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Showing posts from July, 2020

Exodus 35

What does it say? Moses assembled the congregation and said this is what the Lord commands. You are to work for six days and rest on the seventh day. Everyone who has a willing heart is to give a contribution for building the tabernacle and making the priestly garments. Everyone who is skillful shall build the tabernacle and the articles that are put into the tabernacle. All of the people whose heart stirred within them brought gold and silver and materials for the building of the tabernacle as a freewill offering to the Lord. Then Moses told the people that the Lord has filled Bezalel of the tribe of Judah with his Spirit to have wisdom and knowledge in craftsmanship; also, Oholiab of the tribe of Dan. What does it mean? There are three specific things that we should take from this text: The Lord has commandments that he expects his people to follow. The Lord gives people the freedom to chose. The Lord chooses people to do his will. We have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of

Exodus 34

What does it say? The Lord commanded Moses to cut out two stone tablets, like the former ones that Moses had thrown down and shattered, and come up to Mount Sinai, early in the morning by himself. So, Moses did as the Lord commanded and the Lord passed before Moses while proclaiming the name of the Lord. The Lord proclaimed that God is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth; that he keeps lovingkindness for thousands and forgives iniquity, transgression and sin but he will not leave the guilty unpunished and there children will suffer as a result. Hearing this, Moses worshiped the Lord and he asked the Lord to go along in the midst of the people even though they are so obstinate. He prayed that the Lord would forgive their iniquity and sin and take them as his own people. The Lord spoke to Moses of a covenant that he will make and miracles which he will preform that have never been done on the earth. The Lord commanded Moses to write down t

Exodus 33

What does it say? The Lord tells Moses to go to the land which he promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, but he the Lord would not go with them, he will send an angle before them to drive out the inhabitants of the land. The sons of Israel went into morning and striped themselves of their ornaments because of the word of the Lord who said: “I will not go in your midst, because you are an obstinate people, and I might destroy you on the way.” (Ex.1:3, 5) Moses pitched a tent, that he called the tent of meeting, outside of the camp, and when he entered the tent, the Lord would descend in a pillar of cloud and meet with Moses face to face, just as a man speaks to his friend. While the Pillar of cloud was at the entrance of the tent, the people worshiped the Lord. Joshua was Moses servant and he remained in the tent whenever Moses departed from it. Moses prayed to the Lord to let him know the ways of the Lord, that he may know the Lord and find favor in his sight. He prays that the Lord wi

Matthew 15

What does it say? The Pharisees question Jesus, as to the why his disciples do not observe the hand washing tradition of the elders, but he answers them, by showing the Pharisees that they are teaching the precepts of men and ignoring the commandments of God. Jesus said to the crowd that a person is not defiled by what he eats but by what he says. The disciples were concerned that Jesus words offended the Pharisees; therefore, Jesus told his disciples that the Pharisees are false teachers. Jesus’ disciples confessed that the did not understand the statement about what defiles a man, so Jesus explained to them the workings of the gastrointestinal system. Then he explained to them that all sin begins with evil thoughts, which manifest in evil words and evil actions. A woman whose physical birth was not from one of the tribes of Israel came and asked Jesus to heal her daughter. Jesus refused her request but after she answered wisely he healed her daughter and he called the woman’s faith g

Exodus 32

What does it say? Moses was a long returning from the mountain and the people became restless, so Aaron made them an idol, a molten calf to worship as their god who took them out of the land of Egypt. The Lord told Moses that the people have broken the covenant by making an idol to worship; therefore, the Lord was angry. Moses prayed to the Lord, that he would not destroy the people and he reminded the Lord of the covenant that he made with Abraham, Isaac and (Jacob) Israel; that he would multiply there descendants and give them the land that they stood on forever. Hearing this, the Lord withheld his wrath from destroying the sons of Israel. Moses descended from the mountain with the two tablets of testimony given to him by the Lord and while descending he heard the people singing. When Moses saw what they were doing he became angry and threw down the tablets which shattered. Moses ground up the golden calf, scattered the grindings over the surface of the water and he made the sons of

Exodus 31

What does it say? The Lord called Bezalel from the tribe of Judah and filled him with the Holy Spirit , along with Oholiab from the tribe of Dan; there were others but these two led the work done on the articles that the Lord commanded through Moses. The Lord reinforced the sabbath rest which is the sign of the covenant between the Lord and the sons of Israel; the sabbath rest acknowledges that God created all things in six days and rested on the seventh day. The Lord concluded speaking on Mount Sinai and gave Moses the two stone tablets of the testimony, written by the finger of God. What does it mean? The fact that the Lord called two men from separate tribes to do the work on the sanctuary indicates plurality in the work of the Lord. It should also be noted that these men were not of the priestly tribe of Levi but they were called by the Lord to work. The work that they were called to do was not work that most would consider holy, yet the Lord filled Bezalel with the Spirit of God i

Matthew 14

What does it say? Herod hearing the news about Jesus believed that he might be John the Baptist risen from the dead. Herod imprisoned John the Baptist for saying that it was unlawful for Herod to marry his brother’s wife Herodias. Herod made a hasty promise to the daughter of Herodias, before his birthday guest, to give her whatever she desired; she asked for the head of John the Baptist on a platter, having been prompted by her mother, his head was severed from his body and brought to the young woman on a platter. Having heard the news about John, Jesus withdrew to a secluded place across the sea to pray. Jesus feed five thousand men with five loaves and two fish, and there was enough leftovers to fill twelve baskets. Jesus withdrew to the mountain by himself to pray but that night he came to the disciples walking on the sea and they were frightened. Peter got out of the boat (at Jesus command) and began walking to him but he doubted and began to sink; therefore, he called out to the

Exodus 30

What does it say? The Lord gave Moses instructions to make an ornate altar for burning incense on which is to be placed in front of the veil that separates the holy place from the holy of holies. Like the other articles, the altar of incense was designed to be carried with poles. This altar was for burning incense in the morning and in the evening and was not for sacrifice, but once a year the high priest was to make atonement on it with the blood of the sin offering of atonement. The Lord then instructs Moses to take a census of the sons of Israel, and every man numbered from twenty years old and older is to pay a ransom for himself; a half shekel for the service of the tent of meeting. A laver of bronze filled with water is to be placed between the altar and the tent of meeting; the priest are to wash their hands and feet before entering the tent of meeting or before approaching the altar with a sacrifice. A recipe for making a special perfume is given but this perfume is only to be

Exodus 29

What does it say? Instructions were given to Moses regarding the ordination ceremony of his brother Aaron and Aaron’s sons as priest. A bull is to be sacrificed during the ordination ceremony as a sin offering. Then a ram is to be sacrificed as a burnt offering to the Lord. A second ram is sacrificed and the blood of this lamb is to be used for anointing Aaron and his sons and their garments. The fat of the ram, with the liver, the kidneys, the right thigh, a cake of bread, a cake mixed with oil, and one wafer of unleavened bread from the basket set before the Lord is to be put in the hands of Aaron and his sons as a wave offering which they will offer up in smoke on the altar before the Lord. The breast and the thigh of the ram are to be eaten by Aaron and his sons; this portion is theirs forever of the heave offerings. Aarons holy garments are to be passed down to the generations of his sons. The meet of the ram is to be boiled and eaten with the bread in the basket by Aaron and his

Matthew 13

What does it say? Jesus (from a boat) began speaking to a crowd who gathered by sea. He told a parable about a man sowing seed and only one of four soils (the good soil) yielded a crop. Afterwords, the disciples asked Jesus why he teaches the crowds in parables and the answer that he gave is that it has not been granted to them to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven. However, the disciples have been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven. Jesus then explains the parable of the sower to the disciples: The four soils represent four types of hearers one does not hear at all, one receives with joy but is short lived, one bears no fruit because of the worries of the world; however, the disciple hears the word and yields fruit. Jesus told the crowds a parable about a good sower and a bad sower. In another parable the mustered seed which begins small and grows larger than any garden plant. In the parable of the leavened bread, the leaven spreads throughout the loaf. Je

Exodus 28

What does it say? Aaron and his sons: Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ilthamar were elected by the Lord as priest on behalf of the people before the Lord; the Lord also raised up skillful people to make garments for the priests. The outer piece of the priestly garment was a long vest called an ephod which had a stone on each should with the names of the sons of Israel engraved on the stones. The breast piece of judgment was finely knitted and decorated (four rows of precious stones representing the twelve tribes) pouch that contained the Urim and the Thummim (lights and perfections) before the Lord. The cloth of the ephod was blue and the him was decorated with bells and pomegranates so that the priest jingled when he walked before the Lord. Aaron wore a turban with a plate of pure gold with the engraving (Holy to the Lord) fastened to the turban with a blue cord. The turban of the high priest was more ornate than that of the other priests. The priest also wore linen breeches (boxer short

Exodus 27

This chapter gives instructions on the construction of and use of the bronze altar and the court of the tabernacle; lastly, the oil to be used for the lamp in the tent of meeting. The tabernacle was constructed as such: The holy of holies is the place of God. In the holy of holies was the ark of the testimony. A box with attached carrying poles. In the box were two tablets on which were written, Ten Commandments for the sons of Israel. On top of the box was a led called the mercy seat. We will come back to the mercy seat in a later writing but its purpose is for atonement of sins. Going out from the holy of holies we have the holy place. This is were the priest are to meet with God. The holy place is separated from the holy of holies by a linen curtain. In the holy place was a table and a lamp. Placed on the table were twelve loaves of bread which represent the twelve tribes of Israel, the people of God. The lampstand had on it seven lamps that were to be kept lit throughout the night

Matthew 12

Jesus proves to be perfect wisdom in human flesh. The Scribes and Pharisees attempt time and time again to trick Jesus or make him sound foolish but they are the ones made out to be fools.  The Sabbath was given by the Lord to the Sons of Israel for two reasons: First, would they trust his word. Second, for their benefit. However, the pharisees made additional laws to keep people from breaking the Sabbath. The Sabbath became a burden rather than a blessing for the people of God. Jesus would later tell Pilot, “For this I have been born, and for this I have come into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.” (Jn. 18:37, NASB) The pharisees were not teaching the truth about the Sabbath; therefore, understanding about the Sabbath is one area that the Messiah came to redeem. Jesus said something that must have sounded atrocious to them. He claimed to be Lord of the Sabbath. Now why would he say that? Because the pharisees (by making additional laws) h

Exodus 26

The Lord is very detailed in how he wants the tabernacle constructed. We could look at the tabernacle from outside to inside and this is the way that it is written and they way that it would have been seen but we could also go from inside out.  I spent about one year in a U. S. Army Field Hospital unit which used very large canvas tents to construct the Field Hospital. Theses tents were about the size and dimensions of the tabernacle and used framework, clasps and rings to construct them.  Once constructed an entire wall looked as a single curtain. Inside the tent could be further partitioned into rooms with additional curtains. There was also two sets of curtains that made the walls of these great tents. There was an inner wall that was made of softer material and an outer wall of thicker and more rigged material. I imagine the construct of the tabernacle to be much like these great tents although much much much more innate and glorious in appearance.   I would like to think more abou

Exodus 25

At this point in the story of the Exodus and the giving of the Mosaic covenant to the sons of Israel we enter what the covenantal theologians call ceremonial law. The covenantal theologian patricians the Law into three parts: Moral Civil Ceremonial He does this because he wants to bring the Christian back to the law for sanctification after he has been saved from the penalty of the law but does not want him to follow the civil or ceremonial law. He says that the civil law was for the nation of Israel only and the ceremonial law was done away with at the cross but the moral law (The Ten Commandments) are forever.  Jesus said in Matthew 5:17, “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. All of the laws given to Moses for the sons of Israel are related to The Ten Commandments. The civil laws are based on the ten commandments and the ceremonial laws are based on the ten commandments. In this chapter four commands are given by the L

Exodus 24

The people saw the cloud descend on Mount Sinai and they heard the voice of God speaking the ten commandments and they feared the voice of the Lord; therefore, the elected Moses to be their intercessor. The Lord gave Moses commandments on how the people are to live in the promise land. The Lord told Moses to come up to the Lord with his brother Aaron, Aaron’s two sons Nadab and Abihu, and with seventy elders to worship the Lord at a distance.  Moses recounted to all the people the things that God had said to him when they sent him to the Lord as their intercessor. The people agreed to do all the words that the Lord had spoken. Moses wrote down all that the Lord had spoken in a book. Moses built an altar at the foot of the mountain with twelve pillars. One pillar for every tribe. They sacrificed young bulls as burnt offerings on the altar as peace offerings to the Lord. When the bulls were sacrificed, Moses used half of the blood to sanctify the altar. Then he read the words of the Lord

Matthew 11

In the previous chapter Jesus gave his disciples instruction and sent them out to proclaim the coming kingdom of heaven. John heard from prison what Jesus was doing and he sent his disciples to question him: “Are you the coming one?” Jesus answered them with Scripture being fulfilled by his works; namely, Isaiah 31:5f and Isaiah 61:1. Someone looking for the Messiah to come would be looking for fulfillment of these prophecies. But there is another prophecy that has been fulfilled and is being fulfilled. Jesus only states the first half of the prophecy because it is this half that relates to John the Baptist; the propecy is Malachi 3:1. The second half of the prophecy is already fulfilled in inauguration but not yet in consumption. The second half of the prohecy is the day of the Lord, when he sits down on his glorious thrown and all things are made new. Jesus calls John the best man that has ever lived, yet he is not greater than the citizens in the kingdom of heaven. Jesus then compar

Exodus 23

The Lord is a just and holy God. And he expects his people to act justly. Jesus said: “Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” (Mt. 5:48) The ninth commandment: You shall not testify falsely against your neighbor is a commandment about justice. The Lord expects individuals to act justly no matter what the masses are doing. He expects his people to act justly towards both friend and foe. Some people are partial to the poor and others are partial to the rich. Justice should be blind to all partiality, nor should it be bribed. (vv. 1-9) Why the Sabbath rest? The Sabbath was a test to see if the sons of Israel would obey the Lord but it also was given to them for their good. Men do best when they work hard followed by a period of rest. I know that I work best after resting and I rest best after working. Men were made for work but must have rest. This rest was not for the land owner only but was required of him to rest his animals and the slaves that worked for

Exodus 22

The first half of this chapter (vv 1-15) deal with property rights and the second half (vv 16-31) are miscellaneous laws. The property right laws relate to the eight, ninth and tenth commandments: You shall not steal. You shall not testify falsely against your neighbor. You shall not covet what belongs to your neighbor. The last chapter dealt with laws as it related to personhood but these laws relate to personal belongings. Life was to be considered so precious that to take a life by malice of forethought meant death for the murderer. Personal property was to be held in very high regard also but did not mean the death penalty. There is, however, a provision (v 2)  for protecting property during the night. However, if property is stolen and the thief is caught he is not to be killed. He is to give back the property and pay double to the owner but if it has been consumed or sold has to pay five fold for an oxen and four fold four a sheep. So, restitution was based on value. Both animals

Matthew 10

Jesus choose twelve men to be his disciples and he gave them authority that no one since these twelve have had. Jesus is God in human flesh; therefore, he went about Judea proclaiming the kingdom, casting out unclean spirits, healing all kinds of diseases and every kind of sickness. (cf. Mt 9:35) He gave this same authority to his twelve chosen apostles.  Each of these men are named in groups of two. They were sent to the lost sheep of Israel in pairs. One of these men, Judas Iscariot, would betray Jesus.  The remainder of this chapter is instructions given by Jesus for the twelve when he sent them out on a special mission to announce the coming of the kingdom of heaven to Jewish cities in Galilee. This mission is not to be confused with the great commission. (cf. Mt 28:19, 20) However, many of the things that Jesus teaches the twelve in this chapter have lasting value in missions today. But we should keep in mind that he later revoked some of the things that he said in this chapter. I

Exodus 21

This chapter begins what the covenantal theologian calls civil law.  They are laws for the people, living with one another; nonetheless, they are moral because they are related in spirit to the Ten Commandments. As said in chapter 20, the Ten Commandments, when used properly brings the knowledge of sin and make all who hear the law accountable to God. These laws, however, are civil laws for the sons of Israel living in a theocracy.  When reading these I do not believe that they would be a better way of life; however, we should note that they are much much better than the way other nations were living at the time. C. S. Lewis pointed out in Mere Christianity that we should not judge Christianity when comparing the worst Christian’s behavior with the best unbelievers behavior, for this is not comparing apples to apples. What would that person have been like if they did not know the Lord Jesus Christ and what would this moral unbeliever be like if he did know the Lord? I think that this i

Exodus 20

The Ten Commandments might be the most misunderstood and abused text in all of Scripture. In the protestant tradition there has been two dominant views: The covenantal view and the dispensational view. Covenantal theologians partisan the law into moral, ceremonial and civil law. The covenantal theologian puts the ten commandments into the section of moral law. The covenantal theologian believes that there is one overarching covenant that God is acting on; the covenant that he made with Abraham. The gentiles are included as the people of God because God told Abraham, “In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.” (Gn 22:18) The covenantal theologian believes that the Christian has the duty to keep the moral law (The Ten Commandments) but does not have the duty to keep the cerimonial law or the civil laws of Israel because these were abolished at the cross. However, Jesus said: “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets;

Exodus 19

It took the rising and waining of three moon cycles for the sons of Israel to come to the foot of the mountain in the wilderness of Sinai. The Lord spoke to Moses on the mountain and told him to tell the sons of Israel: You have seen the power of the Lord. If you will obey the voice of the Lord and keep his covenant, then you will be the Lord’s special possession among all the people on the earth. Thus, the sons of Israel were chosen by the Lord to be his special possession; however, it is not without condition, they are obligated to obey the word of the Lord and keep his commandments. Their forefather Adam was free to eat the fruit of any tree in the garden but the Lord commanded him not to eat the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil; however, Adam listened to the voice of his wife and ate the forbidden fruit. Will the sons of Israel fare any better than Adam? Moses spoke the word of the Lord to the elders of the people and they were all in agreement to observe all tha

Exodus 18

Jethro the priest of Midian was Moses’ Father-in-law. Moses had married Jethro’s daughter Zipporah, who bore Moses two sons (Gershom and Eliezer), while he was a sojourner in Midian, before he meet the Lord. Jethro was called the priest of Midian. Midian was an Arabian Tribe descended from Midian, the son of Abraham through Keturah, the wife of Abraham after Sarah’s death. (Gn. 25:1-4) Jethro came with Moses’ wife and sons to the mountain of God where Moses and the sons of Israel were camping.  Moses received his father-in-law into his tent and told him all of the great things that the Lord did for Israel in Egypt. Jethro rejoiced when he heard the news and said, “Now I know that the Lord is greater than all the gods.” This is the reaction of a believer. When a believer hears the gospel he rejoices. Moses’ father-in-law, took a burnt offering and the elders of Israel sat with him to eat a meal before the Lord. This is true fellowship when men sit down together to enjoy a meal before th

Exodus 17

The whole congregation of the sons of Israel journeyed from the wilderness of Sin to Rephidim. They did this because the Lord commanded the move and he orchestrated the move in stages. Later writings will reveal how the sons of Israel would move from one location to another in stages. There was no water at Rephidim and the people were thirsty. They had no means to lash out at the Lord, so they chose his human representative. Moses believed that the people were ready to stone him; therefore, he called out to the Lord for help. The Lord told Moses to pass before the people (this was so that they would see what was going on) and bring with him some of the elders. Moses was to take in his hand the staff with which he struck the Nile. Moses was to meet the Lord at Horeb.  “Horeb (“desert”), a range of mountains on the Sinai Peninsula, of which Mount Sinai is the highest (Ex. 17:6); now called the Serbal range.” (BBC)  The Lord stood before Moses on the rock at Horeb and Moses struck the roc

Exodus 16

The people departed from the place of twelve springs and seventy fruit producing palms and came to the wilderness of Sin. It is appropriately named because there they sinned against the Lord; the whole congregation of the sons of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron for taking them out of Egypt. They believed that they were better off in Egypt than to die of hunger in the wilderness.  This was sin against the Lord because it was the Lord who took the sons of Israel out of Egypt and brought them into the wilderness; therefore, it was the Lord whom they grumbled against. The Lord told Moses that for six days, in the morning he will rain bread from heaven and in the evening he will provide meat. However, the Lord did this to test the sons of Israel, whether they would listen to his commands or not.  The Law does not justify anyone but gives us the knowledge of sin; the Law closes our mouth and makes us accountable to God. (cf. Rom. 3:19, 20) The Law shows us that we need the mercy and

Exodus 15

Moses and the sons of Israel sang a praise song to the Lord for his defeat of Pharaoh and his army. Miriam, who is mentioned as Aaron’s sister and a prophetess, led the women with tambourines, dancing and singing to the Lord. Miriam is the first prophetess mentioned in Scripture and shows her as the leader of the women of Israel.  Though all listened to Moses, for he spoke to the Lord and Aaron was their High Priest, Miriam ministered to the women , for she was a prophetess.  The sons of Israel sang to the Lord because he defeated the Egyptian army who rode to battle on horseback . It seems that a mounted army was fearful but the Lord is exalted because he is stronger than the mightiest army of men. The men declare: The Lord is my salvation.  It should be noted that the Hebrew word used (יְשׁוּעָה yeshuah) means salvation. A very close name is (יְהוֹשׁוּעַ Yehoshua) “the LORD is salvation,” which will be used later for Moses successor. This is also the Hebrew name for Jesus. Therefore,

Exodus 14

The Lord had the people turn back and camp in front of Baal-zephon, by the sea. “Baal Zephon is connected to Tahpanhes in Jeremiah 44:1; 46:14, in turn identified as Tell Dafana, about twenty miles west of Sile. If they camped near here, Lake Balah would be the closest sea. (IVP BBC OT) This gave the appearance to Pharaoh and his servants that there was no intention to the Israelites movements. They were aimlessly wondering. The Lord had them do this to get Pharaoh to chase after them. He did this so that the Egyptians would know that “I AM.” What the Lord planned to do, not only eventuated in the belief of the Egyptians but in the belief of the Israelites and in his servant Moses. Pharaoh and his servants had benefited greatly by the service of Israel in Egypt. Realizing their loss of laborers, Pharaoh sent his army after the sons of Israel. The sons of Israel were on foot but the Egyptians chased after them with horses and chariots. They overtook them at the Israelite camp site in fr

Exodus 13

The first born from every womb is special to the Lord. The Lord formed the first man from the dust of the earth and breathed life into his nostrils. The Lord fashioned woman from the first man. (Gn.2:7, 22) Every man since the first man came into the world through his mother’s womb. (Gn.3:20) Therefore, the firstborn is holy to the Lord. So that the people remember how the Lord redeemed the first born sons of Israel in Egypt, they are to redeem the first born. The first born of the clean animals are to be sacrificed (eaten) and the first born of a beast of burden, like the donkey, who was unclean for sacrifice was to be substituted with a clean animal or his neck broken and the life of the animal wasted. This entire system of redemption and sacrifice points us to the Lord Jesus Christ, imputation, and his substitutionary atonement on the cross. “The month of Abib spans our March and April. It is the ancient name for what was later called Nisan in the Israelite calendar.” (IVP BBC OT) I

Exodus 12

The passover feast and the subsequent feast of unleavened bread are the greatest feast in the lives of the Israelite for two reasons: It is a remembrance that the Lord passed-over the Israelites when he judged the Egyptians. It is a remembrance that the Lord took them out of Egypt in haste. That month became the first month of the year for the sons of Israel. It should also be understood that a new day began when the sun set on the previous day; therefore, the passover lamb was sacrificed at twilight. The passover lamb was not to be shared with the uncircumcised. For this reason, each lamb was to be consumed by the members of a single household; however, provision was made for two smaller households sharing together in the feast. The calendar was a lunar calendar, which would mean thirteen months to a year and a week would become seven days. So, the festival would begin at twilight as the first full moon of the year was rising, then conclude after a week had passed. The blood on the li

Exodus 11

The conversation between Moses and Pharaoh from the previous chapter concludes in this chapter. In Ex.10:28, Pharaoh told Moses, “Get away from me!” And told Moses that he could no longer see his face and live; however, before departing, Moses tells Pharaoh that it is Pharaoh’s son who will die and every first born son in Egypt will die. The Lord spoke to Moses either before coming to Pharaoh or while in Pharaoh’s presence. The Lord told Moses about the tenth and final plague; after which, Pharaoh will not only let the sons of Israel go but will drive them out. The Lord told Mose to tell the sons of Israel to ask for articles of silver and gold from their Egyptian neighbors. The text says, “The Lord gave the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians.” As if the hearts of the Egyptians towards the sons of Israel and the hearts of Pharaoh’s servants towards Moses had been changed but Pharaoh’s heart was hardened to stone. All of the previous nine plagues that Moses warned Pharaoh about