Exodus 7:8-11:10

EXODUS 7:8-11:10



We are slow learners in various ways. We all have areas of our lives where we have repeated the same mistake over and over again. What is an area like this in your life? Why do you think it took you so long to learn?

The book of Exodus continues the story of Genesis. In a nutshell, Genesis tells the story of how God created the heavens and the earth, and everything God created was good.

At the pinnacle of this good world, God created humanity to live in a perfect love relationship with him and to image his glory to the world. The first man and woman were given a mission: to multiply and fill the earth with image-bearers of God so that the glory of God would cover the earth like the waters cover the sea (Gen 1:26-27). But an enemy crept into God’s creation, that ancient serpent, the Devil. And he deceived the man and woman, and the world was plunged into sin and death. God promised that one day a descendant of Eve would come as a deliverer, and he would crush the serpent’s head and lead humanity back into God’s presence forever. But until that day, there would be a battle between the Serpent's descendants and Eve's descendants (Gen 3:15).

The rest of Genesis tells the story of how God began to fulfill this redemptive promise through a specific descendant of Eve named Abraham. God came to Abraham and promised that through his family line, all the peoples of the world would be blessed (Gen 12:1-3). In other words, God was telling Abraham that the promised descendant of Eve, who would crush the serpent’s head and bring humanity back to God, would come through his line. Abraham had a son named Isaac, and Isaac had a son named Jacob, and Jacob had twelve sons, and God began fulfilling this redemptive promise.

But Genesis ends with a threat. A famine comes upon the land, and this family, chosen to be the family through whom the deliverer would come, is threatened with extinction. It appears that God’s promises hang in the balance. So they flee to Egypt and find relief there for the next 400 years. The chosen family is spared. This is where Exodus picks up. 

Chapters 1-6 of Exodus tell the story of the birth and calling of Moses, the man whom God raised up to deliver the Israelites from slavery in Egypt. After an initial conflict with Pharaoh, which ended with him rejecting Moses’ call for freedom, Chapter 7:7 begins to tell the story of ten confrontations.

In each confrontation, Moses calls for Israel’s release, Pharaoh refuses, and Moses sends a devastating plague from God. In each case, Pharaoh’s heart grows harder.


Because of the length of this passage, we will only read certain portions of this text.


  • As a group, examine this table. What stands out to you? What is interesting?
  • How do you understand the interplay between God hardening Pharaoh’s heart and Pharaoh hardening his own heart?
  • Throughout these ten accounts, there is a repeated focus on Pharaoh’s hard heart in response to the display of God’s power. Read Romans 1:18-32. Here Paul discusses how humanity has hardened its hearts and suppressed God’s truth, resulting in an ever-increasing spiral into spiritual darkness. How does Paul’s discussion here illuminate what might have happened with Pharaoh?


  • This series of confrontations, followed by the unrelenting hardness of Pharaoh’s heart, shows the power of sin to keep people in spiritual darkness. While Pharaoh played a unique role in the history of redemption, his story is one that plays out all around us. We all have friends and family that we have pleaded with to turn from their sins and come to Christ, only to be met with stubborn resistance. The Bible tells us that only the grace and power of God can give sight to the spiritually blind and soften hearts of stone. As a group, take a moment to name the people in your life whose hearts are hardened to the gospel and pray for them together. 
  • This series of confrontations and judgments, climaxing in the death of Pharaoh’s son and the liberation of God’s people, demonstrates the great lengths God will go to save his people. He will bring a nation to its knees if he has to. And if you continue to read the biblical story, you will see that he will even give his own son to die to save his people. Read Romans 8:31-39. How does this passage inspire deeper confidence in God’s unrelenting commitment to save you?


Father, we thank you that you have not left us like Pharaoh, blinded by the hardness of our own hearts. But instead, you have awakened us to new life in Christ and freed us to gladly respond to your call to turn from sin and hope in your Son.
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