It is quite unbelievable that Pharaoh can fail to learn over and over again. Every time, at the height of the plague, he sees his mistake, and sincerely decides to let the Jewish people go. But as soon as the pain has gone, he is back to his old tricks.
It seems crazy, but then again, don’t we all do the same? We make mistakes and when we are feeling the pain of the consequences of those mistakes, we swear that we will never make the same mistake again. And we really do mean it – until next time that is, when the pain has subsided and we make the same mistake again.
It’s plain and simple human nature. You sit and watch absolutely nothing on TV till 3 a.m. on a work day, and swear that tomorrow will be different. And you really do mean it. Until tomorrow comes and the frustration has subsided and you aren’t tired any more and there are some good programs on and … at 3 a.m. you swear it will never happen again. Or you wake up with a hangover swearing never to drink again – until later that evening when you are offered a drink. Or you finish the whole cheesecake when on a diet. You feel sick and appalled at yourself and tell yourself that you are never going to even look at fattening food again because it is disgusting to you. And you do mean it at the time. But tomorrow’s another day and the cheesecake looks so yummy again.
So let’s get back to Pharaoh. He’s ready for another plague, just because the pain of the previous one has subsided? That’s nuts. And when we do it, it’s just as crazy. But we do have one advantage over Pharaoh. At least we know we are crazy!
Knowing we are crazy at least leaves us with the possibility of changing, even if it we don’t take advantage of it right now. To think, like Pharaoh, that insanity is a normal way of living, is to walk into the asylum – and lock the doors behind us.