Wednesday, June 04, 2008

You ain't so bad. You ain't nuthin!

This is a little exercise I did a while back, just tracing a theme through the Scriptures. It raises many uncomfortable questions, especially for those who contend God is a gentleman and cannot/will not ever violate the "freewill" of an "autonomous" human.

Thesis: God uses Pharaoh like a pawn to demonstrate to Egypt, the Israelites, and the world that He is the sovereign of this planet. He took the most powerful man in the world and made him like a puppet and a fool, to show His greatness by way of contrast. The outcome of which should have been great faith in Him and obedience to Him on the part of His people (e.g., Exodus 20:2, Deut 4:34; etc.)

Romans 9:17-18
17 For the Scripture says to Pharaoh: ‘‘I raised you up for this very purpose, that I might display my power in you and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.” 18 Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have mercy, and he hardens whom he wants to harden.

Genesis 15:13-14
13 Then the LORD said to him, ‘‘Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a country not their own, and they will be enslaved and mistreated four hundred years. 14 But I will punish the nation they serve as slaves, and afterward they will come out with great possessions.

Exodus 3:19
But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless a mighty hand compels him.

Exodus 4:21
The LORD said to Moses, ‘‘When you return to Egypt, see that you perform before Pharaoh all the wonders I have given you the power to do. But I will harden his heart so that he will not let the people go.

Exodus 5:2
Pharaoh said, ‘‘Who is the LORD, that I should obey him and let Israel go? I do not know the LORD and I will not let Israel go.”

Exodus 7:3-4
3 But I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and though I multiply my miraculous signs and wonders in Egypt, 4 he will not listen to you. Then I will lay my hand on Egypt and with mighty acts of judgment I will bring out my divisions, my people the Israelites.

Exodus 7:13
Yet Pharaoh’s heart became hard and he would not listen to them, just as the LORD had said.

Exodus 7:22
But the Egyptian magicians did the same things by their secret arts, and Pharaoh’s heart became hard; he would not listen to Moses and Aaron, just as the LORD had said.

Exodus 8:15
But when Pharaoh saw that there was relief, he hardened his heart and would not listen to Moses and Aaron, just as the LORD had said.

Exodus 8:19
The magicians said to Pharaoh, ‘‘This is the finger of God.” But Pharaoh’s heart was hard and he would not listen, just as the LORD had said.

Exodus 8:32
But this time also Pharaoh hardened his heart and would not let the people go.

Exodus 9:7
Pharaoh sent men to investigate and found that not even one of the animals of the Israelites had died. Yet his heart was unyielding and he would not let the people go.

Exodus 9:12
But the LORD hardened Pharaoh’s heart and he would not listen to Moses and Aaron, just as the LORD had said to Moses.

Exodus 9:16
But 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.

Exodus 9:34-35
34 When Pharaoh saw that the rain and hail and thunder had stopped, he sinned again: He and his officials hardened their hearts. 35 So Pharaoh’s heart was hard and he would not let the Israelites go, just as the LORD had said through Moses.

Exodus 10:1-2
Then the LORD said 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 2 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.”

Exodus 10:20
But the LORD hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he would not let the Israelites go.

Exodus 10:27
But the LORD hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he was not willing to let them go.

Exodus 11:1
Now the LORD had said to Moses, ‘‘I will bring one more plague on Pharaoh and on Egypt. After that, he will let you go from here, and when he does, he will drive you out completely.

Exodus 11:9
The LORD had said to Moses, ‘‘Pharaoh will refuse to listen to you—so that my wonders may be multiplied in Egypt.”

Exodus 11:10
Moses and Aaron performed all these wonders before Pharaoh, but the LORD hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he would not let the Israelites go out of his country.

Exodus 14:4
And I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will pursue them. But I will gain glory for myself through Pharaoh and all his army, and the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD.”

Exodus 3:21-22
21 ‘‘And I will make the Egyptians favorably disposed toward this people, so that when you leave you will not go empty-handed. 22 Every woman is to ask her neighbor and any woman living in her house for articles of silver and gold and for clothing, which you will put on your sons and daughters. And so you will plunder the Egyptians.”

Exodus 11:3
(The LORD made the Egyptians favorably disposed toward the people, and Moses himself was highly regarded in Egypt by Pharaoh’s officials and by the people.)

Exodus 12:36
The LORD had made the Egyptians favorably disposed toward the people, and they gave them what they asked for; so they plundered the Egyptians.

Exodus 14:31
And when the Israelites saw the great power the LORD displayed against the Egyptians, the people feared the LORD and put their trust in him and in Moses his servant.

  • Seems like that was the plan all along, since "the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom." (Proverbs 9:10)

(All Scriptures from the New International Version)

7 Comments:

At 04 June, 2008 10:47, Blogger samurai said...

some meat to chew on... thank you for sharing this...

 
At 04 June, 2008 12:26, Blogger Rev. said...

What's with all the Scripture?!? You "Calvinists" are only supposed to handout man-made doctrines and philosophical arguments!

 
At 04 June, 2008 14:36, Blogger Oilcan said...

Rocky III

Clubber Lang was intimidating and Rocky did receive some glory for ultimately defeating him, but Clubber was no Pharaoh. Sadly for Pharaoh, he was the highest man at the time, as raised up by God, that God could throw down.

And God indeed got glory over Pharoah and all his host, his chariots, and his horsemen as they drowned in the Red Sea. Despite The Ten Commandments version, I believe Pharoah himself died in the Red Sea (Exodus 14:28), but I am not sure about that. Can this be proven or disproven?

 
At 04 June, 2008 15:47, Blogger Lance said...

I'm betting that most of those verses are on the "Slooge Sheet."

 
At 04 June, 2008 22:09, Blogger KELLY said...

That's really timely for me and my friends - with God seeming to have all of us in the book of Exodus lately....although all of us also seem to be in different seasons of our lives. Funny how God does that, huh?

Great post...thanks.

 
At 06 June, 2008 10:53, Anonymous Lionel Woods said...

I traced it by person. From Noah to the Disciples ending with Paul! Regeneration is the pure work of God. Ask Jonah how polite God was to him.

BTW, how are things? Go Red Wings? Since my Pistons didn't man up. Tell Horhe (George) I said hello and I still am blown away by his Sunday School! That is why I want to be a Baptist!

 
At 09 June, 2008 05:24, Blogger GUNNY said...

Always great to hear from you, Lionel.

Things are well and Horhay's world has been *slightly* adjusted as his wife recently had their first baby.

But, I'll pass along the shout out regarding Sunday school. I'm sure he'll appreciate hearing your feedback

Keep the faith, brother, and keep in touch.


Kelly,

Funny is right, though not so much funny "Ha Ha," but funny VERY interesting.

You'd *almost* think God was in control, wouldn't you?

;-)


Rev,

My bad. I slipped, but hopefully just this once.


Oil,

Hard to know for sure regarding Pharaoh's individual demise. One could make a case either way from the text, but don't let the movie influence you too much.


Lance, Amen, brother. That is some SERIOUS slooge!

 

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