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Your Arm's Too Short
Exodus 9:8-12 | Sermon Recap & Discussion Questions

 

The plague of Boils reminds us that God is sovereign, so nothing seen or unseen is any match for him. To persist in rebellion against him will eventually result in God’s punishment. However, to surrender your heart to him will result in comprehensive renewal and spiritual victory even over the powers of darkness.

 

I. Over Evil Spirits (Exodus 9:8-11)

The conflict in Egypt was never merely between Moses and Pharaoh. God was defeating Egypt’s gods and demonstrating that their gods were powerless to save them. As Numbers 33:4 says in commentary on Exodus, “On their gods also the LORD executed judgments.” We must be realistic, too, about the unseen but no less real forces affecting our lives. However, we must also rely on Christ’s sovereignty over those evil forces and go to him alone to be delivered. 

 

II. Over Human Hearts (Exodus 9:12)
This passage also demonstrates that Christ is sovereign over human hearts. He alone can give the gift of faith and repentance. Up until this point, the Bible tells us that Pharaoh had hardened his own heart against God, but in this passage, it says that God hardened Pharaoh’s heart. These passages are not at odds with one another; they simply demonstrate a truth we see explained in Romans 1. That is, when people continually harden their hearts toward God after he has provided opportunities for them to repent, he eventually “gives them over” to what they want. Only the grace of Christ can prevent us from becoming as evil as we possibly can be. 

 

Discussion Questions

  1. Over Evil Spirits:
    a. Are there ways in which you might sometimes minimize the reality that there are spiritual forces of evil at work in the world? 
    b. How might attributing everything to simple human cause and effect blind you to the devil’s schemes as well as to Christ’s power?
    c. Is there any specific circumstance in your life currently where it’s possible the devil is using to sideline you?
    d. Will this involve stepping out in faith, knowing that God empowers his people to advance against evil? Or will this involve acknowledging your inability to control the circumstance and giving it over to God?
  2. Over Human Hearts: 
    a. How does this passage demonstrate the need to stay sensitive to the Spirit’s working in your heart to bring you to repentance? 
    b. What does this passage show us about those with whom we share the gospel?
    c. How does Christ’s sovereignty over the human heart give you hope?