Feb 27, 2022

(Exodus 10, Luke 13; Optional Psalm 39, Proverbs 11:28-31)

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EXODUS 10 – The 8th and 9th plagues in Egypt, increasingly foreshadowing the death that is coming in the 10th plague.

Ex 10:1-2 – God sending Moses again to Pharaoh, even though he won’t listen. Yahweh reminds Moses that an important purpose of the plagues is to show future generations of Israelites who Yahweh is.

Ex 10:3 – In tracing both the sovereignty of God AND the responsibility of people, I’ve written “S” beside Ex 10:1, 20, 27, and “R” by v 3. Rom 9:14-23 makes clear (using Pharaoh as a prime example) that God is not unjust when He hardens hearts AND holds people accountable for their sinful decisions/actions.

Ex 10:3 – “How long” – I pray that I will be a quick repenter!

Ex 10:7 – Again, God gives a gracious warning coming from Pharaoh’s own advisors (also see Ex 8:18-19).

Ex 10:8 – Here and in v 24 Pharaoh AGAIN tries to compromise. NOT full surrender to God, but attempting his own terms.

Ex 10:16-20 – Just enough APPEARANCE of “repentance” to stop the short-term consequences for a little longer. But no real change.

Ex 10:21 – This was no ordinary darkness! It forced a pause, time to reflect/repent. They don’t know it yet, but God is about to strike down their sons as the final judgment. God would make the day dark again just before the death of His Son (Mk 15:33-34).

LUKE 13 – As Jesus heads towards Jerusalem (see Lk 13:33) to lay down His life, this chapter is filled with increasing opposition to Jesus, and calls to reflect and repent. Since Jesus gave His life during Passover, and our OT readings are almost at Passover time, our OT and NT readings are happening at about the same time of year (though about 1400 years apart). And about our same time of year, too, as Passover is not too far away.

Lk 13:1-5 – People brought up awful HUMAN evil (Pilate killing some and mingling their blood with their sacrifices). And Jesus brings up another current event that involves what some call “natural evil” (because it seems like a random event in nature – a tower falling). In BOTH cases, Jesus insists we should NOT assume that the people who died were worse sinners than us, but instead that each of us must repent, or we will ALL likewise perish. Every awful event in this fallen world should be used as an opportunity from God to repent and pray like Psalm 90:12 (ESV) – “So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.”

Lk 13:6-9 – A parable reminding us of the kindness/patience of God, but don’t take that for granted. There IS soon coming a time when it’ll be too late.

Lk 13:17 – Sadly, Jesus’ opposition (the religious leaders) didn’t REPENT, but felt embarrassed. Jesus showed them up – for all their outward APPEARANCES of righteousness, they actually cared more about their animals than this poor lady.

Lk 13:22-30 – URGENCY needed in repenting. 1) FEW will be saved – truly following Jesus will NOT be the majority opinion in the world.  2) There comes a time when it’s too late to repent (v 25).  3) SOME measure of familiarity with Jesus will NOT protect you on judgment day (v 26).  4) The eternal torments of hell are real and terrifying (v 27-28).  5) Even many Jewish people (and we can make application to others who think they’ll be ok because of the group they’re in) will not be in God’s kingdom in the end.

Optional Psalm 39 – This and Psalm 88 have no happy ending apparent and are reminders that there are significant seasons of darkness in the life of a believer. Job also gets to the almost hopeless depths of Ps 39:12-13. And Ps 39:4-6 sounds like a summary of Ecclesiastes.

Ps 39:1-2 – See also Ps 73:15 – There ARE times not to say everything we’re thinking/feeling.

Ps 39:4 – Very similar to the prayer in Ps 90:12! It IS vital in rough times to reflect on the shortness of this life on this fallen world.

Ps 39:7 – Even when we are heartbroken and can’t understand what God is up to, we must still turn to Him. Compare Peter’s response when many were leaving Jesus, frustrated by His hard teaching. When Jesus asked if His closest disciples would also leave, Peter answered “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life…” (John 6:68, ESV).

Optional Proverbs 11:28-31 – Pr 11:28 – The book of Proverbs often links commends having a measure of wealth (often connecting it to diligent work), but this is a reminder that we should never TRUST in having money.