“Afterward Moses and Aaron went and said to Pharaoh, “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, ‘Let my people go, that they may hold a feast to me in the wilderness.'” But Pharaoh said, “Who is the Lord, that I should obey his voice and let Israel go? I do not know the Lord, and moreover, I will not let Israel go.”
Exodus 5:1-2 ESV
There are so many ways that people challenge the authority of the Lord. No one is immune from it. Every human in existence has rejected the sovereign rule of God. Pharaoh shunned God’s commands because he did not know Him, nor did he want to. Those of us who put off reading the Bible, make things up as we go, try to conform God to our image, follow false religions, or outright refuse to live how Jesus called us to live are doing the very same thing. We do all of those things because we don’t know God nor do we want to.
Pharaoh is a picture of the human condition. We don’t like to be told what to do, even by the One who made us. It’s dirty stinking pride that rots the soul. It’s the same sickness that plagued the Pharisees and Saducees who fought so hard to dispel Christ. To accept the Messiah meant to give up their control of religion and of the people who they manipulated. It’s the same reason why the Catholic Church refused to allow bibles to be printed and distributed to the masses for so long. They wanted to be on the throne of people’s lives. The throne is never a place for us to occupy. Not in our own life and especially not in the lives of others.
God answered Pharaoh’s question with ten devastating plagues that shattered their false gods. And every time we ask that question, whether by word or action, we are stating that we too have false gods whom have our heart’s allegiance. But we don’t have to play Pharaoh any longer. In John 10 Jesus said, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” It’s simply a matter of choosing who you’ll be: pharaoh or a sheep. One gets life while the other…well, just read Exodus 7-12 to see for yourself.
Be encouraged by brothers and sisters because He is calling and He has made Himself known.