The plagues but, really, Moses’ fears and objections and God’s answers. The current narrative began in chapter 3 with Moses arguing to God that he was mistaken in choosing Moses to lead the people. Could anyone be more wrong than was Moses? I mean, every single objection made by Moses was met by God’s gracious and effective response. Oh, so gracious! God could have said something like, “OK, you sorry so-&-so; if you won’t do this, I’ll just find someone else.” But God did not do that. Patiently, though firmly, God worked with Moses and brought him to where he needed to be. I’m thinking this is sort of a mirror for us as we gaze at Moses and see ourselves in stubborn refusal to follow God. But he does not leave us. He lovingly and patiently forms us into the likeness of Christ. Paul’s words to the Philippians are helpful to us: “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6).
And the plagues. What about the plagues? Well, I think, if we’re not careful, we can miss the forest for the trees. Yes, it is important to consider the plagues one by one. But it’s the big picture that ought to really grip us. God intended for Israel to depart Egypt for Canaan, and depart Egypt for Canaan they certainly would do. This reality is no less true today than it was then. Every generation, it seems, tends to think that God has lost his will or power to accomplish his purposes. Oh, no! Not the case! We must be very careful, as we look around and see God rejected and the world seemingly falling apart, not to trust the lie of Satan, that is, that the arm of God, his power, has somehow been diminished. “My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose” (Isaiah 46:10) – as true today as it was in Moses’ day! Be encouraged!