Loyalty Makes Even the Sky Open
It is typical of empires to consider their subjects weak and lazy, and make them work harder to prevent that in the gaps of non-work the desire for freedom or the desire for a different God than the Pharaoh should filter in. For the emperors, their workers only work when they feel the prod of the slave-masters on their back. Today in many (but not all) regions of the world, there are no emperors anymore, but it is very common to see leaders who multiply the tasks of workers and force them to spread all through the land of Egypt in search of the missing ‘straw’. Stress and discomfort increase in the places of work, and it is still thought that work is not hard enough in the fields and incentives are not well designed. Nestled within this episode of Exodus, we also encounter the first protest of managers mentioned in the Bible, that of the ‘foremen’. It is among the most beautiful protests and one of the most important ones of the entire Scripture, because it contains valuable messages for all managers of enterprises, institutions and communities, of all times.