Mummie Chi, you are right.
Let’s be honest; conviction is GOD’s to give. And for this, those of us who believe, who have been given belief must count it in great humility as a sign of grace found before the Holy GOD of heaven. The sixth plague upon Egypt emphasizes something and I want you to see it too. There are those who would believe before the sign (blessed are they); there are those who would believe at the sign; there are those who would believe after the sign; there are those who believe not even after the sign has come and gone.
The fourth people scare me. The state of reprobation: where the individual can see that this is not a human thing to contort, this miracle is from heaven, this is GOD and not the devil yet find it immensely impossible to believe. Like Pharaoh and some of these fourth category of people, GOD hardened their hearts. Why? I don’t necessarily know: whether to punish Egypt for being the nation through whom the dreaded prophecy is fulfilled; to punish Pharaoh for not believing, at first, even though he had all resources to facilitate belief; to test Moses to see how far he could go in obedience; to train Moses for the greater reality of the hardened hearts of the Israelites; to show that HE, The GOD who is I AM, is most powerful…I don’t know.
What I know is that GOD gave an instruction and also gave the willpower for it to be disobeyed. GOD have Mercy.
This is me speaking freely to you, Chi. It is shocking and way beyond me honestly. Here, if this was a game of chess, GOD had HIS checkmate move three plagues ago yet HE insisted that it was not enough by hardening the heart of Pharaoh. GOD had the heart of Pharaoh in HIS hands and whatever Pharaoh did or thought he was doing as a means of opposition was all GOD’s Plan. His unbelief was GOD at work only because he was very willing to be that kind of instrument. He could change but he didn’t want to. Much like his first decision of ignorance, his prayer to GOD was let me not believe. GOD answered.
Much like Pharaoh, there are some who have prayed to GOD not to believe. They have done so by their declarations, by their thoughts, by their reservations, by their wrath. That have said I don’t know GOD and because GOD is source and sustenance both to live and to believe, the accuser of the soul has said, “amen” to their prayer.
Mummie Chi, to convict a man is GOD’s to empower and not ours. On that, you are right. Ours is to represent the GOD who empowers the conviction both by thought, word and love to life.
I also believe that we must pray for ourselves and all who we remember that we would not need a sign of affliction from hell before we turn to the side of GOD. WE must pray but we must let go of anything which would tie us to be as reprobate as Pharaoh was. May we not disbelieve to our deaths, may we not refuse GOD in
all any lengths.
And thanks for talking the other day. It was helpful to me.
With boils from furnace ash, GOD said to Pharaoh, “ I AM, GOD, who brings gore from that which has no power – in itself – to do so”