In the sketch tonight Pharaoh mentions "tributaries." These were states (or kingdoms) that paid "protection money" to Egypt so nothing bad (like being invaded) would happen to them. This tribute could be paid in money or goods and services.
If you watched The Ten Commandments, you know that one of the Pharaohs linked to Moses was Rameses II (a.k.a. Rameses the Great). This is because (Exodus 1:11) mentions the cities of Pithom and Rameses. Recent breakthroughs in the translation of ancient Egyptian as well as archeological data actually support another man. His name was Thutmoses III and he had a reputation as a ruthless conqueror. His reign and death (by the Red Sea) occur on the same timetable as the Exodus!
The word "Hebrew" is actually an Egyptian word that means "dusty ones." This seeded to describe most of their occupations for Egypt as well as their appearances. The title became a badge of honor to Israel and they still use it in our modern setting!
Bidding (or telling) Pharaoh to do anything was unthinkable! Others did Pharaoh's bidding, but he never bowed to anyone's demands! He was equal to the gods so there was no authority over him (at least to his way of thinking). The Hebrew wording of Moses' famous line, "God bids you, 'Let my people go...'" carries a strong message of God telling Pharaoh what he was to do! This is (in my opinion) the key to understanding why Pharaoh's heart was hardened against letting the Hebrew go.
When Moses throws down his rod before Pharaoh, it becomes a serpent (Jewish tradition says a cobra). Why use this as a sign from God? The cobra was a revered animal in Egypt. If you look closely in the movies about ancient Egypt, you'll see a cobra on the front of Pharaoh's crown. It was believed that if you told a lie to Pharaoh the cobra on the crown would come to life and strike you dead. Also, Moses' snake gobbling up the snakes of his magicians should have been a sign of "truth-telling" to Pharaoh. In a strange twist of irony, the Hebrew word used here is rarely used in the Bible and usually refers to a dragon (or flame-throwing dinosaur) or monster! (Look it up!)
I don't know why it should continue to surprise me, but I still can't believe how God shows me shades of myself through people of the Bible! From our story tonight, I see one of the main reasons I fail to be the kind of person God has designed me to be!
Last night we talked about the Seats of and how difficult it can be to remain in the proper seat! God the Father's seat is the Seat of Ultimate Authority and when He sits there in our lives, then awesome things can happen to our physical, emotional, and lives!
Tonight, Moses and Pharaoh help you get a more intimate view of God the Father's authority and its effect upon your life. From the Father's Seat extends something like an invisible which shelters and protects those who are under it. The Old Testament Clearly shows us this Umbrella of Authority in the use of Bible words like and . To see a sampling of this concept in Psalms, see: (Psalms 3:3) (Psalms 28:7) (Psalms 84:9) (Psalms 84:11) (Psalms 115:9-11) (Psalms 46:1,7,11)
How do you know if you're living without the protection of God? You can answer that by simply looking at the actions of your life! Are you a ? Takers have a grip on life. This greedy grip is dangerous because:
- It your perspective on life. Does Pharaoh's decree to have the Hebrews gather their own straw stop God's plans? Pharaoh had to learn the difference between his will and God's authority! In church life, you see this when "comfort" has more priority that - . In your Christian life, you can track it by where your time and money are spent. You're dealing with his if you tend to be self-focused!
- It community. Everyone becomes a source form which you can take. Moses displays this by killing the Egyptian. Did that help his people? In fact, it comes back to bite him in tonight's sketch! In church life, you see this in how tightly you hold onto . In you Christian life, you can track it by who you DON'T fellowship with! You're dealing with this if you have a tight grip on temporal things!
How do you know if you're living under God's protection? You can answer that by looking at your actions again! Are you a ? Givers have a grip on life! This loose grip is radical because:
- It on God. Did Moses tell Pharaoh, "let my people go"? In your church and Christian life, are you God-focused?
- It understands what has in life. Was it more important to Moses that he was a murderer or that he did God's will now? In you church and Christian life, do you have a loose grip on temporal things?
Are you a "taker" in your relationship with God? Are you a "taker" when it comes to other people? Do you destroy community in one of God's churches? Are you looking at life from a confused perspective?
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