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Exodus 10:1-11 (The Plagues of Locusts, Part I)

May 31, 2015   //   by Charlie Garrett   //   Exodus, Exodus Sermons (written), Sermons, Torah, Torah (written)  //  No Comments

Exodus 10:1-11
The Plague of Locusts, Part I

At the time of Pharaoh, he was the leader of the greatest nation on earth. He had complete control over the nation, something he had inherited from a previous Pharaoh who listened to a wise young Hebrew man concerning a devastating famine which was coming upon his land.

Since then, the Hebrew people had been a part of the population and their efforts had continued to make the nation great, having built store cities for it and having remained productive members of the society, even if they remained apart from them culturally.

However, the dynasty of this Pharaoh has become an enemy of the Hebrews instead of their ally. He has continually made decisions which have been harmful to them. In turn, he has only brought hardship on himself. Little by little, his power has been slipping away because of the devastations which the Lord has brought on him.

Today, we will see him continue down this stubborn path and eventually he will come to complete ruin. He has set himself against the Lord and against the Lord’s people, banging his head against an unyielding wall. It is the mark of a true dolt, but it isn’t uncommon in history and it is no different than what is happening in the world today.

Text Verse: “For the Lord’s portion is His people;
Jacob is the place of His inheritance.
10 ‘He found him in a desert land
And in the wasteland, a howling wilderness;
He encircled him, He instructed him,
He kept him as the apple of His eye.'” Deuteronomy 32:9, 10

Pharaoh is stubborn and each time he sets himself against the word of the Lord, he only hurts himself and his people more. If that doesn’t sound like a perfect parallel of our nation today, you probably aren’t paying attention.

How we treat the Lord, how we treat the Lord’s people, and how we respond to His judgments are all gauges of what the future holds for us. This is especially true with the leaders of a nation. They represent that nation and therefore that nation will collectively suffer because of the leader’s decision.

Is it too late for our own land? Only time will tell, but we’ve been warned several times in the past 15 years. How many more warnings do we need? And when the tribulation period comes, it will only be worse. Locusts are coming upon Egypt and they will be coming upon the world of the end times.

This is what the Bible proclaims and this then is exactly what has happened and what will happen. It’s as sure as His superior word. And so let’s turn to that precious word once again and… May God speak to us through His word today and may His glorious name ever be praised.

I. Locusts to Cover the Face of the Earth (verses 1-6)

1 Now the Lord said to Moses, “Go in to Pharaoh; for I have hardened his heart

Chapter 10 begins with the order for Moses to go in once again and confront Pharaoh. In this, He notes that “I have hardened his heart.” There are a few points of interest here. The first is that the “I” is emphatic. Everything thus far has been orchestrated to harden Pharaoh’s heart and so the Lord can be said to harden Pharaoh, even though it has been done passively.

And it’s certain that it is a passive rather than an active hardening because a different word was used than just one verse before. In the final two verses of chapter 9, after the plague of hail was complete, it said –

“And 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. 35 So the heart of Pharaoh was hard; neither would he let the children of Israel go, as the Lord had spoken by Moses.” Exodus 9:34, 35

The order of the words for “harden” in these three verses is kaved, khazaq, and then kaved again. Verse 34 said that Pharaoh is the one who sinned and hardened his heart and it used kaved. Then it said his heart was hard using khazaq. Now it says that the Lord has hardened his heart and kaved is used again.

This may sound unimportant, but it is foundational in understanding what is happening and why these events have come about. We cannot impute wrongdoing to the Lord. It is Pharaoh who sinned. However, He sinned because of his own stubborn heart which the Lord knew would harden through His promptings.

There is both a willful and intentional hardening of Pharaoh through arrogance and yet the behind-the-scenes hardening of the man by the Lord through the steadfast operation of His moral and just nature which increasingly dulls him as well. As this increases, the natural result is that more and greater punishment will be inflicted with each occurrence.

The hardening of Pharaoh’s heart is a reflection of the state of man as he either yields to, or willingly hardens against, the prompting of God, be it through nature or through His word. If we can cling to this when things go bad, we can still proclaim with our lips, “Despite the trial, He is the Lord. I will be obedient and I will not withhold His praise from my lips.”

A close walk with the Lord and a good grounding in His word will keep us from all sorts of unnecessary trials, tribulations, and temptations as we face the troubles that are sure to come our way.

1 (con’t) and the hearts of his servants,

I just read you verse 9:34. Let me read it again –

“And 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.”

It noted the servants in that verse specifically. And now, because of their self-willed hardening, attention is again being brought on them in this first verse of chapter 10. In this case, the word is the same for both instances – kaved. The action of the servants in verse 34 is ascribed to them; the action here in verse 1 is ascribed to the Lord, but the same word is used.

The active actions of the Lord through the plagues have been used to harden the servants’ hearts. And it worked. They actively hardened against the Lord. But even though the plagues were an act of the Lord, they were a passive action in relation to the servants. It seems like hair-splitting, but it isn’t.

Time and time again these words are being introduced to teach us fundamental truths concerning our relationship to our Creator and our responses to His active hand in the world around us. And so, in order to get a clearer picture, let’s remove ourselves from the plagues on Egypt for a second and pretend that it is Florida which gets hit by a catastrophic tsunami.

A staunch believer in the Lord will understand that God is sovereign. He will know he isn’t immune from the catastrophes of nature. If he survives but his entire family is lost, he will naturally be filled with grief. But he will not impute wrongdoing to the Lord. Mournful questions may arise, but they will be from the soft heart of faith.

However, another affected person may have been a nominal Christian or someone who never really considered himself in relation to the Creator. He also loses his entire family and his heart becomes hard towards God, rebellious and angry – even defiant.

And let’s introduce one more person; we’ll call him Al. Al also loses his family, but he sees the destruction as a way that he can profit off of it. And so he willfully denies that there is any God at all through his actions. He begins a crusade to convince the world that the tsunami was the result of man-made global warming which caused the waters to get so hot that they hiccupped.

Each of these three has experienced the same calamity and yet each has responded differently to it. As the Lord is ultimately in control of all events, the catastrophe was allowed by the Lord, and yet the response to Him has had measurably different effects on those who were afflicted by it.

Back to Pharaoh and Egypt – the Lord now once again explains the reason for what He is doing…

1 (con’t) that I may show these signs of Mine before him,

The Lord is sovereign. He has an end purpose for every action He takes, or for every event that He allows to proceed unimpeded. There is no wrongdoing which can be imputed to Him for these things. In the case of the plagues upon Egypt, it is so that He may show his signs before Pharaoh.

The word “signs” is owtot. A sign is given to show something else. They are miracles, but they also serve the purposes of revealing the glory of God, destroying the false objects of worship in Egypt, and showing pictures of future events in redemptive history. All of this and more is tied up in the signs of the Lord.

and 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.”

Even more than what we have already noted is found here in verse 2. The signs have been given for the benefit of future generations to hear, recall, and remember the work of the Lord so that they will know that He is, in fact, Yehovah – the existent One.

The word for “tell” here is saphar. It indicates to count, recount, or relate. The recounting of what occurred in Egypt became a standard among Israel and it has been recounted, year by year, at the Passover, for over 3500 years. The plagues are recounted in the Psalms as well; specifically Psalms 78 & 105, among others.

As Adam Clarke comments on this verse – “It was not to crush the poor worm, Pharaoh, that he wrought such mighty wonders, but to convince his enemies, to the end of the world, that no cunning or power can prevail against him; and to show his followers that whosoever trusted in him should never be confounded.”

The words “I have done” in this verse are based on the verb alal. It is the first of 19 times that it will be used in Scripture and its specific meaning is to “abuse.” This is why some versions more poignantly translate this as “dealt harshly” or “made a mockery” toward those in Egypt.

And this is the intent of the word “Egypt.” It isn’t speaking of the land, but the people in the land. This is evident from the plural pronoun “them” which is used. Further, the intended recipients of the knowledge which is being passed on concerning what occurs in Egypt are obscured in this translation.

It says, “…that you may know that I am the Lord.” This makes it sound like the Lord is speaking to Moses, but the pronoun in Hebrew is plural. All of Israel will see the events. The events will also be recorded by Moses who is the representative of all of Israel. And all of Israel of the future will receive the law through Moses. Thus Israel of all generations is who is being spoken to.

And because the full revelation of God’s word is included in the Christian Bible, the Lord is speaking directly to us as well. Any person, believer or not, who hears or reads the word is expected to assimilate what is said and to respond by acknowledging Him.

So Moses and Aaron came in to Pharaoh and said to him, “Thus says the Lord God of the Hebrews:

This is now the 19th time that the term “Hebrew” has been used in Scripture. It is also the 6th time that the Lord has been identified with the term in relation to them being His people. And finally, it is the last time that the term “Hebrew” will be used until after the exodus of the people from Egypt.

The Lord has identified Himself with them and He is now speaking once again on their behalf for their release.

3 (con’t) ‘How long will you refuse to humble yourself before Me? Let My people go, that they may serve Me.

In verse 9:27, there was a brief moment where Pharaoh had clarity of thought. There he proclaimed, “I have sinned this time. The Lord is righteous, and my people and I are wicked.” Now, just 11 verses later, he is being prepared for further chastening because of his refusal to truly submit and humble himself before the Lord.

Though hardening of Pharaoh has been the intent in the events so far, the ultimate intent of the plagues is to humble, not harden him. The word for “to humble yourself” is l’anot. It means to abase oneself or to submit to another.

Pharaoh has purposely refused to do this, thus the hardening is shown to be a purposeful response to the work of the Lord. If you wonder why someone you know refuses to call out to Jesus for salvation, the same truth applies to them as that which applies to Pharaoh here.

They have willingly refused His calling. So much for the perverse doctrine of “limited atonement” which is espoused by Calvinists! They say that Jesus only died for a certain group of people, the elect, and not for all people. That is false.

The only limit in atonement is what actually occurs among those who believe, not what is potentially offered to all people. Jesus Christ died for all, but not all have received His offer. As the Geneva Bible notes –

“The purpose of affliction is that we humble ourselves with true repentance under the hand of God.” Geneva

Pharaoh has thus far failed to humble himself before the afflictions upon his kingdom, and many obdurate souls walking around the world today have likewise failed to humble themselves before the splendid majesty of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Or else, if you refuse to let My people go, behold, tomorrow I will bring locusts into your territory.

Plague 8 is announced. Like plagues 3 and 4, insects are being used to meet the Lord’s purposes. Also, like plague 7, it is a direct attack against the Egyptian gods Nut, the sky goddess, and Osiris, god of crops and fertility. The gods will be shown false and the captors of Israel will be punished once again.

In addition to this, the coming plague is a precursor to the fifth trumpet judgment upon the earth in the end times. Here is what Revelation 9 says –

Then the fifth angel sounded: And I saw a star fallen from heaven to the earth. To him was given the key to the bottomless pit. And he opened the bottomless pit, and smoke arose out of the pit like the smoke of a great furnace. So the sun and the air were darkened because of the smoke of the pit. Then out of the smoke locusts came upon the earth. And to them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power. They were commanded not to harm the grass of the earth, or any green thing, or any tree, but only those men who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads. And they were not given authority to kill them, but to torment them for five months. Their torment was like the torment of a scorpion when it strikes a man. In those days men will seek death and will not find it; they will desire to die, and death will flee from them.
The shape of the locusts was like horses prepared for battle. On their heads were crowns of something like gold, and their faces were like the faces of men. They had hair like women’s hair, and their teeth were like lions’ teeth. And they had breastplates like breastplates of iron, and the sound of their wings was like the sound of chariots with many horses running into battle. 10 They had tails like scorpions, and there were stings in their tails. Their power was to hurt men five months. 11 And they had as king over them the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon, but in Greek he has the name Apollyon. Revelation 9:1-11

Locusts are noted throughout the Old Testament as well and they are especially highlighted in the book of Joel. Their Hebrew name is arbeh. But the root of that word is what gives substance to their name. It is ravah and means “multiply.”

Thus, the very name, “locust” implies astonishing numbers. In fact, in Joel 2:25, the Lord calls them “My great army.” They are chosen now as an instrument of destruction from the heavens. And there is a reason for this, which is because the previous plague of hail, which was also from the heavens, left some standing vegetation.

The locusts are ordered to come and take care of all that is left. They are a consuming army which literally destroys the earth as they march forward in their ranks. They are used metaphorically for the armies which come against Israel in Joel 2 because, like real armies, they destroy everything in their path. In Joel, the destruction is described poetically –

“A fire devours before them,
And behind them a flame burns;
The land is like the Garden of Eden before them,
And behind them a desolate wilderness;
Surely nothing shall escape them.” Joel 2:3

Anything alive and green at their coming is left completely consumed as they depart. This is how they operate and this is what is now promised to Pharaoh…

And they shall cover the face of the earth, so that no one will be able to see the earth; and they shall eat the residue of what is left, which remains to you from the hail, and they shall eat every tree which grows up for you out of the field.

Grace was given in the previous verse. In essence, if you will humble yourself and let my people go, no further harm will come upon you. Further grace was given by announcing that he had until the next day to comply. And grace is even given in the announcement of the type of plague that will come.

Knowing in advance what would afflict Egypt was not necessary, but as with each previous plagues, it is announced so that Pharaoh could consider and amend his ways. If he chose to not do so, the extent of the plague is minutely described. Thus it is one final note of grace before judgment comes.

The antithesis is therefore given. Release my people who have built your land, or I will send my destroyers to destroy your land. And here is what it will be like… “They shall cover the face of the earth.” The Hebrew here literally says, “the eye of the earth.”

It is a phrase used only three times in the Bible, once here and twice speaking of the immense number of Israelites who were preparing to enter the Promised Land. The plague of locusts would be so thick that the “eye” of the land would be darkened by them.

The term is explained by the next words, “no one will be able to see the earth.”  This is not an exaggeration either. Plagues of locusts have been noted many times in history with so many of them that they are literally 5 or 6 inches deep and they cover a distance of a thousand square miles or more.

Egypt would be so inundated that Pharaoh is told that every green thing left alive would be completely consumed by them. One writer, Stuart Poole, notes that –

“…locusts suddenly appear in the cultivated land, coming from the desert in a column of great length. They fly across the country, darkening the air with their compact ranks, which are undisturbed by the constant attacks of kites, crows, and vultures, and making a strange whizzing sound, like that of fire, or many distant wheels. Where they alight they devour every green thing, even stripping the trees of their leaves. Rewards are offered for their destruction; but no labour can seriously reduce their numbers” Stuart Poole

They shall fill your houses, the houses of all your servants, and the houses of all the Egyptians—

I read several eyewitness accounts of plagues of locusts and some of them were almost horrifying. They not only would get into houses, but they would be so thick that they would fly into the mouth of anyone taking a breath. It would be so dark out that even with candles or torches it would still be dark.

People wrote of the locusts being so hungry that they would eat leather and wood in the houses. Nothing is safe from their onslaught and no matter how many one killed, it wouldn’t be a tiny dent in those left behind. Joel 2:9 describes such a locust plague –

“They run to and fro in the city,
They run on the wall;
They climb into the houses,
They enter at the windows like a thief.” Joel 2:9

6 (con’t) which neither your fathers nor your fathers’ fathers have seen, since the day that they were on the earth to this day.’” And he turned and went out from Pharaoh.

Locusts are not indigenous to Egypt, but they have been known to afflict them many times. As the wind blows, it brings them in from other areas. Pharaoh would probably have been familiar with a swarm of locusts, but now he is told more. The plague coming upon Egypt will be unlike any plague ever seen in the land.

From the time of the first man upon earth until the rising of the sun on the next day, there will have been nothing like it. Whatever Pharaoh imagined would be less than what would come about. The weight of the plague would be utterly immense. And with that final note, Moses stepped out of Pharaoh’s palace, leaving him to consider what he had been told.

You’re a stubborn one, Pharaoh, but you will yield
I will continue to come against you until you do
Next up is locusts to cover Egypt, including every field
And they will be so thick, they’ll come into your houses too

Nothing green will be left unless you humble your heart
And let My people go to serve Me
This advanced warning I do to you impart
But I’m sure that you haven’t yet begun to see

You’re a stubborn one, Pharaoh, but you will yield
Eventually, I know that you will let Israel go
My word has been spoken and it is sealed
What I have said will come about, even so

II. Let the Men Go! (verses 7 & 8)

Then Pharaoh’s servants said to him, “How long shall this man be a snare to us?

Verse 7 now initiates a new phase in the events of the plagues.  Up until now, nobody has been recorded as giving Pharaoh advice, but that now changes. In Exodus 8:19, the magicians acknowledged the plague of lice as “the finger of God.” In Exodus 9:20, it says that certain people “feared the word of the Lord” and acted upon it.

Now, Pharaoh’s own servants have accepted that the words of Moses are, in fact, true. They fully believe that what he says will come about. Thus, they have acknowledged the Power behind the words, Yehovah.

The question in Hebrew is different than it reads in English. It says ad matay yiyeh zeh lanu l’moqesh – “until when shall this be unto us a snare?” There is no noun for “man” here, and so it could be talking about Moses, it could be talking about the situation of the plagues, the reason for the plagues – which is keeping Israel, or the entire scenario as one giant catastrophe.

I would prefer the last option – it is referring to the whole sh’bang. This is the first of 27 times that the word moqesh or “snare” is used in the Bible. The word literally means a snare, such as for catching animals, but it is as often as not used figuratively to indicate something that will lead to destruction.

The next time it is used will be in Exodus 23 when describing the inhabitants of the Promised Land. There it says –

“For I will deliver the inhabitants of the land into your hand, and you shall drive them out before you. 32 You shall make no covenant with them, nor with their gods. 33 They shall not dwell in your land, lest they make you sin against Me. For if you serve their gods, it will surely be a snare to you.” Exodus 23:31-33

The snare at that time is referring to the inhabitants of the land, making a covenant with them and/or their gods, and serving their gods. This is exactly how Israel is now perceived to the Egyptians. Everything about them is a snare that will end in their destruction.

7  (con’t) Let the men go, that they may serve the Lord their God.

From time to time, it needs to be repeated that the words “the Lord” mean literally, Yehovah. It is a pronoun indicating His name, not a title. The force of what the servants of Pharaoh say here is lost without understanding this. They actually say, “Let the men go, that they may serve Yehovah, their God.

They are acknowledging now that Yehovah is the God of the Hebrews and that He is to be served just as Pharaoh would serve his own gods. And so they make a recommendation, “Let the men go.” It does not say, “Let the people go.”

A different word is used here than in verse 11 for “man” and so some scholars try to say that the term “men” is inclusive of all of the people. However, there are 2006 uses of this word for “man” in the Old Testament and I went through most of them. Not one that I found was translated any other way than “man.”

The servants are merely asking for the men to leave to serve Yehovah. It then implies that they would be returning after their time of worship was complete. This is certain because otherwise, the rest of the account makes no true sense.

7  (con’t) Do you not yet know that Egypt is destroyed?”

The words are in the past tense, “Egypt is destroyed.” And yet it isn’t yet destroyed. There is then a sense of fear in the servants concerning the finality of the coming plague for their land and their fortunes. They are not so much guided by their love of Israel as they are by the horror that continued resistance will bring about.

So 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?”

Obviously, the consultation had a partial effect on Pharaoh because Moses and Aaron were brought again into his presence with the grant that they may in fact go to serve Yehovah their God. But even before acceptance can be made, an implied qualification is added into the mix.

The Hebrew provides a wonderfully poetic translation into English. It says mi vami haholekem – “who and who will go with you?” The repetition is a way of asking for a complete description of who is intended to join in the trip into the wilderness.

The counselors had gone so far as to recommend the men leave and so Pharaoh asks his question implying that not everyone will actually be allowed to go. He knew from the plague of frogs that “the people” were to go, but he now wants the ambiguity of that statement removed and a firm answer of who is entailed in the term “the people.” And so Moses now tells him…

And 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.”

The designations given by Moses are all-encompassing. There is no more ambiguity in what is demanded. The first designation is “our young and our old.” These are males. The elders would be in superintendence over the affairs of the feast and the younger would be instructed in the method of the feast for the future.

The “sons and daughters” means that the entire household would be included – obviously if the children went, their mothers would be with them. The “flocks and the herds” meant that not an animal would be left because they were to be the offering to the Lord. Whatever was determined would be offered. To leave any behind would also mean they would be susceptible to theft. All would go.

The entire company of Israel was to participate without exception. But according to the ancient writer Herodotus, this was the custom of the Egyptians as well. The entire family was included in their six annual feasts. Because of this, Moses wasn’t asking for anything that was beyond what Egypt already understood.

It needs to be noted that in just a short time, Israel will observe the Passover. In the instructions for it, there was to be a lamb per household for the Passover meal. Considering that there are 603,550 fighting aged men who will depart, that would be an immense number of lambs.

And at the exodus, a large number of flocks and herds of the people are mentioned as they depart. Thus, there would have been millions of animals ready to head out of Egypt and from under his grasp. He will not be pleased with this thought.

I’m not keen on seeing Egypt ruined even more
And so I will now consider letting you go
You may leave to serve Yehovah, that’s for sure
But who and who will go with you, this I want to know

I’m a generous guy and I’m sure we can agree
You’ll get your request granted and off you’ll go
I hope it’s a grand time, a super festive par-ty
But who and who will go with you, this I need to know

Every one will go, this you must know, dear Pharaoh
The whole group of people known as Israel
And all of our flocks will go too, that is who and who will go, so you know
You have asked and now my words do tell

III. It Looks Like Tomorrow Will be a Bad Day for Egypt (verses 10 & 11)

10 Then he said to them, “The Lord had better be with you when I let you and your little ones go!

All of verse 10 is debatable in its intended meaning. This first portion is obscure. Some look at it as a curse, some look at is as a statement of mockery. Either way, because he has already credited Yehovah with the preceding plagues, he is now blaspheming Him.

The same God who has wrought all of this destruction is being challenged in His demand for service and who the participants of that service will be. His words now all but call out for the plague of locusts to come.

10 (con’t) Beware, for evil is ahead of you.

This second half of the verse is also difficult to interpret. It says ki raah neged penekhem – “indeed evil is before your faces.” It is either a threat – “If you try to leave as you have demanded you will certainly find evil in the punishment you receive.” Or it is an indictment on their character – “I can tell that your heart is bent on evil because your face reflects it quite clearly.”

Either way, Albert Barnes sums up the thought quite nicely –

“Great as the possible infliction might be, Pharaoh held it to be a less evil than the loss of so large a population.” Albert Barnes

In other words, “If letting all of you go is the price of not being plagued, then bring on the plague, because you all aren’t going!”

11 Not so! Go now, you who are men, and serve the Lord, for that is what you desired.”

His words drip with irony because he knows that Moses won’t flinch, and his mind is made up as well. The war of ego is all he can think about at this point. Instead, he tells them that the men can go, but he uses a different word for man. It is geber which implies an adult male. It comes from the verb gabar which means “mighty.”

It is being used by him as an antithesis to the word for “men” mentioned in verse 7. Further, he is inserting it into Moses’ mouth because this word has never been used during the entire dialog. Regardless of what he may have thought Moses meant, it is not what Moses meant.

Along with all of this, there is one more point of irony which is the words “go now.” He is falsely implying that the mighty men may go, but he actually means that these two heroes standing in front of him were to be excused as we see in the final portion of the verse…

*11 (con’t) And they were driven out from Pharaoh’s presence.

This is an indignity that they had not yet suffered. The increasing anger and hardening of Pharaoh has become almost a torrent of rage. He is a troubled man who desperately wants to control the events around him and yet he has no power to do so.

And so he uses his anger to vent his frustrations and to subject his opponents to whatever disgrace is available to him. He had just told them that evil was before their faces, and now the final words say that they have been “driven from the face of Pharaoh.” With this act, He has sealed the fate of Egypt to yet another plague.

It is a hard, painful road he has chosen, but we too have made similar choices of our own. As a people we elect leaders who we intuitively know will bring us temporary relief and long term pain.

As individuals, we may choose a sinful divorce for momentary pleasure in place of staying married and enduring through times of difficulty, which will normally in the end with times of great joy and blessing.

As students we may cheat instead of putting forth the effort to study. As employees, we may find ways of hiding our laziness in order to make our day a little smoother. Whatever it is that is self-centered in our decision-making process, it is almost always the worst possible avenue to pursue.

Pharaoh hasn’t learned this and it has cost him. It will continue to cost him until his kingdom is ruined, his firstborn son is dead, and until he finally perishes beneath the waters of the Red Sea. Following the word of the Lord, being obedient to His commands, and honoring Him with our life and our actions is always the very best course for us to follow.

And there is no greater truth than that which says we must belong to Him in order to be able to please Him. And the only way that can come about is by calling out to Him for forgiveness of sin and reconciliation between the warring parties. If you have never called out to Jesus, please let me tell you what you need to know…

Closing Verse: A wicked man hardens his face,
But as for the upright, he establishes his way. Proverbs 21:29

Next Week: Exodus 10:12-20 (The Plague of Locusts, Part II)

The Lord has you exactly where He wants you. He has a good plan and purpose for you. Even if a deep ocean lies ahead of You, He can part the waters and lead you through it on dry ground. So follow Him and trust Him and He will do marvelous things for you and through you.

Release or Locusts, Take Your Pick

Now the Lord said to Moses
“Go in to Pharaoh; for I have hardened his heart
And the hearts of his servants
That I may before him these signs of Mine impart

And that you may tell in the hearing of your son
And your son’s son the mighty things I have in Egypt done

And My signs which I have done among them by My word
That you may know that I am the Lord.”

So 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 Me in the manner I choose

Or else, if you refuse to let My people go
Behold, I will bring locusts into your territory tomorrow

And they shall cover the earth’s face
So that no one will be able to see the earth
And they shall eat the residue of what is left in this place
Which remains to you from the hail, anything of worth

And they shall eat every tree which grows
Up for you out of the field, anything that shows

They shall fill your houses
The houses of all your servants, all looking for what’s green
And the houses of all the Egyptians
Which neither your fathers nor your fathers’ fathers have seen,

Since the day that they were on the earth to this day
And he turned and out from Pharaoh he went away

Then 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 that Egypt is destroyed from all this fuss?

So Moses and Aaron were brought again to Pharaoh
And he said to them, in a manner unknowing
“Go, serve the Lord your God, even so
Who are the ones that are going?”

And 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, now you have been told

For we must hold a feast to the Lord
This is the command of His spoken word

Then he said to them as we now know
“The Lord had better be with you
When I let you and your little ones go!
Beware, for evil is ahead of you, it’s true

Not 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, there and then
These are the things which have transpired

Pharaoh is a tough nut to crack as we see
He is stubborn to the point of foolishness and ruin
But how often is the same true with you and me
When we let our emotions become our own undoin’

Let’s choose a better path and be obedient to the Lord
Let’s willingly follow Jesus in this life we live
Together let us follow the precepts laid out in His word
And all of our praise and worship, to Him let us give

May peace reign in our hearts, each of us
May our lives be suitable offerings to God
Every moment let us pursue the Lord Jesus
And find contentment on the hallowed path we trod

All our praise we offer to You. O Lord Jesus
You are our Rock, our Light, and the Guide for each of us

Hallelujah and Amen…

 

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