Saturday, February 19, 2011

Exodus 11 & 12 - The Most Dreadful Plague

LINK: Exodus 11 & 12


BACKGROUND


The previous nine plagues were terrible, but this plague . . . 
He sent upon them His burning anger, 
Fury, and indignation and trouble,  
A band of destroying angels [a deputation of angels of evil].   
(Psalm 78:49)  
This plague hit Pharaoh at his father's heart. In that time, Pharaoh's son would have been considered a god. This plague was a challenge to the goddess Isis, who was the wife and sister of Osiris. She was the goddess who protected children, and no Egyptian firstborn child would be protected by her. 

The Israelite children would be protected though. The blood of the Passover lamb on the door posts and lintels of the door told the destroying angels to "passover" (pāsaḥ in Hebrew) the houses where the Israelite firstborn children slept safely in their beds. From this night on, they would commemorate this by holding the feast of Passover (pesaḥ in Hebrew) It was the first month in Israel's religious calendar. It is at the time of the barley harvest in March or April. 

The Scarlet Thread of Redemption



Jesus is the perfect "Lamb of God" (John 1:29) who takes away the sin of the world. The blood of the Passover lamb sprinkled over the door posts and lintels allowed the Israelites to escape death and be delivered from bondage, so Christ's blood is our means of redemption and deliverance (Romans 5:9; Ephesians 1:7).

God also gave the Israelites instructions for the Feast of Unleavened Bread as a yearly celebration of Israel's redemption from Egypt. In Jesus' time, the two feasts of Passover and Unleavened Bread were considered one feast (Luke 2:41; 22:1, 7-38; John 19:14; Acts 21:3-4). The Feast of Unleavened Bread lasted seven days from the 15th to the 21st of the month. They were not allowed to eat any bread that contained yeast (leaven). In preparation, homes were cleansed of yeast, which was a symbol of sin (1 Corinthians 5:8).


This plague broke Pharaoh, and he let them go. They were delivered from bondage. The Egyptian people even gave them articles of silver, gold, and clothing.


Here is a summary of all the plagues with the primary god involved (some plagues could have involved more):


The Signs (Plagues)
Reference
False god of Egypt Who Was Attacked
1 Water to blood
 7:20 
Hapi (Apis), the father of the gods,
his symbol is running water
2 Frogs
 8:6
Heqt, the god of resurrection,
had the head of a frog
3 Lice
 8:17 
Hathor, goddess of love and joy,
protected women
4 Flies
 8:24
Shu, god of the air,
maintained order and calm in the sky
5 Livestock
 9:6 
Apis, god of fertility, shaped like a cow
6 Boils
 9:10
Sekhmet, goddess of war,
protector of good, destroys evil
7 Hail
 9:23
Geb, the god of rich soil
8 Locusts
10:13
Serapis, god of vegetation and death
9 Darkness
10:22
Ra, the sun god
10 For Egypt: Angel of Death
12:29
Pharaoh believed he himself
and his son were gods
10 For Israel: Blood of the lamb
12:13
A covenant of God’s continuing Mercy

REFLECTION 



While studying this passage with a group of Muslim women, one of them informed us that their country has an old tradition of putting blood on the door posts and lintels of new houses for protection. I wonder where they got that tradition?

Months later when we came to studying Jesus, they totally understood why Jesus had to die because they understood the story of the Passover lamb!



APPLICATION


Application is all about digging into the Word of God and not walking away from it with your head filled with knowledge but with your heart responding in obedience.  What is God speaking to you about?

Here is a handout about APPLICATION.


Here is a summary of all the feasts from Precept Ministries. It shows how they are linked to the Scarlet Thread of Redemption:
Feasts of Israel 

PRAYER



Jesus, we thank You for being the Passover lamb. Thank You that Your blood brought about our redemption  and deliverance from the bondage of sin. Help us to walk in freedom as we walk with You. Amen.
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