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Exodus 4 v. 18-23 with Betty

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Moses Returns to Egypt

18 And Moses went and returned to Jethro his father in law, and said unto him, Let me go, I pray thee, and return unto my brethren which are in Egypt, and see whether they be yet alive. And Jethro said to Moses, Go in peace.

19 And the Lord said unto Moses in Midian, Go, return into Egypt: for all the men are dead which sought thy life.

20 And Moses took his wife and his sons, and set them upon an ass, and he returned to the land of Egypt: and Moses took the rod of God in his hand.

21 And the Lord said unto Moses, When thou goest to return into Egypt, see that thou do all those wonders before Pharaoh, which I have put in thine hand: but I will harden his heart, that he shall not let the people go.

22 And thou shalt say unto Pharaoh, Thus saith the Lord, Israel is my son, even my firstborn:

23 And I say unto thee, Let my son go, that he may serve me: and if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy firstborn.

 K.J.V. Bible Text

My Thoughts:

 After being asked by the Lord to return to Egypt to take his people out of bondage, Moses asked his father-in-law, Jethro, to allow him to return to Egypt to see if any of his people remained alive.

We have seen that Moses tended to “drag his feet” regarding the Lord’s plan for him to bring his people out of bondage, but the lord assured him that those in Egypt who had wanted to kill him were now dead.  We do not know if Moses had truly accepted his entire mission, but at least he set out for Egypt, staff in hand, accompanied by his wife and sons on a donkey.

Now the Lord told Moses to perform all the miracles given to him before Pharaoh. He also told him he would harden Pharaoh’s heart.  The Lord refers to Israel as his “firstborn son” and tells Moses to tell Pharaoh that he would kill his first-born son in return for Pharaoh’s refusal to allow the Israelites to go and worship him.

Knowing that God is all-powerful, I have to assume that he had a greater plan in mind that simply getting the Israelites out of Egypt.  Allowing (or causing?) Pharaoh to resist letting them go must have meant that God wanted to show his power in a way that both the Israelites and the Egyptians would recognize.

Betty Killebrew

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