Exodus – Chapter 11

Moses in front of Pharaoh the last time

Tenth Plague: Death Announced

Verses 1-2 – The Hebrews basically were going to plunder the Egyptians. The Hebrews has been plundered for almost 400 years. But there was a greater purpose in asking for these articles from the Egyptians. God gave this favor to the Hebrews.

Verse 7 – Moses reminded Pharaoh that his God made a distinction between Egypt and Israel. The Hebrews only saw the distinction between slavery and freedom. Later on they would be taught laws, principles, and values that would make a difference in being God’s people. God sees us in terms of what we will become and not just what we are right now.

Verses 9, 10 – As we have read about all these plagues we may wonder how Pharaoh could be so stubborn. Pharaoh had made his mind up from the first plague. He couldn’t believe that anyone or anything could be greater than himself. This stubborn unbelief led to his hardened heart. We don’t want a great calamity to drive us to God, but must be open in our hearts and minds to His direction now and maybe we can avoid these calamities.

 

Exodus – Chapter 10

locusts

Eighth Plague: Locusts

Verses 1, 2 – What you tell your children about God and what He has done in your life will be the foundation on which causes your children to believe. Throughout your life there will be times when God made a way when there seemed to be no way. Tell them those things.

Verse 3 – A spirit of pride was on Pharaoh. He would not humble himself to God’s request.

Verse 4 – Swarms of locusts are still dreaded in Africa. They consume all vegetation in sight. This was going to be the worst swarms of locusts Egypt had ever had.

Verse 7 – These officials blamed Moses for their trouble. They also knew if Pharaoh didn’t let them go there would be more trouble to come.

Verses 8-11 – Pharaoh had Moses and Aaron brought back in to prolong the plague by arguing with them. Didn’t work.

Verses 16-20 – Pharaoh didn’t waist any time calling Moses and Aaron back this time. He knew that what the hail had not destroyed the locusts would. Then here he goes again with his fake repentance.

Ninth Plague: Darkness

Verses 21-23 – The Israelite’s had asked for a 3 day journey to go worship. It seems appropriate that the Egyptians should be in darkness for 3 days. But not the Hebrews. They had plenty of light. Pharaoh was said to be the son of the Egyptian sun-god, “Amon-Re.” The Egyptians saw that their gods were no match for a living God of the Hebrews. There’s a great lesson we as Christians can learn from reading about these plagues in the Old Testament. God wants us to know that there is a distinction between those who follow Christ and those who don’t. Our faith and trust belong to the One who controls everything.

Verse 24 – Pharaoh wanted to remain in control. He knew if he kept the livestock that the Hebrews would have to return, but he had forgotten; the Hebrews needed their livestock for sacrifices.

Verses 27-29 – The Hebrews had become free labor for Pharaoh. This was too great an asset for him to just let go. At this point, Pharaoh was done bargaining. Moses and Aaron did see Pharaoh again but secretly (Exodus 12:31).

Exodus – Chapter 9

Hail

Fifth Plague: Disease on the Beast

Verse 1 – By this time, Moses may have grown tired of going before Pharaoh, but he continued to obey God. Don’t give up when difficult circumstances arise in your life. There will be times when we have to face the same thing again and again, but you will discover, that persistence is rewarded.

Verse 4 – Here again, God made a difference between His people and the Egyptians. Nothing would come on the livestock of the Hebrew. Do you know that when you are God’s child that you are shielded from the things of this world? It may not look like it sometimes, but as Christians, we don’t walk through this life by sight! What we see sometimes is in contradiction to what God says about us. We walk by faith in believing God will make it right.

Sixth Plague: Boils on Man and Beast

Verses 10, 11 – Notice that Moses and Aaron stood before Pharaoh, but the magicians could not stand before Moses. The magicians were finished and are not mentioned again in Exodus.

Verse 12 – God gave Pharaoh many opportunities to heed Moses warnings. Warnings from God should be taken very seriously. When something (as in Pharaohs heart) becomes hard, things have an impossibility of penetrating it. God did not override Pharaohs free will. Pharaoh chose to resist God. Sometimes people use the excuse that they are waiting for the right time to turn to God, but the longer they resist His calling, the harder their hearts become and they don’t know it. This is a very scary place to be. If you continue to do so there will come a time when you won’t hear His voice at all any more.

Seventh Plague: Hail

Verses 13-19 – God could have easily just wiped out the Egyptians, but God wanted to show them “there is none like Me!”

Verses 20, 21 – All of the previous plagues must not have wiped out all the livestock. Maybe it stopped before all was destroyed.

Verses 27-34 – Pharaoh did not truly repent. Neither do we, when our actions don’t follow what our words have said. Sometimes people are only sorry at that moment for the way their life is going but within a very short time they have returned to their own way of doing things. True repentance is a total and complete turn-around of doing and thinking.

Verses 31-35 – Now their food source is struck. Pharaoh is a goner by now. No turning back. He is willing to let this Mighty God of Israel come against everything just so he can say that he is in charge.

Exodus – Chapter 8

Plauge of frogs

Second Plague: Frogs

Verses 1-14 – I can’t find where the water was changed back, so maybe it was still blood when the frogs came up out of it. The frogs covered the land, meaning in their houses also, and they stank. Everything is stinking now, blood and the frogs.

Verse 15 – Because of Pharaoh’s stubbornness, his people were suffering. We see this in today’s society also. Leaders live in lavishness of wealth while the people who pay their salaries live in poverty. While persistence is good, stubbornness is usually self-centered. Stubbornness towards God is always disobedience. Watch out because the consequences from this can spill onto others. It’s not just about you.

Third Plague: Lice

Verses 16, 17 – God made all the dust in the land turn into lice. Some Bible scholars say these lice could have been gnats, fleas, mosquitoes, or ticks. I believe they were exactly what God said they were-lice.

Verses 18, 19 – The unintelligent magicians tried to duplicate this act of God, but could not. Why would they want to? They realized this must be “the finger of God.” Too many people today say “If I could just see a miracle, then I will believe God.” This concept blinds them to the exact miracle they are asking for; a life changed by faith in Jesus Christ.

Fourth Plague: Flies

Verse 20 – The water must have been cleared up at some point because God told Moses to meet Pharaoh at the water the next morning where He knew Pharaoh would be.

Verses 22, 23 – Starting with the fourth plague (flies) and all that follow, God would distinguish His people from Pharaoh’s people in order to give knowledge of His sovereign presence. Goshen was in the northeastern part of Egypt. This land was excellent pasture for Israel’s live stock.

Verses 25-29 – Pharaoh thinks he is still in charge by saying, “I’ll let you go sacrifice to your God, but don’t go very far.” When it comes to obeying God, halfheartedness won’t work. The Hebrews had to go far enough away where the Egyptians wouldn’t see them sacrifice animals that they held sacred. Moses was concerned about this.

Verse 32 – Have you or have you known others who as soon as they get what they want or have prayed for, put God on the back burner? They forget where their blessing came from. They forget to continue in faith. They believe the blessing came because of their good performance. They will come to God again at another time, but they forget to give honor where honor is due. Moses got rid of the fleas, so Pharaoh reneged on his part.

Exodus – Chapter 7

Aarons snake swallows others

Verse 1 – Pharaoh thought of himself as a god to Egypt so when God told Moses “See, I have made you as god to Pharaoh” He was making Moses one of Pharaoh’s peers. But Pharaoh did not feel inferior to Moses.

Verses 3-5 – Pharaoh had made life for the Israelite’s difficult or hard so in return God made Pharaoh’s heart “hard.” By this, the Israelite’s and the Egyptians would know that it was not Moses who persuaded Pharaoh to let them go. They would know it was “Yahweh.”

Aaron’s Staff swallows Pharaoh’s Rods

Verses 8-13 – Since the Egyptians worshiped other gods; this included the underworld-the occult. Although miracles can help some believe it is dangerous to rely on them alone. Satan is an imitator of God’s work and can lead God’s people astray. Pharaoh missed the message and focused on the act. We as Christians can avoid this error by knowing Gods word based on faith. No miracle from God will be contrary to His word.

First Plague: Blood

Verses 14-19 – God told Moses to meet Pharaoh in the morning. Pharaoh’s nightmare is just beginning. When our God has a purpose, He accomplishes it completely. All the water in Egypt was turned to blood. No drinking water for animals; plants or people. You can’t survive without water. Evan in their vessels that they used to carry water that they had stored became blood. Anything that lived in the water died and began to stink. The fish was a major food source.

Verse 20 – The Nile River was a major source for the population of Egypt. It stretched 3,000 miles a long land that was mostly desert. Without the Niles water sources Egypt would fail to exist. How far will our God go to get His people free? When you have been wronged, how many people do you think God will go through to bring justice to you?

Verses 22-25 – Then Pharaoh’s magicians did the same thing with their enchantments. I don’t think intelligence was one of the problems these men had. If they were so powerful, why didn’t they turn the blood back to water? Because they couldn’t. So what did this great Pharaoh, the people’s leader do for his people, he went into his house. No one hears from him for 7 days.

Exodus – Chapter 6

Moses speaks to the people

God reassured Moses

Verse 1 – Notice God not scolding Moses for doubting Him? He only encouraged him by telling him what He intended to do. In other words keep doing what I’ve told you to do and believe I will do what I say and keep trusting me and it will happen.

Verses 6-8 – We have the confidence we need to fix small problems. But when big problems come, this gives God the opportunity to show His power, doing what only He can do. He gets the credit and glory. As in the Hebrews situation, big problems put us in a perfect position to watch God give big answers. God’s promises were fulfilled to the letter when the Hebrew’s were delivered out of Egypt. God freed them from slavery, became their God, and accepted them as His people. Sound familiar? When God redeems us from being a slave to sin, He then accepts us and becomes our God. Then He leads us into a new life which becomes our promised land. Wow! And you may have wondered why we need to study the Old Testament? Because God’s plan of salvation is all through it.

Verses 9-12 – When Moses told the Hebrews what God had just said, they were too discouraged to listen. Sometimes a clear message from God is followed by no immediate change in your situation. During these times, others may not want to hear anything encouraging about God. Don’t give up. Remember how hard it must have been for Moses to go back to Pharaoh when his own people had trouble believing him. Anybody can obey God when the task is easy and success seems slim, but only those with persistent faith will obey when the task seems impossible!

Verses 14-25 – Genealogy or family trees were used to establish credentials and authority as well as outlining the history of a family. This genealogy was placed here to identify Moses and Aaron.

Verse 26 – According to their armies meant according to their tribes, clans, or family groups.

Exodus – Chapter 5

Moses goes before Pharoah

Pharaoh Rejects Moses

Verses 1, 2 – Egypt had many gods, but Pharaoh had never heard of this God of Israel. Pharaoh wasn’t the least bit worried of who their God was nor did he intend to obey Him.

Verses 4-9 – Evidently the Hebrews knew that Moses and Aaron were going before the Pharaoh in their behalf so they were not working. They were waiting for an answer. Pharaoh had no respect for their God because he didn’t know Him. The result was more hardship for the Hebrews. Sometimes we do suffer for doing the right thing. Obeying God is not always easy. We have to remember, we live in an evil world and there really are people who hate God’s people and His ways. Straw with mud made the bricks stronger, but now Pharaoh withheld the straw; made them find their own and still wanted the same quota as well.

Israel Rejects Moses

Verses 15-21 – The foremen were caught in the middle. First they tried to get the Hebrews to work harder by beating them, and then they went before Pharaoh who gave no compassion. Last they turned on Moses and Aaron. When pressure surrounds you from all sides, go to God. He has all the answers and has a divine purpose in every situation.

Verses 22, 23 – This may be hard to swallow as a Christian, but sometimes we are not delivered immediately. James 1:2-4, tells us to be encouraged when difficulties come. Why? Because your faith is going to be tested. The testing of your faith produces patience. Patience for what? (1) Patience to trust God for the best for you,(2) Patience to still honor God while in that situation, (3)Patience to remember God has not abandon you, (4)Patience in believing the end result will be God’s best for you. James says let patience have its perfect work, that you, (we) will be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing! Do you realize what James was saying? After you have been tested; testing of your faith can mean, things go from bad to worse; it will produce patience on waiting (without complaining) on God to complete His purpose and when this patience has been perfected, you will be lacking in nothing. In these last two verses of chapter 5, Moses goes before God and complains again. Oh but wait; did God not tell him before hand that Pharaoh was not going to just let his people go on the first request?

Exodus – Chapter 4

Moses tells Aaron and the Elders what God said

“They Will Not Believe Me”

Verse 1 – Moses was over anticipating. I think we all do this to some extent. We sit and think of all the possibilities that could go wrong with the decisions we are going to make. Will this fear stop you from making a decision at all? This is always a good time to insert the trust God has been helping you to build up in Him.

Verses 2-4 – A shepherd’s staff was about a 3 to 6 foot wooden rod with a curved hook at the top. It could be used for walking, guiding the sheep, killing snakes or many other tasks. God can take ordinary things and turn them into an extraordinary purpose. (I was just thinking “Lord please don’t turn anything I got into a snake).”

Verses 6, 7 – Moses learned that God could cure any kind of problem. He saw that God indeed had all power.

Verses 10-13 – It is so easy to focus on our weaknesses. We often use them as excuses when we know God has called us to greater things. (What if, what if, what if……)? But God doesn’t think like we do. Who made your mouth; made our hands; made our entire bodies? Do we think that He won’t equip us to do what He has called us to?

Verses 14-16 – In difficult situations, who do you trust to help you? Why not go to God first. He knows the end from the beginning. God basically told Moses, this is how it’s going to work. I’ll tell you what to tell Aaron, and then Aaron speaks. As Christians, we need to be very careful in what we are saying to the lost. Make sure it’s the words Jesus would choose. We have a tendency sometimes to be a little harsh and judgmental.

Verses 17-20 – Moses clung tightly to the shepherd’s staff on his way to Egypt. As Christians, what do you cling to in order for you to be delivered out of something? How about the written word of God? This is also the first mention of Moses son’s, Gershom and Eliezer.

Verses 21, 22 – Yahweh was claiming here that He, not Pharaoh, had authority over Israel. God (Yahweh) was also demanding proper respect from Pharaoh, by treating His son with respect. Israel was being claimed as the “first born”, a position of privilege. When scripture states that God would “harden Pharaoh’s heart” (stubbornness and obstinacy) it was a matter of judgment against confirmed rebels, not people who wanted to server the Lord. It meant that Pharaoh would not listen and obey but would demonstrate that he deserved God’s judgment. When Pharaoh’s heart becomes hard, he is not cool and in command. The truth about his true character comes into view for all to see.

Verses 24-26 – Circumcision on the eighth day of a son’s birth had been given as a command to Abraham as the sign of God’s covenant. Because of where and how Moses had grown up, he had gotten slack in what the Lord required of him. Zipporah was the one who suddenly told Moses that we better do this or you die. If Moses was going to speak for Abraham’s God, who was in the process of keeping His covenant promises,and then Moses needed to observe the sign of that covenant. You can tell by what Zipporah says that she is not real happy with Moses. She had to perform the act, in order to save her husband and son.

Verses 27-31 – Moses had expecting skepticism from the people, but when God told him what he was about to do, and it was repeated by Aaron to the elders, it was received with belief and faithfulness. Why is it so hard for us as Christians, to believe God’s written word that is said about us, and if we follow Him, what He will do for us? You have to believe in order to receive, if you doubt, you go without.

Exodus – Chapter 3

Burning Bush

Verse 1 – God miraculously appears. What a big contrast for Moses. He had been a prince in Egypt and now he was a Midianite shepherd living in the desert. This must have been a humbling experience for him. Sometimes we will feel all alone but God just might be preparing you for great leadership as in Moses case. The preparation may be some of the hardest times you ever go through, but the results will be so much greater in the reward. (Mount Horeb is another name for Mount Sinai, where God would give the law.

Verse 2 – God may use unexpected sources when communicating to us. Sometimes He uses people, or thoughts, but be willing to listen with expected anticipation.

Verses 3-4 – Many times in the Bible, people experienced God, but not in human form. Abraham saw the smoking fire-pot and blazing torch (Genesis 15:17); Jacob wrestled with a man (Genesis 32:24-29). When the Israelite’s were led from Egypt, God led them by pillars of cloud and fire. God made these appearances to encourage the reliable verbal message.

A verse 5, 6 – To stay at a distance and remove footwear was then and is now in some cultures a sign of respect and humility. Sometimes we need to adjust our attitude when approaching Holy God. How would you approach a King? Our God is not just any king, but the King of Kings.

Verse 8 – The home of the Canaanites is the land of Israel and Jordan today. Canaanite was a term for all the various tribes living in that land.

Verse 10 – When God tells you or shows you where He’s going to take you, He doesn’t always give you the “in the middle” stuff. If He did, it might scare us so bad we wouldn’t do it or go there. Moses had no idea what all he was going to go through to get his people out of Egypt, but he started making excuses anyway. Moses knew he was inadequate by himself, but God wasn’t asking him to work alone. First of all, God was with him, and then he would have Aaron, Moses brother. I don’t believe God calls people who have it all together and that have all the skills to accomplish what God wants. If He did, the person may just get a little pride on them and tell God, “I got this.”

Verses 11, 12 – Self doubt can sometimes stop us from doing what we are called to do. God said “I am with you.” Then God made a promise. On this very mountain that Moses was speaking to God, Moses would return with his people to worship the One who had delivered them. Have you ever started out in a certain place in doubt, only to return to the exact same place full of victory and adoration for being delivered? Sometimes God will use the very thing that has caused you the most heartache to bring you into an abundant blessing.

Verses 13-15 – The Hebrews had been living in Egypt for close to 400 years. These Egyptians had many gods. So you know the culture had rubbed off on the Hebrews. Moses wanted to know God’s name so when he told the Hebrews; they would know who their deliverer was. “I Am” shows the eternal power and unchangeable character of God. This same God is who lives in us today. Hebrews 13:8 says God is the same “yesterday, today, and forever.” Yahweh is derived from the Hebrew word for “I AM.”

Verse 16 – God reminded Moses of His covenant promises to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. What God had promised hundreds of years before, He would fulfill through Moses. God may have promised our father or grandfathers something, but it won’t come to pass until your generation or the next. It has to be in God’s timing. Don’t forget, God can not lie. He will bring His promises to pass when He has everything lined up.

Verse 17 – This phrase “flowing with milk and honey” is a picture phrase expressing the beauty and productivity of the promise land.

Verse 18, 19 – A three-day journey would be far enough away from Egypt to worship and sacrifice to God without the Egyptians being able to criticize what they were doing and be bothered by them. God knows the future and He knew what Pharaoh’s reaction would be. God knows the end result; He knows the reaction others are going to have; and this is why we can trust Him. He is not in shock or surprised when something unexpected happens to us.

Verse 20 – This clause shows cause and effect. God does something and then a result happens. “I will stretch out my hand and he will let you go.”

Verse 22 – This silver, gold, and clothing was not borrowed, it was asked for from the Egyptians and they gladly gave it. They wanted the Hebrews gone. Abraham had left Egypt the same way, (Genesis 12:16, 20 or Genesis 20:14, 16) with an accumulation of wealth that had been given to him.

Exodus – Chapter 2

Moses in the bulrushes

Verses 1, 2 – Although not mentioned yet, this baby is Moses; father, Amran; mother, Jochebed; brother, Aaron; and sister, Miriam.

Verse 3 – Egyptian river boats were made with these same reeds and waterproofed with tar.  These reeds were as tall as sixteen feet.  Thus, this small basket could be hidden and insulated among the reeds.  Moses’ mother knew it would be wrong to destroy her child.  God used this courageous act to place her son in the house of Pharaoh.  Do you ever feel small sometimes in fighting against evil?  Trust God to use your effort, however small, in His war against evil.

Verse 5 – Who was Pharaoh’s daughter? 1) Some think Hatshepsut; husband, Pharaoh, Thutmose II.  She thought this child was a gift from the gods.  Hatshepsut wasn’t able to have children.  Thutmose II had a son by another woman whom would become heir to the throne, or 2) some think this daughter was the child of Ramses II.  He was a cruel Pharaoh who made life miserable for the Hebrews.

Verses 7, 8 – Miriam must have been hiding and saw Pharaoh’s daughter find the baby.  Miriam rushed up to the princess and offered a Hebrew woman’s services to nurse the baby.  The family was reunited.  Be alert for opportunities God gives you, and take full advantage of them.

Verse 9 – God doesn’t need much from us to accomplish His plan He has for our lives.  Focusing on our situation by our human standards may paralyze us because it could seem impossible.  But concentrating on God and His power will help us see the way out.  Believe that our God is a deliverer and He will see us through.

Verse 10 – The child was named Moses – meaning “Because I drew him out of the water.”

Verses 12-14 – Sometimes we do things we think no one will see or find out about.  This is what happened to Moses.  Someone saw him kill this Egyptian.  Sooner or later, doing wrong will catch up with us.  Even if we are not caught in this life, one day we will have to face God.

Verse 15 – Moses ran after Pharaoh found out about him killing the Egyptian. (Can anyone say anger management?)  He ended up in Midian.  Because of this one-act, Moses ended up separated from his family and friends.  It took many years before Moses was ready to serve God.  We may feel isolated sometimes because of something we have done.  Don’t give up!  Trust in the Lord no matter what your past looks like.

Verse 17 – How did Moses help these women? (You can bet he didn’t kill anybody.)

Verse 18 – Reuel is also called Jethro in Chapter 3:1.

Verse 19 – How did they know Moses was an Egyptian?

Verses 20, 21 – The daughters went to get Moses and brought him into their family.  Reuel gave Moses one of his daughters, Zipporah, to be his wife and she bore him a son called, Gershom, which means “I have been a stranger in a foreign land.”

Verses 23-25 – Rescue from God doesn’t always come the moment we want it.  God knows the best time to act.  Everything is in His timing.  He is lining things up and sometimes that takes a good amount of time.  Think about all the things that had to happen: when Moses was born; how Moses was rescued and by whom; Moses losing his temper and having to flee Egypt; living out in the wilderness and being at a well on the day Reuel’s daughters would come to water their sheep, and being taken in by his family and marrying one of the daughters. (In the meantime, the Hebrews started crying out to God to be rescued and God had already risen up a deliverer.)  See how He, God Almighty, works it all out?  Timing is everything.  We just don’t always see it.