But against none of the children of Israel shall a dog move its tongue, against man or beast, that you may know that the Lord does make a difference between the Egyptians and Israel. (Exodus 11:7)
During the last of the ten plagues, Moses spoke boldly against Pharoah: the Lord will go into the midst of Egypt and kill all the firstborn in the land of Egypt. This plague was the climax to the story of God’s deliverance of His people, after the Egyptians had undergone lengthy suffering and before Pharoah finally cast the Israelites out of his land in devastation from the loss of his firstborn. At the end, the Lord had gained victory and displayed His majestic powers. The Lord had shown that He does make a difference between the Egyptians and those who He calls His own.
Throughout the ten plagues, God had on multiple occasions made a distinction between His people and the Egyptians in His works:
- “I will make a difference between My people and your people” (Ex 8:23)
- “And the Lord will make a difference between the livestock of Israel and the livestock of Egypt” (Ex 9:4)
- “Only in the land of Goshen, where the children of Israel were, there was no hail” (Ex 9:26)
- “There was thick darkness in all of the land of Egypt three days. They did not see one another; nor did anyone rise from his place for three days. But all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings” (Ex 10:22-23)
In the midst of God’s display of His might, those who did not belong to God suffered great terror and distress. Especially in the ninth plague, when a darkness so thick that it could be felt (Ex 11:21) enveloped the Egyptians, they were completely demobilized, helpless, and afraid. They had no idea how long this darkness would last or if they would ever see light again.
But God’s children were not alarmed. The difference being God’s people and the people of the world is that God’s people have light, even when the rest of the world is full of darkness. Despite the unrest and chaos that take place in society, in God we have hope, an anchor, and a safe haven for our souls. As God’s children, we have life. Not only on this earth, but an everlasting one in His kingdom above. We are redeemed through Jesus Christ, and saved from the eternal death that awaits those who do not believe in Him.
The fact that God makes such a distinction between His people and those who don’t belong to Him is evidence of His love for us – assuring us that we are special to Him. We are chosen, set apart, shielded and protected by Him. 1 Peter 2:9 tells us that we are “a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that [we] may proclaim the praises of Him who called [us] out of darkness into His marvelous light.”
Therefore, it is important for us to know that God makes such a precious distinction between those who are His and those who are not. Keeping this in our hearts can empower us to live differently and preach boldly. As God’s children, we can be confident, and dare to be different.