About Jesus      Steve Sweetman

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This Chapter 6:28 to 7

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ch. 6:28-7:5  ch. 7:6-13  ch. 7:14-24

Aaron To Speak For Moses (ch. 6:28 to 7:5)


In verses 28 to 30 we see the command of God again to Moses to go to Pharaoh and tell him to free the Jews.  Again, in verse 30, Moses tells God that he has faltering lips and doesn't do a good job at speaking.  This is the third time Moses mentions this to God, as if God doesn't know.  Well, God knows all things.  God didn't choose Moses because he was a good speaker or a bad speaker.  To God that was not relevant.


In the NIV, chapter 7 flows on from chapter 6, and is part of the same section that begins with chapter 6, verse 28.


In verses 1 and 2 God tells Moses that he will be like God to Pharaoh, and that Aaron will be like his prophet.  Moses would tell Aaron all that he hears from God.  Aaron would receive what Moses says as if Moses was God Himself.  Then Aaron would repeat it to Pharaoh as if he were the prophet of God.  This would get around Moses' speech problem that some suggest was stuttering. 


After saying all of that, in verses 3 to 5 God then tells Moses that He will harden Pharaoh's heart so Pharaoh won't listen to Aaron.   There is one reason why God does this.  Because Pharaoh refuses God's will, God will judge him and his nation for their disobedience.  He will judge Egypt with severe miraculous signs which will show the whole world that the God of the Jews is the only true God of the universe. 


If you struggle over the idea that God would step into humanity and make someone's heart hard, God certainly has a specific reason when He does things like that, and in this case it was to show Himself to the world to be who He really is.  It was also meant to bring judgment on a ungodly nation.  The judging of Egypt would clearly have a severe and negative impact on Israel as well, but they would come out the other end knowing who their God is as well. 


The same will happen at the end of this age, when the anti-christ rules the world and God brings judgment on him and all the nations of the world.  Israel will suffer then as well, but will come out the other end knowing who their God is.  Thus God's intervention into humanity in a negative way has positive results.  I like to say it this way.  Salvation comes out of judgment.


We will note that Israel suffers the first couple of judgments along with Egypt, but the remaining judgments they are protected from.  I'm sure there is some prophetic significance to this in relation to the Great Tribulation at the end of this age, but as yet, I'm not quite sure what that might be.  I would think the same might apply to Israel in the Great Tribulation.


Moses' Staff Becomes A Snake (ch. 7:6 - 13)


In verses 6 and 7 we note that both Moses and Aaron obeyed the Lord and went to Pharaoh.  This obedience was truly a test of faith and trust in God.  They're going to the king who they know will refuse their request.  How many of us would do the same? 


We learn in verse 7 that Aaron was eighty three years old at the time, while Moses was eighty years old.  Moses spent roughly the first forty years of his life in Egypt and the second forty in Midian.   Once again liberal scholars see these two forty year periods as either symbolic.  They also see the whole story as a story with a moral meaning, not a historical event.  The moral of the story is more important than the event, because the event isn't real.  Conservative scholars see this as a historical event, but some see the forty years, and other such time periods in the Old Testament as more symbolic and not literal.  Since numbers have a meaning, the meaning is more important than the accuracy of the actual time period.  I believe the number of years here and elsewhere are literal.  I believe we should take the Bible as literally as possible.  If God is God, then He can design anything around His numbering system.


In verses 8 and 9 God tells Moses to perform the first set of miracles before Pharaoh upon his request to see a miracle to prove that the God of Israel is actually with the two men.


Verses 10 to 13 recount the event before Pharaoh and his officials.  Aaron threw his staff down before the men and it became a snake.   Then Pharaoh called in all of his magicians, wise men, sorcerers,  and everyone he could think of that could duplicate this miracle, and someone did actually duplicate it.  The problem for Pharaoh is that Aarons staff ate up the staffs of all the men who attempted to duplicate the procedure. 


This tells us something very clearly.  This whole event between Pharaoh and Aaron and Moses is more than human.  The whole story sounds like a fairy tale, and that's why many liberal scholars say that it is just a story.  But there is something else going on here.  This is not a battle of men but of spirits.  This is a spiritual battle between God and the devil.   The devil is trying hard to destroy God's people because he knows that the Saviour of the world would be born from Israel.  Satan throughout the Old Testament attempted to destroy Israel , and still is today.   That's really why he deceived Eve in the garden.  From Genesis 2 on to the end of this age and the thousand year rule of Christ, satan wants to destroy Israel.


The end result to this section is that Pharaoh hardened his heart towards Israel more than ever.  This tells us something about how God hardened Pharaoh's heart.  He just didn't reach down into his heart and make it hard.  The way God hardened Pharaoh's heart was through His miracles that came against him.  This is key to understanding this whole thing about God interfering in the free will of man.  There is no interference here.    


The Plague Of Blood (ch. 7:14 - 24)


In verse 14 God tells Moses that "Pharaoh's heart is unrelenting" and that he will not let Israel go.  This confirms what I've just said above.  God did not reach down and harden Pharaoh's heart against his will.  God did not interfere into the free will of man.  The miracles that God did through Aaron and Moses provided the opportunity for Pharaoh to hardened his own heart, and that was by his own choice. 


In verses 15 to 19 God tells Moses what to do the next morning.  Aaron and Moses should go to the Nile and when Pharaoh gets out of the water, they would go and talk with him.  It is clear that Pharaoh would be bathing in the Nile River.  Then Aaron would make the request to leave again, although this time, it is said in a way that we've seen before.  Israel needed to go out into the desert tow worship.  If Pharaoh refused again, Moses was to throw his staff into the river and the river would turn to blood, killing the fish and causing a big stink. 


Beyond the Nile turning into blood, Aaron would wave his staff and all water in Egypt would turn to blood.  All rivers, streams, and even water in jars would turn to blood.  This would really escalate the conflict between Moses and Pharaoh, between God and satan.


The rest of this chapter simply states the history.  Aaron and Moses did as God commanded and Pharaoh hardened his heart even harder as God said would happen. 


You might wonder now how Moses and Aaron felt.  After seeing the power of God, they might well be getting excited, even though they were still in slavery. 

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