“Sleeping with Frogs” January 29

 

Sleeping with Frogs - Frogs ... they're everywhere! ... in their homes, in their beds, in their bowls, in their ovens—everywhere! Yet, when Moses, God's messenger comes to Pharaoh and asks when he'd like them removed, he says, "Tomorrow." "Just let me spend one more night with those frogs." How about you? Are there any frogs you're keeping around for another sleepover?Frogs … they’re everywhere! … in their homes, in their beds, in their bowls, in their ovens—everywhere! Yet, when Moses, God’s messenger comes to Pharaoh and asks when he’d like them removed, he says, “Tomorrow.” “Just let me spend one more night with those frogs.” How about you? Are there any frogs you’re keeping around for another sleepover?

 

Today’s Readings:
Exodus 7 & 8
Psalm 17.1-7
Proverbs 5.15-20
Matthew 19.1-30

 

Sleeping with Frogs

 

& :

Hard Hearts

 

It’s time. God is about to deliver His people. But first, He prepares Moses and Aaron for the task ahead:

¹ So the Lord said to Moses: “See, I have made you as God to Pharaoh, and Aaron your brother shall be your prophet.You shall speak all that I command you. And Aaron your brother shall tell Pharaoh to send the children of Israel out of his land. And I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and multiply My signs and My wonders in the land of Egypt. But Pharaoh will not heed you, so that I may lay My hand on Egypt and bring My armies and My people, the children of Israel, out of the land of Egypt by great judgments. And the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I stretch out My hand on Egypt and bring out the children of Israel from among them” (Ex. 7.1-5).

“I will harden Pharaoh’s heart.” At first glance, that might seem a little unfair! Is God on His throne pointing to one person and saying I don’t like the way she looks, I think I’ll harden her heart? God is God and He can certainly do as He sees fit, but that is not the picture we see here.

God said He had heard the cries of his people in Egypt (Ex. 3.7), cries against which Pharaoh had already hardened his heart. When we harden our hearts and refuse to show compassion on others, why should we be surprised if He withholds compassion from us?

Even as believers, though we don’t lose our salvation, we can damage our fellowship with Him and set in motion laws of sowing and reaping (Gal. 6.7-9). And if we repeatedly harden our hearts, it may be a sign that we are not really saved, because the Bible teaches that though believers may sin, they will repent.

Even in these passages in Exodus, Pharaoh continues to harden his own heart. Ten times it says Pharaoh hardened his heart and ten times God hardened his heart. God’s hardening was judicial hardening in response to Pharaoh’s personal, sinful hardening.

We see a similar picture in beginning in verse 18. We sometimes call this passage the downward spiral of sin. We see men and women refusing to respect God as God though they know the truth and choosing to continue in their sin. In verses we see the response of God. It says He, “gave them up …,” “gave them up …,” and “gave them over …” John MacArthur says in his Study Bible, “When men consistently abandon God, He will abandon them by removing His restraint and allowing sin to run its inevitable course.”

This results in hearts that are more and more hardened by their own sin. As we look around our world today, we see this in abundance. It’s interesting that the example God uses in Romans 1 is that of homosexuality. Consider that as you listen to the news.

 

One More Night with the Frogs

 

One of the plagues God brought on the Egyptians was frogs (Ex. 8.1-15). Can you imagine? Frogs are everywhere—in in their homes, in their beds, in their bowls, in their ovens—everywhere! When Pharaoh had once again promised to let the people go, Moses said, “Accept the honor of saying when I shall intercede for you …” In other words, “When do you want me to get rid of the frogs?” And Pharaoh says, “TOMORROW!” Tomorrow? “Yes, let me spend one more night with the frogs!”

It seems ridiculous, yet, there can be things we refuse to give up in spite of the consequences. Areas where we are saying, in effect, “Let me have one more night with these frogs!”

Then notice verse 15, “But when Pharaoh saw that there was relief, he hardened his heart and did not heed them, as the LORD had said.”

How many times have you and I repeated the same pattern? We have a crisis Continue reading

July 6 “False teachers”

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The last days will produce many false teachers who will teach outright lies, twist the truth, or leave out those things that are unpopular or politically incorrect.

Today’s Readings:
2 Chronicles 7-8
Psalm 80.1-6
Proverbs 20.15
Acts 13.26-52

2 Chronicles 7-8:

The God who answers prayers

Chapter 7 contains God’s beautiful response to Solomon’s prayer of dedication:

“I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for Myself … Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to prayer made in this place” (vv. 12, 15).

Although God is omnipresent—present everywhere—He no longer dwells in a “place,” but in His people.

“Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s” (1 Cor. 6.19-20).

Think about that awesome truth—the God of the universe, the God who answers prayers—lives in us!

Continue reading

June 2 “The danger of bad advice” & LINKUP

There is great danger in bad advice. God’s commands and principles are not intended to limit our joy and blessings, but to protect us. Often we learn too late that going our own way or listening to the wisdom of fools leads to disaster and heartache.

bad advicene 2 “The danger of bad advice” & LINKUP" >

Today’s Readings:
1 Kings 13 & 14
Psalm 69.16-21
Proverbs 17.23-24
John 12.27-50

1 Kings 13 & 14:

The danger of bad advice

In yesterday’s reading, Jeroboam had set up altars to false God’s to keep the people from going back to Jerusalem where they were supposed to worship. Now in chapter 13 God sends a prophet to Jeroboam to warn him this great sin is about to be judged.

Once it’s obvious that the prophet is from God, Jeroboam invites him to “stay for dinner,” Perhaps he thinks the prophet can get God to change His mind or maybe he wants to kill him, but whatever the reason, God had already told the prophet that he was not to eat or drink there or even return home the way he had come.

Once he leaves, another prophet catches up to him and claims that an angel told him it was alright for him to eat and drink with the older prophet and it ends up costing the Judean prophet his life! Continue reading

January 30 “It’s not fair!”

Fair Not Unfair

It’s not fair! Have you ever looked around at the lives of others and thought just that?

Today’s Readings:
Exodus 9 & 10
Psalm 17.8-15
Proverbs 5.21-23
Matthew 20.1-16

Exodus 9 & 10:

On dogs & sows

Over and over in these chapters we see Pharaoh hardening his heart when the “crisis” of each plague is over and the “pain” is not so intense (see Jan. 29 post). Don’t we often do the same? Proverbs 26.11 says, “As a dog returns to his own vomit, so a fool repeats his folly.” When he quoted this proverb in the New Testament, Peter added, “… a sow, having washed, to her wallowing in the mire” (2 Pet. 2.22). Not a pretty picture.

In 10.7 Pharaoh’s advisers ask him, “… Do you not yet know that Egypt is destroyed?” How pride blinds! Again, we can be guilty of the same thing when we refuse to see the destruction that our stubborn willful sin causes.

As this part of the story unfolds we see God’s final judicial hardening in response to Pharaoh’s continued sin. In Romans 1.28-32 at the bottom of the “downward spiral” it says: Continue reading