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ב״ה
“… out of Tziyon will go forth Torah, the word of ADONAI from Yerushalayim.”
(Isaiah 2:3)
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Please read the Introductory Notes to this commentary.

For a glossary of unfamiliar terms, CLICK HERE. For assistance in
pronouncing Hebrew terms, a pronunciation guide is located HERE.

The summary of the entire Torah is as simple as this:
Love what HaShem loves; hate what HaShem hates. All else is commentary.



שְׁמוֹת֙ • Sh'mot
(“Names”)
The Second Book of Moses,
Commonly Called

Exodus

Ten Plagues for Ten False “Gods”

The plagues that God brought upon Egypt were a direct declaration of war on Egypt’s false gods. Not one of their “gods” — not even all of their “gods” combined — could stand against just “the finger El Shaddai” (Exod 8:19), the God of Israel.

The number ten is significant in Hebrew Gematria; ten is the value of the Hebrew letter י (yud) representing totality or fullness of quantity. Ten Egyptian plagues means Egypt was “completely plagued.” Ten times God, through Moses, allows Pharaoh to change his mind, repent, and turn to the one true God, each time increasing the severity of the consequence of the plagues suffered for disobedience to His request. Ten times Pharaoh, because of pride (considering himself to be a god and therefore the peer of the God of Israel, Exodus 5:2), refuses to be taught by the one true God, and receives “judgments” through the plagues pronounced upon his head from Moses, the deliverer.

In the table, the primary “god” that the God of Israel was attacking is listed first.

PLAGUE EGYPTIAN “GODS” NOTES

1. Water to Blood
Exodus 7:14-25
  • Hapi: god of the Nile
  • Khnum: a ram god, the patron deity of Elephantine, who was said to control the Nile flood and give life to gods and humans
  • Osiris: god of death and resurrection who rules the underworld and enlivens vegetation, the sun god, and deceased souls; the Nile was his bloodstream
  • Partially duplicated by the Egyptian magicians
  • Occurs in Goshen where the Israelites lived
  • Lasted for seven days (seven is the number of completion of perfection)
  • Dead fish, putrid smell

2. Frogs
Exodus 8:1-15
  • Heqet: protector of women in childbirth, represented in the form of a frog
  • Hapi: god of the annual flooding of the Nile, which produced the frogs
  • Partially duplicated by the Egyptian magicians
  • Magicians were able to produce frogs, but only Moses was able to make them go away
  • Occurs in Goshen where the Israelites lived

3. Lice
Exodus 8:16-19
  • Geb: the primary earth god, was all over the dust of the earth
  • Aker: god of the earth and the horizon
  • Sab: an earth god
  • Not duplicated by the Egyptian magicians
  • Occurs in Goshen where the Israelites lived
  • Attributed to the “finger of God” (Exod 8:15), not even His whole hand, and certainly not His mighty “outstretched arm” (Exod 6:6)

4. Flies
Exodus 8:20-32
  • Khepri: god of creation and rebirth, had the head of a fly
  • Uatchit: another fly god of Egypt
  • God now makes a separation between the Egyptians and the Israelites
  • No more plagues will occur in the land of Goshen or have any affect on the Israelites

5. Disease on Livestock
Exodus 9:1-7

All the Egyptian gods and goddessed associated with bulls and cows:

  • Hathor: a major goddess; consort of the sky god Horus and sun god Ra; often depicted as a cow; when depicted as a woman she had a headdress of cow horns and a sun disk
  • Bat: a cow goddess from early in Egyptian history
  • Apis: a live bull worshipped as a god at Memphis and seen as a manifestation of Ptah
  • Ptah: an Egyptian creator god who conceived the world and brought it into being through the creative power of speech
  • Hesat: goddess in the form of a cow; one of the main cattle deities as she is the mother of Horus and Ra and closely associated with the role of royalty and kingship. She was said to provide humanity with milk (called "the beer of Hesat") and in particular to suckle the pharaoh and several ancient Egyptian bull gods.
  • Mehet-Weret: a celestial cow goddess; she gives birth to the sun at the beginning of time, and in art she is portrayed as a cow with a sun disk between her horns. She is associated with the goddesses Neith, Hathor, and Isis, all of whom have similar characteristics, and like them she could be called the “Eye of Ra.”
  • Buchis /Montu: a sacred bull that was worshipped in the region of Hermonthis
  • Mnevis: a bull god
  • Menu-nesu-Ḩeru: a warrior bull god
  • Sekhat-Hor: a cow goddess
  • Shenty: a cow goddess
  • Ảmi-urt: a cow goddess
  • Neb-t au-t-ȧb: a cow goddess
  • Death of livestock (horses, donkeys, camels, cattle and flocks) severely affects not only property, but food and livelihood
  • Israel’s livestock untouched

6. Boils
Exodus 9:8-12

All the Egyptian gods and goddesses of healing and protection of health:

  • Isis: the goddess of medicine and peace
  • Sekhmet: goddess of epidemics; a lioness goddess, both destructive and violent and capable of warding off disease, protector of the pharaohs who led them in war, the consort of Ptah and one of many forms of the “Eye of Ra”
  • Horus: a major god, usually shown as a falcon or as a human child, linked with the sky, the sun, kingship, protection, and healing; often said to be the son of Osiris and Isis
  • Haurun: a protector and healing god
  • Serapis: a god of healing
  • Imhotep: a healer god
  • Setem: a god of healing
  • Serket: a scorpion goddess, invoked for healing and protection
  • Affects the physical bodies of all Egyptians and their animals
  • Pharaoh’s magicians are not even able to stand in the presence of Moses

7. Hail & Fire
Exodus 9:13-35

All the Egyptian gods and goddesses of the sky, atmosphere, winds, and storms:

  • Nut: primary goddess of the sky
  • Isis: a major sky goddess, daughter of Nut
  • Horus: a sky god
  • Hathor: a major sky goddess
  • Ḥebit: an air goddess
  • Sopdu: a major sky god
  • Ba'al: sky and storm god (originally from Syria and Canaan)
  • Ami-Nu: a sky god
  • Set: god of deserts, storms, disorder, violence
  • Shu: god of the atmosphere
  • Hebit: a goddess of air and atmosphere
  • Renenutet: an agricultural goddess
  • Neper: a god of grain
  • Nepit: goddess of grain, female counterpart of Neper
  • Heneb: a god of grain
  • Worst hailstorm in Egyptian history
  • Overwhelmed all the gods and goddesses of nature
  • Destroyed nearly all the plant crops in Egypt
  • The area of Goshen was left untouched
  • Pharaoh confesses his sin but later recants

8. Locusts
Exodus 10:1-20

All the Egyptian gods and goddesses of agriculture and general protection:

  • Serapia: protector from locusts
  • Seth: god of storms and disorder
  • Neper: a god of grain
  • Nepit: goddess of grain, female counterpart of Neper
  • Heneb: a god of grain
  • over 20 other protector gods and goddesses
  • Consumed all agricultural products not destroyed by hail
  • Pharaoh offers a compromise
  • The compromise is rejected
  • Pharaoh again confesses his sin

9. Darkness
Exodus 10:21-29

All the Egyptian gods and goddesses of the sun, moon, and light:

  • Ra (Re): the foremost Egyptian sun god, involved in creation and the afterlife; ruler of the gods, father of every Egyptian king
  • Atum: one of the manifestations of the sun and creator god; the god of pre-existence and post-existence
  • Aten (Aton, Atonu, Itn): the disc of the sun and originally an aspect of Ra
  • Amun: was a major ancient Egyptian deity who merged with Ra to become Amon-ra
  • Khonsu: a moon god, son of Amun and Mu
  • Montu: a god of the sun and war
  • Osiris: god of death and resurrection who rules the underworld and enlivens vegetation, the sun god, and deceased souls
  • Hathor: one of the most important goddesses, linked with the sky and the sun
  • Horus: a major god linked with the sky and sun
  • Thoth: a moon god
  • Iah (Aah, Yah): a moon god
  • Three days and nights of complete darkness
  • Apparently light was still provided for the Israelites in Goshen
10. Death of
Firstborn

Exodus 12:29-36
This plague was a final judgment on all of Egypt’s “gods,” especially Pharaoh himself, who was worshipped by the Egyptians because he was considered to be the greatest of all the Egyptian gods. It was believed that he was actually the son of Ra manifest in the flesh. Pharaoh had killed all the sons of the Israelites (Exod 1:15-22), now God kills all the firstborn of Egypt, human and livestock[1] alike. Pharaoh will let Israel go, but will later lose his entire army in the Red Sea (Exod 14:26-28).

  1. The Hebrew word translated “cattle” in Exod 12:29 is בְּהֵמָה (behemah), which also translates as “animals” or “livestock.” [RETURN]

Page originally posted on Sunday, 02 January 2021

Page last updated on Sunday, 21 August 2022 03:22 PM
(Updates are generally minor formatting or editorial changes.
Major content changes are identified as "Revisions”)

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