10 So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and did just as the LORD commanded. Aaron threw his staff down in front of Pharaoh and his officials, and it became a snake. 11 Pharaoh then summoned wise men and sorcerers, and the Egyptian magicians also did the same things by their secret arts: 12 Each one threw down his staff and it became a snake. But Aaron’s staff swallowed up their staffs. 13 Yet Pharaoh’s heart became hard and he would not listen to them, just as the LORD had said. -Exodus 7:10-13
An entire nation endured plagues because of the hardened heart of its leader, Pharaoh. Moses and Aaron asked for the freedom of their people, yet Pharaoh would not relent. They showed him a miraculous sign. Pharaoh still would not repent. This pattern would repeat itself through a series of plagues until Egypt was devastated by the loss of food, livestock, and children.
Still today, the heart is the key to blessing or pain. If our heart is open to God, he can use us to do great things and bless others. If we harden our hearts, we will bring suffering to our own lives and to those around us. The difference is the heart.
Later, God would call his people to love the Lord with all of their heart. This is not an accident, but a clear command to love God with all of our being. There is much power in the inclinations of the heart.
Dillon Burroughs is the author and coauthor of numerous books and is handwriting a copy of all 31,173 verses of the Bible at HolyWritProject.com. Find out more about Dillon at Facebook.com/readdB or readdB.com.