Beware False Finger-Pointing

July 31, 2013 at 11:18 am | Posted in Exodus, The Fives | 1 Comment
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The Hebrews in Egypt had been enslaved and forced into strenuous labor. But their population – under the blessings of God – had increased exponentially. Pharoah’s motivation for keeping them so busy was probably twofold: (1) They were an extremely cheap but productive labor force, and Egypt’s building program was flourishing; (2) People who are exhausted from working tend to have little time to organize, or to even think about insurrection, escape, freedom, or reform. When Moses and Aaron confronted Pharaoh and informed him that God was demanding a three-day sojourn into the wilderness for sacrificing, feasting, and worshiping, Pharaoh’s response was hostile and accusatory:

And Pharaoh said, Behold, the people of the land now are many, and ye make them rest from their burdens.

Exodus 5:5

Pharaoh did not want the Hebrews to stop, slow down, or take a break. He laid the blame for an alleged decrease in production at the feet of Moses and Aaron. The fact is, however, that Moses and Aaron had orders from a higher authority.

And they said, The God of the Hebrews hath met with us: let us go, we pray thee, three days’ journey into the desert, and sacrifice unto the Lord our God; lest he fall upon us with pestilence, or with the sword.

Exodus 5:3

When we, as Christians, resolve to fear and obey God in this present world, we will face opposition, persecution, and undue blame. This can be uncomfortable to say the least. Few of us enjoy being blamed, condemned, or judged for stating – or living out – what we believe. When someone points the finger of blame at you for your faith, do not point your finger back at them (nor at some handy or hapless third party). Instead, point upward to God. The fear of man is a snare, but the fear of God is the beginning of both knowledge and wisdom.

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