The Fifth Plague: Egyptian Livestock Die
9 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Go in to Pharaoh and say to him, ‘Thus says the LORD, the God of the Hebrews, “Let my people go, that they may serve me. For if you refuse to let them go and still hold them, behold, the hand of the LORD will fall with a very severe plague upon your livestock that are in the field, the horses, the donkeys, the camels, the herds, and the flocks. But the LORD will make a distinction between the livestock of Israel and the livestock of Egypt, so that nothing of all that belongs to the people of Israel shall die.”’” And the LORD set a time, saying, “Tomorrow the LORD will do this thing in the land.” And the next day the LORD did this thing. All the livestock of the Egyptians died, but not one of the livestock of the people of Israel died. And Pharaoh sent, and behold, not one of the livestock of Israel was dead. But the heart of Pharaoh was hardened, and he did not let the people go.
The Sixth Plague: Boils
And the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, “Take handfuls of soot from the kiln, and let Moses throw them in the air in the sight of Pharaoh. It shall become fine dust over all the land of Egypt, and become boils breaking out in sores on man and beast throughout all the land of Egypt.” So they took soot from the kiln and stood before Pharaoh. And Moses threw it in the air, and it became boils breaking out in sores on man and beast. And the magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils, for the boils came upon the magicians and upon all the Egyptians. But the LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh, and he did not listen to them, as the LORD had spoken to Moses.
The Seventh Plague: Hail
Then the LORD said to Moses, “Rise up early in the morning and present yourself before Pharaoh and say to him, ‘Thus says the LORD, the God of the Hebrews, “Let my people go, that they may serve me. For this time I will send all my plagues on you yourself, and on your servants and your people, so that you may know that there is none like me in all the earth. For by now I could have put out my hand and struck you and your people with pestilence, and you would have been cut off from the earth. But for this purpose I have raised you up, to show you my power, so that my name may be proclaimed in all the earth. You are still exalting yourself against my people and will not let them go. Behold, about this time tomorrow I will cause very heavy hail to fall, such as never has been in Egypt from the day it was founded until now. Now therefore send, get your livestock and all that you have in the field into safe shelter, for every man and beast that is in the field and is not brought home will die when the hail falls on them.”’” Then whoever feared the word of the LORD among the servants of Pharaoh hurried his slaves and his livestock into the houses, but whoever did not pay attention to the word of the LORD left his slaves and his livestock in the field.
Then the LORD said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand toward heaven, so that there may be hail in all the land of Egypt, on man and beast and every plant of the field, in the land of Egypt.” Then Moses stretched out his staff toward heaven, and the LORD sent thunder and hail, and fire ran down to the earth. And the LORD rained hail upon the land of Egypt. There was hail and fire flashing continually in the midst of the hail, very heavy hail, such as had never been in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation. The hail struck down everything that was in the field in all the land of Egypt, both man and beast. And the hail struck down every plant of the field and broke every tree of the field. Only in the land of Goshen, where the people of Israel were, was there no hail.
Then Pharaoh sent and called Moses and Aaron and said to them, “This time I have sinned; the LORD is in the right, and I and my people are in the wrong. Plead with the LORD, for there has been enough of God’s thunder and hail. I will let you go, and you shall stay no longer.” Moses said to him, “As soon as I have gone out of the city, I will stretch out my hands to the LORD. The thunder will cease, and there will be no more hail, so that you may know that the earth is the LORD’s. But as for you and your servants, I know that you do not yet fear the LORD God.” (The flax and the barley were struck down, for the barley was in the ear and the flax was in bud. But the wheat and the emmer were not struck down, for they are late in coming up.) So Moses went out of the city from Pharaoh and stretched out his hands to the LORD, and the thunder and the hail ceased, and the rain no longer poured upon the earth. But when Pharaoh saw that the rain and the hail and the thunder had ceased, he sinned yet again and hardened his heart, he and his servants. So the heart of Pharaoh was hardened, and he did not let the people of Israel go, just as the LORD had spoken through Moses.
Exodus 9 Commentary
by Hank Workman
Patience and obedience – 2 words that are challenges for any of us. People say, ‘Don’t pray for patience because God will throw you into a situation that will put it to the test.’ Funny, I think God places us in situations to develop our patience whether we ask for it or not! Obedience is much the same. There are so many situations where God calls us toward obeying His voice. Throughout our day even, I think there are aspects of where He’s calling us to do the right thing, be obedient in some form or another. This is a constant.
When you consider patience and obedience however, how does that translate personally for the long haul?
Meaning, if whatever situation you are currently facing, what disappointment or even chaotic job aspect, is God calling you to be faithful? Where is asking a deep obedience even when you don’t want to be? Where is He working on your patience as you trust Him?
As chapter 9 opens it’s the 5th time Moses has been called back to Pharaoh. There are several more times yet to come. Each time is almost like a repeat of a meeting. Pharaoh says no. God sends plagues. At times Pharaoh gives false repentance. The affliction is lifted. Pharaoh hardens his heart.
For anyone we would think “What’s the use?” And there is no doubt Moses must have felt this way at times. I am sure he felt tired and was insanely discouraged. But through all of these experiences God was intimately talking to Moses and revealing His plan. Moses was called to go back again and again. He was obedient even if it was hard and at times made no sense.
Is there a difficult situation that is similar for you currently? Is there a conflict you are being asked to face again and again? As God was directing Moses with each return, we must believe through our own prayers about whatever we are facing, He is doing the same in our situation. Don’t give up even though you want to. Don’t stop when you know what is the right thing to do. Moses’ persistence was eventually rewarded. As we’re walking with our Lord in whatever situation we currently wrestle, ours will too. Patience. Obedience. Where do these words hit you today?
Exodus 9 Commentary
by Brad Boyles
Only in the land of Goshen, where the sons of Israel were, there was no hail.Exodus 9:26 NASB
There are many instances of this same theme in Scripture. Here in Exodus, it reminds me of the Passover in which Israel is spared. However, it also reminds me of Revelation 7 where the angel commands that no storm will commence until the believers are sealed on their foreheads. After this, God’s wrath will reign down to the blast of trumpets and all kinds of disaster will follow. The only people spared were those whom God protected through His covenant. They remained in the eye of the storm.
We don’t like to think about the wrath of God, but it’s well-documented in Scripture. The contrast is great. There is both devastation and restoration occurring at precisely the same time. For believers in Christ, we cling to these stories. The Passover, Revelation, and here with protection from the plagues, we are those who will be spared. The wrath that’s poured out around us is the same wrath that was paid for at Calvary by Jesus Christ.
God’s word is good. He always delivers on His promises. He’s promised a place in His eternal kingdom for those found in Christ. He’s also promised to demolish those who oppose Him. The fact that He illustrated this concept time and time again in Scripture should only add to our confidence that He will deliver on His word in the end.