The Plagues Of Egypt -- By: Edward M. Merrins

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 065:259 (Jul 1908)
Article: The Plagues Of Egypt
Author: Edward M. Merrins


The Plagues Of Egypt

Edward M. Merrins

The general influence of the current teaching of science seems unfavorable to the growth and maintenance of a sturdy faith in the good providence of God. That He not only governs the nations of the earth and leads them’ to their appointed destiny, but that his care extends to the smallest matter of the individual human life, in the words of Jesus, the very hairs of the head being numbered; that it includes within its ministrations all forms of animal life, the raven being fed by Him, and the sparrow not falling to the ground without his knowledge; in fine, that “He is ever present with His works one by one, and confronts everything He has made by His particular and most loving providence, and manifests Himself to each according to its needs,” are comfortable statements not easily believed by this generation. Science disclaims all knowledge of a God to whom such epithets as holy, wise, loving, can be applied; nor does it acknowledge that He controls all natural laws for his own gracious purposes. There is a First Cause, but it is inscrutable. Man can trace the laws of nature, but of their real essence he knows nothing; all he can be sure of is that throughout the wide domains of time,

space, matter, and life these laws reign supreme, being universal, uniform, inexorable. So it has come to pass that even religious teachers regard as incredible those exceptional episodes in the lives of individuals, or in the history of nations, recorded in the Scriptures, which were held to be special or marvelous manifestations of God’s power for the good of the world. In the judgment of the most outspoken, the miraculous narratives of the Bible, when not regarded as poesies, are stultifying to science and common sense, antagonistic to the higher activities of true faith, and an intelligent man who affirms his belief in them does not know what intellectual honesty means.

Such uncompromising, unequivocal statements are rather disconcerting to the ordinary believer, who is unable to rise quickly to new altitudes of faith, or without strength to accompany these religious guides along a path described by themselves as a via dolorosa. This is not to be wondered at, for consider some of the issues involved. By faith Moses, at the time of the exodus, instituted the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, that the destroyer of the first-born of the Egyptians should not touch the Hebrews. For thousands of years the Jews have celebrated annually this deliverance, strengthening faith in their own spiritual vocation, and finding comfort in their troubles and adversities, by recalling what God did for their ancestors. “O God, we have heard with our ears, and our fathers have declared unt...

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