Have you ever tried to bargain with God? How did that work out for you? Did you ever keep your end of the bargain? Or was God the only one held to that standard?
As I read about the last of the plagues today, it occurred to me that Pharaoh is an example of what happens when we try to negotiate with God. Moses told Pharaoh God wanted all Jews and their livestock to leave Egypt. Pharaoh, after being warned about the locusts that would destroy his crops, said ‘Sure. Go. But only the men.’ Moses didn’t take him up on that. It wasn’t what God required.
Then, after the locusts came like Moses said they would, and after complete darkness fell on Egypt for three days, Pharaoh relented. ‘Ok. Everybody can go. But leave the animals.’ Again, that wasn’t what Moses needed to hear.
The thing is, God gave a directive: ALL Israelites and ALL livestock are to leave.
Pharaoh was ready to obey – kind of. He just wanted to obey on his own terms.
It struck me when Pharaoh said to Moses, “I have sinned against the Lord your God, and against you. Now therefore, please forgive my sin only this once…that He would remove this death from me” (10:16-17)
Each time Pharaoh heard God’s command, then tried to tweak it, his heart grew harder and harder. Somehow he thought if he gave in a little, God would be ok with that. Then he must have thought if he let God forgive him a little bit, he’d escape the bad things that were happening.
Friend, I don’t see anywhere in the Bible where it says God wants us to kind of obey Him. I don’t see anywhere where it says if we give Him a portion of our hearts, He will bless us. Let’s face it. God is Who He says He is. And if He says something, we can’t tweak it to fit our own desires.
Be holy as I am holy.
I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one goes to the Father except through Me.
All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature.
You can try to tweak it, but that doesn’t change the Truth. So don’t even try. God demands complete obedience, complete surrender. Anything else is disobedience. Period.
Father, I pray for those reading this blog today. May we be students of Your Word so we know exactly what it is You are demanding of us. Convict us when we are tempted to obey You with anything less than everything. May we confess, repent, and be the people You demand. And may you find us willing to serve You with our whole hearts.