i am doing the reading at the vigil tomorrow night about Exodus. My understanding is that when the reading says "God made Pharaoh obstinate" the sense is more that God allowed Pharoah to be obstinate than He forced him to be obstinate. Any ideas how to convey that meaning?
4. Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament
Has a view that God hardened Pharaohs heart to glorify Himself.
Exo 14:4 And I will harden Pharaoh's heart, and he will pursue them, and I will get glory over Pharaoh and all his host, and the Egyptians shall know that I am the LORD." And they did so.
Three times (Exo_14:4, Exo_14:8, and Exo_14:17) it is stated that Jehovah hardened Pharaoh's heart, so that he pursued the Israelites, to show that God had decreed this hardening, to glorify Himself in the judgment and death of the proud king, who would not honour God, the Holy One, in his life. “And the children of Israel were going out with a high hand:” Exo_14:8. is a conditional clause in the sense of, “although they went out” (Ewald, §341). רָמָה יָד, the high hand, is the high hand of Jehovah with the might which it displayed (Isa_26:11), not the armed hand of the Israelites. This is the meaning also in Num_33:3; it is different in Num_15:30. The very fact that Pharaoh did not discern the lifting up of Jehovah's hand in the exodus of Israel displayed the hardening of his heart. “Beside Pihachiroth:” see Exo_14:2.