“for at this time I will send all My plagues to your very heart, and on your servants and on your people, that you may know that there is none like Me in all the earth.”
This scripture gives preamble to the plagues that befell Egypt when Pharaoh refused to let the children of Israel leave for the promised land. As a consequence, we see 10 plagues unleashed upon the land that shook it to its very foundation.
This was judgement released upon a nation that tried to prevent God’s plan from unfolding. Earlier on in human history we saw same upon the land of Sodom and Gomorrah. Also into the future on their promised land, the walls of Jericho came down tumbling. But the experience in Egypt was so devastating and more than that there is also something in it that symbolic of the type and antitype of scripture revelation.
In the book of Jude 1:7 it says “Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”
Jesus said to Israel concerning the end of the Mosaic age in Matthew 24:37 But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.” Clearly his return was in reference to a coming judgment. This was the reason why the Apostles used the word “coming wrath”
Paul said in 1 Corinthians 10:11:
“Now all these things happened unto them for examples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the age are come.”
It is interesting to note that the end of those kingdoms and the judgment upon them was also an indicator to God’s plan to end an age that was also a preparation for the new age of the new covenant.
When you take a close look at the book of Revelations, you will discover the release of plagues. Some have taught that the plagues would be released on the earth after the rapture. Contextually that is not correct. The book in the very first chapter gives us an insight to the relevant audience and location for their fulfillment.
“ Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.” (Revelation 1:7)
His coming return was one of judgment that would cause the tribes of land to mourn. This was a matter that was relevant to those who pierced him, the Jews.
Let’s take a step back into God’s dealings with Israel through the law. He told them through Moses that extreme plagues would visit them if they go against the terms of the covenant.
‘Then, if you walk contrary to Me, and are not willing to obey Me, I will bring on you seven times more plagues, according to your sins.” (Leviticus 26:21)
“ then the Lord will bring upon you and your descendants extraordinary plagues—great and prolonged plagues—and serious and prolonged sicknesses.” (Deuteronomy 28:59)
“so that the coming generation of your children who rise up after you, and the foreigner who comes from a far land, would say, when they see the plagues of that land and the sicknesses which the Lord has laid on it:” (Deuteronomy 29:22)
In chapter 32 we see the song of Moses written for the children to learn. It also spoke about about their latter end. The plagues that would be released upon the land would speak as testimony against them.
Paul cried in Romans 9 about the Israelites, his brothers:
“I tell the truth in Christ, I am not lying, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Spirit, 2 that I have great sorrow and continual grief in my heart. 3 For I could wish that I myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my countrymen according to the flesh, 4 who are Israelites, to whom pertain the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the service of God, and the promises; 5 of whom are the fathers and from whom, according to the flesh, Christ came, who is over all, the eternally blessed God. Amen.” (Romans 9:1-4)
Vs 22 he continues
“What if God, wanting to show His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath prepared for destruction,”
Notice the language he used. They were vessels prepared for destruction. Why did he describe them that way?
In chapter 10:1-3
“Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved.2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge.3 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God.”
“All day long I have stretched out My hands
To a disobedient and contrary people.”
In their refusal to accept God’s mercy which was manifested in the sacrifice of Jesus they opened up themselves to the curses and plagues promised in the law.
Now see below the record of plagues released in Revelation and you will see that what Egypt went through were pictures of what God was going to do to Jerusalem in 70AD.
See below for the comparisons.
THE PLAGUES OF EGYPT AND ITS REFLECTION IN THE BOOK OF REVELATION
1. Water turned to blood – Exodus 7:14-24 – Revelation 8:18
2. Frogs – Exodus 7:25-8:11 – Three unclean spirits like frog – Revelation 16:13
3. Gnats – Exodus 8:12-15 – We see no direct mention of it in Revelation but it references that the dust of the earth would be their shame just like it was for the Egyptians
4. Flies – Exodus 8:15-28 – We see no direct mention of it in Revelation but it refers to the destruction of the land through invasion
5. Pestilence – Exodus 9:1-7 – livestock may die off if crops ruined (Revelation 6:8 famine) and food too becoming expensive (Revelation 6:6)
6. Boils – Exodus 9:8-12 – Ugly sores – Revelation 16:2,11
7. Hail and lightning – Exodus 9:13-15 – Lightning, Hail and fire mixed with blood, hailstones like huge weight – Revelation 8:5,7; 16:21
8. Locusts – Exodus 10:1-20 – Locusts like scorpions – Revelation 9:3-11
9. Darkness – Exodus 10:21-29 – Darkness upon one-third of the land, kingdom of the beast thrown into darkness
10. Death of the 1stborn – Exodus 11:1-10; 12:29-30 – Death upon one-third of men
We don’t have any reason to be afraid of plagues being released in the future cum the rapture. The plagues have released in the transition from the old covenant to the new covenant upon the land of Israel. It was all fulfilled during the years leading to the destruction of Israel in 70AD.