August 19, 2021

Harder Still


Exodus 9:1-11


Can you imagine what Pharoah must have been feeling in the midst of the story of Moses and the Exodus?  In our passage, we see just one of the many plagues God unleashes on the Egyptian people for the sake of freeing the Israelites.  God has sent a plague of disease to the Egyptian livestock, killing them, whilst at the same time, the livestock belonging to God’s people weren’t affected.  Not one animal from Israel died.  

It’s the last line that gets me.  Pharaoh’s heart was harder still, and he refused to release them.  My wife likes to call me stubborn, and she isn’t wrong.  But this goes beyond stubbornness.  Pharoah believes he is a living God, and yet, he is utterly powerless to defend his kingdom from these plagues unleashed by who we know to be the one true God.  All he can do is harden his heart and refuse to yield the one thing he still thinks he has control over: the release of Israel.  

It’s often when I feel the most powerless, that I find sin taking over my heart.  So too it seems with Pharoah, his control slipping away day by day, and his heart growing harder still.  


  • What does it feel like to lose control?
  • When do you find yourself more likely to sin?   
  • What hardens your heart?


  • How would you feel if you were in Pharoah’s shoes?  What would your response be?


Lord, soften our hearts.  Help us submit to you.  Guard us from our own sense of self-worth, knowing our worth comes from you and who you created us to be and not from what we do, or what we gain here in our time on earth.  Amen.