Message: A few days ago, we talked about how Pharaoh was trying to negotiate with Israel much like we try to do with sin. We seem to think we can separate parts of it out to try to hang onto the comfort or what we perceive to be a benefit, while still walking in freedom and obedience. In this story God was not here to bargain a deal for their freedom so when Pharaoh told them they could go to worship God, first he told them they had to leave their women and children behind, and then he tried to tell them that they had to leave their flocks behind. Moses was very clear when he told Pharaoh that “not one hoof” would be left behind. There are lots of things in life that we have to learn to compromise with in order to work well in relationships and in business. Our relationship with sin is not one of those things so our complete freedom is non-negotiable. Had Moses bargained with Pharaoh on this he would have had a tether hold on them and used it to try to draw them back in. A tethered relationship gives an illusion of freedom, but the pull becomes exhausting and eventually the tether pulls a person right back into bondage.
Command: When it comes to sin, there is no compromise that will free us from the bondage. Any bargain that we try to make with it will ultimately serve as a tether pulling us right back in to bondage.
Promise: If we approach sin with a non-negotiable approach like Moses did, our freedom awaits and God will fight off the forces that rush in to attempt to try to overtake us in our pursuit for freedom.
Warning: If we refuse to take a stand and make a firm decision against sin and bondage, we allow it a foothold and a right to take us captive.
Application: This reminds me of the importance of the decision that has to happen in my mindset before anything else. If there is room for negotiation in even the slightest degree, this can be used as a tether to pull me in. I have to make a firm decision ahead of time and before temptation comes. If I have already been living in the bondage of sin in a particular area, the mindset has to be set firmly that from this day forward I am walking into freedom and “not a single hoof” will be left behind to draw me back in. When I make those firm decisions in my mindset, I draw the line in the sand and this allows God to fight on my behalf when the pursuit of sin rushes back in to try to overtake me.