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Jan 15, 2015

90 Day Challenge – Day 15

Sarah Christmyer

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Bible Time Period: Egypt and Exodus

You freed your people from slavery in Egypt so they could worship you: Free me from sin so I can serve and worship.

Reflection

In chapters 9-12, the plagues on Egypt continue until they culminate in the death of the first-born sons of Egypt. This is no surprise – back in 4:22-23, God told Pharaoh through Moses:  “Israel is my first-born son, and I say to you, ‘Let my son go that he may serve me’; if you refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay your first-born son.”  That being done, the stage will be set for the Exodus from Egypt itself.

Today’s Reading

Exodus 9-12

Today’s Question

Imagine what the plague of darkness would mean to a nation that worshiped the sun god, Ra, and whose Pharaoh was believed to be its embodiment on earth.  Now put yourself in the scene and imagine seeing in the distance, light over the land of Goshen.  How do you feel? What does that say to you?  What might it have meant to the Hebrews?

Join the discussion below!

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  • This is an interesting way to put things. I would head toward the light. This made me think that we as Christians need to trust God and live our lives so that others can see us and be drawn out of sin to God.

  • Many years ago now, there was a blackout in the eastern grid of the country….when night fell upon that land, the country there was in true darkness…though not as dark as the darkness that comes from not having knowledge of God…Warmth comes from light…When we sit in the light we feel safe, warm, secure, and feel the positive emotions, and the virtues of life…when one sits in the darkness, One can feel doom, fearful, dread, hate and the other vices…such is the great difference that The Egyptians and the Israelites felt…the first felt darkness and the second the light…One was blessed and the other cursed…When we walk in the light of Christ, we know we can feel comfort, security, peace, joy and the other virtues…Around us is darkness, when we walk in the light, we can also walk in the dark…for the light takes over the darkness…May it always be so…Jesus is the way, the truth and life…whoever walks in the light of Christ will never die…ths is what we do in the name of the Jesus.

  • The plague of darkness brought upon Egypt was a dreadful plague. While Israel, at the same time, had light in their dwellings. Putting myself in the scene, I dread the consequences of sin; if three days of darkness were so dreadful, what will everlasting darkness be?

      • Yes, thanks Ms. Gig Rose. We the people of God were the children of the light, but our Lord intended us to put in this darkness of this world!!!

    • Yes, Jose, I imagine hell as the total absence of light. The unquenchable fire, in my mind, would be the unquenchable desire for goodness, light, God!

  • I think the Hebrews had to have recognized that God was with them and was protecting them. The “darkness” surely had happened before in this land because of the sand storms but to have one area (the area of Goshen, which just happened to be when the Israelites lived,) had to have made the Egyptians recognize something different here. It lasted for three days, that’s worth noting. Also, the darkness was the ninth plague. All the other “gods” of Egypt had been mocked by the different plagues and now the greatest of their gods, Ra was made to be subservient to the God of all. Egypt and their gods are a sham. In chapter 7:5 it says, “so that the Egyptians may learn that I am the Lord” and again in 9:16 “But this is why I have spared you: to show you my power and to make my name resound throughout the earth!” When the Israelites finally did make it to the Promised Land, these things that were done in Egypt were known. God wants to be known to all people

  • Since our human bodies need sunlight, the three days of thick darkness must have been terrifying to the Egyptians. The Israelites ‘had light where they dwelt’. I could see that the Hebrews/Israelites could have felt a resurgence, a feeling of hope seeing the light over the land of Goshen. (I am confused about this because the plague of darkness portion of the reading for today doesn’t mention the land of Goshen. Can anyone explain this concept of the ‘land of Goshen’ when the Israelites dwelt in their own light?)

    • Genesis 46 and 47 speak of the land of Goshen. It apparently was an area when livestock was raised and since Jacob and family were keepers of livestock they settled in that area with Pharaoh’s permission.

        • Thanks for the brilliant comments everyone, the comments are inspirational – and the varied interpretations of the chapters so far makes it very interesting.
          Let’s always bear in mind that “God’s ways are not our ways”

          • You are so special to point out ‘varied interpretations’ of the bible. I strongly believe that’s what makes us so special in God’s eye; as we are not all the same. We are such incredible individuals! God is so great and awesome! I bow to His Name.

          • Can I just gently suggest that the word “interpretation” be substituted with “application”? We are called to defer to the Church’s teaching/interpretation of Scripture and that which we do not understand or perhaps disagree with, we can pray about. At least, this is what Catholics are called to do. Application, however, will vary between individuals, depending upon the paths we are on – our experiences, etc.

    • Hi pnkyB4brain, I was reading normally your posting and I’m determined myself for comment about Goshen, but when I get to the end, you said, “the Israelites dwelt in their own light?’ I was then laughing to myself since my mind came to a joke, and mumble, saying, “maybe she want to debug the miracle of darkness, and simply say “the Pharaoh think, their line of power was cut off. so the Israelites have their own light.” No, not that, Cheers!!! Just to break the hour of monotony.

      Here, at the last part of Genesis, remember, Joseph put Israel and all his siblings family and all their animals belonging to them in the rich and fertile land of Goshen, so at the beginning of me Exodus mentioned Israel’s twelve children. So there at Goshen, is the venue where the 400 years slavery in Egypt.

      • Thanks for the LOL!! You are such a dear person. You are a good teacher as is everyone that comments on these questions. Thank you, again.
        I am still in a conundrum about this ninth plague. The Egyptians were the only ones that experienced the thickness of the darkness that took place for three days, not the Israelites and the bible says, “…but all the people of Israel had light where they dwelt.” Exodus 9:23 With what Sarah, our commentator, has asked regarding the readings of day 15, was she saying that it was the Egyptians that were looking in the distance and seeing a light over the land of Goshen? Also what would it mean to the Hebrews? They “dwelt in the light” according to the reading so why are they looking toward the land of Goshen that is not mentioned in this reading?
        I know my ignorance is showing for I am at such a loss for words. Perhaps I need to regroup and keep quiet for a while, so I may try and figure these mysteries (they are to me!) out.

        • I so enjoy hearing everyone’s thoughts about these questions that come up. It is great food for thought. I am getting a lot out of this bible study.

          I was thinking about the Catholic prophecy on the Three Days of Darkness given by many saints and blesseds, particularly Blessed Anna Maria Taigi and Marie-Julie Jahenny. This is supposedly going to happen in the future and is likened to the plague of darkness over Egypt. In that prophecy, all lights will be distinguished in the world, but in the homes of the faithful blessed candles can be lit and will remain illuminated and will not be extinguished during those 3 days. (There are certain requirements about the type of candles to be used during this time; does this also parallel the specific Passover requirements?) Of course, we are not obliged to believe private revelation by any holy person and this prophecy has never been endorsed by the Holy See, regardless of who or how many times it has been prophesied.

          But if this scenario were the case, couldn’t it be that the Egyptians who see the Israelite homes “in the distance” (as our question today asks us to imagine), were actually seeing the Israelite homes with glowing lights inside that could not be extinguished; i.e., blessed candles? Maybe the Egyptians candles couldn’t be lit during these 3 days and they were in the darkness no matter what they tried.

        • What pops into my thoughts is that the Darkness plague may have simply affecting all of the Egyptians eyes. Essentially blinding them for 3 days? So, The only light they could see was the “Light of Christ/God” so to speak coming from the Israelites?

    • Goshen, I believe, was the area set aside for the Israelites to dwell in when Joseph had them all come the Egypt. See the footnote for Gen. 45:10. The Israelites were settled separately from the Egyptians because their customs and lifestyle were different and distasteful/abhorrent to the Egyptians. Remember how Joseph told Jacob to tell the Pharaoh they were shepherds so they could have their own lands? Shepherds were considered the lowest of the low in Egypt.

  • As the notes on this chapter say, this could have been a sandstorm that caused this darkness to occur. In and of itself, perhaps not overly frightening. Coupled with the previous eight plagues, however, terrifying. We begin to see here that some of Pharaoh’s followers have begun to fear the Lord through Moses. Instead of softening Pharaoh, however, it only hardens his resolve. How sad. For the Israelites (and some Egyptians) watching these plagues occur just as Moses has prescribed and who saw the lightness over Goshen this must have given them great comfort and hope. Perhaps a light at the end of the dark tunnel (a 400 year old tunnel)! The Lord is truly here among us! Perhaps seeing the error of their way, the Israelites and some Egyptians want this light, which can be associated with goodness, which is God! As the Egyptians worshipped the Sun God, Ra, this darkness proved a challenge to the power of Pharaoh. (Oh my, we have this Sun God thing wrong! What does this then tell us about Pharaoh?) The Israelites had been oppressed for over 400 years and only during the time of Moses did they cry out for help. This is a great testament to God’s mercy and grace. Even when we fall away from Him due to our sinful natures, God is always with us just waiting for the opportunity to share our lives with us just waiting for us to call to Him, you are my true Lord whom I will serve with my heart, soul, mind and body!

  • I wonder what the Egyptian magicians “secret arts” were that they could reproduce a rod into a serpent, blood in the Nile and tons of frogs? I feel sorry for the Egyptian people who witnessed these charlatans for so many years. I’m sure those tricks convinced the people of the existence of their false gods. But some Egyptians must have come to believe in the Israelite God of Abraham because by the time of the 7th plague (hail) God gives a way out for those Egyptians who would believe and fear him (Gen 9:19, 20).

    I know some historians think that all these plagues were naturally occurring events, possibly over the course of decades. I don’t know enough of these things to ever debate that, however, I noticed in the bible when Moses goes to Pharaoh with God’s warnings of the plagues, he says “tomorrow” I will do this, or at “about midnight”, or “tomorrow, about this time”. It seems that God is bringing these plagues in a very timely, exact manner so that there cannot be any explanation for the origins other than God himself. How many times today do humans try to “explain away” the workings of God in our lives?

    • The historians say naturally occurring, I say God is in charge of what naturally occurs! I agree with you, so many times people try to “explain away” what is happening around us. I am glad that I have embraced faith and trust in God!

  • The Isrealists were God’s firstborn son or the chosen race. They had the light, followed the light and worshiped the light. But when we sin, we could loose the light too. Therefore Christians are people of the light too as they believe in Jesus Christ who is the light, the truth and the way!

  • The plague of darkness is something special especially for a nation which has been worshiping the sun god.It would have made many Egyptians know the limitations of the power of their gods and believe in the LORD. The Hebrews would have enjoyed this special protection from the LORD. But there could have been some good people among the Egyptians. Why did the LORD punish the entire country for the sins of the KING of Egypt?

    • I guess I think that God chose all the Egyptians because He needed them to help persuade the King to let the Israelites leave. It would seem the Egyptian people would see what was happening to the king but would not be as involved because, after all, it is only the king. Or maybe (even also) God wants all of them to believe in Him over the other gods they worshipped.

      • My bet is on God wanting the Egyptians to turn to Him, as well. After all, God created them, as well. All the signs pointed out how false their gods were.

    • It wasn’t just the King, see Ch 9 vs 34-35 “But Pharaoh, seeing that the rain and hail and thunder had ceased, sinned again: he with his servants became obdurate, and in his obstinacy he would not let the Israelites go, as the Lord had foretold through Moses.” In Ch 10 vs 7 Pharaoh’s servants are beginning to question the Pharaoh’s wisdom when they say, “Do you not yet realize that Egypt is being destroyed?” The Lord continued to make Pharaoh obstinate, and at the end of Ch 10 Pharaoh makes a threat to Moses, “Leave my presence and see to it that you do not appear before me again! The day you appear before me you shall die!” Pharaoh appears at the end to be acting on his own authority, we know what happens when we do that, right?

      • Good point, Gig! I also think about how we are all called to stand up for what’s right – in our families, communities and country. Most of us stay out of state/national issues, though, because we feel helpless, like we can make no difference anyway. I imagine the Egyptians felt the same, and they were conditioned to think of Pharaoh as a god. Do we have less excuse today for remaining quiet to the injustices served upon those around us and in the larger world?

    • Why did the LORD punish the entire country for the sins of the KING of Egypt? I think God wanted to show how powerful he is to the Egyptians. God wanted to show that He is the supreme being, not all the false gods. Pharaoh was not the only sinner, the Egyptians idolized many false gods, therefore the message to be sent had to be sent to all the Egyptians. If God only plagued those that were sinners, it most likely would have caused confusion among the people. They may start focusing on why that house is not subjected to the plague, rather than realizing that God was asking for a simple request – that of obedience.

  • Hi,
    I have questions– the 5th plague was the death of all the livestock, so now all the live stock is dead. Now the boils come down upon all the beasts. Are the beasts different from the livestock? Now the hail is falling on all their livestock-isn’t their livestock already dead from a prior plague? Again the death of the first born-weren’t all the livestock killed before so how can the first born of the cattle be killed? Thanks and God Bless.
    There are a lot of interesting thoughts and comments here. I do more reading then posting 🙂

    • You have pointed out something very interesting. Maybe livestock was referring to their personal cattle or other food animals, while beasts might refer to wild animals or pets that were not part of their food. When God mentions the livestock being killed again in the other plagues, maybe they have had the chance to reproduce again. For example, cow gestation is about that of a human pregnancy. Maybe these plagues were spread out over a few years. This might explain Pharaoh’s hard heart – there has been time between the each plague and the cattle and farms have naturally been replenished again. He grows arrogant in between plagues and refuses to recognize the power of Abraham’s God. I think there may have been time in between the plagues, but when God did bring about the plague, he was very precise in his timing (as I mentioned before about using the word “tomorrow” I will do this, etc.).

      • I think one of the reasons Pharaoh was willing to listen to Moses’ reason for leaving to go a journey into the desert to worship our God was that the Egyptians did not eat their beasts as they worshiped them,therefor, it would have been an affront for the sacrifice of animals, am I wrong about that? Also as someone else mentioned Ch 9 vs 20 “Some of Pharaoh’s servants feared the warning of the Lord and hurried their servants and livestock off to shelter.”

        • I think you are right. Cattle, sheep and goats were gods to the Egyptians and that is why Moses wanted to take his people out of Egypt to offer the Israelite’s sacrifice to God. God specifically wanted the sacrifices of these animals because they were gods to the Egyptians and God wanted Moses to make a clean break from the Egyptians.

    • I am so happy you brought this question up Jeanne. I hadn’t questioned the time line on the 10 plagues before. It is unclear how long it took for the 10 plagues to occur, however some surmise they probably occurred over at least a 9 month time frame.

      Livestock are the domesticated animals such as cows, sheep, ox, and goats. Beasts are other animals such as donkeys and wild animals.

      Lastly, whenever the plagues struck I think it is possible that some of the animals survived a plague. They may have been sheltered and therefore not affected by the direct plague is one example. So when the next plague struck it is possible they were now exposed to be affected.

      • I would really be interested in a time frame but I don’t think that is possible. Anyway I read in one of my commentaries that new cattle were purchased from neighbors. So many questions and so few answers.

        • Jeanne, when reading the Bible many questions come up which is why reading the Bible is not an easy read. However we should not be sweating the small stuff. I find it interesting that the cattle were purchased from their neighbors, hadn’t heard that one yet. But, does that change the moral of the story? Not really. When we come across questions that are important and we have trouble answering, we then need to look to the Church for guidance and pray for our understanding of the Scripture. I pray everyday that I hear and understand what God want me to hear and learn from Scripture. God bless.

    • I assumed they had already purchased new livestock from the Israelites. Because they were now owned by the Egyptians, they were now subject to any further plagues.

  • Even if the plagues were as some of the notes suggest. How is is that the Israelites were spared? My body naturally craves light, I don’t want to think about how I would react if I were denied sunlight for three days. If I could see even a glimmer of light I would be running toward it. My brother actually had this experience during the eruption of Mt. St. Helens. He was working on a research project (forestry not geology) When the evacation order came, he had only time to make half way back to his home ni Moscow, ID. He had to make his way home in almost total darkness which proceeded him. The darkness lasted for some days. The way my brother describes the experiance, it is something I would not want to experience. During that time “conversion moments” where they were drawn closer to God.

  • Imagine if the Egyptians had pollsters the way we do in the U.S. What do you suppose the Pharaoh’s popularity would rate after the 3 days of darkness?
    I imagine the light shining on Goshen created a great yearning in the average Egyptian – “I want to be there in the light.” In our current world I look to the U.S. as having been this great light, founded on Christian ideals and principles. We were a beacon for the disenfranchised and beaten down people of the world.
    The people of Israel were singled out to be a bright light, preparing to bring salvation to the world. They did not understand this, of course, and will struggle with it until the Great Light, Jesus, comes some 1300 years later.
    The Church, established by Christ, is meant to be the light now – a true glimpse of the True Kingdom and the True King, Christ – in a dark world. Pope Francis is the perfect vicar of Christ, a juxtaposition between earthly kings and kingdoms and the heavenly King and the Kingdom to come. In a dark world starved for the light of grace, I see real hope as people are drawn like moths to his message of welcome and mercy. I would love to be a fly on the wall when our American president meets with Pope Francis; I will pray that the president’s heart will be softened by this meeting; that our nation can again be a light, working with the Church to dispel the darkness in the rest of the world. I’m an optimistic idealist, I know…..

    • Perhaps if enough optimistic idealists gather in prayer……who knows. Very nicely put Kerry. Three days in darkness preceded by the other plagues within this country would result in an all out rebellion. Pope Francis truly is a man of God and a man of the people. What a wise choice God brought the World.

    • I agree that the Vicar of Christ is truely the light of the world. One thing about the Popes in these times is their light shines on through their writings. I applude your optisim. Optimist people are truly the light of the world. I fear that I cannot share your optimisim that our Nation will ever again become a “beacon to the world’ I do pray for our president every day, but many more hearts must be changed before our nation can truely become a world leader again. However, I am optimistic that there will be political leaders in other countries that will help lead us out of the darkness like Lech Welsa and Pope John Paul did in the cold war.

  • The Hebrews had spent their lives under the slavery of the Pharaoh and the Egyptians accepted the authority of the Pharaoh. The Egyptians were facing a new power, one that obliterated the sun (which they worshiped). They were imprisoned in an oppressive darkness, whilst they could see that the slaves enjoyed light and freedom. Their god did nothing whilst the Hebrew God raised his people up from slavery. It must have been terrifying for the Egyptians and wonderfully liberating for the Hebrews.

    With each sign from God, the Hebrews were moving away from a slave mentality, to ever increasing hope for a future under the protection of the one true living God. Toward the end, the Hebrews started obeying God. When we live fully in the world accepting the wrongful and sinful preaching, worshiping the false idols, we are living in the dark unable to move spiritually. The Church is the glow of light and hope in the distance, but unlike the Egyptians, we can move through the dark to the light of the Church. learn to obey and follow God and from there, walk in His company.

    • I agree Avilla, I think that the plagues were not only to teach a lesson to, and/or Break Down the Egyptians, but specifically to also strengthen the hearts of the Israelites who obviously got to see it all. I think that God hardened the Pharaoh’s heart so that the overall lesson would be far more impressed upon everyone. End result would leave no doubt, no bases left uncovered.

  • Darkness, and plagues that come in all shapes and sizes will always be with us because it is part of our earthly experience, and from which we must flee just as the ancient Hebrews fled from Egypt. We must do as they did and flee in haste (from evil and darkness) and act in trust.

  • I love the image of light and the feeling of being in the light of Christ. When I pray and put myself with my Lord, I not only see light, I feel the light and the warmth it brings over my body. It is such a fully enveloping experience to see and feel light in the presence of our lord jesus and know that you are always safe as long as you live in his name.

  • The way the question is worded it suggests that you might be an Egyptian looking towards Goshen. I think they would be confused and fearful. They believe in the sun god Ra. How could they be in darkness when the Hebrew slaves have light. Perhaps their sun god isn’t as powerful as they thought. As for the Hebrews this would only deepen their faith in God to protect them and watch over them. God is light.

  • nearly all of us look toward the Light… inside buildings we live harboring from the elements – but, we nearly always have light sources for almost anything we do… fire if nothing else – fire in the fireplaces, fire on the stove, fire out of small cans or lighters or pits or… none of us could imagine life without light, try as you may…

    go camping – without light? who dares to go camping without some kinda light? go hiking, canoeing, or on trips of any sort… you take your batteries, your chargers, your different sources of light, but nobody goes without thinking: it could be longer, so we should be ready with a flame…

    Christ is Light – you cannot shut Him down with all of the waters in the world, or even all the waters in the unseen universe… but to banish the evil one, all you need is Light…

    • I am one of those people who must have light’ a lot of sunlight during the day, and a nightlight to sleep with. I keep two flashlights in each room (one is beside my bed)
      I love the Easter season, when the Pascal Candle burns in the church reminding us that Christ is the Light.

  • The Egyptians believed their top God, Ra, the sun, created all things–people, animals, seasons, everything the sun shines on (paraphrase of wiki). Being in complete darkness would symbolize that the God of the Hebrews had killed Ra. More than just being cursed with darkness, all of the Egyptians might have felt they all were going to die because the sun was no more.
    Off topic, I noticed that in the magicians trying to replicate God’s signs and miracles/plagues, they could only manage to make the situation worse. First God directed Moses to throw down his staff, and it became a serpent. And when picked up again, it became a staff again. The magician’s trick resulted only in serpents that got eaten up. Then for the 1st two plagues, if the magicians were effective at all , then they only made the matters worse. If there was water that hadn’t turned to blood, they ruined that water, too (Ex 7:22). If they managed to bring more frogs, then they only added to the number of frogs (Ex 8:3). But they were stymied by the 3rd plague and by the 6th they were incapacitated by boils like the rest of the Egyptians (Ex 9:11)

    • Reading the plague sections in Exodus is a reminder of how hard false believers work to keep away from God. What a shame…I hope to continue working to spark nonbeliever toward life with God.

  • I’m sure if I would see light in the far off distance, filled with fear and confusion I would wonder how to travel to Goshen fast. The Hebrews must have increased their faith and trust with God, and believed Moses would help to free them from bondage. In today’s world we would hear constant news reports immediately, but they just had to depend on word of mouth and learn through observing the signs the Egyptians were enduring, because of Pharaoh’s hardened heart.
    God wanted to prove to the Israelites as well as the Egyptians the “promises of deliverance,” as indicated in Chapter 6:2-9.

  • Life in darkness continues to be an area I really work at staying – deep ugly sinfulness, life without God. For me, it is a place further and further away from God, which is where Pharoah was, therefore, it’s a place of sin. Darkness is a frightful thought therefore, intense darkness without movement is not living. Frightening! The Hebrews may have felt relieved to not be the target of such intense darkness and maybe stronger believers of God…keeping the faith that hope life with God will get better for them all.

    Light is life with God….Alleluia!

  • I think the whole plague story is one BIG lesson about choices. Each plague stripped something of importance from the duplicitous Pharaoh and his people. But during all of it, the Israelites could see the “distant” light. Are we Pharaohs or Israelites? Like Pharaoh, we make daily decisions that effect those around us…do we turn to the Light (God) for guidance, or do we depend on our own judgment only to stumble, fall, and like dominoes, pull others down with us?

  • Sunshine was and is a very important component to any living thing. To place myself in a time and place that experienced the 9th plaque, I would have been terrified. I would think of myself as being one of God’s chosen people. Although I would believe that this was a punishment sent down from God for all the darkness in people’s minds, the thought of having no sunshine was quite a problem for the growth of flora and fauna that was paramount to the existence of all animals.
    I would also think that the skeptics within the chosen people would think twice if they ever doubted God and His messenger, Moses. God proved to them that He was the Almighty and Creator of Heaven and Earth.
    Lastly, the darkness evokes such foreboding words in my mind such a isolation, gloom, obscurity, murkiness, somber, light less, and uncertainty. Still Pharaoh was not convinced of God’s power! Satan had such an incredible hold on that individual who had nothing but darkness in his soul.

  • To see light is to see God. Our God. He is the way and the truth and the light. It is such a comfort to see it and know it is there if only we follow it and choose light over darkness. Driving to work today I could see the sunrise yet I was still in the morning pre-dawn light. I could see the light in the distance. As I traveled I knew it would get lighter. Not only because it was turning to day but also because I was traveling towards the sunrise. I can’t help but think this is what the Hebrews envisioned as the new day dawning and all of the hopes and promises it brings. May I be able to have the strength to live in the light and be that light for others that need it most.

  • I think of how the Israelites saw God working to free them and then as darkness covered the earth,, they could see a light in Goshen. God is our light-leading us, rescuing us. How loved and blessed are the people who love and serve the Lord.

  • The sun god was one of the Egyptians’ supreme deities. They took the regular rising of the sun and its traversing of the sky as proof of triumph over death. The Egyptians would have thus considered the blotting out of the sun by Moses’ command an evil omen. The plague of darkness is a rebuke to the sun god, and by these divine actions, worked through Moses, God was demonstrating His power – establishing that Israel’s God is “a deity great beyond any other”.

  • I could not have read this at a more appropriate time. Today I witnessed a glorious sunrise and now the sunlight is streaming through my window. We have been under an inversion with dense unbreathable fog for some time now. I cannot express my feelings when I saw the sunrise. Last year we had an inversion that lasted 15 days. I noticed that even the clerks in the stores were rude and angry. I have never been for days in total darkness, However my brother has experienced it and even with modern lighting it is frightening. I believe that if I could see a glimmer of light I would run toward it. Perhaps that is why there was a crowd of non-Israelite people with the Israelites.
    I always say a “Glory Be to the Father” at sunrise. I see the sun as God’s Greatest gift to creation. Life can not exist without. By expressing my gratitude to God for a new day I am worshiping the Creator not the creation. The Egyptain worshiped the creation not the Creator.

  • Putting myself in Egypt looking toward Goshen and the Light that shines upon the inhabitants there I think of God’s promise to His people. I want to go there! And I see the light under the basket shine through as God promises. It is the light that shines in the darkness – ALWAYS – that draws me to the Light. That is not to say that I don’t find myself in a dark place sometimes. But I look for the Light shining in the darkness and am hopeful. For what is life without hope and hope without God? God never lies and he always keeps His promises. But in His time not ours. The plagues represent to me, in this day and age, the trials and tribulations that we face in our modern times but the message in Scripture is the same. Follow the Lord and you will always be safe. The infidels of today threaten us just like Pharaoh did but the promises of our God prevail. Praise Him for that!!

  • Worship in the sun god Ra was the protection and security to Egyptians. They would be in hopeless and lost in that 3 days of darkness. Seeing the light in the land of Goshen, I would sense hope in there, and ran towards it and embrace it. Christ is light, there is no darkness. But the world is full of darkness, we have to try our best to let the people around us to see the light through us in our daily life.

  • The plague of the 3 days of darkness was clearly showing them that God was superior to their sun-god. It makes me wonder if the other plagues were also directed at other gods that the Egyptians worshiped. Say, I wonder what they used to measure the Days/Time with during the 3 days of darkness… They certainly didn’t have the sun!!! They probably saw the Israelites having the cycles of sunshine…

  • If I was an Egyptian, looking out from the darkness and seeing light over the land of Goshen, I would be bewildered, confused and scared and I would definitely be doubting if the sun god Ra and his compatriot Pharaoh were all that! Personally, I do not like the dark, it makes me uneasy. I would definitely have walked towards the light. It would have got me thinking what this distinction meant – why do the Hebrews have light and we don’t? And how is it that the sun god Ra whom we worship seems to favor the Hebrews? I would be asking myself (as an Egyptian), what have we done, and who is this God of the Hebrews who is more powerful than our sun god Ra? These questions are the beginning of conversion.

    To the Hebrews, this plague should have been firm confirmation of the Almighty power of their ever living God – Yahweh. Considering the 8 plagues before this particular plague and the fact that the Egyptian magicians had been able to replicate some of these signs, the Hebrews at this point would have started to feel real hope that their God Yahweh was going to get them out of Egypt. I dare say there would have been some sense of joy and excitement in the air over Goshen. Even the most weary of slaves would have acknowledged Yahweh’s might and started to look forward to their exit from Egypt – finally, there’s hope, there’s light at the end of their 400 year old tunnel!

    Having hope is so important in our spiritual lives. When we loose hope, we succumb to other pleasures and pressures. Lack of hope leads to despair which renders a kind of paralysis over our thoughts and actions. Despair is dangerous because in this state, we can cease to believe in God, and we can let go of God’s promises which makes us ever more vulnerable to sin which takes us further away from God.

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