"Do not be afraid of sudden terror, nor of trouble from the wicked when it comes." Proverbs 3:25
Text: Exodus 5 : 4-9
A PERPLEXING RESPONSE
Were Moses and Aaron perplexed by Pharaoh’s response? They probably were, for this was the first encounter they had with him. They must have been surprised by the turnaround of events!
“Then the king of Egypt said to them,
‘Moses and Aaron, why do you take the people
from their work? Get back to your labour.’
And Pharaoh said, ‘Look, the people of the land are many now,
and you make them rest from their labour!'”
1. Ignoring the words of Moses and Aaron
The Pharaoh did not even bother to respond appropriately to the request made to him! His reply gave no indication that he had even heard what Moses and Aaron said to him!
2. Accused of Malingering
This was essentially what Pharaoh charged Moses and Aaron with! There was much work to be done, why were they asking for time out for the people?
3. Hinting at fostering foment
Though this was not yet a formal charge against Moses and Aaron, the Pharaoh warned them that they were in danger of inciting the people to down tools and to cease from their labours!
SHOW OF FORCE
Some people’s barks are worse than their bites! But not Pharaoh! He proved himself to be both cunning and vicious! He gave an order to make the lot of the Hebrews even worse!
“So the same day Pharaoh commanded the taskmasters
of the people and their officers, saying. ‘You shall no longer
give the people straw to make bricks as before.
Let them go and gather straw for themselves. And you shall
lay on them the quota of bricks which they made before.
You shall not reduce it. For they are idle; therefore they cry out,
saying, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to our God.’ Let more work
be laid on the men, that they may labour in it, and let them
not regard false words.'”
Unreasonable demands were made on the slaves! How could they fulfill their quota of bricks, if the Egyptians did not supply the needed straw! That was the whole point of this command! Pharaoh wanted to teach Moses a lesson!