Read Exodus Chapter 10. After you have read the chapter, read the passages below to help you dive deeper into the Chapter. Conclude in Prayer.
The plague of locusts - "The locusts devastate crops and cause famine, so that plague was meant to expose the weakness of their gods to sustain them even physically. St. Augustine believes that the locusts refer to false testimonials that, like locusts, bring harm through the mouth.” - Fr. Tadros Y. Malaty
INCONSTANCY AND DISCORD - "In the eighth place locusts are mentioned. Some interpreters think that this sort of plague confutes the inconstancy of the human race, filled with dissent and discord. In another sense, the locusts can be interpreted as representing flittering mobility, like the pleasures of this world in a restless and skittish soul.” - ISIDORE OF SEVILLE
PHARAOH’S HEART COULD BE SOFTENED - And the briefly recorded fact that the heart of Pharaoh experienced a kind of softening when he said, ―But you shall not proceed far; you shall go a three days‘ journey and leave your wives behind, and whatever else he spoke when yielding before the marvelous works makes it clear that these signs had some effect even on him, though they did not entirely accomplish their object. Yet not even this would have happened if the idea held by most people about the words, ―I will harden Pharaoh‘s heart, rightly represented what was wrought by him, that is, by God." - ORIGEN
“As the situation worsened, he allowed them to go their way (namely to go for three days), but he said: “Go now, you who are men, and serve the Lord, for that is what you desired” (Ex 10: 11). He was not allowing them to take their children, their wives, or their beasts. The enemy, although allowing us to worship God, yet without our women, (which are our bodies to which wives refer according to the letter of St. Paul to the Ephesians), to love their women as they do their bodies; without their children - the fruits of the Spirit; and without the beasts, meaning without sanctifying their senses and emotions. The devil wants to separate worship from man’s whole active life, even from the sanctification of his body and emotions.” - Fr. Tadros Y. Malaty
Can you see how Pharoah tries to negotiate with Moses and Aaron? In our spiritual battle Satan tries this same trick. He resists us completely at first, when we strive to worship our Lord. When he sees that we continue to strive for holiness, he says ok. Go, worship, fast, but I will occupy your heart or your mind. He seeks to keep us busy. He does not want us to worship God completely, in mind body and spirit, but rather to go through the motions without sacrificing all that we are to God. He fights us to keep something back from God.
How does Satan compromise try to compromise with you? What ways does he try to keep your mind or your heart preoccupied with things other than God? How can you strive to worship God or fast God in full?
The plague of darkness - The Egyptians used to worship ‘Ra’, god of the sun. It is as though this plague was directed against that god. At the same time, it revealed the blindness of their insights, and proclaimed their need for the coming of the Sun of Righteousness who shines on those sitting in the darkness. This plague remained three days, which probably refers to the waiting of the soul to enter into the light of resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.” - Fr. Tadros Y. Malaty
THE DIVINE MYSTERY - "In the ninth plague, darkness fell. Either it means the blindness of their minds or that they should realize that the workings of the divine economy and of providence are most obscure. For God made darkness his hiding place.1 But they desired boldly and rashly to investigate it and, drawing one conclusion after another, fell into the dense and palpable darkness of ignorance.” - ISIDORE OF SEVILLE
"Finally, he allowed them to take their women and children, but, “Let your flocks and herds be kept back” (Ex. 10: 24). The response of Moses and Aaron was: “Not a hoof shall be left behind” (Ex. 10: 26). Likewise, we have to go with all our women, children, and beasts, to offer every thing to God, and not to leave for the devil any place in our life. We shall not leave him any hoof, lest he would have any chance for his evil work in us.” - Fr. Tadros Y. Malaty
Heavenly Father, truly our enemy is cunning and deceptive, but You Lord, by Your Holy Spirit, make us able to see past his deception. We ask dear Lord, that we no longer walk in the futility of our minds, having our understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God. Reveal to us O God, the ignorance that is in us, because of the blindness of our hearts, lest we end up giving ourselves over to lewdness and all uncleanness. Renew the Spirit of our mind, heart and soul, so that we give no place to the devil. Expose in us the unfruitful works of darkness so that we may walk as children of light. Amen.
Posted on Mon, December 12, 2016
by Mathew Shehata