“But the Egyptian magicians did the same things by their secret arts, and Pharaoh’s heart became hard; he would not listen to Moses and Aaron, just as the Lord had said. Instead, he turned and went into his palace, and did not take even this to heart.” (Exodus 7:22&23 NIV84)
I wonder whether anything breaks the heart of God more than a human heart that is resistant to His Words and works. God created our hearts in the very beginning to beat in unison with His own. He created our hearts to distinguish His Word from all others’. He created our hearts to love Him as He loves us. But sin messed that all up. The day Adam and Eve failed to distinguish the difference between the falsehood of Satan’s words and the truth of God’s words, they lost everything. Our hearts are prone to disobedience. Our hearts tend to be inwardly focused, and thus they become hard. You see, when it’s all about me, love becomes easy because all I have to love is me. But an inward love quickly moves into pride and arrogance. It refuses to hear or recognize truth coming from anywhere else but within. To God, this is the description of a hardened heart. This is the heart of Pharaoh. He refuses to heed to the Word of God coming to him through Moses and Aaron. He refuses to recognize the works of God when they are right in from of him. As you go through the 10 plagues, you can’t help but see the futility and danger of hardening your heart to God.
As we do our devotions today, it’s easy to point our accusing fingers at Pharaoh or others like him in our world today, but what about you and me? Are there areas of our lives where we resist the Word and the work of God? Are there parts of our lives that we still claim dominion over? Like Pharaoh, have we hardened our hearts to what God wants done in and through us? If so, let’s heed the warning that God provides us in the life of this Pharaoh. It is no use taking a stand against God. God wants your heart! He wants the whole thing. He wants to make it new. He desires that it once again beat in unison with His own. In confession, open yourself up completely to His Word. Let God cleanse and soften the parts of your heart that remain hard. May our hearts, today and always, beat side by side with the heart of our Savior, Jesus Christ.