The finger of God (Lk 11:20-11:20)

“But if it is

By the finger of God

That I cast out

The demons,

Then the kingdom of God

Has come

To you.”

 

εἰ δὲ ἐν δακτύλῳ Θεοῦ ἐγὼ ἐκβάλλω τὰ δαιμόνια, ἄρα ἔφθασεν ἐφ’ ὑμᾶς ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ Θεοῦ.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus said that it was by the finger of God (εἰ δὲ ἐν δακτύλῳ Θεοῦ) that he cast out these demons (ἐγὼ ἐκβάλλω τὰ δαιμόνια).  Thus, the kingdom of God (ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ Θεοῦ) has come to them (ἄρα ἔφθασεν ἐφ’ ὑμᾶς).  There is a similar statement in Matthew, chapter 12:28.  However, Luke talked about the finger of God rather than the Spirit of God, like Matthew.  In Exodus, chapter 8:19, the Egyptian magicians referred to Moses’ power as the finger of God.  Notice that Matthew said that the Kingdom of God (ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ Θεοῦ) had come, not the Kingdom of heaven, as he said many times earlier in this work.  Matthew indicated that Jesus said that if he cast out the demons with the Spirit or breathe of God (εἰ δὲ ἐν Πνεύματι Θεοῦ ἐγὼ ἐκβάλλω τὰ δαιμόνια), then the kingdom of God had come or arrived for them (ἄρα ἔφθασεν ἐφ’ ὑμᾶς ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ Θεοῦ).  The end times had already begun.  Have you ever experienced the finger of God?

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The sixth plague – festering boils (Ex 9:8-9:12)

“Then Yahweh said to Moses and Aaron, ‘Take handfuls of soot from the kiln, and let Moses throw it in to the air in the sight of Pharaoh.  It shall become fine dust all over the land of Egypt, and shall cause festering boils on humans and animals throughout the whole land of Egypt.’  So they took soot from the kiln, and stood before Pharaoh.  Moses threw it in the air and it caused festering boils on humans and animals.  The magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils, for the boils afflicted the magicians, as well as all the Egyptians.  But Yahweh hardened the heart of Pharaoh, and he would not listen to them, just as Yahweh had spoken to Moses.”

Moses took soot from the kiln, and stood before Pharaoh, and threw it in the air.  This caused festering boils on humans and animals.  However, it is not clear how this happened, since he was only in one room.  This time it afflicted the magicians, as well as the rest of the Egyptians.  You guessed it, Yahweh hardened the heart of Pharaoh, and he would not listen to them.

The third plague – mosquito/gnats (Ex 8:16-8:19)

“Then Yahweh said to Moses, ‘Say to Aaron, stretch out your staff and strike the dust of the earth, so that it may become gnats throughout the whole the land of Egypt.’  They did so.  Aaron stretched out his hand with his staff and struck the dust of the earth and gnats came on humans and animals alike.  All the dust of the earth turned into gnats throughout the whole land of Egypt.  The magicians tried to produce gnats by their secret arts, but they could not.  There were gnats on both humans and animals.  The magicians said to Pharaoh, ‘This is the finger of God.’  But Pharaoh’s heart was hardened, and he would not listen to them, just as Yahweh had said.”

Aaron once again stretched out his hand with his staff and gnats came out of the dust all over humans and animals in Egypt.  I prefer the French mosquitoes.  Normally in the fall, the Nile had stagnant waster that led to mosquito infestation. Now the Egyptian magicians could not do this trick, so they told Pharaoh that this time it was the finger of God, and not a magic trick.  Of course Pharaoh did not listen to them.

The second plague – frogs (Ex 7:25-8:15)

“Seven days passed after Yahweh had struck the Nile.  Then Yahweh said to Moses, ‘Go to Pharaoh and say to him, thus says Yahweh, let my people go, so that they may worship me.  If you refuse to let them go, I will plague your whole country with frogs.  The Nile River shall swarm with frogs.  They shall come up into your palace, into your bedchamber and your bed, and into the houses of your officials and of your people, and into your ovens and your kneading bowls.  The frogs shall come up on you and on your people and on all your officials.’  Yahweh said to Moses, ‘Say to Aaron, stretch out your hand with your staff over the rivers, the canals, and the pools, and make frogs come up on the land of Egypt!’   So Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt, and the frogs came up and covered the land of Egypt.  But the magicians did the same by their secret arts, and brought frogs up on the land of Egypt.”

After seven days, Yahweh went to Moses to tell Pharaoh that frogs were going to go all over the place.  This time, like last time Aaron stretched out his hand over all the waters of Egypt, and the frogs covered the land of Egypt.  Moses seems to have the Nile covered, while Aaron does the rest of the country.  However, the Egyptian magicians seem to be able to do the same thing so it appears to be no big deal.

“Then Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron, and said, ‘Pray to Yahweh to take away the frogs from me and my people, and I will let the people go to sacrifice to Yahweh.’  Moses said to Pharaoh, ‘Kindly tell me when I am to pray for you and for your officials and for your people that the frogs may be removed from you and your houses and be left only in the Nile.’  And he said, ‘Tomorrow.’  Moses said, ‘As you say!  So that you may know that there is no one like Yahweh our God.  The frogs shall leave you and your houses and your officials and your people.  They shall be left only in the Nile.’  Then Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh.  Moses cried out to Yahweh concerning the frogs that he had brought upon Pharaoh.  Yahweh did as Moses requested.  The frogs died in the houses, the courtyards and the fields. They gathered them together in heaps, and the land stunk.  But when Pharaoh saw that there was a respite, he hardened his heart, and would not listen to them, just as Yahweh had said.”

This time Pharaoh asked Moses to stop the frogs the next day.  If he did that, then he would let them go.  We see some movement.  It looks like things are going to be okay.  Moses cried out to Yahweh and the frogs died all over the place.  However, there still was a bad odor. Normally, there were these frog eating birds in Egypt along the Nile.  Anyway when Pharaoh saw that there was a let up with the frogs, he once again hardened his heart, and would not let them go, just as Yahweh had said.

The first plague – The Nile River pollution with blood (Ex 7:14-7:24)

“Then Yahweh said to Moses, ‘Pharaoh’s heart is hardened.  He refuses to let the people go.  Go to Pharaoh in the morning, as he is going out to the water.  Stand by at the river’s brink, and take in your hands the staff that was turned into a snake.  Say to him, `Yahweh, the God of the Hebrews, sent me to you, say, ‘Let my people go, that they may worship me in the wilderness.  But until now you have not listened.’   Thus says Yahweh, ‘By this you shall know that I am Yahweh.  See with the staff that is in my hand I will strike the water that is in the Nile, and it shall be turned to blood.  The fish in the river shall die.  The river itself shall stink.  The Egyptians shall be unable to drink water from the Nile.’  Yahweh said to Moses, ‘Say to Aaron, Take your staff and stretch out your hand over the waters of Egypt, over its rivers, their canals, and their ponds, and all its pools of water, so that they may become blood.  There shall be blood throughout the whole land of Egypt, even in vessels of wood and in vessels of stone.’”

Here comes the gory stuff, the ten plagues. Yahweh knew that Pharaoh had a hard heart, so he kept pounding away at the Egyptians.  Moses, this time alone, met Pharaoh at the Nile River bank with his staff.   You will not let my people go so I am going to show you with my magic wand.  He turns the Nile River into blood.  Then Aaron was told to stretch out his hands over all the waters in Egypt turn them into blood.  So we have a bloody mess.

“Moses and Aaron did just as Yahweh commanded.  In the sight of Pharaoh and his officials, he lifted up the staff and struck the water in the Nile River, and all the water in the Nile River turned into blood.  The fish in the Nile died.  The Nile River stank so that the Egyptians could not drink its water.  There was blood throughout the whole land of Egypt.  But the magicians of Egypt did the same by their secret arts.  So Pharaoh’s heart remained hardened, and he would not listen to them, as Yahweh had said. Pharaoh turned and went into his house.  He did not take even this to heart. All the Egyptians had to dig along the Nile for water to drink, for they could not drink the water of the Nile River.”

However, the Egyptian magicians were able to do the same thing.  Everyone had to dig water wells for drinking water.  A natural explanation may have been the fact that the Nile River has red particles of earth in it.  Anyway, remember, it’s a miraculous story. Pharaoh was unmoved, as the water supply was polluted.