Pastor's Wife, Mom, Writer & Imperfect Seeker of Jesus
The Dumbest Verse in the Bible
June 3, 2016
It was one of those moments when my jaw literally fell open, followed by a “What? Are you serious?” I even double-checked other translations just to be sure that the version I was reading was accurate. Yup, it was the same in all of them. There it was…the dumbest verse I think I have ever read in the Bible.
Before I go any further, let’s be clear: I am totally in love with God’s Word. For the past ten years or so, this love affair has actually been growing stronger, filled with sweet and amazing moments.
The best way I can describe it is this: For those of you who are married, do you remember when you first began dating your spouse? Or even those first few years of marriage and how there were continually those moments where you learned something new about each other? As time goes on, those moments of learning new things about one another tend to get fewer and further in between. (Although even after being with Ryan for over 23 years, I’m STILL finding out about girls that he’s dated in the past, which is pretty amazing considering I met him when he was only 18 years old. I thought I knew about all of them long ago, but evidently there’s a few more tucked back in the old memory vault. But that’s another story.)
Anyway…that’s the typical fashion of life: the more familiarity, the less “new” moments you experience. But since God’s Word is ALIVE (Hebrews 4:12) and since God’s ways are NOT my ways (Isaiah 55:8), that’s NOT what happens the more you dive into Scripture. Instead, those “new” moments of revelation occur MORE and MORE! And this was one of them.
I had been reading through Exodus again and was just beginning into the ten plagues against Pharaoh and the Egyptians. The Nile River had already been turned to blood, and now God was sending frogs to plague the land. “The Nile River will swarm with frogs. They will come up out of the river and into your palace, even into your bedroom and onto your bed! They will enter the houses of your officials and your people. They will even jump into your ovens and your kneading bowls. Frogs will jump on you, your people, and all your officials.” (Exodus 8:3-4 NLT)
And that’s just what happened.
We live out in the country near a creek, and I’ll admit that I really do enjoy the sound of frogs croaking at night. The frogs croaking and the crickets chirping…ahh, it’s the setup for a perfect country song.
HOWEVER, we also have an old Kayak above ground swimming pool off to the side of the house that for the first time in 13 years we’ve decided not to open because, well basically, no one is home to enjoy it anymore. Both girls are teenagers now, and between their working, camps, 4-H, mission trip, etc., it’s honestly just not worth the effort and money to do this year.
So right before bed last night I walked out there to toss some mosquito repelling rings into the water (we have to leave some water in there or it can completely ruin the pool for future years) and was practically DEAFENED by the croaking of possibly hundreds of frogs!!! They were everywhere. Perched on toys that Chloe had evidently left there from last summer. Clinging to all sides of the pool walls. Swimming in the nasty, brown water. SO MANY frogs that it literally gave me the willies. And I generally like frogs.
So imagine them inside your home. In your bed. Even in your food!! Yuck. Of course, Pharaoh went running to Moses to beg him to ask God to remove the infestation of frogs from the land. And this is after Pharaoh’s magicians added even more frogs by their own secret pagan magic. Evidently, the magicians couldn’t get RID of the frogs though, but Pharaoh knew who could. He knew that the one true God, the God of Moses, could absolutely solve this problem.
“Moses said to Pharaoh, ‘You make the choice rather than me. When should I ask on behalf of you, your officials, and your people, that the frogs be taken away from you and your houses, and remain only in the Nile?’” (Exodus 8:9 HCSB)
Pharaoh gets to decide. He gets to pick the time for Moses to pray to God for the ending of this annoying plague. His response?
“’Tomorrow,’ he answered.” (Exodus 8:10 HCSB)
WHAT?!?!? That’s got to be the stupidest thing I’ve ever read. You get to decide when, and you pick tomorrow? I’d be saying, “Hey Moses, I’ve got an empty prayer closet up in the palace if you’d like to make that request for me right now.”
But instead he waits?
My first response was to wonder how on earth this guy was smart enough to lead such a successful nation. But then I realized that he is JUST LIKE US. How often is God ready and waiting in anticipation to bless us, but we decide to wait until TOMORROW to act on whatever it is He is calling us to?
Maybe it’s because of fear, worry, regret or even anger that we put off MOVING in our own lives. We don’t have the important conversation that we so know needs to take place. We fill our time with many, many other things so that we are too busy to do the important things. We are embarrassed by our past so we refuse to walk into our future. We listen to Satan’s whispers that we are unqualified.
Please hear me now--you and I need to STOP this!!! “Don’t boast about tomorrow, for you don’t know what a day might bring.” (Proverbs 27:1 HCSB) “Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.” (James 4:14 NASB)
What we have is TODAY. When Jesus called Peter, Andrew, James and John to follow Him, they didn’t just stand around working on their torn fishing nets. They IMMEDIATELY dropped those nets and went after Jesus. (Matthew 4:18-22)
And when the paralytic’s friends lowered him down on a mat through the roof to see Jesus, and Jesus told him to get up off that mat, pick it up and go home, he didn’t lay there thinking that maybe tomorrow would be a better time to be healed. No! He IMMEDIATELY jumped right up in front of everyone. (Mark 2:1-12)
We see over and over in Scripture the incredible things that happen when people responded to God and didn’t wait to follow Him.
So let’s make OUR responses be immediate too. Who knows? Maybe what is “plaguing” your own life just might vanish when you respond TODAY!