Meditation: Exodus 8 & 9 (1 of 4)

Reading: Exodus 8:1-4; 16-17; 20-21; 9:1-19

God carefully choses ten plagues to show the Egyptians it is futile to trust in their gods and their magician priests. These magicians, who say they are close to the gods, practice magic, perform mystical rites and chant repetitive prayers to impress the gods so they will protect Egypt from disasters. The Egyptians have many gods and goddess. One is Hekt which is represented by a frog. So frogs were sacred, and honoured to ensure the goddess’ blessings over people and land. The goddess Osiris and the gods Hapi and Hekt take care that the frogs are satisfied living in the River Nile. But the God of Israel mocks at these idols; He turns their blessings into a curse. He calls the creatures out of the Nile to crawl all over Egypt; even people’s beds and kneading bowls are invaded by these slimy animals. The fervent prayers to the idols are answered with total silence.

Egypt also served Geb, the god of soil and dust. He is worshipped to ensure the soil is productive.  The god Beelzebub protects Egypt against insects that damage crops and bite people.  However, these gods, the guardians of Egypt, are powerless before the God of Israel. They cannot stop plagues of frogs, lice, flies and locusts from doing their destructive work. Amon-Re the god, who stops illness, cannot stop the disease killing the livestock, and the boils on people and animals. The god who protects Egypt against bad weather cannot prevent the destructive hail. The priest, with their secret magic and mystical prayers, cannot stop the disasters. They cannot even escape the boils on their own bodies

Key verse: Ex 9:11 “And the magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils, for the boils were on the magicians and on all the Egyptians.”

Question: Why does Moses refer several times to the inability of the magicians to deal with the disasters, for example, Exodus 9:11?