As we learned in II Kings 8, Jehoshaphat’s eldest son Jehoram inherited the throne, and his wife Athaliah converted him to the worship of Baal and Asherah. But Jehoshaphat was a considerate father and left all of his sons wealthy and in charge of their own cities. This made Jehoram uneasy, so as soon as he had solidified his power in Jerusalem, he murdered all of his brothers and a few Israelite princes (relatives of his wife) just to safe.
Unfortunately, this didn’t bring stability, because Edom rebelled against Judah, and so did other tribute nations, and Judah lost.
Then Elijah sent Jehoram a letter informing him that God was pissed he was cheating on It–and that he had killed his brothers, too–but mostly for cheating on It! so God would visit a plague on Judah that would cause Jehoram to shit his guts out.
And lo, first the Philistines and Arabians invaded Judah and plundered Jerusalem and killed all but one of Jehoram’s sons. Then some horrible GI plague attacked the land, and Jehoram was not spared. He suffered for two years before he finally shit his guts out and died. His reign was a mere 8 years long. No one was sad to see him go. In fact, he was so despised that there were no mourning ceremonies and his body was not entombed with the kings.
Afterwards, God informed Moses that It had one final plague in store for Pharaoh, then the Hebrews would finally go free because Pharaoh would drive them away in fear and anger. It told Moses to tell everyone to ask all their Egyptian neighbors to let them borrow clothes and gold and silver jewelry. It also told Moses that he should assure everyone that this would be the final plague, but that it was crucial–absolutely crucial–for the Hebrews to do exactly as Moses told them.
Then Moses went to Pharaoh and told him that there was going to be one more plague–the death of all the firstborn in Egypt, but Pharaoh was just, I thought I told you I never wanted to see your face again?
Again God told Moses to go through the same routine with Pharaoh, reminding Moses that it was all pro forma, because It had hardened Pharaoh’s heart against being persuaded in order to justify getting Its smite on against the Egyptians. Oh, and the whole thing would be a great story for Hebrews to tell in later generations. So Moses and Aaron went back to Pharaoh, only this time the plague would be locusts that would devour whatever vegetation escaped the hailstorm.
However, this time after the brothers left, Pharaoh’s entourage turned on him and were all, Ra almighty, Pharaoh, why do you hate your own people? Egypt is already fucked–do we need even more plagues? Let the stupid Hebrews go already. So Pharaoh recalled Moses and Aaron and asked them who exactly did they want to go on this camping trip? Moses and Aaron were like, um, everyone. Pharaoh was all, by everyone, you mean all the men, right? And they were all, no, we mean everyone, from the oldest grandma to the newest baby. Pharaoh was all, get outta here! I’d let the men go camping, but everyone?! This is clearly just some sort of trick on the part of you dastardly Hebrews. Get out of my sight! Continue reading “Exodus 10: Plagues of Locusts and Darkness”
Then God told Moses to go through the routine with Pharaoh again, only to threaten him with the death of all the livestock this time. But It was all, don’t worry Moses! I won’t kill the Hebrews’ livestock, m’kay?
So Moses went to Pharaoh with the same old song and dance, then all the Egyptians’ livestock died. Pharaoh still didn’t let the Hebrews go, because now someone had to haul off all the dead carcasses, right? Continue reading “Exodus 9: Plagues of Livestock Death and Hail”
At the end of a week, God told Moses to go back to Pharaoh with the same demands, and that when he refused (which God would make sure of) to threaten him with a plague of frogs.
So the brothers went back, Pharaoh refused, and then, between the brothers and the court magicians, Egypt was overran by frogs. I mean there were frogs everywhere–in the chamber-pots, the soup tureens, Pharaoh’s wine cup. You couldn’t step without squishing a frog.
After a few days, Pharaoh had a enough of the frogs, so he called Moses and Aaron to him and was all, I’ll let the Hebrews go on that camping trip if you guys get rid of the frogs for me. Moses said they’d be gone by morning, and lo, in the night all the frogs died. So now there were piles of dead, rotting frogs to go with the rotting fish from the week before. When Moses and Aaron came to Pharaoh to set dates for the trip, Pharaoh was all, what vacation? Y’all need to get out there and start sweeping up dead amphibians. Continue reading “Exodus 8: Plagues of Frogs and Gnats”
God told Moses, Moses, don’t you know that Pharaoh sees you as a god? He thinks of Aaron as your prophet, man, I promise. Really. And I command you to go to Pharaoh and tell him to let the Hebrews go. It won’t work of course. I’ll see to that. I feel like getting my smite on here in Egypt. But go tell Pharaoh anyway so I can start the smiting. Anyways, when Pharaoh wants evidence that you come from God, do the staff trick and see if that don’t blow his mind.
So Moses and Aaron wen to Pharaoh and told him to let the Hebrews go. When Pharaoh looked bored and vaguely annoyed, Aaron was all, hey, check this out! and threw down the magic staff, and it turned into a snake. Pharaoh yawned and waved to his court magicians, who all threw down their staffs, which also turned to snakes. So now there were all these snakes writhing about, but before anyone could try to catch them so they’d turn back into staffs, Aaron’s staff-cum-snake ate the other three. I guess his must have been a king snake or something. Continue reading “Exodus 7: Plague of Water into Blood”
Moses was all, that’s sounds great and all, God, but nobody is going to believe me about any of this. They”ll just ask me what I’ve been smoking and snort. God rolled Its fiery bush eyes and was all, What’s that in your hands there, Moses? Moses was all, this? Um, it’s a staff. And God was all, toss it down and look again. Moses dropped it and, lo it became a serpent. Moses was all, holy shit, a snake! and jumped back ten feet. After God got done laughing, It was all, pick it back up, I dare you. So Moses gingerly reached out and just barely caught hold of the snake’s tail, and lo, it was a staff again. God was all, if anyone doubts you just lay that on them. Moses must have still looked skeptical, because then God was all, And if that don’t work, try this one. Put your hand in your coat. Now take it out. And behold, when Moses did, it was white with leprosy. Moses stood there staring in horror at his newly-diseased hand for like 10 minutes before God was all, now put it back in your coat and take it back out. So Moses did, and behold, it was again healthy. Then God was all, and if they still won’t believe you, take a bucket of water from the Nile and when you pour it out, it will be blood. Continue reading “Exodus 4: The Burning Bush, Part 2”