I don’t know about you but when I think of the ten big plaques that God used to hit Egypt in the Exodus story, God ends up looking crewel and nasty. But what if those plagues were more subtly making a statement about who God was, what if they were proving that YHVH was not a god, but thee God.
During the time of the Exodus story the people of God found themselves being oppressed by the Egyptians and more specifically the Pharaoh Ramses II. The Egyptians worshiped a large selection of gods at this time with one or two being the major gods. Could it be that YHVH used the plagues to show how the Egyptians gods were in fact not gods at all but that He was thee God.
Hapi, Nile God
The god Hapi who was the god of the River Nile, or more precisely the Nile was a god. It was believed that this god made the land fertile. Once a year the Nile would flood into the fields allowing crops to grow.
The god Hekt was the frog-headed goddess, and it was said that this god have played a part in creation of the world and was still in the process of creating every spring.
There was a god called Geb who was known as the god of the earth. And that this god could make things from the dust of the earth.
The god Khephera was the Fly God and was linked with bravery. There was a story of fly flying inside people to see their hearts, to see what there hearts were made off.
The god Hathor was the cow-headed goddess who was linked to love.
The god Im-Hotep was thought to be the god of healing. They would bring offerings to Im-Hotep to be made well again.
The god Amon-Ra was the sun god and was the principle deity of the pantheon (Egyptian gods).
The god called Nut was the mother of the sun-god Ra and was called ‘The sky goddess’ who was thought to allow things of the sky to happen. Rain, sun, hail, thunder. It wasn’t that She made these things but allowed them to occur.
Senehem was locust-headed god and was linked to Anger.
And then Pharaoh was thought to be thee supreme god of Egypt with Pharaoh’s son being the supreme god of Egypt to be.
One by one YHVH sends his plagues to show who really is in charge. YHVH turns the Nile into blood, which was a sign of this god being dead and no longer having any ability of bringing fertility to the fields.
God shows he is greater than the frog goddess ‘Hekt’ and ‘Geb’ by showing his creative ability by bringing to birth thousands of frogs and by creating the gnats from the dust. He is also a creative God.
God then creates thousands of flies which too become pests but also could be seen to be showing how YHVH can see everything by being everywhere like the fliers.
God then kills all the livestock showing how he has control of the animals not ‘Hathor’.
God then sends the plague of boils upon the Egyptian people. At which point they would have gone into the temple of ‘Im-Hotep’ for healing at which we presume this god didn’t do. Showing that YHVH is almighty.
Then before he finishes his ten God shows his almighty power by making it hail proving the ‘Nut’ goddess of the sky could not stop him, he then sends thousands of locusts making ‘Senehem’ look like a pest and blots out the power of ‘Amon-Ra’ by bringing darkness upon the land.
God then finishes by showing he is Almighty by breaking the chain of Pharaohs by killing the Pharaoh’s son showing that the Pharaoh’s are nothing but human and not devine.
Pharaoh should have known better right at the start of the story when in Exodus 7:10 it said that…
“Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and did just as the LORD commanded. Aaron threw his staff down in front of Pharaoh and his officials, and it became a snake. Pharaoh then summoned wise men and sorcerers, and the Egyptian magicians also did the same things by their secret arts: Each one threw down his staff and it became a snake. But Aaron’s staff swallowed up their staffs”.
The cobra or “urae” was a symbol of the ruling power. This was the main symbol of the ruling Pharaoh. Moses is showing Pharaoh that YHVH was the ruling power and He had the power to do whatever He wanted. Pharaoh must of thought far too highly of himself to allow what followed in Exodus 7-11 to happen.