What Will It Take?

In Exodus 8, we see that Pharaoh continues to rebel against God, and God’s plaques against Egypt continue.  We read of the—

  1. Waters turned to blood – Exod. 7:20
  2. Overrun by Frogs – Exod. 8:6 
  3. Infested with swarms of Gnats – Exod. 8:17 
  4. Swarm of flies – Exod. 8:24 
  5. The Death of Egypt’s livestock – Exod. 9:3 
  6. They were inflicted with Boils – Exod. 9:10 
  7. Land and beast were battered by Hail – Exod. 9:24 
  8. God sent Locusts to eat up whatever vegetation was left – Exod. 10:13
  9. Complete Darkness for three days – Exod. 10:22    

What would it take for Egypt to repent of their sin, and believe in God?  As we pray for the United States of America, I often wonder, what might it take for our nation to repent of our sin, and believe?  

So, after God turns the waters into blood, God sent the plague of frogs, and in 8:10, we see that Moses speaks to Pharaoh, and says, 10 … “Tomorrow.” …“Be it as you say, (notice the point) so that you may know that there is no one like the Lord our God11 The frogs shall go away from you and your houses and your servants and your people. They shall be left only in the Nile.”

Well that didn’t really do it, so God sent a swarm of Gnats.  Still, no faith and repentance. 

So God Moses back to Pharaoh, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord, “Let my people go, that they may serve me. 21 Or else, if you will not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies on you and your servants and your people, and into your houses. And the houses of the Egyptians shall be filled with swarms of flies, and also the ground on which they stand. 22 But on that day I will set apart the land of Goshen, where my people dwell, so that no swarms of flies shall be there, (notice again, God’s point) that you may know that I am the Lord in the midst of the earth.

Then in Exodus 9 we see the Plague on the Egyptian’s Livestock, and still no faith and repentance, so God send the plague of Boils, to cover the Egyptians.

13 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Rise up early in the morning and present yourself before Pharaoh and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, “Let my people go, that they may serve me. 14 For this time I will send all my plagues on you yourself, and on your servants and your people, so that you may know that there is none like me in all the earth.  So God sent the Hail.

This led Pharaoh to relent and beg Moses to stop the hailstorm, and 29 Moses said to him, “As soon as I have gone out of the city, I will stretch out my hands to the Lord. The thunder will cease, and there will be no more hail, (and once again, Moses says) so that you may know that the earth is the Lord’s.

In Exodus 10, notice that God reveals a little more on His intensions for lessons to be learned.  We read, 1 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go in to Pharaoh, for I have hardened his heart and the heart of his servants, (notice this) that I may show these signs of mine among them2 and that you may tell in the hearing of your son and of your grandson how I have dealt harshly with the Egyptians and what signs I have done among themthat you may know that I am the Lord.

7 Then Pharaoh’s servants said to him, “How long shall this man be a snare to us? Let the men go, that they may serve the Lordtheir God. Do you not yet know that Egypt is ruined?”  Well, that doesn’t fully register either, so God sends the plague of Locusts.  

And 21 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, a darkness to be felt.” 22 So Moses stretched out his hand toward heaven, and there was pitch darkness in all the land of Egypt three days.

Four times, Pharaoh is told why these plagues are coming against Egypt.

  • so that you may know that there is no one like the Lord our God
  • that you may know that I am the Lord
  • so that you may know that there is none like me in all the earth
  • so that you may know that the earth is the Lord’s

And then God said to Moses, for all of Israel—

  •  that you may know that I am the Lord

God sent His word to Pharaoh, and he would not believe, he would not repent, and he would not obey.  

Then we come to Acts 18.  Here we see that God is sending His message of the gospel to all people, and notice how He does that.  In v.4 we read that Paul 4 … reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, and tried to persuade Jews and Greeks. 5 When Silas and Timothy arrived from Macedonia, Paul was occupied with the wordtestifying to the Jews that the Christ was Jesus6 And when they opposed and reviled him, he shook out his garments and said to them, “Your blood be on your own heads! I am innocent. From now on I will go to the Gentiles.”

Paul reasoned with them, he tried to persuade them, he gave his testimony to them, all to try to convince them that the Christ was Jesus.  

Now beginning in v.12, there is One of my favorite accounts found in the book of Acts.  

12 But when Gallio was proconsul of Achaia, the Jews made a united attack on Paul and brought him before the tribunal, 13saying, “This man is persuading people to worship God contrary to the law.” 14 But when Paul was about to open his mouth, Gallio said to the Jews, “If it were a matter of wrongdoing or vicious crime, O Jews, I would have reason to accept your complaint. 15 But since it is a matter of questions about words and names and your own law, see to it yourselves. I refuse to be a judge of these things.” 16 And he drove them from the tribunal. 17 And they all seized Sosthenes, the ruler of the synagogue, and beat him in front of the tribunal. But Gallio paid no attention to any of this. 18 After this, Paul stayed many days longer and then took leave of the brothers and set sail for Syria….

I don’t know if that strikes you as funny it strikes me. 

19 And they came to Ephesus, and he left them there, but he (Paul) himself went into the synagogue and reasoned with the Jews.

We meet Apollos, and in v.28 we read,  28 for he powerfully refuted the Jews in public, showing by the Scriptures that the Christ was Jesus.

Moses proclaimed God’s word alongside the mighty power of God, and we see in Acts, that we are to use Reason, Persuasion, Testifying to what Christ has done in our lives, and when necessary, Refuting falsehood, by using Scripture, all to show that Jesus is God, the Savior of the World, and that all should believe and repent.  

In Psalm 55-56, David prays, as we pray along—

55:1 Give ear to my prayer, O God, and hide not yourself from my plea for mercy!

56:3 When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. 4 In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me?

8 You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book? 9 Then my enemies will turn back in the day when I call. This I know, that God is for me. 10 In God, whose word I praise, in the Lord, whose word I praise, 11 in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can man do to me? 12 I must perform my vows to you, O God; I will render thank offerings to you. 13 For you have delivered my soul from death, yes, my feet from falling, that I may walk before God in the light of life. 

Amen

From the FBCP Bible Reading #20

~ by James M. Winslow on 2021/04/12.

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