Pharaoh took immediate action. He sent down orders to the slave-drivers and their underlings: "Don’t provide straw for the people for making bricks as you have been doing. Make them get their own straw. And make them produce the same number of bricks—no reduction in their daily quotas! They’re getting lazy. They’re going around saying, ‘Give us time off so we can worship our God.’ Crack down on them. That’ll cure them of their whining, their god-fantasies." Exodus 5:6-9 (TM)
It’s been said that those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it. There’s also a spiritual reason why you should love your enemies: you become like those you hate.
A couple of thousand years after Pharaoh gave Moses such a harsh reply, Israel’s King Solomon had conscripted laborers among his own people to build his kingdom. Upon Solomon’s death, the Israelites were tired of being their own king’s slave-labor. They asked Solomon’s son, King Rehoboam for a little grace. Rehoboam’s reply was eerily reminiscent of Pharaoh: "My father made your yoke heavy; I will make it even heavier. My father scourged you with whips; I will scourge you with scorpions."
Without God’s active presence in my life, I’m in danger of becoming the very person that I, myself, despise.