Into the Dark (Psalm 105 Devotion)


PSALM 105

He turned their heart to hate His people, To deal craftily with His servants. 26 He sent Moses His servant, [And] Aaron whom He had chosen. 27 They performed His signs among them, And wonders in the land of Ham. 28 He sent darkness, and made [it] dark; And they did not rebel against His word. 29 He turned their waters into blood, And killed their fish. 30 Their land abounded with frogs, [Even] in the chambers of their kings. 31 He spoke, and there came swarms of flies, [And] lice in all their territory. 32 He gave them hail for rain, [And] flaming fire in their land. 33 He struck their vines also, and their fig trees, And splintered the trees of their territory. 34 He spoke, and locusts came, Young locusts without number, 35 And ate up all the vegetation in their land, And devoured the fruit of their ground. 36 He also destroyed all the firstborn in their land, The first of all their strength.

PSALM 105:25-36

INTO THE DARK

How does God harden the heart of an individual and send them into the dark? He does it with the Light! Note John 3:19-21 says, “And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.” (John 3:19-21). Or how about Isaiah the prophet who says, “Here am I! Send me!” and what is the promised result for this evangelistic fervor? Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?” Then I said, “Here [am] I! Send me. And He said, “Go, and tell this people: ‘Keep on hearing, but do not understand; Keep on seeing, but do not perceive.’ “Make the heart of this people dull, And their ears heavy, And shut their eyes; Lest they see with their eyes, And hear with their ears, And understand with their heart, And return and be healed.” (Isaiah 6:8-10).

Then there is the curious case of Judas Iscariot who walked with Jesus, talked with Jesus, and saw him perform sign after sign. He sat at Jesus’ feet when he was teaching. He experienced casting out demons in Jesus’ name. Yet, we are told that Satan entered into his heart and just moments after Jesus had looked him in the face, shared a meal, and washed his feat, Judas walks out on those same two feet into the night to betray Jesus.

In today’s passage we see how God used the plagues in Egypt to plunge Pharaoh and his servants into darkness. Not just metaphorically, but physically as well. Was this judgement or was it grace? On the one hand God has come against Egypt in such a way as to demonstrate that all their god’s are worthless idols beginning with their pagan sun worship all the way down to honoring pharaoh as a god himself (by taking his first born son). It was grace to show that the Egyptians had placed their hope in false gods, but it would become judgement. When their gods were proven to be false and the LORD was proven to be true, they didn’t forsake their false gods for worshipping the LORD. Isn’t this what Jesus said in John 3:18? “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God” (John 3:18).

So as God delivered Israel from Egypt and softened the heart of his people (and a few Egyptian converts along the way) he also hardened the hearts of Pharaoh and many other Egyptians. But we note it was the same miracles, the same signs, the same plagues, that were to bring about the salvation of one nation and the judgement of another.

The sobering reality is that this is how God does his work. We must respond to what light we have today so that we are not plunged into darkness later. Our reaction to Jesus matters. Am I pressing in to him or am I running from His persistent grace? God’s word doesn’t return void. As one African theologian put it, “The same sun that melts the wax hardens the clay.”

PRAYER

Father, Thank you for your persuasive grace that opens eyes to see and hearts to believe. I want to always be pressing into the light of grace that you have shed on my heart. I want to draw near to you. I want to drink deeply from your grace and mercy. Keep me from ever hardening my heart to you. I pray for those even now who have appeared to harden their hearts. I ask that you would soften them to receive the light of your gospel and grace, rather than shrink back from the holy, I pray that they would press into your grace and mercy. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

I’m reading and blogging the Psalms Through The Summer. I’d love for you to join me. You can find out a little more here.

One thought on “Into the Dark (Psalm 105 Devotion)

  1. linshes

    So good! God uses 2 sides of the same coin. The same sun that melts the wax is the same sun that dries the clay. God uses our circumstance to find out if we will respond to His Light, or if we are not focused on Him, but other false gods. It is all about trusting in Him! Amen!

    Like

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