The Plagues Begin
- Remember, God prepared everyone for what was going to happen. He told Moses, Pharaoh, and the Children of Israel.
- God warned the Children of Israel that Pharaoh will harden his heart and refuse to let the people go.
- The purpose of the plagues was for the one, true God, to totally discredit the major gods of the people of Egypt. He took what they worshipped and made them detestable. He took what the Egyptians thought were a blessing and made them a curse.
- God challenged their (and Pharaoh’s) arrogance.
Exodus 18:8-12 NKJV (8) And Moses told his father-in-law all that the LORD had done to Pharaoh and to the Egyptians for Israel’s sake, all the hardship that had come upon them on the way, and how the LORD had delivered them. (9) Then Jethro rejoiced for all the good which the LORD had done for Israel, whom He had delivered out of the hand of the Egyptians. (10) And Jethro said, “Blessed be the LORD, who has delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians and out of the hand of Pharaoh, and who has delivered the people from under the hand of the Egyptians. (11) Now I know that the LORD is greater than all the gods; for in the very thing in which they behaved proudly, He was above them.” (12) Then Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, took a burnt offering and other sacrifices to offer to God. And Aaron came with all the elders of Israel to eat bread with Moses’ father-in-law before God.
Numbers 33:3-4 NKJV (3) They departed from Rameses in the first month, on the fifteenth day of the first month; on the day after the Passover the children of Israel went out with boldness in the sight of all the Egyptians. (4) For the Egyptians were burying all their firstborn, whom the LORD had killed among them. Also on their gods the LORD had executed judgments.
Isaiah 19:1 NKJV (1) The burden against Egypt. Behold, the LORD rides on a swift cloud, And will come into Egypt; The idols of Egypt will totter at His presence, And the heart of Egypt will melt in its midst.
Religion of Egypt
To the Egyptians, everything that had life in it was a god to them.
- Major gods were light and water.
- The Nile River and the Sun were worshipped every morning.
- Minor gods were sustained by light and water. (fish, snakes, beetles, bugs, cows, etc.)
The plagues begin:
Exodus 7:14-25 NKJV (14) So the LORD said to Moses: “Pharaoh’s heart is hard; he refuses to let the people go. (15) Go to Pharaoh in the morning, when he goes out to the water, and you shall stand by the river’s bank to meet him; and the rod which was turned to a serpent you shall take in your hand. (16) And you shall say to him, ‘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! (17) 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.” ‘ ” (19) Then the LORD spoke to Moses, “Say to Aaron, ‘Take your rod and stretch out your hand over the waters of Egypt, over their streams, over their rivers, over their ponds, and over all their pools of water, that they may become blood. And there shall be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, both in buckets of wood and pitchers of stone.’ ” (20) And Moses and Aaron did so, just as the LORD commanded. So he lifted up the rod and struck the waters that were in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh and in the sight of his servants. And all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood. (21) The fish that were in the river died, the river stank, and the Egyptians could not drink the water of the river. So there was blood throughout all the land of Egypt. (22) Then the magicians of Egypt did so with their enchantments; and Pharaoh’s heart grew hard, and he did not heed them, as the LORD had said. (23) And Pharaoh turned and went into his house. Neither was his heart moved by this. (24) So all the Egyptians dug all around the river for water to drink, because they could not drink the water of the river. (25) And seven days passed after the LORD had struck the river.
The first three plagues, the land of Goshen was affected. This is because there were many of the Israelites that did not believe God and put their trust in Him. But after these, they did.
Pharaoh’s heart was already hardened but when he saw that his magicians could do the same thing that Aaron did, his heart grew harder.
All Pharaoh had to do was to repent and this would end immediately but he let it go on for seven days. Why, because he did not care about his people; he only cared about his ego, pride, and reputation.
This was a curse to the people. Jesus’ first miracle was to turn water into wine, which is a type of the blood and it was a blessing to the people.
Exodus 8:1-15 NKJV (1) And the LORD spoke to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh and say to him, ‘Thus says the LORD: “Let My people go, that they may serve Me. (2) But if you refuse to let them go, behold, I will smite all your territory with frogs. (3) So the river shall bring forth frogs abundantly, which shall go up and come into your house, into your bedroom, on your bed, into the houses of your servants, on your people, into your ovens, and into your kneading bowls. (4) And the frogs shall come up on you, on your people, and on all your servants.” ‘ ” (5) Then the LORD spoke to Moses, “Say to Aaron, ‘Stretch out your hand with your rod over the streams, over the rivers, and over the ponds, and cause frogs to come up on the land of Egypt.’ ” (6) So Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt, and the frogs came up and covered the land of Egypt. (7) And the magicians did so with their enchantments, and brought up frogs on the land of Egypt. (8) Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron, and said, “Entreat the LORD that He may take away the frogs from me and from my people; and I will let the people go, that they may sacrifice to the LORD.” (9) And Moses said to Pharaoh, “Accept the honor of saying when I shall intercede for you, for your servants, and for your people, to destroy the frogs from you and your houses, that they may remain in the river only.” (10) So he said, “Tomorrow.” And he said, “Let it be according to your word, that you may know that there is no one like the LORD our God. (11) And the frogs shall depart from you, from your houses, from your servants, and from your people. They shall remain in the river only.” (12) Then Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh. And Moses cried out to the LORD concerning the frogs which He had brought against Pharaoh. (13) So the LORD did according to the word of Moses. And the frogs died out of the houses, out of the courtyards, and out of the fields. (14) They gathered them together in heaps, and the land stank. (15) But when Pharaoh saw that there was relief, he hardened his heart and did not heed them, as the LORD had said.
Pharaoh waited until tomorrow for deliverance because he wanted to see if his magicians could do anything about this.
They had duplicated the snakes, the blood and now the frogs. After this plague, they could no longer duplicate what God was doing.
Their power was limited because they could duplicate the problem but they could not get rid of it. They could not provide the answer. Satan can contribute to the problem but he has no power to bring deliverance or the answer.
These plagues were so disgusting to the people of Egypt because for their day, they were a very clean people as compared to other civilizations. They used spices and bathed quite often. That is when Pharaoh’s daughter found Moses – when she was taking a bath.
Exodus 8:16-19 NKJV (16) So the LORD said to Moses, “Say to Aaron, ‘Stretch out your rod, and strike the dust of the land, so that it may become lice throughout all the land of Egypt.’ ” (17) And they did so. For Aaron stretched out his hand with his rod and struck the dust of the earth, and it became lice on man and beast. All the dust of the land became lice throughout all the land of Egypt. (18) Now the magicians so worked with their enchantments to bring forth lice, but they could not. So there were lice on man and beast. (19) Then the magicians said to Pharaoh, “This is the finger of God.” But Pharaoh’s heart grew hard, and he did not heed them, just as the LORD had said.
We begin to see the protective hand of God over His people in the land of Goshen for the remainder of the plagues.
The protection started as the people began to commit their hearts to the LORD as a whole and believed Him.
This is why that just because you might go to church does not enable you to receive and walk in the blessings of God. These become available to us as we surrender our lives to the Lord and believe Him.
When we disobey God, it is not that God withdraws His protection; it is because we walk out from underneath it, like an umbrella.
Psalms 91:1 NKJV (1) He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
This is the place of relationship and fellowship with God.
1 John 1:7 NKJV (7) But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.
Psalms 91:8-10 NKJV (8) Only with your eyes shall you look, And see the reward of the wicked. (9) Because you have made the LORD, who is my refuge, Even the Most High, your dwelling place, (10) No evil shall befall you, Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;
(Moses wrote Psalm 90-91 after the plagues of Egypt.)
Four Things That Will Keep You Under the Shadow of the Almighty:
- Living by Faith in God
Hebrews 11:6 NKJV (6) But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
Stay in the Word of God.
- Walk in forgiveness.
Mark 11:25-26 NKJV (25) “And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. (26) But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.”
- Ignorance of the will of God.
1 John 5:14-15 NKJV (14) Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.(15) And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.
- Keep your heart pure before God and people.
James 5:16 NKJV (16) Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
The fourth plague was flies, cockroaches, and beetles.
Exodus 8:20-32 NKJV (20) And the LORD said to Moses, “Rise early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh as he comes out to the water. Then say to him, ‘Thus says the LORD: “Let My people go, that they may serve Me. (21) Or else, if you will not let My people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies on you and your servants, on your people and into your houses. The houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground on which they stand. (22) And in that day I will set apart the land of Goshen, in which My people dwell, that no swarms of flies shall be there, in order that you may know that I am the LORD in the midst of the land. (23) I will make a difference between My people and your people. Tomorrow this sign shall be.” ‘ ” (24) And the LORD did so. Thick swarms of flies came into the house of Pharaoh, into his servants’ houses, and into all the land of Egypt. The land was corrupted because of the swarms of flies. (25) Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron, and said, “Go, sacrifice to your God in the land.” (26) And Moses said, “It is not right to do so, for we would be sacrificing the abomination of the Egyptians to the LORD our God. If we sacrifice the abomination of the Egyptians before their eyes, then will they not stone us? (27) We will go three days’ journey into the wilderness and sacrifice to the LORD our God as He will command us.” (28) So Pharaoh said, “I will let you go, that you may sacrifice to the LORD your God in the wilderness; only you shall not go very far away. Intercede for me.” (29) Then Moses said, “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.” (30) So Moses went out from Pharaoh and entreated the LORD. (31) And the LORD did according to the word of Moses; He removed the swarms of flies from Pharaoh, from his servants, and from his people. Not one remained. (32) But Pharaoh hardened his heart at this time also; neither would he let the people go.
The Land of Goshen was spared because the people obeyed and believed God.
The fifth plague will be a deadly fever in the livestock that wipes out the livestock.
Exodus 9:1-7 NKJV (1) Then the LORD said to Moses, “Go in to Pharaoh and tell him, ‘Thus says the LORD God of the Hebrews: “Let My people go, that they may serve Me. (2) For if you refuse to let them go, and still hold them, (3) behold, the hand of the LORD will be on your cattle in the field, on the horses, on the donkeys, on the camels, on the oxen, and on the sheep—a very severe pestilence. (4) And the LORD will make a difference between the livestock of Israel and the livestock of Egypt. So nothing shall die of all that belongs to the children of Israel.” ‘ ” (5) Then the LORD appointed a set time, saying, “Tomorrow the LORD will do this thing in the land.” (Time to repent) (6) So the LORD did this thing on the next day, and all the livestock of Egypt died; but of the livestock of the children of Israel, not one died. (7) Then Pharaoh sent, and indeed, not even one of the livestock of the Israelites was dead. But the heart of Pharaoh became hard, and he did not let the people go. (Remember, in the wilderness, the Children of Israel made a golden calf – this animal was worshipped)
The sixth plague was boils and festering blisters. (Keep in mind the people are very clean and vain)
Exodus 9:8-12 NKJV (8) So the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, “Take for yourselves handfuls of ashes from a furnace (where the bricks were made), and let Moses scatter it toward the heavens in the sight of Pharaoh. (9) And it will become fine dust in all the land of Egypt, and it will cause boils that break out in sores on man and beast throughout all the land of Egypt.” (10) Then they took ashes from the furnace and stood before Pharaoh, and Moses scattered them toward heaven. And they caused boils that break out in sores on man and beast. (11) And the magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils, for the boils were on the magicians and on all the Egyptians. (12) But the LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh; and he did not heed them, just as the LORD had spoken to Moses.
This was so bad because the Egyptians were such a clean people.
Notice the Lord took the restraints off and allowed Pharaoh’s heart to become fully hardened.