Last year, I was allowed to present a lesson before the Dalraida church of Christ concerning the Physical, Mental, and Spiritual Aspects of the Ten Plagues. The lesson was written and presented specifically for Vacation Bible School: Miracles, Signs, and Wonders. The final area covered in the lesson was The Spiritual Aspect of the Plagues.
Physical, Mental, and Spiritual Aspects of the Ten Plagues: The Spiritual Aspect of the Plagues
Spiritual Aspect of the Plagues – The hardest hitting part of God’s action against the Egyptians and for the Israelites was, beyond a doubt, the spiritual impact. Again we see that God teaches every person during every plague something different about the spiritual significance of the plagues themselves and the nature of His power and greatness.
What did the Egyptians learn from the plagues?
- Their gods are false. The one true God attacked all of their false gods with plagues.
- Hapi – god of the Nile (blood)
- Heqt – god of frogs (frogs)
- Kheper – god of beetles and flies (gnats/flies)
- Apis – sacred bull (death of livestock)
- Imhotep – physician god (boils)
- Nut – sky goddess (hail)
- Seth – god of crops (locusts)
- Ra – Sun god (darkness)
- Pharaoh (death of firstborn)
God is the one and only true God. (12:31-33) During the night Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron and said, “Up! Leave my people, you and the Israelites! Go, worship the LORD as you have requested. Take your flocks and herds, as you have said, and go. And also bless me.” The Egyptians urged the people to hurry and leave the country. “For otherwise,” they said, “we will all die!” The people of Egypt had no other conclusion but to believe that the Israelite God was the only true God. He had shown them that not only were their gods fake, but that He was supreme. This overwhelming spiritual impact must have affected them deeply.
What did the Israelites learn from the plagues?
They learned about grace. Although the Israelites did not deserve anything better than the Egyptians in the context of humanity, God showed them love and mercy through His grace. (James 4:6) But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” Certainly the Israelites were in humble circumstances and received the grace of God. God taught them about love. God showed His love to the Israelites at every turn. They were protected and cared for by God throughout the whole ordeal of the plagues. God showed them they were special. (1 John 4:18) There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. – While God punished their enemies, He left them alone and cared from them. How comforting that must have been.
They experienced God’s first true method of salvation. During the Passover, God used the “blood of the lamb” to mark His people so that the angel of (physical) death would pass over them. This is directly connected to Jesus blood that causes the angel of (spiritual) death to pass over us. Jesus himself used the Passover meal to institute the Lord’s Supper we take every Sunday. When we take the bread and the cup, we partake in a spiritual meal begun over 6,000 years ago.
God affects us physically, mentally, and spiritually in the same ways He did during Moses time. While we don’t see plagues necessarily, we do experience God’s love through Jesus. We are blessed physically with so many things we can scarcely count them. God gives us good and stable homes through the teachings found in his word that contribute to peace and mental well-being. Finally, we receive God’s grace, love, and salvation through Jesus. We even partake of a Passover meal every Sunday to give ourselves spiritual strength, energy, and preparedness for the long journey to our Promised Land in Heaven. God is truly still leading His people out of bondage and into a beautiful new land!