Notes on the Exodus (105)

“Exposing the Exodus”

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The Blackness of Darkness   (Chapter 10 Verses 21-29)

The darkness here is not just the darkness of night, this is a supernatural darkness. God is light, this darkness is a total withdrawal of God (John 3:19). Pharaoh, Egypt is abandoned, God-forsaken, “my spirit shall not always strive with man” (Genesis 6:3). There comes a time when a man crossed the line and God will have no more to say to him. Pharaoh has reached that place. Egypt’s darkness will not be lit and Israel’s light will not be unlit. One either belongs to the light or the dark. We are not told what the reaction of people is to this, it must have been awful. Think of all that they have been through already, one plague after another, now this. Their nation is in ruins they themselves are totally demoralized. Pharaoh pronounces his own judgment as he dismisses God’s accredited Minister (v28).Get out of my face, I never want to see you again. For God to walk away from a man and leaving in the darkness is an awful, awful thing. Surely the worst calamity to befall a human being. He still thinks he can negotiate (v24). He is wrong, he is dealing with God, not Moses. This is a sheer act of God in judgment (v23). The liberal, unbelieving commentators, yes, and some who claim to be evangelical,  pass this off as being the result of some natural cause. For instance, the wind causing a sandstorm so that nobody could see. This is simply unbelief. Evolution has made such inroads into the church, resulting in people making shipwreck of their faith, refusing to simply accept the authority of God’s word, as it stands in scripture. No, this is a direct supernatural  act of God. There is absolutely nothing at all in the text that would even suggest it could have been a sand storm. A Christian a person who stands on the authority of God’s word, not on the authority of science or even theological commentators. This strikes at the heart of Egypt’s religion. The sun is unique in their religious system, they sang hymns to the sun. You are the unique one, there is none like you, you rise faithfully everything morning and give us warmth, and light. Praise be to the sun. Amon-Re is the sun god of Egypt. God shuts the sun down, he immobilizes their deity and leaves them with an awesome darkness that could be felt (v23). Ernest Shackelton the polar explorer wrote, “In all the world there is no desolation more complete than polar darkness. It is is a return to the ice age, there is no warmth, no life, no movement. It is only those who have experienced it that can fully appreciate what it means to be without the sun day after day, week after week. A few men who are unaccustomed to it can fight off its effects altogether. But it has driven some men completely mad.”

What Shackelton speaks in comparison to this darkness is nothing. Some of the Egyptian people would be in a terrible state of fear. Remember they are already demoralized. Madness, yes, some would have gone completely insane. How many suicides do you think there would have been during these three days? Or heart failure? The king, Pharaoh is the personal embodiment of this solar deity. He was reckoned to the son of the sun. He was reckoned to the incarnation of Amon-Re the sun god. He claimed attributes that belonged only to God, the true and living God. Do you see, he claims to be in the place of God, that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God” (2Thessalonians 2:3-4). Pharaoh is the head of the world-power, he is an Old Testament type of the Anti-Christ. So God, the God of the Bible that is, our God, here shows, demonstrates the falsity of all this. That the sun in the sky that the Egyptians worship and adore, and Pharaoh who is his supposed representative, that all this is a hideous false, blasphemous religion. He shuts out the light, completely, utterly. He takes them back to the primeval darkness, to where there was no light, he shows them who the real Creator is, the one who created the sun. It is there at my disposal, “I form the light, and create darkness” (Isaiah 45:7). 

(© James R Hamilton, written Spring, 2015)
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