“Let my people go, that they may serve me. Or else, if you will not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies on you and your servants and your people, and into your houses. And the houses of the Egyptians shall be filled with swarms of flies, and also the ground on which they stand. But on that day I will set apart the land of Goshen, where my people dwell, so that no swarms of flies shall be there, that you may know that I am the LORD in the midst of the earth. Thus I will put a division between my people and your people. Tomorrow this sign shall happen.”
Egypt was afflicted with ten plagues, and while you may think that Israel got away scot-free, they didn’t. They had a few plagues to deal with too. It wasn’t until the fourth plague—flies—that God began to spare His people the suffering to come. Therefore, the Israelites had to deal with the water turning to blood, frogs, and gnats.
As with all stories and dramas there are the good guys and the bad guys—the protagonist and the antagonist. For the drama of the Exodus the good guys are easy to find, Moses and Aaron, and the antagonist is obvious, Pharaoh. However, there are a few other bad guys that are not so easy to pick out. But that’s their mode of operation. They prefer being secretive, hidden, and under the radar. Their craft was magic and their methods were top secret. Some might say they were powerful, however, before the power of God their actions became pathetic. These men were the magicians of Egypt.
The stage was set for one of the most epic dramas to unfold in human history. All the players were in place. From Pharaoh who stubbornly sat on his royal throne in Egypt greedily unwilling to let free labor go without a fight, to the people of Israel who were broken-hearted and hardened by years of tough and painful slavery. While things looked bad and all hope seemed lost, it was merely a setup for some of the most dramatic accounts in Scripture—the Ten Plagues of Egypt.
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