One Last Chance...
by Kristin Schoeff
"There will be loud wailing throughout Egypt – worse than there has ever been or ever will be
again” (Ex. 11:6) This is Moses’ prediction of the anguish that the tenth and final plague would
bring on the people of Egypt: the death of every firstborn son in the land – the precious ones
who carried the future of their family line and upon whom rested their families’ fortunes and
What does it mean to have a hardened heart? Over and over through the early chapters of
Exodus, we read that Pharaoh hardened his heart and wouldn’t allow the Israelites to leave
Egypt to worship God. Nine plagues came against the land and people of Egypt before this final plague on the firstborn, but Pharaoh refused to humble himself and acknowledge the Lord.
And when the warning came of this final, devastating plague, in which Pharaoh would also
clearly see that the Lord made “a distinction between Egypt and Israel,” the Lord alerts Moses
that “Pharaoh will refuse to listen to you—so that my wonders may be multiplied in Egypt.”
(Ex. 11:9) And then verse 10 tells us that “the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart.” After so many
instances of Pharaoh choosing not to listen to the warnings of God through Moses and
stubbornly refusing to release the enslaved Israelites, now the Lord has released Pharaoh to his
In Chapter 9:15-16, the Lord sends Moses to Pharaoh with this message:
"…I have raised you up for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that my
name might be proclaimed in all the earth."
In the midst of so much trouble and destruction, God had a big picture plan. Time and time
again, he reached out to Pharaoh and gave him a chance to do God’s will and release his
people. Still, God used Pharaoh’s stubbornness to accomplish his purposes.
And what is perhaps most amazing is that the ultimate liberation the Lord had planned for his
people since the beginning of time involved another first-born Son—his own—who would also
die so that those who would humble themselves and accept God’s plan would be delivered
“from the domain of darkness and transferred…to the kingdom of His beloved son.” (Colossians
Lord, we thank you for your great and perfect plan to bring your people to freedom. May our.
hearts always be tender towards you, listening and responding to your voice.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.