Bible Reading Blog — January 16, 2016

16 Jan

Today’s Readings — Exodus 7-12 & Mark 3:7-12

I remember about 20 years ago when I read that many if not all of the ten plagues against Egypt were targeted specifically at showing the supremacy of God over the gods of Egypt. In other words, the theory goes, since Egyptians revered the Nile River, God turned it to blood (though the Pharaoh’s barbaric actions toward Hebrew babies might have had something to do with it). What strikes me about this theory is that it seems to accord with what we see repeatedly in this section of Exodus. Several times, God states that His purpose in the plagues is that Egypt and the Pharaoh may know that God is God. The Lord brings plagues to deliver Israel from slavery but also to demonstrate His supremacy to the false gods of Egypt. From the beginning, God is a missionary God, with a concern that His name be known among the nations, His power revered. And interestingly enough, when Israel leaves Egypt, some believing Egyptians follow them out of the land.

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