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Ten Plagues Upon Egypt Essay Research Paper

Ten Plagues Upon Egypt Essay, Research Paper

To escape punishment for killing an Egyptian, Moses ran away to Midian, where he

met and married the daughter of a shepherd. During that time, the king of Egypt

died, and the Israelites called out to God in their suffering. In the past, God

had made a covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob concerning the fate of them

and their descendants, and the time had come for Him to rescue them. While Moses

was tending his father-in-law’s sheep, he led the sheep through the desert until

they arrived at Mt. Horeb. There, the angel of the Lord appeared to Moses in the

form of flames from a bush. The Lord told Moses that He saw the misery that the

Israelites were suffering at the hands of the Egyptians, and would come and

rescue them. He instructed Moses to go to the Pharaoh, ask that the Israelites

be freed, and then lead them out of Egypt and into the land of the Canaanites.

When Moses objected that neither Pharaoh nor his own people would support him,

God let him know that He knew Pharaoh’s heart would harden against Him, so He

would show His power to the Egyptians by raining down calamities against them.

This display of anger for the Egyptians who refused to follow His will was

manifested in ten plagues. God, working through Moses and Aaron, brought misery

after misery upon Pharaoh and the Egyptians. 1. The first plague involved

changing the water of the Nile River into blood. Moses warned Pharaoh that

unless he let the Israelites go to worship God, the river would turn to blood,

the fish would die, the water would stink, and the people would not be able to

drink. Even the water stored in jars would turn to blood. Pharaoh disobeyed, and

God let loose his wrath. Pharaoh hardened his heart as God had said, and walked

back into his palace. 2. The second plague occurred seven days later. When the

Pharaoh refused yet again to obey God, the Lord brought frogs out of the land.

They filled the Nile, and every home, bed and oven. Pharaoh then agreed to free

the Israelites if God removed the frogs. God caused the frogs to die the next

day, but Pharaoh hardened his heart and broke his end of the agreement. God then

sent a third plague. 3. Everywhere throughout Egypt, the Lord changed dust into

gnats. They covered men, animals and all of the land. Even Pharaoh’s magicians

saw this was the work of God, but Pharaoh still would not listen. God knew this

was going to happen and sent Moses to Pharaoh to demand freedom, or a fourth

plague would descend upon him and his people. Like before, he refused. 4. This

fourth plague brought flies over the entire land, except for Goshen, which was

where the Israelites lives. Moses had gone and warned Pharaoh of this, and let

him know that Goshen would be spared to prove God’s power to the Pharaoh. When

the flies came, they poured into the palace and the homes of Pharaoh’s

officials. They covered the land and ruined it. Pharaoh again agreed to free the

Israelites so that they could go to the desert and make sacrifices to worship

God, but only if the flies were taken away. Again, a deal was made, and God

caused every last fly to leave. Yet once again, Pharaoh hardened his heart and

would not let the people go. 5. Then the Lord sent Moses to warn Pharaoh of a

fifth plague, in which all of Egypt’s livestock would die, but not the

Israelite’s. Pharaoh chose not to obey, and the next day, God brought His

plague. Pharaoh sent his men to investigate the livestock of the Israelites, and

even though he saw that not one was harmed, he still disobeyed God. 6. God then

created a sixth plague, the plague of boils, to sweep across the land. Moses

took soot from the furnace and tossed it in the air before the Pharaoh, It

became fine dust over the whole land and on every man and animal that it landed

on caused a terrible outbreak of boils, but Pharaoh still refused to free the

Israelites. 7. At this point, God instructed Moses to go once again to Pharaoh,

only this time the punishment for disobedience would be even greater. Moses was

to tell Pharaoh that God had given him many chances to let His people go, and

now He would display His true power. A hailstorm unlike any seen before would

fall upon Egypt. The next day, a tremendous hailstorm struck Egypt. Lightning

flashed through the sky, and every man and animal outside was killed, all crops

were beaten down, and all trees were stripped bare. Only Goshen was spared.

Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron and told them he had sinned and was wrong. He

would allow the Israelites to leave if Moses would pray and end the storm. Moses

said that he would, but he knew that Pharaoh still did not fear God. He left the

city and spread his hands toward the Lord. The storm ended, and Pharaoh saw this

and again hardened his heart even further. 8. God instructed Moses to go to

Pharaoh once more. He explained how he had deliberately hardened Pharaoh’s

heart, and those of his officials, so that he could perform these miracles,

which were to be retold to his descendants. Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and

warned him that if he refused to free their people, a plague of locusts would

enter the country. Pharaoh’s officials told him to let the people go, as Egypt

was ruined. Pharaoh agreed, but would only allow the men to go; no women and

children would leave. Moses protested that all had to come as they were to

celebrate a festival to the Lord. Pharaoh refused him and drove them away. Moses

stretched out his staff over the land as God instructed him to do, and a wind

from the east blew across the land all day and all night. By the morning, the

wind had brought locusts. They covered all of Egypt. There were so many that the

ground was blackened. They ate all that was left after the hailstorm, everything

in the fields, every fruit left on the trees. No plant or tree was left in all

of Egypt. Quickly, Pharaoh summoned Moses and admitted his sin. He would allow

the people to go, if this plague would leave. Moses prayed to the Lord, and a

west wind blew in, which caught up the locusts and blew them into the Red Sea.

God then hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he refused to let the Israelites go. 9.

Then the Lord told Moses to stretch his hand toward the sky and darkness would

spread over Egypt. Moses did this, and complete darkness covered all of Egypt

for three days. No one could see anything or leave their homes, except for the

Israelites, who had light in the places they lived. Pharaoh called for Moses and

told him to go and worship God. Even the women and children could go, but the

animals had to stay behind. Moses insisted that the animals come too, because

sacrifices and offerings had to be made. Pharaoh refused and became angry. He

told Moses to leave and never appear in front of him again. Moses agreed and

told him he would never see him again. 10. God spoke to Moses again, and told

him that He would send one more plague down on Egypt, after which the Israelites

would not only be freed, but also driven out completely. For this reason, they

were to go to their neighbors and ask for silver and gold. God made the

Egyptians kind toward the Israelites so that they would give these items to

them. Then he instructed him on the final plague. On the tenth of the month, the

people of Israel were to gather firstborn male lambs and on the fourteenth they

were to slaughter them for food and smear their doorframes with their blood. On

that night, the Lord would pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn

male, both men and animals, and would bring judgment against the Egyptian gods.

The blood on the doors would be a sign to Him of the Israelites, and this

horrible plague would pass over them. God gave them further instructions on what

to eat and what not to, and how else to observe this event. This was to

represent a lasting festival to the Lord for all future generations. It was to

be a day to commemorate. Moses explained this to the elders of Israel and

instructed them that this was a lasting ordinance for them and all their

descendants. Once they entered the land the Lord had promised, they were to

observe this ceremony. The Israelites bowed down, worshiped, and did as the Lord

commanded. At midnight, the Lord killed all the male firstborn in Egypt. Not

even the son of Pharaoh was spared. Pharaoh, his officials, and every Egyptian

woke up in the middle of the night and a loud wailing was heard over the land.

There was not one household without someone dead. During that night, Pharaoh

called for Moses and Aaron and told them to hurry and leave as they requested.

The Egyptians were frightened that they would die if the Israelites remained and

hurried them on their way with gold and silver, just as God had planned. They

journeyed from Rameses to Succoth where they received further instruction from

God concerning Passover. The Israelites did as commanded, and on that same day

they were brought out of Egypt.

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