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Bible Commentaries
Exodus 7

Grant's Commentary on the BibleGrant's Commentary

Verses 1-25



Though Moses had protested that he was of uncircumcised lips, God assured him that He was making Moses a god to Pharaoh, therefore that Pharaoh would not be able to totally ignore Moses. Aaron was to be Moses' prophet and would speak all that Moses communicated to him as the command of God, the only object being to demand that Pharaoh release the children of Israel. Again He tells Moses that He will harden Pharaoh's heart and will use Pharaoh's stubbornness as a cause of multiplying His signs and wonders in Egypt (v.3). There was no reason for Moses and Aaron to be discouraged by Pharaoh's refusals, for God was in perfect control of this. Egypt would only incur the greater judgment by their defiance, and would find by painful experience that God is absolutely Lord (v.5).

At this time (v.6) we are told that Moses and Aaron did as the Lord commanded them, and no mention is made of any further complaints on their part. Their age is told us, -- Moses 80 years and Aaron 83. We may wonder at their physical energy at that age, but even when Moses was 120 years "his eyes were not dim nor his natural vigor diminished" (Deuteronomy 34:7). It is Moses who wrote Psalms 90:1-17, which tells us "The days of our lives are seventy years; and if by reason of strength they are eighty years, yet their boast is only labor and sorrow, for it is soon cut off and we fly away" (v.10). But God made Moses himself a striking exception!



The first sign with which Pharaoh was to be faced was that of Aaron's rod being thrown on the ground and turning into a serpent (vs.9-10). This is typical of God's using even Satan as a rod of His authority to accomplish His purposes in this way. It would tell Pharaoh that even his power (moved by Satan) was under the control of God. However, Pharaoh had seen apparent miracles wrought by magicians, and he brings such men in to imitate what Aaron had done. Using magic arts, they were able to have their rods turned to serpents when thrown down. In this way falsehood always resists the truth (2 Timothy 3:8). But Aaron's rod swallowed up the rods of the magicians. Yet Pharaoh remained obdurate: he would not give in.



The first plague God sent was announced beforehand to Pharaoh. God told Moses that Pharaoh would go out in the morning to the river. Moses was told to stand there with the rod that had before become a serpent, and repeat God's message demanding that Pharaoh let Israel go. Then he announced to Pharaoh that he would strike the waters of the river that they might become blood (v.17), that the fish would die, the river would stink and the people would find it loathsome to try to drink of the river. The announcement evidently had no effect on Pharaoh, and the Lord commanded Moses to do just what he had warned (v.19). When he did this, the result was just as he had said (v.21).

The magicians used their enchantments to do the same thing. God had sent the trouble; and Satan shows he can bring trouble too, but he cannot take it away. Pharaoh regards the whole matter as if it was only a matter of magic, and with no apparent concern, went back into his house (v.23). Yet he ought to have realized that this was a most significant matter. The Nile was Egypt's god: they gave it the name "Osiris," which represented all that was good. Another god, "Typhon," represented all that was evil, and regarded as blood-red. All Egypt would recognize that to turn water to blood was to make evil triumph over good.

The Egyptians were thus given the work of digging wells in the vicinity of the river so as to find water to drink. This continued for seven days (v.25), evidently being relaxed at the end of this.

Bibliographical Information
Grant, L. M. "Commentary on Exodus 7". Grant's Commentary on the Bible. https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/lmg/exodus-7.html. 1897-1910.
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