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Daily Devotional

February 9

THUS SAITH THE LORD THE GOD OF ISRAEL LET MY PEOPLE GO

by Henry T. Vriesen

Exodus 5–7

Moses and Aaron came to Pharaoh and said, “Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Let my people go.” “Get you unto your burdens,” Pharaoh said, “Let there more work be laid upon the men, that they may labor therein; and let them not regard vain words.” The taskmasters were ordered to lay more work upon the people and not to furnish the straw that they needed for making the brick. The people were forced to go into the fields and gather what they could find. They had to get out the same amount of brick as they did when the straw was furnished them. And the Egyptian officers became more cruel than they had been before.

Moses loved his people and he pitied them. He turned to the Lord and said, “Lord, wherefore hast thou so evil entreated this people? Why is it that thou hast sent me? For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in thy name, he hath done evil to this people; neither hast thou delivered thy people at all.” The Lord replied, “Say unto the children of Israel, I am the Lord … I will redeem you … and ye shall know that I am the Lord.” And Moses spoke to the children of Israel, but “They hearkened not unto Moses for anguish of spirit, and cruel bondage.”

Moses and Aaron went again to Pharaoh. They had with them the rod that Moses had brought from the wilderness. Aaron cast down the rod before Pharaoh and his servants. It became a serpent. Pharaoh knew this was a miracle. But he had in his court two wise men, sorcerers—Jannes and Jambres—they were called in. They also brought rods and threw them down. They became serpents, but they were swallowed up by the serpent of Moses and Aaron. The power of God is so much greater than the power of Satan. But Pharaoh would not submit; he did not listen to the voice of God. Moses and Aaron did not get the permission to let Israel go.

And the Lord said, “Get thee unto Pharaoh in the morning; lo, he goeth out unto the water.” Moses and Aaron went to the bank of the Nile. And the Lord spoke to Moses, “Say unto Aaron, Take thy rod, and stretch out thine hand upon the waters of Egypt, upon their streams, upon their rivers, and upon their ponds, and upon all their pools of water, that they may become blood.” Aaron lifted up the rod and smote the waters;’ that were in the Nile in the sight of Pharaoh and his servants. And all the waters were turned to blood. The fish in the river died and the Egyptians could not drink the water; so they had to dig wells. The magicians of Egypt did so with their enchantments. So his heart was hardened again. He did not listen nor let the people go.

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