Standing in the hall of fame
And the world’s gonna know your name
‘Cause you burn with the brightest flame
And the world’s gonna know your name
And you’ll be on the walls of the hall of fame
There’s two ways to look at lyrics like this. We can either internalize them or externalize them. We can either try to stand in the hall of fame ourselves or step aside for one who will no matter what. This is a big deal to God and he’ll go to great lengths until we get it right. God is never satisfied with second place.Think plagues.
Something always struck me as interesting about this story. God tells Moses that he is going to purposely harden Pharaoh’s heart. After 430 years of enslavement to the Egyptians, the Israelites were probably more than a little frustrated with God’s postponement of their deliverance. One plague after another and Pharaoh still refuses to let the people go.
The bigger picture is that more than refusing to let God’s people go, the Pharaoh was refusing to submit to the one true God. In the end, this was a much bigger deal than the Israelites temporary discomfort. More than his sins, the disposition of the Pharaoh’s heart took precedent. The desire of any Pharaoh’s heart is to be great. To the Egyptians the Pharaoh was to be considered a god. From the very beginning, the desire of Pharaoh’s heart was to be great and letting a bunch of slaves go free went entirely against this plan.
So what did God do about Pharaoh not wanting to step aside? He gave the pharaoh the desire of his heart. He showed him exactly what would happen if he tried to make himself great As we all know, this destruction and the destruction of Egypt. As the old saying goes, “Give someone enough rope and they’ll…”
Think plagues and think cows.
When King Nebuchadnezzar refused to acknowledge God as God he had a dream. His dream was interpreted by Daniel this way:
“This is the interpretation, Your Majesty, and this is the decree the Most High has issued against my lord the king: 25 You will be driven away from people and will live with the wild animals; you will eat grass like the ox and be drenched with the dew of heaven. Seven times will pass by for you until you acknowledge that the Most High is sovereign over all kingdoms on earth and gives them to anyone he wishes”
The struggle of humanity’s heart desiring self promotion and wanting to be great comes up several times in scripture even amongst those who we consider saints.
At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who, then, is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”
2 He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. 3 And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5 And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.
Jesus answers the great question about how to be great by telling us to be nothing without His help. On our own, our attempts to be great lead to destruction. He tells us to be children so we can avoid being made into cows.
Cows crawl, children learn to run because their Father gives them the path and strength.
Cows moo, children learn to speak eloquently because their Father speaks through them.
Cows stick with the herd. God teaches His children to stand up for Him
Children are better than cows.
Bible stories like this have a consistent theme that challenge us to check our hearts. There is no doubt, God is greater, wiser, bigger, stronger and greater. The only question left is will we set aside our will for His ?
Take note. The issue wasn’t that these guys were kings. The issue was that they put their majesty before God’s majesty in their hearts.
God will go to great lengths for your heart and he will never relent.
Who is the king of your heart right now? The next promotion at work? Your savings account? Are you worshiping God for gain or simply because you love Him?