Judgments on the oppressor, part 1
Passage: Exodus 7:14–9:12
Freed to be God’s people: a study of Exodus
Judgments on the oppressor
God will judge those who oppose him as he redeems a people to be his own
There were ten plagues, a number of perfection. There is also a pattern: three groups of three, with the tenth one being unique and climactic. The first plague in each of the three groups have similarities, as do the second and third plagues in each of the three groups. God is purposeful.
1) Water turned into blood, 7:14-25.
How does what the Lord tells Moses to say to Pharaoh in 7:17 point to God’s primary purpose for the plagues? Why does the first plague involve changing waters of Nile into blood? How do the magicians contribute to Pharaoh’s indifference to the bloody crisis, and further heart hardening? What is the significance a parallel plague taking place in the end times (Revelation 16:3-4)?
2) Frogs, 8:1-15.
What’s so bad about a bunch of frogs? What is unhelpful about the magicians producing more frogs? (The magicians don’t or can’t replicate any more miracles after this). How does Pharaoh start to show his vulnerability? How does 8:10 connect to God’s overarching purpose in the plagues? What is dangerous about continuing to harden your heart?
3) Gnats, 8:16-19.
What are some of the differences in the way this plague takes place and with the magicians?
4) Flies, 8:20-32.
What is God’s purpose in setting apart the land where the people of Israel live, of putting a division between God’s people and Pharaoh’s people? Are the plagues getting worse? Pharaoh is trying to get the Lord to ease up without relinquishing control and submitting to him. how do we do this? The Lord is making a distinction between his people and Pharaoh’s people. What is and what is not the basis of God’s choosing a people to be his own? Deuteronomy 7:6–8, Ephesians 1:4.
5) Egyptian livestock die, 9:1-7.
What are some significant characteristics of this plague, and Pharaoh’s response?
6) Boils, 9:8-12.
What is more threatening about this plague? What is significant about the magicians’ response? (We don’t see them anymore). What is different about Pharaoh’s heart-hardening this time? How does Revelation 16:2 and 11 relate to this plague and Pharaoh’s heart? Sometimes people say of those who keep making bad to worse choices, “they have to hit bottom before they will change.” Is this always true? What is hopeful and what is sobering about Exodus 7:14-9:12? What is our rescue from judgment (John 3:16-18, 5:24)?