The Ten Commandments is God’s law to mankind. The law shows man his sinful nature. The first and second commandments deal with not having other gods or graven images before us. I found it interesting that all ten plagues given to the Egyptians dealt with their gods and graven images.

The number ten symbolizes the law, government and restoration. God gave us the law and clearly outlined that we are not to have any other gods before us. God also shows how we can be restored to Him – through His Son, Jesus Christ and His work of the cross. I thought I would incorporate those two concepts into the ten plagues. I could not believe how God blessed me through this! I hope they bless you as well!

1. Water into blood: The Egyptians viewed the Nile as their god – the giver of life. And Moses and Aaron did so, as the LORD commanded; and he lifted up the rod, and smote the waters that were in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh, and in the sight of his servants; and all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood. (Exo 7:20)

The Hebrew slaves shed much of their blood at the hands of the Egyptians but now God showed them that the Egyptian Nile god was no longer the giver of life – God gave them much blood to drink. Exo 7:20 says that all the waters in the river turned to blood. This was their drinking water – sustenance for their crops and cattle. Can you just imagine what impact this had on them? Think of how you wouldn’t be able to live without water!

I found it interesting that the magicians could duplicate this plague but they could not make it go away. The world can try to duplicate the way to heaven but only through Christ’s shed blood can we gain entrance. It is His blood that brings forth the waters of everlasting life! He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (Joh 7:38 )

2. Frogs: The Egyptian goddess, Isis (the goddess of fertility) was represented as a frog. And the river shall bring forth frogs abundantly, which shall go up and come into thine house, and into thy bedchamber, and upon thy bed, and into the house of thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thine ovens, and into thy kneadingtroughs: (Exo 8:3) God showed the Egyptians that she was not a god by giving them dead piles of frogs. These frogs were everywhere! Imagine finding frogs in your house – in your bedroom – in your bed – in the food – everywhere you looked? That’s a LOT of frogs! I found it interesting that the magicians could make the frogs appear but they could not make them go away. The devil can bring things into our lives to make our lives putrid and disgusting – permeating every area of our lives, but only God can clean it up and make it new. Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (2 Cor 5:17)

3. Lice: The Egyptians worshipped the earth god named Seth. And the LORD said unto Moses, Say unto Aaron, Stretch out thy rod, and smite the dust of the land, that it may become lice throughout all the land of Egypt. (Exo 8:16) God caused the tiny little lice to come up out of the earth and make the Egyptians’ lives miserable! Can you imagine each piece of dust in the land turning into lice? If any of you have had lice or one of your children has come home from school with head lice, you know how absolutely annoying they can be to get rid of! It was interesting to see that the magicians could not duplicate this plague. God created the earth – He can cause it to do whatever He wants. Not so with their earth god. The lice reminded me of sin and how much it can permeate our lives and consume us. It takes strong chemicals to be rid of lice and we have to boil our clothes and bed sheets, etc. – and still no guarantee that they are completely gone. It is the same with sin. We can try all we want to use the methods of the world to be rid of them, but only the precious blood of Jesus Christ can wipe them away – permanently!

4. Flies: The prince of the air, Beelzebub, was thought to use the flies as his ears. Else, if thou wilt not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies upon thee, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thy houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground whereon they are. (Exo 8:21) Egypt’s priests could not make them go away. They were coming in droves and were everywhere but the Hebrews were not bothered by them at all. Evil was separated from good. It reminded me of: Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, (2 Cor 6:17) Sin is putrid in the eyes of God. But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. (Isa 64:6) God sees our best behavior as filthy rags – putrid smelling.

5. Grievous Murrain: The Egyptians worshipped Apis, the sacred bull. Behold, the hand of the LORD is upon thy cattle which is in the field, upon the horses, upon the asses, upon the camels, upon the oxen, and upon the sheep: there shall be a very grievous murrain. (Exo 9:3) God caused a disease to come over all the livestock of the land. God showed them that there is no other who is holy or sacred. … for there is one God; and there is none other but he: (Mar 12:32b)

6. Boils: The Egyptians believed that their medical sorcerers could cure their diseases. They were looked upon as gods. And they took ashes of the furnace, and stood before Pharaoh; and Moses sprinkled it up toward heaven; and it became a boil breaking forth with blains upon man, and upon beast. (Exo 9:10) God showed them their god could not heal them – in fact, they had the boils themselves. Have you ever had a boil? These were not just boils but had pustules (blains) coming from them. I know this sounds disgusting but the point is that it could not have gotten any worse! These boils were also on their animals! How gross is that?! After having a pestilence throughout the land affecting their animals, the Egyptians could not have had many animals left. God showed them that only He could remove disease.

7. Hail with Fire: The Egyptians worshipped their weather sorcerers, who supposedly could control the weather. And Moses stretched forth his rod toward heaven: and the LORD sent thunder and hail, and the fire ran along upon the ground; and the LORD rained hail upon the land of Egypt. (Exo 9:23) God showed them here that only He could control the weather. And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. (Mar 4:39)

8. Locusts The Egyptians also worshipped their agricultural sorcerers. And Moses stretched forth his rod over the land of Egypt, and the LORD brought an east wind upon the land all that day, and all that night; and when it was morning, the east wind brought the locusts. (Exo 10:13) They supposedly controlled the crops by doing magic to their gods. However, God showed them that they could not outdo Him. The locusts were bigger than they had ever seen and did not leave – they covered the entire land so that everything appeared black. Ex. 10:14-15, And the locusts went up over all the land of Egypt, and rested in all the coasts of Egypt: very grievous we
re they; before them there were no such locusts as they, neither after them shall be such. (14) For they covered the face of the whole earth, so that the land was darkened; and they did eat every herb of the land, and all the fruit of the trees which the hail had left: and there remained not any green thing in the trees, or in the herbs of the field, through all the land of Egypt. (15)
Can you imagine this? We’ve never seen anything like this but it did happen and it will happen again according to Revelation 9:3. Sin has a way of destroying everything in our lives – our physical bodies – those around us – our circumstances. Sin covers us with black in the eyes of God. Only Christ can make us white as snow. Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. (Isa 1:18 )

9. Darkness: The highest and most powerful god of the Egyptians was Rah, the sun god. And Moses stretched forth his hand toward heaven; and there was a thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days: (Exo 10:22) Rah was supposedly Pharaoh’s father and, therefore, the most powerful of all their gods. God showed the Egyptians that He was greater than their god by overpowering the sun! Jesus Christ, the “Son,” overpowers all gods. He is the Light of the world. Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. (Joh 8:12)

10. Death of the First Born: To the Egyptian, the first born represented their gods’ favor toward them. And all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sitteth upon his throne, even unto the firstborn of the maidservant that is behind the mill; and all the firstborn of beasts. (Exo 11:5) The Old Testament is filled with God requiring that the first born be consecrated to Him. God removed the Egyptians thoughts of their gods favoring them by showing them that He favored the Hebrews. God spared the Hebrews’ first born by instructing them to paint their doorposts with the blood of a spotless lamb! When the angel of death saw the blood on the doorposts, He passed over them just as God’s judgment and punishment pass over us because of the perfect Blood of Christ covering us! Praise be to God! God portrayed His desire to consecrate the first born by giving us His Son to pay the penalty for us.

Ah, the number ten – a beautiful depiction of God’s Law – man’s inability to keep that law – and God’s plan to restore us to Him through Christ. I never thought I would see this in the ten plagues but it sure was fun picking it apart!

When I See the Blood
John G. Foote

Christ our Redeemer died on the cross,
Died for the sinner, paid all his due.
All who receive Him need never fear,
Yes, He will pass, will pass over you.

Refrain

When I see the blood, when I see the blood,
When I see the blood, I will pass, I will pass over you.

Chiefest of sinners, Jesus will save;
As He has promised, so He will do;
Oh, sinner, hear Him, trust in His Word,
Then He will pass, will pass over you.

Refrain

Judgment is coming, all will be there.
Who have rejected, who have refused?
Oh, sinner, hasten, let Jesus in,
Oh, He will pass, will pass over you.

Refrain

O great compassion! O boundless love!
Jesus hath power, Jesus is true;
All who believe are safe from the storm,
Oh, He will pass, will pass over you.

Refrain

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What a blessing it was to open the Word this morning! All praise, honor and glory to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords! I initially was heading down a different path with the word “overcometh” but God took me down another instead. How thankful I am for the Word of God which spiritually feeds our hungry souls!

I am struggling through an area in my life which God knows all about. As I strive to overcome this fear, the Lord has taught me that He has overcome all for my benefit! These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. (Joh 16:33) There is nothing that we need to overcome because Christ has already done it all for us. We simply must trust in Him. Notice how Jesus said that He has spoken to us through the Bible so that we might have peace! There is no peace in worry – there is no peace in the things of this world. However, there is peace knowing that we are born again and that Christ has paid our sin debt. There is nothing we have to do. Also, there is peace knowing that He has been in every situation we have ever been through or will ever experience and He has overcome them. Jesus states that He has overcome the world, my friend. Because we are in Him, we can rest assured that we will overcome because of Him and only Him.

This thought process is what led me into the word search for overcometh. This word does not appear in the Old Testament. Could it be because the Messiah had not yet come and the Jews could not overcome the world in their own flesh? They could not claim this promise yet until Jesus came. Don’t you find it interesting that this word was not even used once in the Old Testament?

There are, however, ten occurrences of the word overcometh in the New Testament. Interestingly enough, the number ten symbolizes “law, government, and restoration“! Oh the joy I have received from God’s numbers in the Bible and seeing how He uses them in His Word! Christ is the only One who has overcome the world (John 16:33). Being saved means that our fellowship has been restored with God the Father – only because we had faith and believed in Jesus Christ’s virgin birth, His shed blood on the cross was payment for our sin, His resurrection and He now sits at the right hand of God the Father. We are promised that we will overcome this world in the end and reign with Him because we are now His. Ten verses in the New Testament speak of overcoming – when we are born again through the Word of God, our fellowship with God is restored and we will reign with Him for all eternity. What a beautiful portrait indeed!

For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. (1 Jo 5:4)

Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God? (1 Jo 5:5)

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God. (Rev 2:7)

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death. (Rev 2:11)

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it. (Rev 2:17)

And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: (Rev 2:26)

He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels. (Rev 3:5)

Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name. (Rev 3:12)

To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. (Rev 3:21)

He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. (Rev 21:7)

Although today’s devotional is quite short in my own words, God’s Words are quite powerful and require nothing more be said. I pray you have enjoyed this as much as I have!

Able to Deliver Thee
Fanny Crosby

O troubled heart, be thou not afraid,
In the Lord thy God, let thy hope be stayed;
He will hear thy cry and will give thee aid,
Whate’er thy cross may be.

Refrain

He is able still to deliver thee,
And His own right hand thy defense shall be:
He is able still to deliver thee,
Then be thou not afraid.

O troubled heart, tho’ thy foes unite,
Let thy faith be strong and thy armor bright;
Thou shalt overcome thro’ His pow’r and might,
And more than conqu’ror be.

Refrain

O troubled heart, when thy way is drear,
He will rescue thee and dispel thy fear;
In thy greatest need He is always near,
To Him all glory be.

Refrain

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While I am certain there are other passages that could be found on this theme, here are ten passages I was able to find a few days ago (the last three are closely related).

1) Psalms 119:94 I am thine, save me; for I have sought thy precepts.

I have been studying out Psalm 119 last week, and one morning before work the first three words of verse 94 leaped out at me:

I am Thine…

How many times over the years have I read that Psalm and never focussed on those specific words? But reading that verse recently caused that phrase to hit my heart with tremendous force. Often we think of the Lord being ours, of our finding Him when we turn to Him for salvation – but here the emphasis is on us being the Lord’s. Those three words made an impact on me that, Lord willing, I will never forget.

I am Thine… What comfort and assurance!

2) Acts 27:22-25 And now I exhort you to be of good cheer: for there shall be no loss of any man’s life among you, but of the ship. For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve, Saying, Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar: and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee. Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me.

The Apostle Paul faced shipwreck on the Mediterranean Sea, but the Lord sent an angel to give him courage in the midst of the danger that confronted him. He made a statement of simple fact, simple faith: God, whose I am, and whom I serve… The God whom I serve is able to protect me, and deliver me. The God whose I am loves me enough to look out for me in the midst of any trials or afflictions I may face.

The encouragement here to us is that, if you are a born again child of God through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the statement Paul made is also true of you. Just put yourself in his place, and apply these words to yourself: the God, whose I am. You are His!

3) John 10:14-15 I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.

Jesus’ sheep are those He laid His life down for on Calvary, and who have trusted Him alone for salvation. They are His! He knows each one of them personally!

We love to quote Psalm 23: The Lord is my Shepherd. But how much do we meditate on the fact that we are His sheep?

4) 2 Timothy 2:19 Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.

The Lord knows all about us – everything about us – and still calls us His! That is one of the best exhortation we could find to live right. We are children of the King of Kings, so let’s live like it. We are Christians, so let’s live like ambassadors/representatives of Christ. The world cannot “see” our Lord (ie. physically), but it can see us – let’s live in such a manner that they can see our Saviour through us!

1 John 4:10-12 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another. No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.

It is interesting how verse 12 above starts with the same phrase as John 1:18:

John 1:18 No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.

No man hath seen God at any time… Just as no one can see what the Father is like until they see Him manifested through Jesus Christ; even so, no one can see what our Heavenly Father is like until they see Him reflected through us, until they see Christ living in us (see Galatians 2:20).

5) Isaiah 43:1-2 But now thus saith the LORD that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.

Thou art Mine…

God has called you by your name, and you are His! He will never leave you, nor forsake you – regardless of what trials may await you in the future. He is always there for you, looking out for His own. As Sis Kate has stated recently, we are His peculiar people – a people for His own possession. We are His!

Whenever I read the passage above and think about its promise for the future (ie. when thou passest through the waters… when thou walkest through the fire), I am always reminded of this verse from the Psalms that give us the same promise from a past perspective:

Psalms 66:12 Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water: but thou broughtest us out into a wealthy place.

God was faithful and kept His promises! He was always with His people through the trials – He stood by His own!

6) Deuteronomy 32:9 For the LORD’S portion is his people; Jacob is the lot of his inheritance.

The word portion indicates “an allotment, an inheritance.” We are what the Lord has set apart for Himself, for His enjoyment, for His inheritance. We are what He looks forward to and takes enjoyment in!

Psalms 100:3 Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

7) Malachi 3:16-17 Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name. And they shall be mine, saith the LORD of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him.

This is an amazing promise – the Lord will remember and reward true believers when they fellowship together and meditate on Him! He will write it down for a memorial when we fear (ie. reverence) Him and speak to one another about Him, about His name, and what He has done in our lives. Then He states, they shall be Mine! He claims those who claim Him as their Lord and Saviour, and considers them as valuable jewels worth keeping and sparing from harm. Our Lord will delight in and rejoice over us, because we are His!

Isaiah 62:3-5 Thou shalt also be a crown of glory in the hand of the LORD, and a royal diadem in the hand of thy God. Thou shalt no more be termed Forsaken; neither shall thy land any more be termed Desolate: but thou shalt be called Hephzibah, and thy land Beulah: for the LORD delighteth in thee, and thy land shall be married. For as a young man marrieth a virgin, so shall thy sons marry thee: and as the bridegroom rejoiceth over the bride, so shall thy God rejoice over thee.

8) Song of Solomon 2:16 My beloved is mine, and I am his: he feedeth among the lilies.

This is the first of three similar r
eferences in the Song of Solomon. Like most new believers, the Shulamite (picturing believers and their walk with the Lord) rejoices in the fact that she has found the Lord (though, of course, it was the Lord looking for us first), and that Jesus is hers. My Beloved is mine – I have a firm grasp on Him… And I am His too – almost as an afterthought.

9) Song of Solomon 6:3 I am my beloved’s, and my beloved is mine: he feedeth among the lilies.

Now she is maturing more, having walked with her Saviour a little longer, and she realizes that she is His first and foremost. She is still boasting about her hold upon Him, but that is nowhere near as important as His hold upon her.

10) Song of Solomon 7:10 I am my beloved’s, and his desire is toward me.

Now see the difference in focus: she is no longer boasting about her claim on her Saviour, but rather in His claim on her! If she is anything like me (and she certainly pictures me in all other areas), she understands that she has failed and faltered so many times, and that her hold on the Lord is weak and fragile at times. But His hold on her never falters, never loosens, is never in danger of letting go! The fact that we are our Beloved’s is the primary focus – it doesn’t matter how weak and frail we may become at times, nothing can separate us from His love (see Romans 8:35, 37-39), nothing can pluck us out of His hand (see John 10:27-29), nothing can prevent our Saviour from keeping us by His power (see 1 Peter 1:5).

Lastly, notice how she focusses on His desire toward her. The word desire here means “in the original sense of stretching out after; a longing.” It also comes from a root word meaning “to run after.” As a young believer, she rejoiced in her desire towards her, now she just takes comfort and assurance in the knowledge that Jesus is the one delighting in her, that He is the one running after her for fellowship.

Song of Solomon 2:14 O my dove, that art in the clefts of the rock, in the secret places of the stairs, let me see thy countenance, let me hear thy voice; for sweet is thy voice, and thy countenance is comely.

Psalms 27:8 When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.

I am my Beloved’s…

I am His…

I am Thine…

I Am Thine, O Lord
(Words: by Fanny Crosby; Music: W. Howard Doane)

I am Thine, O Lord, I have heard Thy voice,
And it told Thy love to me;
But I long to rise in the arms of faith
And be closer drawn to Thee.

Chorus:
Draw me nearer, nearer blessed Lord,
To the cross where Thou hast died.
Draw me nearer, nearer, nearer blessed Lord,
To Thy precious, bleeding side.

Consecrate me now to Thy service, Lord,
By the power of grace divine;
Let my soul look up with a steadfast hope,
And my will be lost in Thine.

O the pure delight of a single hour
That before Thy throne I spend,
When I kneel in prayer, and with Thee, my God
I commune as friend with friend!

There are depths of love that I cannot know
Till I cross the narrow sea;
There are heights of joy that I may not reach
Till I rest in peace with Thee.

Preached on June 22nd/07
Written June 26th/07
Jerry Bouey