Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the land of Egypt for the locusts, that they may come upon the land of Egypt, and eat every herb of the land—all that the hail has left.” Exodus 10:12.
Moses … warned the monarch that … a plague of locusts would be sent, which would cover the face of the earth and eat up every green thing….
The counselors of Pharaoh were appalled at this new danger. They had sustained great loss in the death of their cattle. Many of their people had been killed by the hail….
Then Moses and Aaron were again summoned, and the monarch said to them, “Go, serve the Lord your God: but who are they that shall go?”
The answer was, “We will go with our young and with our old, with our sons and with our daughters, with our flocks and with our herds will we go; for we must hold a feast unto the Lord.”
The king was filled with rage….
Does your God think that I will let you go, with your wives and children, upon so dangerous an expedition? I will not do this; only you that are men shall go to serve the Lord. This hard-hearted, oppressive king, who had sought to destroy the Israelites by hard labor, would now pretend that he had a deep interest in their welfare and a tender care for their little ones, when he only designed to keep them as a pledge of their return….
Moses was commanded to stretch out his hand over the land, and an east wind blew and brought locusts: “very grievous were they; before them there were no such locusts as they, neither after them shall be such.” They filled the sky till the land was darkened, and devoured every green thing on the ground and among the trees.
The king sent for Moses and Aaron in haste, and said to them, “I have sinned against the Lord your God, and against you. Now therefore forgive, I pray thee, my sin only this once, and intreat the Lord your God, that he may take away from me this death only.”
They did so, and a strong west wind arose, which carried away the locusts toward the Red Sea so that not one was left behind. But notwithstanding the king’s humility while death threatened him, as soon as the plague was removed he hardened his heart and again refused to let Israel go.—Signs of the Times, March 18, 1880.