Bo (Enter I Go)
Torah: Exodus 10:1 – 13:16 Haftarah: Jeremiah 46:13-28 Brit Chadasha: Ephesians 2:1-22
Trust in Him
In the ending chapter of the previous portion we finally see Pharaoh verbally confessing that he had sinned against YHVH[i]. We all know how the story ends and clearly see from the Scriptures that there was no true repentance on Pharaoh’s part. If true repentance had taken place; I believe we would have seen Pharaoh not only release the children from their enslavement but also repay them for their time spent being slaves unto his government. It is sad to say but Pharaoh’s confession is no different than many religious people today and possibly even you and I at some point and time in our lives. How many people have come to Yahweh because of their circumstances but not really found what they were looking for? You know tears flowing and snot running. What I am saying is Pharaoh was brought to a place where he was only sorry that he had to suffer the consequences of his sin instead of truly being sorry and repentant for his actions i.e. the things that got him in the predicament he was in to begin with. It’s like religious folks today going to an altar mainly because they got caught doing something they should not have been doing in the first place and crying a few tears and blowing some snot on a Kleenex getting up from there and going right back to what they were they just got caught for. There was no change. There was no true repentance. The Torah never instructs us to make a confession only. There has to be some type of action that goes with that confession. Esav is a great example. We are told by the writer of Hebrews that Esav found no repentance even though he was seeking it with tears.[ii] There are a lot of people today that say sorry and get up and act like nothing ever happened. This is not what Dr. Yahweh prescribed. He instructs us to put action to our words[iii]. I like what Brad Scott says about repenting. Brad says that repenting is not just changing your direction as in if you’re about to walk off a cliff and you turn and go in another direction because when you turn and go in another direction you could still walk off of another cliff. Repentance is about you returning to where you came from. It’s about restoration. So next time when we repent we need to remember that it’s just more than saying I am sorry; there has to be action with our words.
Hard as a rock
I remember reading the whole story of the Exodus and one thing that continued seeming very strange to me was when I read that Yahweh hardened the heart of Pharaoh. I kept thinking man this seems like Yahweh was not being fair with him. You know like Yahweh was forcing Pharaoh to do something or that Yahweh had taken away free choice. It wasn’t until a few years ago that I understood what that word hardened really meant. This is why it is so important to understand that what you and I are reading have been translated by men down through a couple of languages before it gets to you and me and some of the words might not mean exactly what they mean in the original language they were written in. I am saying this because I speak two languages and there are some words that can be translated but when they are translated from one language to another they lose some of their meaning. So a word that means something to us might be a total different word to someone else in another language.
Just what exactly does it mean then when Scriptures say Yahweh hardened Pharaoh’s heart? The meaning of the Hebrew word is that Yahweh strengthened what was in Pharaoh’s heart. Did you see how that one little word changes completely the way those verses read? Yahweh strengthening something is very different than Yahweh hardening something.
Pharaoh had pride so what Yahweh did was allow it to be strengthened even more. Let us bring this over into the present day in which you and I live. Isn’t it interesting that we find homosexuals and all types of immoral behavior far more out in the open today than it was say twenty years ago? Why? I believe it is this same principle that we have been talking about. I don’t know if you have ever tried talking to homosexuals or immoral folks about Yahweh but it seems like they just blow up and manifest a hatred not at you, although they will attack you verbally and some even physically, but it’s a hatred towards the Creator of the Universe. I believe the Father is strengthening what is in their hearts not because He is being hateful! It’s because He is causing a separation to go forth in the land.
Just as Yahweh is strengthening the hearts of the wicked, He is strengthening the hearts of His people. Why do you think there has been such a large amount of folks waking up the Hebrew Roots Movement over the past decade? It’s because the Father is strengthening our hearts also and when He strengthens the hearts of the wicked and strengthens the hearts of the righteous it begins to separate the two further and further apart until you can see that they are over there and we are over here. Now at any time those wicked can repent and change sides because it is all about the whosoever’s but if they don’t their hearts will continue to be strengthened and they will continue to believe they are right in their own site.
Now can we find this in the Brit Chadasha (Newer Testament)? Yes we can[iv]. So to finish this off it is so important that we flush out of hearts those things that are not of Yahweh so that they will not get strengthened. We don’t want to get down to the end and be found fighting against the things of Yahweh.
Thought for the Week
It is better to take refuge in Yahweh than to trust in man. It is better to take refuge in Yahweh than to trust in princes. Psalms 118:8-9