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  1. #1
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    Why did God harden Pharaoh’s heart?

    "Why did God harden Pharaoh’s heart?"

    Exodus 7:3-4 says, “But I will harden Pharaoh's heart, and though I multiply my miraculous signs and wonders in Egypt he will not listen to you. Then I will lay my hand on Egypt and with mighty acts of judgment I will bring out my people the Israelites.” It seems unjust for God to harden Pharaoh’s heart, and then to punish Pharaoh and Egypt for what Pharaoh decided when his heart was hardened. Why would God harden Pharaoh’s heart just so He could judge Egypt more severely with additional plagues?

    First, it is important to remember that Pharaoh was not an innocent or godly man. He was a brutal dictator who was overseeing the terrible abuse and oppression of the Israelites, who likely numbered over 1.5 million people at that time. The Egyptian pharaohs had enslaved the Israelites for 400 years. A previous Pharaoh, and possibly even the Pharaoh in question, ordered that male Israelite babies be killed at birth (Exodus 1:16). The Pharaoh whom God hardened was an evil man, and the people whom he ruled agreed with, or at least did not dispute, his evil actions.

    Second, before the first few plagues, Pharaoh hardened his own heart against letting the Israelites go. “Pharaoh's heart became hard” (Exodus 7:13; 7:22; 8:19). “But when Pharaoh saw that there was relief, he hardened his heart” (Exodus 8:15). “But this time also Pharaoh hardened his heart” (Exodus 8:32). Pharaoh could have spared Egypt of all the plagues if he had not hardened his own heart. God was giving Pharaoh increasingly severe warnings of the judgment that was to come. Pharaoh himself chose to bring judgment on himself and on his nation by hardening his own heart against God’s commands.

    As a result of Pharaoh’s hard-heartedness, God hardened Pharaoh’s heart even further, allowing for the last few plagues (Exodus 9:12; 10:20; 10:27). Pharaoh, and Egypt, had brought these judgments on themselves with 400 years of slavery and mass murder. Since the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23), and Pharaoh and Egypt had horribly sinned against God, it would have been just if God had completely annihilated all of Egypt. Therefore, God hardening Pharaoh’s heart was not unjust. God bringing additional plagues against Egypt was not unjust. The plagues, as terrible as they were, actually demonstrate God’s mercy in not completely destroying all of Egypt, which would have been a perfectly just penalty.

    Romans 9:17-18 declares, “For the Scripture says to Pharaoh: ‘I raised you up for this very purpose, that I might display my power in you and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.’ Therefore God has mercy on whom He wants to have mercy, and He hardens whom He wants to harden.” From a human perspective, it seems wrong for God to harden a person and then punish the person He has hardened. Biblically speaking, however, we have all sinned against God (Romans 3:23), and the just penalty for that sin is death (Romans 6:23). Therefore, God hardening and punishing a person is not unjust, as it is actually merciful in comparison to what the person deserves.
    article by: gotquestions.org

  2. #2
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    Why did God harden Pharoah's heart?

    Romans 8:29 tells me that God predestines a person based on His foreknowledge of how that person is going to end up spiritually. I believe that God's hardening of Pharoah's heart occurred because He knew in advance that Pharoah would never turn from his wicked ways and because He never interferes with the exercise of free will by a person who is not seeking Him.

    God did not cause Pharoah's heart to harden. He allowed it to harden because it would have been a violation of His perfect nature to step in without Pharoah's cooperation. As I was told when I first came to Christ: "The Holy Spirit is a gentleman; He never goes where He's not wanted."

    SLE
    I want to be a coin in God's pocket that He can spend any way He wishes.

  3. #3
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    I'm aware that God created humans with a free will to choose to love Him or not, but can God make us love or hate others? or it also lies within our free will?
    Can God soften or harden our heart towards someone?
    Could have Pharaoh loved them, if he chose to and God didn't interfere? or God must soften his heart?

    Another thing I want to understand, lets imagine the Pharaoh repented, was it God that softened his heart, or it only depends on Pharaoh's free will and the fact that he wanted to believe in God?
    Last edited by Property Of God; 10-21-08 at 09:50 PM.
    A fool finds no pleasure in understanding but delights in airing his own opinions

  4. #4
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    Originally Posted by SpiritLedEd View Post
    Romans 8:29 tells me that God predestines a person based on His foreknowledge of how that person is going to end up spiritually. I believe that God's hardening of Pharoah's heart occurred because He knew in advance that Pharoah would never turn from his wicked ways and because He never interferes with the exercise of free will by a person who is not seeking Him.

    God did not cause Pharoah's heart to harden. He allowed it to harden because it would have been a violation of His perfect nature to step in without Pharoah's cooperation. As I was told when I first came to Christ: "The Holy Spirit is a gentleman; He never goes where He's not wanted."

    SLE
    You took the words right out of my mouth.
    "He's everything, or He's nothing." {Preacher Paul Washer}

  5. #5
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    Actually Pharaoh's heart was already hard, God just conditioned the enviroment that would cause Pharaoh to harden his heart toward the Hebrews even more.
    Religion is an ugly tyrant.

  6. #6
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    Originally Posted by SpiritLedEd View Post
    Romans 8:29 tells me that God predestines a person based on His foreknowledge of how that person is going to end up spiritually.
    If God already knows who will be saved and who will be damned to Hell, what purpose does it serve for Christians to spread the Gospel? The Gospel cannot impart any benefit to someone who is already going to be saved; neither can it benefit someone who is never going to be saved.

  7. #7
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    Originally Posted by flaja View Post
    If God already knows who will be saved and who will be damned to Hell, what purpose does it serve for Christians to spread the Gospel? The Gospel cannot impart any benefit to someone who is already going to be saved; neither can it benefit someone who is never going to be saved.
    Its not for us to assume who will or will not be saved, regardless that GOD has that knowledge. What if you were never preached the Gospel because someone assumed GOD did not predestine you to be saved? How would you feel about that?

    GOD tells us in Scripture to go out and preach the Gospel, and that is what we must do.

    Romans 8:29
    For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.


    The Scripture is very clear.

  8. #8
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    Originally Posted by Chad View Post
    Its not for us to assume who will or will not be saved, regardless that GOD has that knowledge.
    But yet an entire branch of Protestantism, i.e., Calvinism, is based on people making such an assumption.

    What if you were never preached the Gospel because someone assumed GOD did not predestine you to be saved? How would you feel about that?
    Abraham was called directly by God; he didn’t need to have anyone preach to him. The same goes for Samuel and the other OT prophets as well as the 12 Apostles and St. Paul. God can contact whomever He wishes to contact and at His convenience. God does not need any human intermediates. So my question remains. What good does it do to preach the Gospel to people that won’t ever be saved? And why do people that are going to be saved no matter what need to hear the Gospel?

    My point is that predestination is likely a false doctrine, at least the way the Calvinists apply it. If everyone is predestined for either Heaven or Hell, then freewill does not exist. And if humans don’t have freewill, then we can never be anything better than God’s slaves and God will not be worthy of acknowledgment, let alone worship.

  9. #9
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    Originally Posted by flaja View Post
    Abraham was called directly by God; he didn’t need to have anyone preach to him. The same goes for Samuel and the other OT prophets as well as the 12 Apostles and St. Paul.
    It is my understanding that Calvinists teach salvation/predestination as being arbitrary on God's part. If that is true, I heartily agree that it is unbiblical because for God to act arbitrarily to limit our will would be a violation of his perfect nature.

    However, God does sometimes use intermediaries. In the case of Paul and the 12 Apostles, the intermediary was Jesus.

    SLE
    I want to be a coin in God's pocket that He can spend any way He wishes.

  10. #10
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    Originally Posted by SpiritLedEd View Post
    It is my understanding that Calvinists teach salvation/predestination as being arbitrary on God's part. If that is true, I heartily agree that it is unbiblical because for God to act arbitrarily to limit our will would be a violation of his perfect nature.

    However, God does sometimes use intermediaries. In the case of Paul and the 12 Apostles, the intermediary was Jesus.

    SLE
    You say this as if Jesus isn’t God. If Jesus is God, then God contacted the Apostles and Paul Himself and thus didn’t use any intermediary.

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