And The Lord Took Pharoah For Therapy

In a 1996 lecture on Exodus 14, Dennis Prager says: I want the God who wreaks vengeance on bad people. That is Jewish glory — to reward the good and to punish the bad. That is glory in Judaism. It is not politically correct glory in 1996 America. In 1996 America, it is to have compassion on the wicked.

Perhaps God should’ve had a rehabilitation program for Pharoah. If a politically correct Torah were written, it would be the Lord took Pharoah for therapy. And the Lord saw that he seemed fine, and He let him out. He went before the divine parole board and he said, I’m a new Pharoah. I hate slavery.

I don’t cringe that God drowned these characters in the sea.

The gods of the Pharoahs are believed in by nobody. The God who took the Jews out of Egypt is the God Egyptians believe in.

Here’s an example of the Jewish trait of bitter sarcasm:

As Pharaoh approached, the Israelites looked up, and there were the Egyptians, marching after them. They were terrified and cried out to the LORD. 11 They said to Moses, “Was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert to die? What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt? 12 Didn’t we say to you in Egypt, ‘Leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians’? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!””

Dennis: “This is classic Jewish complaining. It’s eery. Jews have a bitter sarcastic form of complaining. What’s the matter? We didn’t have enough graves in Egypt.

“That’s so classically Jewish as a form of complaint.

“If you wanted tombs, we were in the land of tombs.

“It’s a good line. Jews may complain, but they do it with wit! For this cantaloupe, I had to come here? I could’ve had this cantaloupe at home.

“Not, I don’t like the food. It has to be a bitter dig.

“I don’t know if converts have this. Do you get it when you dip into the mikveh? Does the sarcasm come through the water?

“That’s how you know a true conversion. Do they become bigger complainers than they were prior to the conversion?”

“Five times the Israelites mention Egypt like it was a great place.”

NIV: “Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the LORD will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again.””

Nachum Sarna notes that after the drowning, Egypt is never again mentioned in the Torah. It’s eery.

We are not born free. We work toward being free. Life is to work towards freedom and the Jewish view is that you can’t have freedom without God and law.

That’s why so many modern people are addicted — they have neither law nor God.

NIV 16: 3: “The Israelites said to them, “If only we had died by the LORD’s hand in Egypt! There we sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death.””

This hyperbole. You’re killing me. I’m dying. I’m dead. The Jews are always dying. There’s no little problem. You don’t often hear a Jew say, “It’s not a big deal.”

“It’s not a big deal” is not a Jewish statement. It’s a WASP statement. “I’m dying” is a Jewish statement.

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been noted in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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