Egypt Wails; Israel Prevails (Exodus 10-12)

Daily reading assignment: Exodus 10-12

By the end of the seventh plague, Egypt has suffered enough loss that hunger and famine have become the lot of the people.  Refusing to heed the LORD’s command to free Israel from bondage, Pharaoh and Egypt continued to harden their hearts (10:1).

Do you ever ponder why the LORD allows trials and troubles? Ever wonder what good can come from disappointments and suffering?

Many in Israel struggled with the increasing hardships placed on them by their Egyptian taskmasters.  To believe Moses’ assurances, that the LORD would deliver them from bondage in the midst of trials, challenged their faltering faith.  Exodus 10:2 apprises us that the LORD had a greater goal than simply delivering one generation from slavery.

Exodus 10:2 – “And that thou mayest tell in the ears of thy son, and of thy son’s son, what things I have wrought in Egypt, and my signs which I have done among them; that ye may know how that I am the LORD.”

The LORD wanted His people to remember through successive generations all that He had done in Egypt.  His dealings with Pharaoh and the plagues that befell the nation were to serve as a lasting testimony that the God of Israel is Creator and Sovereign of nature.

The eight plague that came upon Egypt was locusts and they devoured what was left of the nation’s vegetation (10:3-20).  The ninth plague shrouded Pharaoh and Egypt in a frightening cloak of oppressive darkness (10:21-29) while Israel enjoyed the comfort of light in their dwellings.

Before the tenth and final plague, the LORD instructed Moses to bid the Hebrews to request from the Egyptians jewelry and vessels of gold and silver (11:1-3).  A strange request it seems; however, the jewelry, gold and silver will eventually be used to decorate the tabernacle and fabricate vessels to be used in sacrifices and worship.

Moses warned Pharaoh the tenth plague would mean the death of the firstborn, both man and beast (11:5).  Again, Pharaoh hardened his heart (11:10) and the LORD “smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt” as He promised (12:29-30).

Now the LORD had instructed Moses and Aaron to tell the people to sacrifice a lamb; not just any lamb, but a lamb “without blemish, a male of the first year” (12:15).   The blood of the lamb was to be put on the side posts and lintel of the doorposts of the houses (12:7) with the promise the LORD would “pass over” the homes where the blood of a lamb was seen (12:12-13).

The Passover was to become a perpetual memorial and testimony of the night the LORD spared the firstborn of Israel.  The Passover lamb was to be served with “unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs” (12:8-11, 14-19).

“Leaven”, the equivalent of yeast in our day, was not to be used in bread during the Passover season (12:15, 17-20).  The permeating nature of a little leaven is a symbol of the nature of sin in the scriptures.  In other words, sin is among God’s people what leaven is in bread dough and, “A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump” (Galatians 5:9).

To spare Israel the death of the firstborn, the LORD required the blood of the lamb; a type, a picture, of God’s punishment of sin that would be fulfilled in the sacrifice of God the Father’s Son, Jesus Christ.

Knowing the LORD is Just, Holy, and the universal penalty of sin is death (Romans 6:23a); we conclude Jesus Christ, the Perfect, sinless Son is God’s sacrificial Lamb.  The author of Hebrews writes, “So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many” (Hebrews 9:28).

Declaring the substitutionary doctrine of salvation, the apostle Paul wrote, “For He [God] hath made Him [Jesus Christ] to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21).

Is Jesus Christ your Lamb, Redeemer and Savior?

Copyright 2020 – Travis D. Smith