Exodus 7:3 – The Hardening of Pharaoh’s Heart

By Wayne Jackson

God once said: “I will harden Pharaoh’s heart” (Exodus 7:3). By itself this might be a difficult verse to explain, yet in your margin write: See 7:13, 22; 8:15; 9:34; 10:20.

A comparison of these passages reveals that Jehovah did not arbitrarily harden the king’s heart. Actually, several factors were involved.

  1. The Lord made demands upon Pharaoh which went against the monarch’s selfish interests, hence, in that sense God hardened his heart.
  2. The king resisted the divine command and hardened his own heart!
  3. The Egyptian magicians, attempting to duplicate Moses’ signs, added to Pharaoh’s confusion.

These facts indicate that the evil ruler was responsible for his own conduct. He was not the victim of a capricious God!

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About the Author

Wayne Jackson has written for and edited the Christian Courier since its inception in 1965. He has also written several books on a variety of biblical topics including The Bible and Science, Creation, Evolution, and the Age of the Earth, The Bible on Trial, and a number of commentaries. He lives in Stockton, California with his dear wife, and life-long partner, Betty.