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Exodus 5:6-14 - Homilies By J. Urquhart

The increase of trouble for God's people no proof of the failure of his purpose.

I. THE DEMANDS OF GOD PROVOKE THE WRATH OF THE UNGODLY . The mad persistence of Pharaoh in his injustice is marked—

1 . In his haste: his commands were issued "the same day."

2 . In the severity of the decree: they should find their own straw, and yet deliver the same number of bricks.

3 . In his determination to have his commands obeyed. It is not meant to be an idle threat: the overseers are "straitly charged." When God's word is resisted the soul is inflamed to greater evil. The unregenerate spirit is the same everywhere. God's claim has only to be pressed home to be repelled in the same fashion.

II. THE WAY TO DELIVERANCE SOMETIMES LIES THROUGH DEEPER TROUBLE . Israel's case was now harder than it was before ( Exodus 5:11-14 ), and solely because God had arisen to fight for them: but it was the last struggle of a doomed foe. It is thus—

1 . In the Church's struggle with the world of unbelief: God's message is met with scorn, repression, and opposition of science falsely so called. But these shall vanish away like smoke, and their utterances and deeds will at last be the monuments of their infamy.

2 . In the contest with the dominion of sin in the soul. The might of sin is felt most when the Spirit's call is first heard; but God has said, "Let my people go," and the wrath of the enemy will soon be swallowed up in his destruction.

3 . In the breaking of the yoke of death. When God's call is heard, "Come up higher," we wrestle in pain and mortal weakness with the dread adversary. He seems to triumph. But the last tie that bound us is broken, and we bid an eternal farewell to the bondage and the grief.— U .

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