Exodus, Chapter 5


Exodus, Chapter 5


It is painful to enter into this story of oppression. Israel, God’s chosen people, are enslaved in Egypt to Pharaoh. And Pharaoh’s reign of terror is intensifying. He is exacting a higher and higher price of blood, sweat, and tears from the Hebrew slaves.

In the ancient world, Pharaoh was viewed as a god. His power was total and his will was not to be controverted. He held absolute power. This is extremely important for us to keep in mind as we make our way through Exodus. Why? Because the whole of Exodus is the God of Abraham engineering a showdown with the supposedly god-like Pharaoh. And at each turn, the LORD is humiliating Pharaoh and showing him for what he is: a mere mortal playing the divine.

Our world is filled with Pharaohs, self-appointed deities with absolute power whose wills are to be obeyed at all costs. Their claim to supremacy is a lot more subtle and slick, but it is no less real.

Right here in Exodus 5, the Living God starts to erode Pharaoh’s phony power. What we worship is our god. The Hebrews are beginning to learn who is worthy of worship. Faithfulness to God is moving from the worship of lesser things to greater things. And the greatest thing worthy of our worship is God the Father, Son, and Spirit.


What do you worship? Who/what plays the role of Pharaoh in your life?


Almighty God, you alone are worthy to be praised and to receive honor and blessing. By the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, help us look to your Son Jesus as the world’s once and future King. Amen.

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