“And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.” Acts 2:40
The Palmer Road church of Christ, Westland, Mi. September 14, 2014
Jump Start # 1173
Exodus 8:10 "Then he said, 'Tomorrow.' So he said, 'May it be according to your word, that you may know that there is no one like the Lord our God."
I talked about this verse in a sermon last evening. It is one of those things that stays with us. It's just hard to grasp and harder yet to understand what prompted this reply. Let me fill in some details.
Our verse is a conversation between Moses and Pharaoh. The stubborn Egyptian ruler refused to grant freedom to Israel. Through Moses, God was sending a series of plagues-each one with massive and destructive consequences. Each one a direct hit against a known Egyptian god. Each one left Pharaoh in a position that he was incapable of doing anything to prevent it. These plagues made Pharaoh seem weak and they humiliated him before his people.
Exodus eight begins with the plague of frogs. Frogs everywhere. The Egyptians had many images of a man with a frog head. It was one of their gods. God flooded Egypt with frogs. In the palace, in the bedrooms, in the ovens-everywhere. Creepy, croaky frogs. They would step on them and get frog goo between their toes. There would be frogs in their clothing. The frogs would bother the animals. The children would scream. At night, they would croak and croak and no one would get sleep. The stench of dead frogs would fill the air. Life was miserable with frogs from Heaven.
Finally, Pharaoh had enough. Moses was called in. Moses told Pharaoh that the frogs would stop coming whenever he said the word. This is where our verse comes in. Pharaoh said, "TOMORROW." Tomorrow. Unbelievable. Why not NOW? Why not TODAY? Instead, tomorrow. That meant another night with frogs. Another sleepless
night. Another annoying night. Another night which you can't hardly eat. Another night with frogs are jumping and scaring you and the children. Another night of stepping on frogs. ANOTHER NIGHT? It didn't have to be another night. He could have said stop them now.
Another night. We walk in the same steps when we put off doing what we know we should. We ought to stop the complaining. We ought to stop the judging. We ought to stop the gossip. We ought to stop the indifference. We ought to stop the drinking. We ought to stop the affair. We now we should. We know that we will. Tomorrow, we will do it. Not now, but tomorrow.
Another night of misery. Another night of wrong. Another night away from God. Another night of selfishness. Tomorrow always sound wonderful. But there comes a point when we must do things NOW. The prodigal, when he came to his senses, didn't think, let me stay one more night with the pigs, he came home. Why be miserable? Why stay away from God?
It beats all reason why Pharaoh said tomorrow. Maybe it was a power thing. Maybe he wanted to flex his position a bit more. Maybe he wanted Moses to think this wasn't so bad. It was. Another miserable night with frogs.
How about you? Isn't it time to leave the frogs and come back to God? Isn't it time to do what you know you ought to do? Isn't it time to reach out and forgive? Isn't it time to stop the wrong and come back to God? Isn't it time?
Tomorrow-some day there won't be a tomorrow. I expect Mr. Pharaoh got an earful that night from his family as they had to deal with frogs one more time. It wasn't necessary. It was his choice. And what a bad choice that was.
Now or tomorrow?