In Exodus chapters 7- 12 we have an outline of ten plagues, so lets look at them.
- Exodus 7:14-25 - Water turned to blood
- Exodus 8:1-15 - Frogs
- Exodus 8:16-19 - Lice
- Exodus 8:24-32 - Flies
- Exodus 9:1-7 - Plague of the Livestock
- Exodus 9:8-17 - Boils
- Exodus 9:18-35 - Hail
- Exodus 10:1-20 - Locust
- Exodus 10:21-29 - Darkness
- Exodus 11,12 - Death of the First Born
It is also important to note that there was a physical separation between the Children of Israel and Egypt. There was also a spiritual separation between the Children of Israel and Egypt revealed by who they worshipped.
God now makes this physical and spiritual separation visible by his dealings with Egypt in her defiance of His express command.
And I will sever in that day the land of Goshen, in which my people dwell, that no swarms of flies shall be there; to the end thou mayest know that I am the Lord in the midst of the earth.
23 And I will put a division between my people and thy people: to morrow shall this sign be.
24 And the Lord did so; and there came a grievous swarm of flies into the house of Pharaoh, and into his servants' houses, and into all the land of Egypt: the land was corrupted by reason of the swarm of flies.
God does something interesting, the first three plagues fell on both goshen, where the Children of Israel occupied the land, and Egypt. However the seven last plagues fell on Egypt alone.
There is also a parallel in these last days just before Jesus Christ’s return where a separation will be seen between the Children of God and the children of satan.
Why did God send the plagues ?
Exodus 7:1-7 And the Lord said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a god to Pharaoh: and Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet.
2 Thou shalt speak all that I command thee: and Aaron thy brother shall speak unto Pharaoh, that he send the children of Israel out of his land.
3 And I will harden Pharaoh's heart, and multiply my signs and my wonders in the land of Egypt.
4 But Pharaoh shall not hearken unto you, that I may lay my hand upon Egypt, and bring forth mine armies, and my people the children of Israel, out of the land of Egypt by great judgments.
5 And the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I stretch forth mine hand upon Egypt, and bring out the children of Israel from among them.
6 And Moses and Aaron did as the Lord commanded them, so did they.
7 And Moses was fourscore years old, and Aaron fourscore and three years old, when they spake unto Pharaoh.
It is because of the hardness of Pharaoh's heart that God sent the plagues, the scripture is very clearly.
Could there be another reason as well.
Patriarchs and Prophets Ch.23 pg.260.2
The Hebrews had expected to obtain their freedom without any special trial of their faith or any real suffering or hardship. But they were not yet prepared for deliverance. They had little faith in God, and were unwilling patiently to endure their afflictions until He should see fit to work for them.
Many were content to remain in bondage rather than meet the difficulties attending removal to a strange land; and the habits of some had become so much like those of the Egyptians that they preferred to dwell in Egypt.
Therefore the Lord did not deliver them by the first manifestation of His power before Pharaoh. He overruled events more fully to develop the tyrannical spirit of the Egyptian king and also to reveal Himself to His people.
Beholding His justice, His power, and His love, they would choose to leave Egypt and give themselves to His service. The task of Moses would have been much less difficult had not many of the Israelites become so corrupted that they were unwilling to leave Egypt.
The Spiritual condition of Pharaoh and his end…
And I will harden Pharaoh's heart, and multiply my signs and my wonders in the land of Egypt.
4 But Pharaoh shall not hearken unto you, that I may lay my hand upon Egypt, and bring forth mine armies, and my people the children of Israel, out of the land of Egypt by great judgments.
Testimonies for the Church Vol.5 pg.119.2 - 120.2
By rejecting the first light and every following ray, Pharaoh went from one degree of hardness of heart to another, until the cold, dead forms of the first-born only checked his unbelief and obstinacy for a moment. And then, determined not to yield to God's way, he continued his willful course until overwhelmed by the waters of the Red Sea.
This case is placed on record for our benefit. Just what took place in Pharaoh's heart will take place in every soul that neglects to cherish the light and walk promptly in its rays. God destroys no one. The sinner destroys himself by his own impenitence.
When a person once neglects to heed the invitations, reproofs, and warnings of the Spirit of God, his conscience becomes seared, and the next time he is admonished, it will be more difficult to yield obedience than before. And thus with every repetition. Conscience is the voice of God, heard amid the conflict of human passions; when it is resisted, the Spirit of God is grieved.
The first three plagues
Matthew 24:7-9 (Mark 13:8-13, Luke 21:10-17)
For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
8 All these are the beginning of sorrows.
9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.
At the end of the first three plagues God was determined to separate his people from the Egyptians by allowing the last seven plagues to fall on Egypt alone. Matthew, Mark and Luke tells us that the first three plagues, Famines, Pestilences and earthquakes will be the beginning of sorrows. And after that we will be hated of all nations. After the first three plagues God’s people will be separated from the world.
What will cause the separation between God’s people and the world? What will cause the nations of the earth to hate the people of God?
It is loyalty to the commandments of God that will cause the world to hate God’s people. It is the day of worship that will divide the world in to two classes. It is Sunday rest by law that will separate God’s people from the world.
The earthquakes, the famines and the pestilences we will have to endure as God’s people. We will be in the midst of these calamities and God can keep us. Everyone alive will experience these, some to a greater extent, some to a lesser extent. Is it possible for God’s people to die during these calamities? Yes we can, that is why we must be faithful to God at all times.
We will not know when the sunday rest by law shall be enforced, however we know that when it shall be enforced and the whole world would have been given an opportunity to make a choice then will Revelation 22:11-12 is fulfilled.
Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, 182 (1894)./LDE Ch.17 pg.238.2
The world is soon to be left by the angel of mercy and the seven last plagues are to be poured out.... The bolts of God's wrath are soon to fall, and when He shall begin to punish the transgressors there will be no period of respite until the end.
The First 2 plagues of the 7
2 And the first went, and poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image.
3 And the second angel poured out his vial upon the sea; and it became as the blood of a dead man: and every living soul died in the sea.
The first plague is poured out after the proclamation of the third Angel’s message and after the mark of the beast is enforced.
Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.
Why should plagues befall men when there is no avenue for repentance ?
Revelation 13:11-14 11 And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon.
12 And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.
13 And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men,
14 And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.
Their miracle working power at this time must be exposed as in the days of Egypt when the magicians who seemed to have power to turn their rods into servants were soon powerless to prevent Egypt from suffering from the future plagues.
19 Then the magicians said unto Pharaoh, This is the finger of God: and Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he hearkened not unto them; as the Lord had said.
Plague 1 - Noisome and grievous sore, meaning painful and severe. This is boils just like what the Egyptians received only worse (Exodus 9:9-10) and Job(2:7).
Plague 2 - The sea supports international commerce and travel. This will be interrupted, and their will be many calamities on the sea even to the creatures in the deep.
The third and fourth plagues of the 7
4 And the third angel poured out his vial upon the rivers and fountains of waters; and they became blood.
8 And the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and power was given unto him to scorch men with fire.
9 And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give him glory.
Plague 3 - Whilst the sea is affected life can still continue, however when the rivers and fountains are turned to blood it will be a terrible calamity to befall the inhabitants of earth as it was in the days of Pharaoh (Exodus 7:17-19)
Is God just, in sending the 7 last plagues upon the earth?
5 And I heard the angel of the waters say, Thou art righteous, O Lord, which art, and wast, and shalt be, because thou hast judged thus.
6 For they have shed the blood of saints and prophets, and thou hast given them blood to drink; for they are worthy.
7 And I heard another out of the altar say, Even so, Lord God Almighty, true and righteous are thy judgments.
1 Samuel 15:23
23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, he hath also rejected thee from being king.
God here is justified in his dealings with the rebellious
Plague 4 - The sun scorched men upon the earth. The sun will be hotter than usual. However this was already foretold so it is nothing new.
Great Controversy Ch.39 pg.628.1
And men were scorched with great heat.” Verses 8, 9. The prophets thus describe the condition of the earth at this fearful time: “The land mourneth; ... because the harvest of the field is perished.... All the trees of the field are withered: because joy is withered away from the sons of men.” “The seed is rotten under their clods, the garners are laid desolate....
How do the beasts groan! the herds of cattle are perplexed, because they have no pasture.... The rivers of water are dried up, and the fire hath devoured the pastures of the wilderness.” “The songs of the temple shall be howlings in that day, saith the Lord God: there shall be many dead bodies in every place; they shall cast them forth with silence.” Joel 1:10-12, 17-20; Amos 8:3
The fourth plague also reveals fully the character of men. These calamities does not bring forth sorrow for their sins but they blaspheme the name of God. They are truly displaying the character of their father.
There will be much similarities to those who died in the flood.
Patriarchs and Prophets Ch.7 pg.99.3
As the violence of the storm increased, trees, buildings, rocks, and earth were hurled in every direction. The terror of man and beast was beyond description.
Above the roar of the tempest was heard the wailing of a people that had despised the authority of God. Satan himself, who was compelled to remain in the midst of the warring elements, feared for his own existence.
He had delighted to control so powerful a race, and desired them to live to practice their abominations and continue their rebellion against the Ruler of heaven.
He now uttered imprecations against God, charging Him with injustice and cruelty. Many of the people, like Satan, blasphemed God, and had they been able, they would have torn Him from the throne of power.
The fifth and sixth plagues of the 7
10 And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain,
11 And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds.
12 And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared.
Plague 5 - Darkness befalls the seat of the beast meaning its headquarters and also its kingdom, the world.
Last Day Events Ch.17 pg.246.2
With shouts of triumph, jeering, and imprecation, throngs of evil men are about to rush upon their prey, when, lo, a dense blackness, deeper than the darkness of the night, falls upon the earth. Then a rainbow, shining with the glory from the throne of God, spans the heavens, and seems to encircle each praying company.
The angry multitudes are suddenly arrested. Their mocking cries die away. The objects of their murderous rage are forgotten. With fearful forebodings they gaze upon the symbol of God's covenant, and long to be shielded from its overpowering brightness....
This is similar to the darkness that fell upon Egypt but there was light in goshen.
21 And the Lord said unto Moses, Stretch out thine hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, even darkness which may be felt.
22 And Moses stretched forth his hand toward heaven; and there was a thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days:
23 They saw not one another, neither rose any from his place for three days: but all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings.
Plague 6 - The river Euphrates dries up to make way for the kings of the east.
While we do believe the plagues are literal as confirmed by Joel and Amos and the inspired writings by EGW, the sixth plague begs us to look at it a little closer. There are a few questions that come to mind.
- After the third and fourth plagues the rivers and lakes of the earth should be destroyed. Why is the river Euphrates still flowing.
- Who are the Kings of the east that the river Euphrates is holding back.
- If there is no literal reference then can we look for a hidden meaning
Of all the Plagues as to date there is no physical reference that can satisfy a literal interpretation of this text. Therefore we will look at a symbolic representation of it and see if we can understand it better.
We know that water represents people ( Revelation 17:1,15 ). The fifth place targets the headquarters of the beast. The place of his administration. Therefore we can conclude that the sixth plague which is just before the seventh and last plague, brings the beast power to its knees by taking away all earthly support leaving it vulnerable and without help. The Euphrates represent the nations that support the beast power but have now been finally broken, so that they cannot now strengthen the beast power by their wealth or military strength.
The Kings of the east here represents Christ and his retinue of Angels that are coming to take his people home. We can conclude that by the end of the sixth plague Christ's is about to show up.
The Seventh Plague
The seventh plague
17 And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, It is done.
18 And there were voices, and thunders, and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great.
19 And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath.
20 And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found.
21 And there fell upon men a great hail out of heaven, every stone about the weight of a talent: and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail; for the plague thereof was exceeding great.
Great voice out of the temple of heaven from the throne
16 The Lord also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the Lord will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel.
30 Therefore prophesy thou against them all these words, and say unto them, The Lord shall roar from on high, and utter his voice from his holy habitation; he shall mightily roar upon his habitation; he shall give a shout, as they that tread the grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth.
25 See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven:
26 Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven.
The Prophets of old have told us that God will speak from heaven and he will shake the earth because of the wickedness of men. We see that this is fulfilled in the seventh and last plague. The voice of God however will be hope to his people.
Voice and Lightnings and Thunders
And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking: and when the people saw it, they removed, and stood afar off.
The voice of thy thunder was in the heaven: the lightnings lightened the world: the earth trembled and shook.
5 And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.
And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire:
3 And cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth: and when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices.
19 And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament: and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.
This shows the awesome and mighty power of God. When he speaks it sounds like thunder. When the Angel of Revelation 10, which is Christ cried with a loud voice , represented by a lion's roar seven thunders were uttered. These occurrences as seen through Exodus to Revelation proceeding from the throne of God as the Voice of God.
The Great City
And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.
4 And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication:
18 And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.
10 Standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come.
The City divided into three parts - Modern Spiritualism, Papacy and Apostate Protestantism
13 And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon( Modern Spiritualism ), and out of the mouth of the beast( Papacy ), and out of the mouth of the false prophet ( Apostate Protestism ).
14 For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.
The cities are fallen
The Great Controversy, 637 (1911)/Last Day Events Ch.17 pg.251.5
The proudest cities of the earth are laid low. The lordly palaces, upon which the world's great men have lavished their wealth in order to glorify themselves, are crumbling to ruin before their eyes. Prison walls are rent asunder, and God's people, who have been held in bondage for their faith, are set free.
Babylon came in remembrance before God
Babylon will now receive the reward for all the evil she has caused in this world.
8 And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.
5 For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities.
6 Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double.
The hail, the judgement of God
17 Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet: and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the hiding place.
18 And your covenant with death shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, then ye shall be trodden down by it.
30 And the Lord shall cause his glorious voice to be heard, and shall shew the lighting down of his arm, with the indignation of his anger, and with the flame of a devouring fire, with scattering, and tempest, and hailstones.
22 And I will plead against him with pestilence and with blood; and I will rain upon him, and upon his bands, and upon the many people that are with him, an overflowing rain, and great hailstones, fire, and brimstone.
The Certainty of God's Judgments
Last Day Events pg.240.5 - 241.3
God's love is represented in our day as being of such a character as would forbid His destroying the sinner. Men reason from their own low standard of right and justice. “Thou thoughtest that I was altogether such an one as thyself” (Psalm 50:21). They measure God by themselves. They reason as to how they would act under the circumstances and decide God would do as they imagine they would do.... LDE 240.5
In no kingdom or government is it left to the lawbreakers to say what punishment is to be executed against those who have broken the law. All we have, all the bounties of His grace which we possess, we owe to God.
The aggravating character of sin against such a God cannot be estimated any more than the heavens can be measured with a span. God is a moral governor as well as a Father. He is the Lawgiver. He makes and executes His laws. Law that has no penalty is of no force. LDE 241.1
The plea may be made that a loving Father would not see His children suffering the punishment of God by fire while He had the power to relieve them. But God would, for the good of His subjects and for their safety, punish the transgressor. God does not work on the plan of man.
He can do infinite justice that man has no right to do before his fellow man. Noah would have displeased God to have drowned one of the scoffers and mockers that harassed him, but God drowned the vast world. Lot would have had no right to inflict punishment on his sons-in-law, but God would do it in strict justice. LDE 241.2
Who will say God will not do what He says He will do?