Making Bricks without Straw (Part 1 of 2)
“That same day Pharaoh gave this order to the slave drivers and overseers in charge of the people: “You are no longer to supply the people with straw for making bricks; let them go and gather their own straw” Exodus 5:6-7 (NIV)
As you study the Bible, you will discover that there is a yearly cycle of events that are centered on the Feasts of Leviticus 23. When certain events happen in the Bible, notice the time period in which those events occur. For instance, when an event in the Bible occurs in the early spring, it shows us that we can expect a similar event to happen in our lives in the early spring. The timing of these Biblical events helps us learn what kind of events to expect in our lives during the year.
When Moses first approached Pharaoh and told him to let the Israelites leave Egypt, the king harshly retaliated. He commanded the slave drivers to force the Israelites to make bricks without straw. As we come near the season of Passover, this same event will occur in your life. This is something I have noticed every year as we approach Passover. In this two-part series, we want to equip you to get through this time period.
Here is the full quote:
Exodus 5:6-9, 13-14, 17-18
6 That same day Pharaoh gave this order to the slave drivers and overseers in charge of the people: 7 “You are no longer to supply the people with straw for making bricks; let them go and gather their own straw. 8 But require them to make the same number of bricks as before; don’t reduce the quota. They are lazy; that is why they are crying out, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to our God.’ 9 Make the work harder for the people so that they keep working and pay no attention to lies.” 13 The slave drivers kept pressing them, saying, “Complete the work required of you for each day, just as when you had straw.” 14 And Pharaoh’s slave drivers beat the Israelite overseers they had appointed, demanding, “Why haven’t you met your quota of bricks yesterday or today, as before?” 17 Pharaoh said, “Lazy, that’s what you are—lazy! That is why you keep saying, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to the Lord.’ 18 Now get to work. You will not be given any straw, yet you must produce your full quota of bricks.”
Straw was a vital ingredient to make bricks solid and consistent. Without the straw, the bricks would not hold together. They would crumble and fall apart. These verses contain a vital revelation for the month or so before Passover. It is the time of making your bricks without straw.
During this period, the tasks that usually took 30 minutes will now take 1 hour. You are going to lose the “consistency” of your life. You will have to work harder to get the same results, just as the Israelites had to work even harder to make the same number of bricks. The king did not lower his demand despite the harsh command. You will still have the same number of things to do, but you will find it harder to get things done. You will experience this in your family, finances, and job. At times you will find this frustrating.
In the Passover story, Pharaoh is a picture and type of Satan. You can see from the verses above how cruel he treated the Israelites. He accused them of being lazy, despite the fact that they worked just as hard as or harder than before. If you have feelings of unworthiness and condemnation, do not lose heart. This season will pass. The devil wants you to give up the race of your faith and give in to sin. You will feel like you are not getting anything accomplished. Do not fear or worry; this is all a part of the process of being freed during the Passover Season. This attack of the enemy will make getting to Passover just that much more enjoyable!
We will finish this two-part series next time.