Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | June 21, 2022

“I will harden Pharaoh’s heart that I may multiply My signs and My wonders” – “the LORD makes a distinction between Egypt and Israel.”

Today’s devotion comes from Exodus 4:18-23.

Here is a link to this Scripture –

I quote only the following verses.

“The LORD said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt see that you perform before Pharaoh all the wonders which I have put in your power;  but I will harden his heart so that he will not let the people go.  Then you shall say to Pharaoh, ‘Thus says the LORD, “Israel is My son, My firstborn.  So I said to you, ‘Let My son go that he may serve Me’;  but you have refused to let him go.  Behold, I will kill your son, your firstborn.”’”  Exodus 4:21-23.


There are two major purposes why the LORD hardened Pharaoh’s heart so that Pharaoh would not let Israel, the LORD’s chosen people, go.  First, the LORD wanted to make His power known.  Second, the LORD wanted to make a sharp distinction between His chosen people and the others.  

“Then the LORD said to Moses, “…  But I will harden Pharaoh’s heart that I may multiply My signs and My wonders in the land of Egypt.  When Pharaoh does not listen to you, then I will lay My hand on Egypt and bring out My hosts, My people the sons of Israel, from the land of Egypt by great judgments.  The Egyptians shall know that I am the LORD, when I stretch out My hand on Egypt and bring out the sons of Israel from their midst.”  Exodus 7:1 and 3-5.

“Moses said, “Thus says the LORD, ‘About midnight I am going out into the midst of Egypt, and all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the firstborn of the Pharaoh who sits on his throne, even to the firstborn of the slave girl who is behind the millstones;  all the firstborn of the cattle as well.  Moreover, there shall be a great cry in all the land of Egypt, such as there has not been before and such as shall never be again.  But against any of the sons of Israel a dog will not even bark, whether against man or beast, that you may understand how the LORD makes a distinction between Egypt and Israel.’  All these your servants will come down to me and bow themselves before me, saying, ‘Go out, you and all the people who follow you,’ and after that I will go out.”  And he went out from Pharaoh in hot anger.

Then the LORD said to Moses, “Pharaoh will not listen to you, so that My wonders will be multiplied in the land of Egypt.”  Moses and Aaron performed all these wonders before Pharaoh;  yet the LORD hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he did not let the sons of Israel go out of his land.”  Exodus 11:4-10.

“For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “FOR THIS VERY PURPOSE I RAISED YOU UP, TO DEMONSTRATE MY POWER IN YOU, AND THAT MY NAME MIGHT BE PROCLAIMED THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE EARTH.”  So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.”  Romans 9:17-18.

“What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction?  And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles.”  Romans 9:22-24.


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