The Scripture says to ·the king of Egypt [L Pharaoh]: “I ·made you king [L raised you up] for this reason: to show my power in you so that my name will be ·talked about [proclaimed] in all the earth [Ex. 9:16].”
It is obviously not a question of human will or human effort, but of divine mercy. The scripture says to Pharaoh: ‘Even for this same purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name shall be declared in all the earth’.
Pharaoh, king of Egypt, was an example of this fact. For God told him he had given him the kingdom of Egypt for the very purpose of displaying the awesome power of God against him, so that all the world would hear about God’s glorious name.
Is that grounds for complaining that God is unfair? Not so fast, please. God told Moses, “I’m in charge of mercy. I’m in charge of compassion.” Compassion doesn’t originate in our bleeding hearts or moral sweat, but in God’s mercy. The same point was made when God said to Pharaoh, “I picked you as a bit player in this drama of my salvation power.” All we’re saying is that God has the first word, initiating the action in which we play our part for good or ill.
For the Kitvei Hakodesh says to Pharaoh, BA’AVUR ZOT HE’EMADTICHA BA’AVUR HAROTECHA ES KOCHI ULEMA’AN SAPER SHMI BECHOL HA’ARETZ ("For this purpose I raised you up, in order that I might demonstrate in you my power and in order that my Name might be proclaimed in all the earth" SHEMOT 9:16).
The Scriptures even speak to the Pharaoh himself: “I have given you a position of power so that I might show My greater power through you and so that My name might be declared throughout every land upon the earth.”
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