“Then say to Pharaoh, ‘This is what the Lord says: Israel is my firstborn son, and I told you, Let my son go, so he may worship me. But you refused to let him go; so I will kill your firstborn son.’” — Exodus 4:22-23 (NIV84)
My dad had this unwritten but very lived-out rule of life. It was, “Don’t mess with my family or my food!” As a young man growing up, I experienced him live both out. In a parking lot outside a restaurant, I watched him nearly pull a man out of his car window because he was swearing at my dad, in front of us kids, about taking a parking spot. Once the man apologized to my mom and us kids, my dad returned him to his driver’s seat. My dad’s love for and commitment to protect his family moved him to action. The story about his food I will share another day.
God seems to have a similar affinity to His children. In our verse for today, God was telling Moses to let Pharaoh know that he was messing with His children (firstborn). Early on, Moses warned Pharaoh that his hard-heartedness was going to lead to an ugly showdown. Because of his abuse of the Israelites, Pharaoh was putting his own firstborn at risk. The point here? Don’t mess with God’s children. He is committed to love and protect them. It’s not good to find yourself on the wrong side of God’s will.
Brothers and sisters in Christ, we are God’s children. He made us His children by redeeming us through the death and resurrection of Jesus. By His Spirit, He has made us born again and brought us into His kingdom. Be confident that God knows what you’re going through. He loves you as one of His own children, and He will act to redeem and restore you.