By Richard Lodwick
Exodus 9:13-35 (KJB) And the LORD said unto Moses, Rise up early in the morning, and stand before Pharaoh, and say unto him, Thus saith the LORD God of the Hebrews, Let my people go, that they may serve me. 14 For I will at this time send all my plagues upon thine heart, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people; that thou mayest know that there is none like me in all the earth. 15 For now I will stretch out my hand, that I may smite thee and thy people with pestilence; and thou shalt be cut off from the earth. 16 And in very deed for this cause have I raised thee up, for to shew in thee my power; and that my name may be declared throughout all the earth. 17 As yet exaltest thou thyself against my people, that thou wilt not let them go? 18 Behold, to morrow about this time I will cause it to rain a very grievous hail, such as hath not been in Egypt since the foundation thereof even until now. 19 Send therefore now, and gather thy cattle, and all that thou hast in the field; for upon every man and beast which shall be found in the field, and shall not be brought home, the hail shall come down upon them, and they shall die. 20 He that feared the word of the LORD among the servants of Pharaoh made his servants and his cattle flee into the houses: 21 And he that regarded not the word of the LORD left his servants and his cattle in the field. 22 And the LORD said unto Moses, Stretch forth thine hand toward heaven, that there may be hail in all the land of Egypt, upon man, and upon beast, and upon every herb of the field, throughout the land of Egypt. 23 And Moses stretched forth his rod toward heaven: and the LORD sent thunder and hail, and the fire ran along upon the ground; and the LORD rained hail upon the land of Egypt. 24 So there was hail, and fire mingled with the hail, very grievous, such as there was none like it in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation. 25 And the hail smote throughout all the land of Egypt all that was in the field, both man and beast; and the hail smote every herb of the field, and brake every tree of the field. 26 Only in the land of Goshen, where the children of Israel were, was there no hail. 27 And Pharaoh sent, and called for Moses and Aaron, and said unto them, I have sinned this time: the LORD is righteous, and I and my people are wicked. 28 Intreat the LORD (for it is enough) that there be no more mighty thunderings and hail; and I will let you go, and ye shall stay no longer. 29 And Moses said unto him, As soon as I am gone out of the city, I will spread abroad my hands unto the LORD; and the thunder shall cease, neither shall there be any more hail; that thou mayest know how that the earth is the LORD’S. 30 But as for thee and thy servants, I know that ye will not yet fear the LORD God. 31 And the flax and the barley was smitten: for the barley was in the ear, and the flax was bolled. 32 But the wheat and the rie were not smitten: for they were not grown up. 33 And Moses went out of the city from Pharaoh, and spread abroad his hands unto the LORD: and the thunders and hail ceased, and the rain was not poured upon the earth. 34 And when Pharaoh saw that the rain and the hail and the thunders were ceased, he sinned yet more, and hardened his heart, he and his servants. 35 And the heart of Pharaoh was hardened, neither would he let the children of Israel go; as the LORD had spoken by Moses.
I want to begin with a note by Matthew Henry. “God sometimes raises up very bad men to honor and power, spares them long, and suffers them to grow insufferably insolent, that he may be so much the more glorified in their destruction at last.” May I say also, nations get what they want, as far as leaders, and God uses them AND ALLOWS them to grow in their evil beyond that which the people who elected them ever think or imagine. When a nation has not the True and Living God as their head, and leaders who follow Him, it is an evil to the degree that no man can conceive of! Now, look at Rom. 9:17 and ponder our time, and our nation.
Next, I want you to look at Josh. 10:11Job 38:22-23 & Ps. 18:12-13, 78:47-48, 148:7-8. NOW see Is. 28:2-17, 30:30, 32:18-19, Ezek. 13:10-13 (an end-times passage also), Ezek. 38:22. And with Rev. 11:16-19 & 16:21. Get the picture of the power, and wrath of God when He is angry but a little?
Next… we will do more than one lesson on this plague. There is more in the way of verses on this one than the previous plagues, and I believe for good reason. This lesson will look at individual verses with brief comments on each. The next lessons on this plague will go into the gods involved. But first note, God’s judgments are getting more severe! Note also, He hasn’t changed. Whenever a man or great men of this earth refuse His warning to repent, it gets worse. God doesn’t give in to the rebellion of man… ever! God will always win in the end!
The narrative on this, to some, indicates a dual plague. Pestilence (V15) and hail (V18). It appears the pestilence (Hebrew deber (deh’ber) plague; murrain, cattle disease) was delivered by the hail. Note V3-7. See also the cattle of Israel were spared. What a message to Pharaoh and Egypt!
V14. Upon thine heart. O, the heart of sinful, God-rejecting, idol worshiping, ego-driven man… especially powerful ones! Also in this verse, we are told that God is NOT distant. This earth does NOT belong solely to man… or kings… or presidents! Note also the last phrase in the verse. Ponder it for a moment!
V8. Rain a very grievous hail. Grievous is not enough here for God. HE says VERY grievous. Are you getting the drift? See Ps. 2:1-12! Wow!
V19. This one is on man and beast. Do not overlook the totality… and the anger level! This is also NOT just your ordinary plague. This one will demand the ultimate price! Death! America needs to read this passage!
V20-21 Revealed here is the fact that SOME actually were getting the message. SOME DID fear God. Some will today, too, if we witness!
A last look at the word “very” (V18): It carries a quadruple meaning. Speedily, exceeding, vehement, & utterly, as in destruction! Every word in your Bible is important. God is VERY mad here. But after all this, Pharaoh is still not going to give in. I say again, nothing has changed!!