Pharaoh’s Anger

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
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“Get out of here!” Pharaoh shouted at Moses. “I’m warning you. Never come back to see me again! The day you see my face, you will die!”

Exodus 10:28

I can certainly understand Pharaoh’s anger with Moses. By this point in the story, Pharaoh was surely sick and tired of Moses and everything he represented. Unfortunately for Pharaoh and the Egyptians, his anger kept him from thinking rationally and doing what was best for himself and his people. In fact, Pharaoh’s anger seems to have been an essential element of his hard-heartedness, that which caused him to resist God’s will.

Honestly, I can also relate to this mind-closing impact of anger. Most of the time I am fairly easy-going, but when I get angry, my ability to think clearly is compromised. This means, among other things, that I tend to resist God’s will. It also means I can make decisions or say things that I will later regret.

Anger isn’t necessarily wrong, of course. In fact, sometimes anger is most appropriate and even helpful as a motivation to action. But when our angry feelings are mixed with pride and pettiness, we have a dangerous combination. As the New Testament letter of Ephesians says, “Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil” (4:26-27). So if we feel our anger beginning to control us, we need the wisdom to step back, to calm down, and to regain proper perspective. I find it most helpful (though sometimes difficult when my pride is engaged) to take my anger to the Lord.

QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: Have you ever said or done things in anger that you have later regretted? When? What might help you not to do this sort of thing again in the future?

PRAYER: Lord, I’m grateful today for the example of Pharaoh . . . not a positive example, to be sure, but a pertinent one. Help me not to let anger cloud my judgment. By your grace, may I know when to back away from that which enrages me so that I might gain perspective. Keep me, Lord, from speaking or acting in anger, from hurting people, from injuring the work of your kingdom. Amen.