Summary: God reveals Himself through the plagues. He is powerful, purposeful and merciful.
God is unchanging. He is the same yesterday, today and forever.
• But our understanding of Him is not. We grow in our knowledge of Him, continually. Our understanding is not always right.
• Our view of Him is challenged by the changing circumstances around us, by the experiences and the encounters we have in life. They cause us to question who God is.
• He has not changed. It’s just that we are trying to figure Him out.
God reveals Himself in three ways through the plagues.
• Moses and Aaron were sent into Egypt to demand for the release of the people of Israel but Pharaoh refused to let them go.
• The Lord unleashed a total of TEN PLAGUES against Egypt (chapters 7-12).
Sandwiched between the plagues are these remarks:
• Exo 5:1-2 1Afterward Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said, "This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: `Let my people go, so that they may hold a festival to me in the desert.'" 2Pharaoh said, "Who is the LORD, that I should obey him and let Israel go? I do not know the LORD and I will not let Israel go."
• Exo 12:12 “On that same night I will pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn - both men and animals - and I will bring judgment on all the gods of Egypt. I am the LORD.”
Through the plagues, God shows that there is only one true God and LORD. He will bring judgment against all the false gods of Egypt.
• The stage is set. God is the director behind the scenes.
• The main characters may be Pharaoh, Moses and Aaron; secondary role are the magicians of Egypt. But God is the principal player. The plagues reveal God.
Remember last week’s message – God is going to reveal Himself through the agency of human servants, through Moses and Aaron.
• No matter how doubtful you are, God can use you. Believe it.
• He has not changed His mode of operation today. Through you the world will see God.
There are three specific things we see about God in these plagues.
1. GOD IS POWERFUL
The plagues were all miraculous, supernatural, and out of the ordinary.
• In Exo 4:17 God tells Moses to “take this staff in your hand so you can perform miraculous signs with it.”
• In Exo 7:4 God says I will “multiply my miraculous signs and wonders in Egypt.”
The language is clear: God was going to work miracles. They are not acts of nature, but acts of God.
He can start them and He can stop them anytime. The plagues come and go at the command of Moses and Aaron.
• The magicians were able to bring the frogs, but they could not get rid of them. Pharaoh has to ask Moses to help.
• If you have the power to start it but not stop it, you are not Almighty.
• If you can smoke but cannot stop it, you are not great but weak. If you can gamble but not quit it, you are not strong but weak. You are addicted, in bondage, not in control.
If God is so powerful, why didn’t He do it? He is powerful enough NOT to do it. He is in absolute control.
• Even Pharaoh’s magicians commended after the third plague (Gnats): “This is the finger of God.” (8:19)
• The plagues can even be executed SELECTIVELY:
Exo 8:22-23 (flies): The Lord says, "But on that day I will deal differently with the land of Goshen, where my people live; no swarms of flies will be there, so that you will know that I, the LORD, am in this land. 23I will make a distinction between my people and your people. This miraculous sign will occur tomorrow.'"
Exo 9:3-4 (livestock): “…the hand of the LORD will bring a terrible plague on your livestock in the field - on your horses and donkeys and camels and on your cattle and sheep and goats. 4But the LORD will make a distinction between the livestock of Israel and that of Egypt, so that no animal belonging to the Israelites will die.'"
Exo 10:22-23 (darkness): “So Moses stretched out his hand toward the sky, and total darkness covered all Egypt for three days. 23No one could see anyone else or leave his place for three days. Yet all the Israelites had light in the places where they lived.
In fact, it takes more faith to believe that all these can take place naturally, than to believe that God did them. God is a God of the miraculous.
• Nothing is normal (or natural) about these plagues – the execution, the timing, and the magnitude of every one of them – all points to the God who rules over all nature – the land, sea and sky. He has sovereign power over all creation.