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Sermon Recap | Why the Prelude?

Why the Prelude

This past Sunday, C.J. explored the opening scenes of God’s confrontation with Pharaoh and the idols of Egypt. While the stage was previously set for Moses and Aaron to take the Lord’s message of deliverance to the king of Egypt, we are now given a prelude, of sorts, for the impending larger conflict.

In Exodus 7:8-13, God commissions Moses and Aaron to stand before Pharaoh and answer his call for a sign of God’s power. Moses’s brother casts down his staff before Pharaoh, that it might become a serpent and demonstrate the Lord’s authority over Egypt. What follows stands as a reminder for both the Egyptians and ourselves that God has taken the initiative to save His people, confront the evil of our world, and enact his redemptive purposes over all the earth.

The Lord’s use of a serpent proves not only His authority over secret and demonic powers, but also acts as a declaration of war against their wicked idols. An inanimate staff-turned-snake swallows up the sorcery of Pharaoh’s priests! This humiliating defeat serves as Pharaoh’s final warning. In response, however, Pharaoh’s heart would only harden and his refusal would only spark continued heartbreak and defeat at the hands of the Lord.

As the passage concludes, C.J. offers a reminder of what’s at stake in the hardening of our own hearts. Though we are all tempted in various ways to respond arrogantly toward God’s commands, we must remember that turning our backs to God’s sovereign call upon our lives will result in nothing but sorrow and loss. Therefore, this brief prelude serves to remind us that God alone holds power and authority over Satan, over our darkest circumstances, and even our hearts--and only his sovereign commitment to our deliverance ensures our salvation.