Exodus 9-12 Chapter Study
I. The Exodus • Chs. 1-13:16
B. Moses Is Born •
C. Moses’ Call • Ch. 3-4:17
D. Moses’ Return To
E. Moses’ First Encounter With Pharaoh • Ch. 5-6:27
F. Moses’ Second Encounter With Pharaoh •
G. The Plagues •
1. 7:14-25 • The First
2. 8:1-15 • The Second Plague – Frogs
3. 8:16-19 • The Third Plague - Lice
4. 8:20-32 • The Fourth Plague – Flies
Tonight, we have the balance of the 10 Plagues, each of which
was a judgment on the gods and
1Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go in to Pharaoh and tell him, ‘Thus says the Lord [Yahweh] God of the Hebrews: “Let My people go, that they may serve Me.
Repeatedly in the message Moses brought to Pharaoh was the emphasis on the Name of the God of the Hebrews – “Yahweh.”
emphasized God’s name in each audience with Pharaoh so that Pharaoh would
realize this whole thing was not just a
was no mere
So Moses stands before the King of Egypt yet again, and relays the same message from God – “The Hebrews are MY people – not yours! Let them go that they may serve Me;” meaning worship.
2For if you refuse to let them go, and still
hold them, 3behold, 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. 4And the Lord
will make a difference between the livestock of
The ultimatum is delivered –
Pharaoh must relent and let the children of
Pharaoh refused to relent, and the pestilence came.
This plague was directed against the Hathor, a goddess represented by the figure of a cow.
Every cow was held in esteem by the Egyptians because it was a symbol of Hathor.
6So 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. 7Then 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.
It’s curious why Pharaoh would send to see if the plague had happened just as Moses said, and then when it was verified, he still refused to yield.
Pharaoh resistance to the Lord is being proven to be totally without reason!
Pharaoh likely figured, “Well, it’s too late now! The livestock is already dead.”
the Hebrews go at this
that the damage has been done, he might as well keep the children of
What Pharaoh didn’t know or
willfully remained blind to, was that the people
They were suffering for his hard-heartedness and rebellion against God.
so it always is with the rulers of nations – their
8So the Lord
said to Moses and Aaron, “Take for yourselves handfuls
of ashes from a furnace, and let Moses scatter it toward the heavens in the
sight of Pharaoh. 9And 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
There’s a cycle or series of three in the Plagues.
For two plagues, Moses & Aaron appear before Pharaoh and call on him to release the Hebrews; Pharaoh refuses and the plague comes.
Then the third plague in the cycle comes with no word or warning given to Pharaoh – the plague just descends of the land. So it is with this, the 6th plague.
takes ash and scatters it and without warning, all of
The word “boil” is an apt description of this malady.
The Hebrew word means “to burn” and refers to a large, painful sore that gives a burning sensation.
Imhotep, was the Egyptian god of medicine and healing whom this plague was directed against.
The magician-priests were also the medical practitioners and when the boils afflicted them as well it was understood that their medical prowess could not rebuff the judgment of Yahweh.
13Then the Lord said to Moses, “Rise early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh, and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord [Yahweh] God of the Hebrews: “Let My people go, that they may serve Me, 14for at this time I will send all My plagues to your very heart, and on your servants and on your people, that you may know that there is none like Me in all the earth.
Right in the middle of the
Plagues, God sends Moses & Aaron to Pharaoh and the court of Egypt with the
message that all that’s happening to
The gods the Egyptians worship are false, petty, and cannot save them.
Make no mistake, God isn’t
just whooping on the Egyptians to torment them; by these plagues and judgments,
He desires them to realize the im
So He sends these plagues, as it says in v. 14, “to their very hearts” – to the core of their religion, culture, and worldview, so that they might come to their senses and be saved.
As we’ll see, the Egyptians by and large did! It was Pharaoh who remained unyielding to the end.
15Now if I had stretched out My hand and struck you and your people with pestilence, then you would have been cut off from the earth.
Though the plagues have been fierce, God reminds them they could have been worse still.
In fact, it was only the mercy of God that had not wiped out the Egyptians already!
16But indeed for this pur
God tells Pharaoh and the
court of Egypt the reason why they
have become the world’s dominant
had allowed them to rise as the world’s greatest, all so that the children of
The plagues were the birth pains and when it was all said and done – the news that would go forth was that Yahweh, the God of Israel was supreme.
said that it is God who ap
This is a thought that ought to comfort our hearts as we listen to the news, read the newspaper, and our Bibles.
All things are progressing just as God has ordained!
18Behold, tomorrow about this time I will cause very
heavy hail to rain down, such as has not been in
The astute reader will
immediately say, “Wait a minute – in the 5th plague it says all the livestock of
The word “all” in v. 6 doesn’t mean “every last single animal.” It refers to the list of animals given in v. 3; the cattle in the field, horses, donkeys, camels, oxen, and sheep.
Remember, that was a pestilence of some kind, a disease that afflicted the livestock.
Now, it’s the nature of disease to afflict a particular species – rarely does it kill many different types of livestock.
A pestilence that killed a half dozen different kinds of livestock was clearly the judgment of God.
When it says that all the livestock died, it means that many of the animals in each of these 6 groups were killed – but not every last single one of them.
What livestock were left would now be threatened by this horrendous judgment, along with any man, woman, or child who failed to take cover.
20He who feared the word of the Lord among the servants of Pharaoh made his servants and his livestock flee to the houses. 21But he who did not regard the word of the Lord left his servants and his livestock in the field.
Some of the Egyptians have come to the place of accepting Moses and Aaron as the prophets of God and when they speak, hearken to their voice.
With the announcement of the 7th plague, they take action to prepare – and for this, they are rewarded!
God is giving one more proof of His mercy here – “Listen to My Word, and live in light of it, and you’ll know blessing. Reject it at your peril.”
22Then the Lord
said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand toward heaven, that there may be hail in
all the land of Egypt—on man, on beast, and on every herb of the field,
throughout the land of Egypt.” 23And Moses stretched out his rod
toward heaven; and the Lord sent
thunder and hail, and fire darted to the ground. And
the Lord rained hail on the
Many of the Egyptian gods and
There are re
Every so often, sheets of ice will fall from the sky.
think that waters
Whatever the genesis of this hailstorm, it was terrifying!
27And Pharaoh sent and called for Moses and Aaron, and said to them, “I have sinned this time. The Lord is righteous, and my people and I are wicked. 28Entreat the Lord, that there may be no more mighty thundering and hail, for it is enough. I will let you go, and you shall stay no longer.”
Alright! Pharaoh has come to his senses! Notice his confession – “I have sinned this time. The Lord is righteous, and my people and I are wicked.”
He’s saying all the right words. Time for rejoicing, huh? Not quite.
29So Moses said to him, “As soon as I have gone out of the city, I will spread out my hands to the Lord;
This is the
. . . I will spread out my hands to the Lord; the thunder will cease, and there will be no more hail, that you may know that the earth is the Lord’s. 30But as for you and your servants, I know that you will not yet fear the Lord God.”
How did Moses know this? Because God had already told him!
What I find remarkable here
is that in the midst of God’s judgment,
when God’s man prayed in res
There’s something for us to think about as we begin to witness the judgment of God coming on our nation & world.
When people turn and cry out to God for help, rather than just piling on and saying, “You’re only getting your just desserts!” we ought to pray for deliverance.
Yes, speak the truth that God judges the nation that forsakes Him and His ways – but then go on to say that as His people, we will pray for mercy.
In Habakkuk 3:2 we find the prophet of God praying –
31Now the flax and the barley were struck, for the barley was in the head and the flax was in bud. 32But the wheat and the spelt [an inferior strain of wheat] were not struck, for they are late crops.
This plague came in that period when the barley and flax were just getting ready for the harvest.
The wheat crop had some weeks yet to go before it would be ready to harvest.
It was those crops which had full, thick heads which would be most prone to ruin form the hail, so the barley and flax crops were totally lost.
33So Moses went out of the city from Pharaoh and spread
out his hands to the Lord; then
the thunder and the hail ceased, and the rain was not
This will be my text for this weekend so I’ll leave further comment till then.
1Now the Lord said to Moses, “Go in to Pharaoh; for I have hardened his heart and the hearts of his servants, that I may show these signs of Mine before him, 2and that you may tell in the hearing of your son and your son’s son the mighty things I have done in Egypt, and My signs which I have done among them, that you may know that I am the Lord.”
Many people are bothered by v. 1, where God says He hardened Pharaoh’s heart.
as we’ve seen in a couple previous studies and as is perfectly illustrated
here, Pharaoh’s hardening by God comes in res
This is revealed clearly by looking at the last 2 vs. of ch. 9 and the first verse of ch. 10 –
34And when Pharaoh saw that the rain, the hail, and the thunder had ceased, he
sinned yet more; and he hardened his heart, he and his servants. 35So the heart of Pharaoh was hard;
neither would he let the children of Israel go, as the Lord had s
For the first 7 plagues, Pharaoh hardened his own heart against the Lord.
Even though God was striving with Him by his Spirit
and through the clear evidences of His
Now, God stops striving with Pharaoh and honors his choice to resist.
rather than Pharaoh winning the
contest, God, who turns every
situation to good, turns Pharaoh’s op
will move in such a way as to give many generations to come convincing evidence
3So Moses and Aaron came in to Pharaoh and said to him,
“Thus says the Lord God of the
Hebrews: ‘How long will you refuse to humble yourself before Me?
Let My people go, that they may serve
7Then Pharaoh’s servants said to him, “How long shall
this man be a snare to us? Let the men go, that they may serve the Lord their God. Do you not yet know
Though both Pharaoh & his servants have hardened their hearts, the servants now come to the king with the strong suggestion that he let the males among the Hebrews go to worship Yahweh.
They want to offer a compromise arrangement with Moses & Aaron.
tell Pharaoh his
8So Moses and Aaron were brought again to Pharaoh, and he said to them, “Go, serve the Lord your God. Who are the ones that are going?”
This is clever; the king tells them they can, as they have asked, go! Oh, by the way, who do you plan on taking?
Now, Moses had been clear – the entire nation is going, but Pharaoh is angling here to make it look like Moses is being unreasonable.
9And Moses said, “We will go with our young and our old; with our sons and our daughters, with our flocks and our herds we will go, for we must hold a feast to the Lord.”
10Then he said to them, “The Lord had better be with you when I let you and your little ones go! Beware, for evil is ahead of you. 11Not so! Go now, you who are men, and serve the Lord, for that is what you desired.” And they were driven out from Pharaoh’s presence.
Moses tells Pharaoh that
every last person and
Pharaoh acts all surprised and says, “If you intend on taking everyone, then you’d better make sure your Yahweh goes too because I’ll come after you and kill you all! No – the men alone can go – that’s good enough, and if you don’t consent to this, then all bets and deals are off.”
You see, Pharaoh knows that
he’s quickly being cast as the bad guy
in all that’s happened in the on-going contest with the children of
Not only do the Hebrews see him as an evil oppressor, but the Egyptians themselves see him as the cause of the trouble that has destroyed their land and lives.
Pharaoh has to turn the tables and make it look like Moses in the trouble-maker; the cause of the ruin.
He hopes this last piece of negotiation will make Moses appear unreasonable.
Pharaoh says, “You can go worship – you men! But you cannot take anyone else.” Moses says, “It’s all or nothing.”
The tactic Pharaoh takes here reminds me of the negotiations taking place between the Palestinians and the Israelis right now. [Elaborate]
12Then the Lord
said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the
Locusts were and are one of the most dreaded calamities of many parts of the world.
When they descend on a field, they strip it absolutely bear of anything green.
They might eat a few acres and then fly off, but this plague settled over the entire nation!
This plague was a judgment on Seth, the god who protected the crops.
16Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron in haste, and said, “I have sinned against the Lord your God and against you. 17Now therefore, please forgive my sin only this once, and entreat the Lord your God, that He may take away from me this death only.”
The king again appears to be
repentant, and Moses again res
18So he went out from Pharaoh and entreated the Lord. 19And the Lord turned a very strong west wind,
which took the locusts away and blew them into the
Again, God hardened Pharaoh’s
heart in the sense that He accepted the
21Then the Lord
said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness
As the third in the third series of three, this plague is again unannounced.
Chief among the deities the Egyptians worshiped was Ra, the Sun-god.
was their supreme deity and the one they believed had allowed them to rise as
Pharaoh was Ra’s earthly regent, and as such, his embodiment.
plague of darkness would mean Ra’s complete im
This darkness was a
supernatural judgment in which light as a physical property was banished from
22So Moses stretched out his hand toward heaven, and
there was thick darkness in all the
The darkness was so complete,
no one in all
It was a total disorientation because sight was rendered ineffectual.
If you’ve ever taken a tour of a cave and they turn off the lights, you know how unnerving a total absence of light can be.
It’s said that a complete absence of light for more than a few days is enough to make many people go totally insane.
In His mercy, God limited this darkness to just 3 days.
during the entire time, the
What an apt picture of the difference between the home and lifestyle of the lost and the home-life of the people of God.
When the light came back up, Pharaoh again sent for Moses.
Moses arrived to find the king “chillin’ like a villain.”
He’s already got another little scheme cooked up . . .
24Then Pharaoh called to Moses and said, “Go, serve the Lord; only let your flocks and your herds be kept back. Let your little ones also go with you.”
The previous negotiation had been for only the men to go but Moses had demanded all the people be allowed to go.
appears to relent; but he slips in a lesser condition; they must leave their
25But Moses said, “You must also give us sacrifices and burnt offerings, that we may sacrifice to the Lord our God. 26Our livestock also shall go with us; not a hoof shall be left behind. For we must take some of them to serve the Lord our God, and even we do not know with what we must serve the Lord until we arrive there.”
can leave nothing behind, not only they, but all they
Moses says, “We won’t know what or how to worship Yahweh till we get to the place He meets with us. Then He will instruct us in His worship and what it means to be His people. So we must carry everything to Him.”
The deliverance of
they went out of
They left nothing behind – everything went!
In the same way, our salvation covers and concerns everything we have and are.
It isn’t just a “church-thing”, a religious-thing. It’s a life-thing; EVERYthing!
salvation will effect our
Moses said, “When we leave, not a hoof shall be left behind.”
Is that the attitude we have regarding our Christianity?
have we left some hooves in
It’s said that when the Crusaders prepared to launch on their crusade they submitted to mass baptism.
They were taken to the riverside and then would wade en-masse out into the water and dunk themselves when the priest who stood on the bank of the river gave the liturgy of baptism.
But as they went under the water, each held his sword hand above his head so it would not be baptized.
They wanted to be saved – but did not want that salvation to extend to the way they made war.
wanted to rape, pillage and kill, and knew that the teachings of Christ and the
true Christian faith did not sup
They thought they could have saved souls but wicked hands.
There is no such thing – A wicked hand is a sign of an evil soul.
A saved soul produces a sanctified hand.
Are there any hooves you’ve
27But the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he would not let them go. 28Then Pharaoh said to him, “Get away from me! Take heed to yourself and see my face no more! For in the day you see my face you shall die!”
In his hardened rebellion, Pharaoh uses Moses’ seeming refusal to compromise as the basis for breaking off negotiations altogether!
The man Moses is clearly unreasonable – so Pharaoh says he will deal with him no more.
In fact, if Moses ever comes to him again, it’s curtains!
29So Moses said, “You have s
1And the Lord
said [really, “had
said”] to Moses, “I will bring one more
plague on Pharaoh and on
Vs. 1-3 give us a little behind the scenes information about what God had revealed to Moses.
told him there would be one final plague and then Pharaoh would not only let
the children of
told Moses that the people of
It was the bondage of Hebrews which had enriched them, therefore it was only right that they pay them for their service.
In v. 4, we return to Moses & Aaron as the stand before Pharaoh during that last interview following the 9th Plague.
4Then Moses said, “Thus says [Yahweh] the Lord: ‘About midnight I will go out
into the midst of Egypt; 5and all the firstborn in the land of Egypt
shall die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sits on his throne, even to the
firstborn of the female servant who is behind the handmill,
and all the firstborn of the animals. 6Then there shall be a great
cry throughout all the land of
Moses was angry because of the incredible and useless loss of life Pharaoh was bringing on his people – and all because he was a stubborn man who would not surrender to God.
9But the Lord
said to Moses, “Pharaoh will not heed you, so that My
wonders may be multiplied in the
Not until the 10th and final plague which we come to in chapter 12.
But that brings us to the institution of the Passover and some absolutely incredible stuff that is just too good and too much so we’ll leave it for next week.
 Guzik, David, On-Line Commentary on Exodus