January 19: Day 19

Reading: Exodus 7-9, Psalm 19

Exodus 7

Moses and Aaron Before Pharaoh

1And the Lord said to Moses, "See, I have made you like God to Pharaoh, and your brother Aaron shall be your prophet. 2You shall speak all that I command you, and your brother Aaron shall tell Pharaoh to let the people of Israel go out of his land. 3But I will harden Pharaoh's heart, and though I multiply my signs and wonders in the land of Egypt, 4Pharaoh will not listen to you. Then I will lay my hand on Egypt and bring my hosts, my people the children of Israel, out of the land of Egypt by great acts of judgment. 5The Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I stretch out my hand against Egypt and bring out the people of Israel from among them." 6Moses and Aaron did so; they did just as the Lord commanded them. 7Now Moses was eighty years old, and Aaron eighty-three years old, when they spoke to Pharaoh.

8Then the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, 9"When Pharaoh says to you, 'Prove yourselves by working a miracle,' then you shall say to Aaron, 'Take your staff and cast it down before Pharaoh, that it may become a serpent.'" 10So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and did just as the Lord commanded. Aaron cast down his staff before Pharaoh and his servants, and it became a serpent. 11Then Pharaoh summoned the wise men and the sorcerers, and they, the magicians of Egypt, also did the same by their secret arts. 12For each man cast down his staff, and they became serpents. But Aaron's staff swallowed up their staffs. 13Still Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he would not listen to them, as the Lord had said.

The First Plague: Water Turned to Blood

14Then the Lord said to Moses, "Pharaoh's heart is hardened; he refuses to let the people go. 15Go to Pharaoh in the morning, as he is going out to the water. Stand on the bank of the Nile to meet him, and take in your hand the staff that turned into a serpent. 16And you shall say to him, 'The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, sent me to you, saying, "Let my people go, that they may serve me in the wilderness." But so far, you have not obeyed. 17Thus says the Lord, "By this you shall know that I am the Lord: behold, with the staff that is in my hand I will strike the water that is in the Nile, and it shall turn into blood. 18The fish in the Nile shall die, and the Nile will stink, and the Egyptians will grow weary of drinking water from the Nile."'" 19And the Lord said to Moses, "Say to Aaron, 'Take your staff and stretch out your hand over the waters of Egypt, over their rivers, their canals, and their ponds, and all their pools of water, so that they may become blood, and there shall be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, even in vessels of wood and in vessels of stone.'"

20Moses and Aaron did as the Lord commanded. In the sight of Pharaoh and in the sight of his servants he lifted up the staff and struck the water in the Nile, and all the water in the Nile turned into blood. 21And the fish in the Nile died, and the Nile stank, so that the Egyptians could not drink water from the Nile. There was blood throughout all the land of Egypt. 22But the magicians of Egypt did the same by their secret arts. So Pharaoh's heart remained hardened, and he would not listen to them, as the Lord had said. 23Pharaoh turned and went into his house, and he did not take even this to heart. 24And all the Egyptians dug along the Nile for water to drink, for they could not drink the water of the Nile.

25Seven full days passed after the Lord had struck the Nile.


Exodus 8

The Second Plague: Frogs

1 Then the Lord said to Moses, "Go in to Pharaoh and say to him, 'Thus says the Lord, "Let my people go, that they may serve me. 2But if you refuse to let them go, behold, I will plague all your country with frogs. 3The Nile shall swarm with frogs that shall come up into your house and into your bedroom and on your bed and into the houses of your servants and your people, and into your ovens and your kneading bowls. 4The frogs shall come up on you and on your people and on all your servants."'" 5 And the Lord said to Moses, "Say to Aaron, 'Stretch out your hand with your staff over the rivers, over the canals and over the pools, and make frogs come up on the land of Egypt!'" 6So Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt, and the frogs came up and covered the land of Egypt. 7But the magicians did the same by their secret arts and made frogs come up on the land of Egypt.

8Then Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron and said, "Plead with the Lord to take away the frogs from me and from my people, and I will let the people go to sacrifice to the Lord." 9Moses said to Pharaoh, "Be pleased to command me when I am to plead for you and for your servants and for your people, that the frogs be cut off from you and your houses and be left only in the Nile." 10And he said, "Tomorrow." Moses said, "Be it as you say, so that you may know that there is no one like the Lord our God. 11The frogs shall go away from you and your houses and your servants and your people. They shall be left only in the Nile." 12So Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh, and Moses cried to the Lord about the frogs, as he had agreed with Pharaoh. 13And the Lord did according to the word of Moses. The frogs died out in the houses, the courtyards, and the fields. 14And they gathered them together in heaps, and the land stank. 15But when Pharaoh saw that there was a respite, he hardened his heart and would not listen to them, as the Lord had said.

The Third Plague: Gnats

16Then the Lord said to Moses, "Say to Aaron, 'Stretch out your staff and strike the dust of the earth, so that it may become gnats in all the land of Egypt.'" 17And they did so. Aaron stretched out his hand with his staff and struck the dust of the earth, and there were gnats on man and beast. All the dust of the earth became gnats in all the land of Egypt. 18The magicians tried by their secret arts to produce gnats, but they could not. So there were gnats on man and beast. 19Then the magicians said to Pharaoh, "This is the finger of God." But Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he would not listen to them, as the Lord had said.

The Fourth Plague: Flies

20Then the Lord said to Moses, "Rise up early in the morning and present yourself to Pharaoh, as he goes out to the water, and say to him, 'Thus says the Lord, "Let my people go, that they may serve me. 21Or else, if you will not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies on you and your servants and your people, and into your houses. And the houses of the Egyptians shall be filled with swarms of flies, and also the ground on which they stand. 22But on that day I will set apart the land of Goshen, where my people dwell, so that no swarms of flies shall be there, that you may know that I am the Lord in the midst of the earth. 23Thus I will put a division between my people and your people. Tomorrow this sign shall happen."'" 24And the Lord did so. There came great swarms of flies into the house of Pharaoh and into his servants' houses. Throughout all the land of Egypt the land was ruined by the swarms of flies.

25Then Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron and said, "Go, sacrifice to your God within the land." 26But Moses said, "It would not be right to do so, for the offerings we shall sacrifice to the Lord our God are an abomination to the Egyptians. If we sacrifice offerings abominable to the Egyptians before their eyes, will they not stone us? 27We must go three days' journey into the wilderness and sacrifice to the Lord our God as he tells us." 28So Pharaoh said, "I will let you go to sacrifice to the Lord your God in the wilderness; only you must not go very far away. Plead for me." 29Then Moses said, "Behold, I am going out from you and I will plead with the Lord that the swarms of flies may depart from Pharaoh, from his servants, and from his people, tomorrow. Only let not Pharaoh cheat again by not letting the people go to sacrifice to the Lord." 30So Moses went out from Pharaoh and prayed to the Lord. 31And the Lord did as Moses asked, and removed the swarms of flies from Pharaoh, from his servants, and from his people; not one remained. 32But Pharaoh hardened his heart this time also, and did not let the people go.


Exodus 9

The Fifth Plague: Egyptian Livestock Die

1Then the Lord said to Moses, "Go in to Pharaoh and say to him, 'Thus says the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, "Let my people go, that they may serve me. 2For if you refuse to let them go and still hold them, 3behold, the hand of the Lord will fall with a very severe plague upon your livestock that are in the field, the horses, the donkeys, the camels, the herds, and the flocks. 4But the Lord will make a distinction between the livestock of Israel and the livestock of Egypt, so that nothing of all that belongs to the people of Israel shall die."'" 5And the Lord set a time, saying, "Tomorrow the Lord will do this thing in the land." 6And the next day the Lord did this thing. All the livestock of the Egyptians died, but not one of the livestock of the people of Israel died. 7And Pharaoh sent, and behold, not one of the livestock of Israel was dead. But the heart of Pharaoh was hardened, and he did not let the people go.

The Sixth Plague: Boils

8And the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, "Take handfuls of soot from the kiln, and let Moses throw them in the air in the sight of Pharaoh. 9It shall become fine dust over all the land of Egypt, and become boils breaking out in sores on man and beast throughout all the land of Egypt." 10So they took soot from the kiln and stood before Pharaoh. And Moses threw it in the air, and it became boils breaking out in sores on man and beast. 11And the magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils, for the boils came upon the magicians and upon all the Egyptians. 12But the Lord hardened the heart of Pharaoh, and he did not listen to them, as the Lord had spoken to Moses.

The Seventh Plague: Hail

13Then the Lord said to Moses, "Rise up early in the morning and present yourself before Pharaoh and say to him, 'Thus says the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, "Let my people go, that they may serve me. 14For this time I will send all my plagues on you yourself, and on your servants and your people, so that you may know that there is none like me in all the earth. 15For by now I could have put out my hand and struck you and your people with pestilence, and you would have been cut off from the earth. 16But for this purpose I have raised you up, to show you my power, so that my name may be proclaimed in all the earth. 17You are still exalting yourself against my people and will not let them go. 18Behold, about this time tomorrow I will cause very heavy hail to fall, such as never has been in Egypt from the day it was founded until now. 19Now therefore send, get your livestock and all that you have in the field into safe shelter, for every man and beast that is in the field and is not brought home will die when the hail falls on them."'" 20Then whoever feared the word of the Lord among the servants of Pharaoh hurried his slaves and his livestock into the houses, 21but whoever did not pay attention to the word of the Lord left his slaves and his livestock in the field.

22Then the Lord said to Moses, "Stretch out your hand toward heaven, so that there may be hail in all the land of Egypt, on man and beast and every plant of the field, in the land of Egypt." 23Then Moses stretched out his staff toward heaven, and the Lord sent thunder and hail, and fire ran down to the earth. And the Lord rained hail upon the land of Egypt. 24There was hail and fire flashing continually in the midst of the hail, very heavy hail, such as had never been in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation. 25The hail struck down everything that was in the field in all the land of Egypt, both man and beast. And the hail struck down every plant of the field and broke every tree of the field. 26Only in the land of Goshen, where the people of Israel were, was there no hail.

27Then Pharaoh sent and called Moses and Aaron and said to them, "This time I have sinned; the Lord is in the right, and I and my people are in the wrong. 28Plead with the Lord, for there has been enough of God's thunder and hail. I will let you go, and you shall stay no longer." 29Moses said to him, "As soon as I have gone out of the city, I will stretch out my hands to the Lord. The thunder will cease, and there will be no more hail, so that you may know that the earth is the Lord's. 30But as for you and your servants, I know that you do not yet fear the Lord God." 31(The flax and the barley were struck down, for the barley was in the ear and the flax was in bud. 32But the wheat and the emmer were not struck down, for they are late in coming up.) 33So Moses went out of the city from Pharaoh and stretched out his hands to the Lord, and the thunder and the hail ceased, and the rain no longer poured upon the earth. 34But when Pharaoh saw that the rain and the hail and the thunder had ceased, he sinned yet again and hardened his heart, he and his servants. 35So the heart of Pharaoh was hardened, and he did not let the people of Israel go, just as the Lord had spoken through Moses.


Psalm 19

The Law of theLordIs Perfect

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David.

1 The heavens declare the glory of God,

and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.

2 Day to day pours out speech,

and night to night reveals knowledge.

3 There is no speech, nor are there words,

whose voice is not heard.

4 Their voice goes out through all the earth,

and their words to the end of the world.

In them he has set a tent for the sun,

5 which comes out like a bridegroom leaving his chamber,

and, like a strong man, runs its course with joy.

6 Its rising is from the end of the heavens,

and its circuit to the end of them,

and there is nothing hidden from its heat.

7 The law of the Lord is perfect,

reviving the soul;

the testimony of the Lord is sure,

making wise the simple;

8 the precepts of the Lord are right,

rejoicing the heart;

the commandment of the Lord is pure,

enlightening the eyes;

9 the fear of the Lord is clean,

enduring forever;

the rules of the Lord are true,

and righteous altogether.

10 More to be desired are they than gold,

even much fine gold;

sweeter also than honey

and drippings of the honeycomb.

11 Moreover, by them is your servant warned;

in keeping them there is great reward.

12 Who can discern his errors?

Declare me innocent from hidden faults.

13 Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins;

let them not have dominion over me!

Then I shall be blameless,

and innocent of great transgression.

14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart

be acceptable in your sight,

O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.