#142 🧎🏿Exodus 5-6 Hebrew Slaves Oppressed 🧱 ⛓️ 𓁈 👐🏿
God sends Moses to speak to Pharaoh to let His people go, but he refuses. After 400 years of slavery, the Hebrew slaves were greatly oppressed. Pharaoh cut off the straw to make the bricks to build his cities but kept his quota to produce the bricks the same. He made their lives miserable, and their spirit was broken. God saw the Hebrews' oppression to intervene and free them from their bondage. God raised Pharaoh to be in his position and hardened his heart so God could demonstrate His power to all people. God also raised Moses to be in his place to build his faith and his people and reveal Himself. This duality story ultimately revealed God's power and character for all generations. Exodus is especially relevant today, given the plagues unleashed in modern times. Those who trust will be saved, and those who do not will perish.
In Exodus 5, Moses and Aaron go to Pharaoh to seek the release of the Israelites to worship their God in the wilderness. Pharaoh refused and accused the Israelites of laziness and increased their labor by demanding that they gather their own straw for making bricks while maintaining the same production quotas. The Israelites' leader complained to Pharaoh about the increased workload, but Pharaoh remained hardened. The Israelites then blamed Moses and Aaron for the trouble this had brought them to greater hardships. Moses questions God about the worsening situation, expressing frustration that things have not improved since he confronted Pharaoh.
In Exodus 6, God reassures Moses that He will free the Israelites from bondage. He emphasizes His covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, promising to bring the people into the land He had sworn to give them. Despite God's reassurance, Moses relays his doubt that the Israelites will not listen to him, given their current suffering. This tension between human uncertainty and divine certainty is what we all face. Moses was not alone in feeling and expressing his doubts to God. We can do the same and God will listen with compassion and understanding.
This chapter also includes Moses and Aaron's genealogy to trace their lineage in defining their roles as Levites priests and Moses as God's chosen prophet. Moses conveys God's message to Pharaoh once more, but Pharaoh remains unyielding, dismissing God's sovereign authority to do what He says He will do.
Pharaoh's refusal to release the Israelites foreshadows his ultimate confrontations with God and the plagues that will follow to destroy Egypt. Pharaoh's tactic to increase hardships also shows the typical response by oppressive leaders when faced with challenges to their authority. Ultimately, God has the final say and control over all situations.
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