in the river shall die, the river shall stink, and the Egyptians will loathe to drink the water of the river.”

Remember that the Egyptians had an aversion to blood, and their livelihood was fish. The water would be undrinkable, but God did not prevent them from digging for fresh water.

Exodus 7:19 Then the LORD spoke to Moses, “Say to Aaron, ‘Take your rod and stretch out your hand over the waters of Egypt, over their streams, over their rivers, over their ponds, and over all their pools of water, that they may become blood. And there shall be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, both in buckets of wood and pitchers of stone.

One thing to notice is that even the Israelites had bloody water, there was not a separation of the Egyptians and Israelites in this. Moses turned water into blood, Jesus turned water into wine. Revelation 8: 8-11 mentions the second trumpet where 1/3 of the seas were struck and turned to blood and 1/3 of the living creatures in the sea died and 1/3 of the ships were destroyed. Then a star falls from heaven and falls on 1/3 of the rivers and springs of water. When the people did not repent, even after other judgments, then we find that the judgments become more severe in the bowl judgments. Revelation 16:3-7 talks about two bowl judgments – the second one where the sea turned to blood and every living creature in the sea dies. And the third bowl judgment where the waters and springs became blood. and an angel of the lord says, verses 5-6 “You are righteous, O Lord, the One who is and who was and who is to be, because you have judged these things. For they have shed the blood of saints and prophets, and You have given them blood to drink, for it is their just due.”

Just like the Pharaoh in Moses’ day, those in the end time will refuse to listen to God and will harden their hearts. I find it interesting that the angel points out the shed blood, don’t forget that Pharaoh also ordered the shedding of the blood of Israelite boys, wanting to reduce the population. With no water, it is hard to survive, and the death of the fish and the crops due to lack of water would hurt the economy of both Egypt, and the world in the end times.

Exodus 7:20-21 And Moses and Aaron did so, just as the LORD commanded. So he lifted up the rod and struck the waters that were in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh and in the sight of his servants. And all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood. The fish that were in the river died, and the Egyptians could not drink the water of the river. So there was blood throughout all the land of Egypt.

Now watch what the two magicians do (I assume it is two because of 2 Timothy), they do exactly what Moses did, replicating the water turning to blood – but isn’t that just what satan does in our lives. I think the magicians would have been more useful turning blood into water, instead they take water dug up and turn it to blood too, making even less water for the people to drink. When satan comes into our lives he never makes it better, only worse.

Exodus 7:22-24 Then the magicians of Egypt did so with their enchantments; and Pharaoh’s heart grew hard, and he did not heed them as the LORD had said. And Pharaoh turned and went into his house. Neither was his heart moved by this. So all the Egyptians dug all around the river for water to drink, because they could not drink the water of the river.

Notice, Pharaoh who was considered god, could not do anything to make the lives better for his people. His magicians were feeble imitators of God, and they only made things worse. The people dug for water (so God in His mercy did not keep them from drinking water), and the dug water was used for the magicians to make blood – not really a good use of the water.

Exodus 7:25 And seven days passed after the LORD had struck the river.

Genesis 7:10 – after the ark was loaded, seven days and then the water was on the earth. I am wondering why seven days and if there is any connection.

I can’t help but contrast Pharaoh’s reaction for the plight of his people with God’s. God who so compassionately sent his Only Begotten Son to redeem us. Pharaoh had the power to speak the words to free his people from the plague of the bloody waters, and he chose not to do it. And he just callously went back into his house, and left the people scrabbling for water by digging.

God will bring His people out of Egypt, but the liberation is not always easy. Fortunately, God has things in control.

Hoping you have a blessed day. It is pouring rain here, and dreary.

Heather

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About Heather Marsten

Welcome to Heather's Blog. I'm looking forward to meeting you and checking out your sites. I just moved about nine years of material over from another blog site, Xanga, who may close down mid-July. At first I was disappointed to make the move because I had a lifetime membership at Xanga and had to spend weeks transferring posts. But now I'm thrilled. Already I've met new bloggers and read many new websites. Blogging is a wonderful way to expand my horizons and garner new ideas. I'm a happily married mom of three young adults. My husband and I are proud to watch our children grow and venture out into the world. My daughter is still in college but my two sons have graduated. One has a job and the other just graduated and is in the process of finding a job in his field, physics. Anyone know of any jobs out there? I'm proud of our children and love watching them grow and mature. They've become fine, compassionate, and loving people. Empty nest? Nah, I'm too busy to let an empty nest bother me. Not enough hours in the day. My husband and I enjoy quiet time together and I have many interests to pursue - one of which is blogging :D I am a born-again believer and love God. As you read this blog, you will discover that Bible studies thrill me. There is so much wisdom contained between the covers of the Bible and I am fortunate to sit under the teachings of a remarkable pastor, Pastor Don Moore. Members of our church (Living Word Chapel in West Hurley, New York) are encouraged to teach and there are visiting pastors who stop by our church, I also study the Bible on my own and love sharing what I learn. One other passion is writing. My current work in process is a memoir. A scene from my memoir was published in a book called: Heavenly Company: Entertaining Angels Unaware - an anthology of angelic encounters compiled by Cecil Murphy. I'm hoping my memoir will encourage other survivors of abuse. I grew up in a home filled with abuse, including incest. For most of my life I was searching for something that would fill the void of not being loved by my parents. I tried many ways to find that love -- therapy, relationships, occult studies, and keeping my life so filled I had no way to think about my past. It was only when I discovered God that I was able to put the pieces of my life back together and walk forward in a joyous life. My nickname - wondering has changed from wondering where the heck God was in my life, to wondering what incredible adventure is going to happen next. I hope you enjoy my site. Please say hi, share some thoughts, and ask questions. I look forward to meeting you and checking out your sites. Have a blessed day. Heather
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