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reasoned himself, lest his people should be de- the land was destitute of husbandmen for its stroyed, and that the manner of this death cultivation : but if any thing escaped destrucwas also reproachful. So that he was forced tion from them, it was killed by a distemper, in part to recover himself from his wicked which the men underwent also. temper to a sounder mind; for he gave leave Pharoah did not yet yield to the will of God; for ihe Hebrews themselves to depart. But but while he gave leave to the husbands to when the plague thereupon ceased, he thought take their wives with them, he insisted that it proper to require, that they should leave the children should be left behind; God theretheir children and wives behind them, as fore resolved to punish his wickedness with pledges of their return; whereby he provoked several sorts of calamities, and those worse God to be more vehemently angry at him; as than the foregoing, which had yet so geneif he thought to impose on his providence ; | rally afflicted them ; for their bodies had terand as if it were only Moses, and not God, rible boils, † breaking forth with blains; while who punished the Egyptians for the sake of they were already in wardly consumed; and a the Hebrews. For he filled that country full great part of the Egyptians perished in this of various sorts of pestilential creatures,* with
But when the king was not brought their various properties ; such, indeed, as to reason by this plague, hail was sent down never came into the sight of men before. By from heaven'; † and such hail as the climate of their means the men perished themselves, and Egypt had never suffered before, $ nor was
arnason NonMNorror arran lice to signify gnats. The Septuagint call them Knúmes ; to him it was not oné particular kind, but all sorts of flies, but what kind of creatures these were is not so certainly mingled together in one prodigious swarm or conflux. known, Others would have them to be'a new species of Some translate it a mixture of beasts, which they supanimals, called analogically by an old name; or if they pose went into Egypt to infest and destroy the coun. were lice, that they were such as had wings, and cruelly try: but this is not so probable a construction, because stung and ulcerated the Egyptians. But upon the sup- the punishments bitherto inflicted were nauseous and position that they were no worse than cominon lice, this troublesome, rather than mortal; though this plague of inwas plague enough to the Egyptians, who affected neat
finite numbers of small tormentors is so great an one, that ness to such a degree, that they bathed themselves every God calls it his army, Joel ii. 25. and the Greeks thought day, and some of them frequently shaved their bodies all fit (as Pliny 1. 20. c. 28. tells us) to have a god to deliver over, for fear of such verniu. Those who pretended them from it, under the style of Myiagros, or Myiodes, that these lice were a new species, make this a reason even as Belzebub signifies the lord of god of flies; Bowhy the magicians could noi counterseit this miracle, chart, Hier. part 2. B. because, though they could easily provide the serpents, Aathmation, which first makes a tumour or boil (as we
+ The Hebrew word Shechin properly signifies an inno where to be had; and therefore, as the organs of sight translate it), and thence turns a grievous ulcer. Dr. Lightare more liable to be imposed upon than those of feeling, foot indeed observes, that in the book of Job, chap. ii. 7, the magicians might impose upon the king and the other 8. where the same word occurs, it signifies only a burnspectators with fantastical blood and frogs, but visionary.ing itch, or an inflamed scab; an intolerable dry itch, lice could not vex and torment the body: so that now it which Job could not scratch off with biş nails, and was was time for the enchanters to desist, and to own their therefore forced to make use of a potsherd : but then he inability to mimic. Moses any farther. But supposing, confesses that this Shecbin here spoken of was more that wbat the magicians did, in the three former miracles, rancorous than that, having blains and ulcers that broke was not illusion and imposition upon the senses, but out with it, which Job's had not. So that the Egyptians, reality, the true reason why they could proceed no far- according to this, must have been vexed with a triple ther was, that God Almighty had laid bis restraint and punishment at once, (a punishment fitly calculated for prohibition upon the evil spirits, who had hitherto been the mortification of a delicate and a voluptuous people,) subservient to them, that they might not assist them any aching boils, nauseous ulcers, and a burning itch: and to longer. Le Clerc's Commentary; and Bibliotheca Bibl. this that communication of Moses to the people, in case in locum. B.
they proved disobedient, does, without all peradventure, * The word Arob, which we render fly in general, is | allude, The Lord will smite thee with the botch of Egypi, by the Septuagint called Kuvopúsa, i. 2.. dog-fly, from its | and with the emerods, and with the scab, and with the itch, biting; for it fastens its teeth so deep in the flesh, and whereof thou canst not be healed, Deut.xxviii. 27. B. sticks so very close, that it oftentimes nakes cattle run This infection was the more terrible in Egypt, bemad; and the congruity of this plague seems to be greater, cause, according to the account of Herodotus, (1. 3. c. 10,) because one of the Egyptian deities, which they called a very rare thing it was to see any rain, and much more Anubis, bore the head of a dog. The Psalmist indeed any hail, in that climate ; and accordingly he mentions tells us, that God sent divers sorts of flies among them, it as a kind of prodigy, that in the reign of Psammenitus which devoured them, Ps. Ixxviii, 45. So that according there happened to be a shower in 'Thebes, which was VOL. 1.-(7.)
it like to that which falls in other climates* in | what he desired was unjust, since they were winter time, but larger than that which falls in obliged to offer sacrifice to God of those catthe middle of spring to those that dwell in the tle, and the time being prolonged on this ac. northern and north-western regions. This hail|count, a thick darkness, † without the least brake down their boughs laden with fruit. Af- light, spread itself over the Egyptians ; whereter this a tribe of locusts consumed the seed by their sight being obstructed, and their which was not hurt by the hail : so that to the breathing hindered by the thickness of the Egyptians all the hopes of future fruits of the air, they died miserably; and under a terror ground were entirely lost.t
lest they should be swallowed up by the dark One would think the aforementioned ca- cloud. Besides this, when the darkness, after lamities might have been sufficient for one three days, and as many nights, was dispatchthat was only foolish, without wickedness, to ed ; and when Pharaoh did not still repent, make him sensible what was for his advan- and let the Hebrews go, Moses came to him, tage. But Pharoah, led not so much by his and said, “ How long wilt thou be disobedient folly as by his wickedness, even when he saw to the command of God ? for he enjoins thee the cause of his miseries, still contested with to let the Hebrews go; nor is there any other God, and wilfully deserted the cause of virtue. way of being freed from the calamities you So he bid Moses to take the Hebrews away, are under, unless you do so. But the king with their wives and children; but to leave was angry at what he said, and threatened to their cattle behind, since their own cattle strike off his head, if he came any more to were destroyed. But when Moses said, that trouble him about these matters. Hereupon
never known before in the memory of man, nor ever proper the expression is, in relation to the locust in parafter, to the age wherein our author wrote. The Psalmist ticular, will appear from the account which Aldrovandus has given us a very poetic description of this judgment: and Fincelius give us of these animals, viz. · That in the He destroyed the vines with hail, and the sycamore-trees year of our Lord 852 an infinite number of them was with frost: he gave up the cattle also to the hail, and their seen to fly over twenty miles in Germany in one day, in flocks to hot thunderbolts, Ps. Ixxviii. 47, 48. And from the manner of a formed army, divided in several squathe plain account of Moses, where he mixes thunder, drons, and having their quarters apart when they rested; hail, and fire together, Exod. ix. 23. the observation is that the captains rested a day's journey before the rest, obvious, that here were no less than three of the elements and chose the most opportune places for their camp; that in confederacy against Pharaoh's obstinacy: the air in they never removed until sunrising, at which time they the thunder; ihe water in the hail; and the fire in the went away in as much order as an army of men could do; lightning; all jointly demonstrating and proclaiming, that that at last, having done great mischief wherever they the God of Israel was the God of nature. B.
passed, after prayers maile to God,) they were driven § Exod, ix. 24.
by a violent wind into the Belgic ocean, and there As to this winter or spring hail near Egypt and Judea, | drowned; but that, being cast by the sea upon the shore, see the like on thunder and lightning there in the note on they covered 140 acres of land, and caused a great pestiVI. 5. and Havercamp's note on 111.1.
lence in the country :' which is enough to shew how + This is the creature wbich we properly call the grass-dreadful a punishment this was, especially considering hopper : and wonderful is the account which several that these locusts were such as were never known before; authors give of them. Thevenot, in his Travels, tells us, and yet the ordinary locust (as Aristotle and Pliny have * That in that part of Scythia, which the Cossacks now described it) was an animal so fierce and formidable, that inhabit, there are infinite numbers of them, especially one single one would kill a serpent by taking it fast by in dry seasons, which the porth-east winds bring over the jaws, and biting it to death, Arist. Hist. Animal. I. 5. from Tartary, Circassia, and Mingrelia, which are sel c. 23; Pliny's Nat. Hist. I. 11. c. 9; and Le Clerc's Comdom or never free from them; that they fly in the air all
mentary. B. compact together, like a vast cloud, sometimes 15 or 18 I The Septuagint, and most translations, render it, a miles long, and about 10 or 12 miles broad; so that they darkness which might be felt, i. e, consisting of black vaquite darken the sky, and make the brightest day ob- | poursłanil exhalations, so condensed, that they might be scure; and that wherever they light they devour, all the perceived by the organs of touch. But some commencorn in less than two hours' time, and frequently make a tators think that this is carrying the sense loo far ; since, famine in the country:
These insects," says he, “live in such a medium as this, mankind could not live an hour, not above six months; and when they are dead, the much less for the space of three days, as the Egyptians stench of them so corrupts and infects the air, that it very are said to have done: and therefore they imagine, that often breeds dreadful pestilences.” God (as we hinted instead of a darkness that may be felt, the Hebrew phrase before) calls the locust, the canker-worm, caterpillar, and may signify a darkness wherein men were groping and the palmer-worm, his great army which he sends amongst feeling about for every thing thay wanted. B. a wicked and rebellious people, Joel ii, 25. And how
THE CONDUCT OF MOSES.
Moses said, he would not speak to him about part quickly, and others on account of their
TI crifice ready; and that they should prepare
VHUS the Hebrews went out of Egypt,
while the Egyptians wept, and repented themselves on the tenth day of the month || they had treated them so hardly. Now they Xanthicus, against the fourteenth; which month || took their journey by Letopolis, a place at is called by the Egyptians Pharmuthi, and that time deserted, but where Babylon was Nisan by the Hebrews; but the Macedonians | built afterward, when Cambyses ravaged call it Xanthicus. And that he should carry | Egypt. But as they went away hastily, on away the Hebrews, with all they had. Ac- the third day, they came to a place called cordingly Moses having got the Hebrews | Baalzephon, on the Red Sea; and when they ready for their departure, and having gather- | had no food out of the land, because it was a ed the people into tribes, kept them together desert, they ate of loaves, kneaded of four, in one place. But when the fourteenth day only warmed by a gentle beat; and this food was come, and all were ready to depart, they they made use of thirty days; for what they offered sacrifice, and purified their houses with || brought with them out of Egypt would not the blood; using bunches of hyssop for that suffice them any longer time; and this only purpose : and when they had supped, they while they dispensed it to each person, to use burnt the remainder of the flesh, as just ready || so much only as would serve for necessity, but to depart. Whence it is, that we do still offer not for satiety. Whence it is, that, in memory this sacrifice, in like manner, and call this of the want we were then in, we keep a feast festival Pasch: which signifies the feast of || for eight days, which is called the Feast of Unthe Passover; because on that day God | leavened Bread. Now the entire multitude of passed us over, and sent the plague upon the those that went out, including the women and Egyptians. For the destruction of the first- || children, was not easy to be numbered; but born came upon the Egyptians that night ; || those that were of an age fit for war were six so that many of the Egyptians, who lived hundred thousand. near the king's palace, persuaded Pharaoh to They left Egypt in the month of Xanthicus, let the Hebrews go. Accordingly he called || on the fifteenth day of the lunar month : four for Moses, and bid them be gone; as suppos- hundred and thirty years after our forefather ing that if once the Hebrews were gone out of Abraham came into Canaan; but two hunthe country, Egypt should be freed from its dred and fifteen years I only after Jacob remoiseries. They also honored the Hebrews | moved into Egyyt. It was the eightieth year with gifts, † some in order to get them to de- || of the age of Moses, and of that of Aaron
* Esod, viii. 7.
which, had they not now ceased, they had soon been all + These large presents made to the Israelites, of ves dead men, as they themselves confess, xii. 23. Nor was sels of silver, and vessels of gold, and raiment, were, as there any sense in borrowing or lending, when the Israelites Josephus truly calls them, gifts really given them; not were finally departing out of the land. lent them, as our English falsely renders them. They # Why our Masorete copy so groundlessly abridges this were spoils required, not borrowed of them ; Gen. xv. account in Exod. xii. 40. as to ascribe four hundred and 14. Exod. iii. 22. xi. 2. Ps. cv. 37. as the same version | thirty years to the sole peregrination of the Israelites in falsely renders the Hebrew, word bere used. Exod. xii: || Egypt, when it is clear, even by that Masorete chrono35, 36. God had ordered the Jews to demand these as logy elsewhere, as well as from the express text itself in their pay and reward, during their long and bitter sla- | the Samaritan, Septuagint, and Josephus, that they sojourn. very in Egypt; as atonements for the lives of the Egyp-led in Egypt but half that time, and that by consequence tians; and as the condition of the Jews' departure, and the other half of their peregrination was in tbe land of the Egyptian deliverance from these terrible judgments; | Canaan, before they came into Egypt, is hard to say: