In 2008 our cultural vocabulary was enriched with the term “Too big to fail.” It was determined by the federal government that certain economic giants in the nation had to be rescued from themselves at taxpayer expense because the implications to the national economy were too draconian if those mega-businesses were allowed to go bankrupt.
This mindset applies not only to businesses but also to politicians. The law is unashamedly applied differently to big name people than to ordinary citizens. Some people can commit flagrant crimes but they are still too big to go to jail.
Even in our relentless American warmongering, we embrace a social contract of only killing soldiers and civilians and not taking out the politicians. For all the different factions warring in Syria, no one is overtly bombing the presidential palace or any other place Assad might be. It is simply not proper, because we war in a civilized fashion, you see.
God, on the other hand, feels no need to defer to social niceties when flogging His ancient enemy. So the ninth plague drives home that point as God targets Ra, their sun god. Ra was deemed the king of all things, the creator of all things, including mankind, and therefore supreme.
All Egyptians were cognizant of the pattern of Yahweh defeating one demi-god after another, but Ra was in a different category. They had no reason to believe Yahweh could do anything of any sort to Ra because he was far above the earth, untouchable. Sending locust on earth was a small thing. Touching the mighty Ra would be impossible.
Therefore, to utterly stagger the faith of the Egyptians in their pantheon, God not only went up against Ra, but he did so in unmistakable manner. The light of the sun was shut off completely. Unbelievable. We don’t have as many details as we would like, but the phrases “thick darkness” and “darkness which may be felt” are quite intriguing. Exodus 10:21-22 AV.
The fact that no Egyptian got up from their place for three days suggests that candles, torches and lamps didn’t work and that there was such an intensity of the presence of the fear of the Lord there that no one really wanted to try to defy this move of God.
And to drive home the final degree of insult, the Hebrews who were overtly rebelling against the god Ra had abundant light in their abodes.
A crushing blow to the brand of Ra.
God the Strategist followed up swiftly. “Speak now in the ears of the people, and let every man borrow of his neighbour, and every woman of her neighbour, jewels of silver, and jewels of gold. And the LORD gave the people favour in the sight of the Egyptians. Moreover the man Moses was very great in the land of Egypt, in the sight of Pharaoh’s servants, and in the sight of the people.” Exodus 11:2-3 AV
Debt collection is generally messy. The Egyptians owed the Hebrews several hundred years of back wages with penalties and interest, so God simply unleashed the entire Hebrew nation to collect their debt in a few days’ time. And after that display of force by the God of Moses, when a Hebrew knocked on the door of an Egyptian and said, “Trick or treat!” they didn’t leave with mini-Kit Kats. The Egyptians forked over the gold or anything else the Hebrews wanted. Quickly.
So nothing is off-limits to the God of the Universe. There is no demonic stronghold that is too big to tackle. There is no human or spiritual structure that is protected by any social contract of propriety.
There is simply war and victory — crushing victory.
Oh yes, and brand building in the meantime. After all, a lot of the Egyptian brand building was for the benefit of the Canaanites. When Moses went to Pharaoh and said the God of the Hebrews wanted to be worshipped, Pharaoh said succinctly, “Never heard of him. Case closed.”
Long before the Hebrews reached Jericho, everyone between Egypt and Canaan had heard lots and lots about the God of the Hebrews. The God of the Marketplace dominates the social media of any generation and gets His brand established wherever He wants it.
Did you notice that in the conquest of Canaan, not one single nation dared to pit their god against Yahweh? They knew it would be pointless. They simply used walled cities, trickery and massed armies in a futile attempt to resist the Hebrews, but not one single Canaanite priest or wise man suggested a god-to-God hoe down.
They knew NOTHING was off-limits to the God of the Hebrews.
Copyright November 2015 by Arthur Burk
From the Hub