Problem: The magicians brought frogs upon Egypt
Verses: Exodus 8:6-7; Status: Weak

Before the Exodus, God brought many plagues upon Egypt. But the magicians of Egypt were - initially - able to perform the same tricks. This is the second plague, described in Exodus 8:6-7:

So Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt, and the frogs came up and covered the land of Egypt. But the magicians did the same by their secret arts and made frogs come up on the land of Egypt. (ESV)

This passage raises a number of questions, to say the least. I suspect bringing a plague of frogs is beyond even David Blaine's power, so what were these secret arts? Clarke's Commentary suggests they merely imitated the miracle with sleight of hand. At a stretch, this might be an acceptable reading, though the text seems to say that they actually did it for real.

So how could they? The NIV Study Bible suggests "demonic power", which I suppose is possible if you believe in that sort of thing.

What did it mean to bring frogs upon the land of Egypt, when there were already frogs upon the land? I suppose it meant "even more frogs".

Updated: 2009-03-15

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