The next plague, darkness is the second one that God does not warn Pharaoh about, the darkness just comes over the land. We can recognize darkness because it contrasts so vividly with the light. For us, Jesus is the light of the world, and it is only through him that we come out of our personal darkness and into the light of His love.
The Egyptians had elaborate rituals to ensure that the sun would rise, they prayed to the god ra, and prayed prayers at dawn, noon, sunset, and midnight to ensure the safe passage of the sun god around the earth is his chariot. So this plague of darkness is pointing out the weakness of ra to the Egyptians. No amount of prayers to their idol will make light, only God is the creator of light.
Remember that there was three hours of darkness when Christ was on the cross, and we will see that in Revelation, there will also be darkness and the antichrist will not be able to do anything about it. Man has always had a fear of darkness, for we cannot see the enemy coming. When God created the earth, he divided the darkness from the light. Genesis 1:14-19 Then God said, “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and seasons, and for days and years; and let them be for lights in he firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth and it was so. Then God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night. He made the stars also. God set them in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.
A few thoughts. I think we take for granted the day and the night – miracles that we don’t even notice until there is an absence of one. So many of the new agers who feel that they are in charge of their universe forget the myriads of little miracles that occur every day, from sunset to sunrise, the heart beating, cells in our bodies, the earth revolving around the sun. This stuff is not accidental. It really would take a fool to believe that there was not a creator behind this.
And the other thing, if you read the creation, the days are marked like this, “And the evening and the morning…” For the Jewish people, the day begins at sunset, and the light then begins to increase on the earth. Without light there would be no plant growth, and no ability to function normally, so the darkness that God sends will be particularly terrifying to the Egyptians. Such a darkness would feel crushing. Without the light of the sun, imaginations and fears can run wild.
Exodus 10:21-22 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, darkness which may even be felt.” So Moses stretched out his hand toward heaven, and there was thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days.
Thick darkness, this is not the usual darkness of night. There would be no stars, no moon, no sun, just darkness. The lights from the candles would not be able to pierce the thick darkness. Terror would abound.
Exodus 10:23 They did not see one another; nor did anyone rise from his place for three days. But all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings.”
I wonder what the Egyptians thought when they could not move, for the darkness was so thick. The Israelites had the glory of God.
Pharaoh will want to again try to bargain with Moses, but Moses will not bargain.
Exodus 10:24 Then 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.”
Who does Pharaoh think he is fooling? He is wanting to have some means to control the Israelites, so that they come back. But God wanted complete liberation. He did not want the Israelites with a leash held by Pharaoh.
Exodus 10:25-26 But Moses said, “You must also give us sacrifices and burnt offerings, that we may sacrifice to the LORD our God. Our 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.”
I find the last statement of Moses interesting, and so true. We give God our all, but we do not know what we must serve Him with until we arrive – that means we have to take the first steps in faith and know that God will then give us the next step. Pharaoh wanted the livestock because God blessed the Israelites with many blessings, and their livestock prospered. (Remember Jacob and the flocks and how God prospered them).
Exodus 10:27-28 But the LORD hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he would not let them go. Then 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!”
You know here is a good example of the spirit of antichrist imitating God, for we are told that if we look on the face of God we will die (die to self, die to the flesh, for our sins cannot live in the light of God), but here Pharaoh is saying that if they looked on his face they would die – Pharaoh meant that he would have Moses and Aaron killed, but it is a mirror of God’s statement.
Exodus 10:29 So Moses said, “You have spoken well. I will never see your face again.”
Well, the next plague will be the last one and so distressing that Pharaoh will not be seeing because of his grief. And God will institute a feast that continues to today.
I am so grateful that we have God in our lives, that God will keep creating beautiful sunrises and abundant life. I am thankful each morning that God’s mercies are new every morning. I pray that you have a blessed day!
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