This is an article that was left in my draft for a long time, and was a follow up on the study of 10 plagues that God has landed into the land of Egypt. Recently i decided to make edits to it.

To many readers of the old testament the God of the old testament has a lack of love, full of violence. Some may even accuse God of showing bias toward the Israelites. But actually, the story of Moses and the 10 plagues is the best illustration on how God executes his justice in the old testament. Many people like to point the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, Jericho as well as the massacre of the Amalekites as evidence of Gods violence against human beings. However those records of Gods punishment are much less in details compared to the execution of the ten plagues onto the land of Egypt.

Before we start to point finger at God.. lets us now discuss how the Plagues begin

The Start Of The 10 Plagues

“The LORD God of the Hebrews has sent me to you, saying, “Let My people go, that they may serve Me in the wilderness”; but indeed, until now you would not hear! Thus says the LORD: “By this you shall know that I am the LORD. Behold, I will strike the waters which are in the river with the rod that is in my hand, and they shall be turned to blood. 18 And the fish that are in the river shall die, the river shall stink, and the Egyptians will loathe to drink the water of the river.”‘” – Moses (Ex 7:16-18)

The 10 plagues did not start because God wanted to flex his muscle before the Egyptians, rather it began with Pharaoh’s disobedience. There are some people that argued that it was Gods plan to harden the heart of the Pharaoh (Ex 7:3, 4:21). But let us take a step back and think, about this. “Did God made his heart harden?” or “Did God just allow Pharaoh to remain harden in his heart?” As I have describe in the last post, Pharaoh had a reason to disobey God. There was nothing alluring about Hebrew servants, but it is more about his status as the sun of Ra. If he is seen to be submitting to a unnamed God of the Hebrew, it will bring political problems into his kingdom.

Moreover, Pharaoh believed that the gods of the Egyptians will protect them from the God of the Hebrews, therefore he remain defiant throughout the 10 plagues.

Therefore, because Pharaoh has chosen in his heart to disobey God, so God decided to start the 10 plagues according to his earlier warning to the Pharaoh. Sometimes when Calamity falls on people, perhaps it is time for us to reconsider whether the calamity was a result of our disobedience to God. God sent his ambassadors (Moses and Aaron) to the Pharaoh but Pharaoh choose to disobey, therefore can we now blame God for executing the consequences? Bearing in mind that is is not just the Pharaoh’s decision but it is a decision of the courts and the magicians who were with the Pharaoh.

The first few plagues are targeted at the Hebrews as well.

In fact, God allowed the plagues to happen to all who disobeyed him. Why would I say it? Let us all take a look at some facts about the 10 plagues that we usually ignore.

Among the ten plagues

1. Water turn to blood (Ex 7:22) : Israelites w:ere deprive of drinking water as well
2. Frogs (Ex 7:25-8:15) : Frogs invaded the house of the Israelites living in Goshen as well
3. Lice (Ex 8:16-19) : The same lice attacked the Israelites in Goshen as well.

4. Flies

Do take note that only the 4th plague God made a distinction between the land of Goshen which the Israelites stayed (Ex 8:22-24). So, it would be unfair to God to say that he specially protected the Israelites from the plague.

Some of you may wonder, why then did the Lord punished the Israelites, what did they do to incur Gods wrath. Lets take a look at the reason behinds God punishing them.
a. The Israelites do not trust Moses, despites God giving Moses the sign. this can be seen at the incident of the Bricks without straw (Ex 5:1-17) They treated Moses with contempt (Ex 5:19-21)
b. The Israelites are faithless, they believed Moses initially (Ex 4:29-31). Yet they lost their faith when the Pharaoh started to be nasty.

In my opinion, during the time of the plagues, the faith of the Israelites must have went thought tremendous re-examination. It is during this time where they found that their faith is lacking, and therefore repented from their faithlessness. When they are reconciled with God, God immediately stopped his punishment upon them. however, the Egyptians hard heartedness clause God to continue to punish them.

Therefore my friends, when we consider the calamities that before us, if we were to discover that the calamities that befall us are indeed a result of our disobedience and faithlessness. We ought to quickly turn back and return to our God. Let us heed the advice of Moses to the Pharaoh

“Indeed I am going out from you, and I will entreat the LORD, that the swarms of flies may depart tomorrow from Pharaoh, from his servants, and from his people. But let Pharaoh not deal deceitfully anymore in not letting the people go to sacrifice to the LORD.” – Moses (Ex 8: 29)

Let us make the same mistakes as the Pharaoh who harden his heart. (Ex 8:32).

The Result of Turning Back To God

5. Livestock diseased

By the fifth plague, where there are diseased livestock, we can see Gods protection go beyond just protecting the people. When the plague started, the livestock of the Egyptians and the Pharaoh were all diseased and are dead. The Pharaoh assumed that the Hebrews livestock would die as well However, when he sent his men to check. All the livestock of the Hebrews were unharmed (Ex 9:7)

That is when the Pharaoh understand that the God of the Hebrews is a God that watches over everyone who put their trust into him.

So are we looking for grace from God? But when calamity strikes, do we now murmur against God and saying God doesn’t love us anymore? Actually the there are times where God uses calamity to remind us how far our faith has fallen. Over here God allowed the first 3 plagues to fall on the Israelites so that they would re-examine their faith. But we can be assured that when God gave a calamity, he will know how much his people can handle. Just like 1 Cor 10: 13 which reads

“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.” – Paul 1 Cor 10:13.

God will always provide a way of escape, in trials and temptation, one of the easiest way to escape is to repent before God and reexamine our faith.

One of the purpose of the 10 plagues is to turn the Israelites from the servant to the Pharaoh to a servant of God. Hence you always read God saying this “Let my people go and worship me”. Exodus doesn’t just record Israelites leaving Egypt, but it also records how God reform the faith of the Israelites and he does so by punishing both Egyptians and Israelites alike when they disobey God

Our God is a just God

Just like suffering have change the Israelites hearts and thinking.. and allow them to begin their journey of faith. Likewise now God has called out to his believers in the last days

“Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and has become a dwelling place of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird! For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth have become rich through the abundance of her luxury.” – angel in Rev 18:1-3

“Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues. For her sins have reached to heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities. Render to her just as she rendered to you, and repay her double according to her works; in the cup which she has mixed, mix double for her. In the measure that she glorified herself and lived luxuriously, in the same measure give her torment and sorrow; for she says in her heart, ‘I sit as queen, and am no widow, and will not see sorrow.’ Therefore her plagues will come in one day-death and mourning and famine. And she will be utterly burned with fire, for strong is the Lord God who judges her. ” angel in Rev 18:4-8

We are living in the world where God is about to show his justice to, the ancient Egypt and Babylon is a representative of our modern, “civilised” world. Will we now begin our journey of faith, and depart from that city? Likewise we must reform our faith, and depart from Egypt.

Advertisements