Explaining Moses’ Miracles

The book of Exodus displays many amazing events, and the protagonist is Moses. He freed the Hebrews from the Egyptian oppression using ten dreadful plagues. Many have speculated on the nature of Moses’ deeds, some claiming they weren’t in fact miracles, but natural calamities that synchronized with him.

For instance, the Nile turning into blood and becoming undrinkable is, in fact, a metaphoric way to convey an algae infestation or reddish mud flowing from a southern source downstream. The magicians did a similar thing, but it is known that there is a chemical catalyst that can employ to turn water reddish. The following plagues have seen as results, consequences of the polluted Nile. Poisoned water prompts frogs to get out of it and die on dry land, flies abound, whereas humans and animals get sick.

Taking the atmospheric phenomena into the discussion, specialists that detract the miraculous nature of Moses’ performances have used as an argument the fact that Egypt annually undergoes the khamseen season. This is a period dominated by sandstorms that can radically affect visibility and which might, thus, explain the darkness. Bible scholars respond with the statement that the intensity and timing of all events prove God’s power. Moreover, the Hebrew slaves spared of the damage. There goes without saying that the last plague, the death of all firstborn sons of all Egyptians, does not follow any known natural phenomena.

There were two other miraculous events mentioned in the episode of the Hebrews escaping from Egypt, namely that they guided by a pillar of fire and a huge cloud and that they got away from the Egyptian pursuers after Moses parted the Red Sea and they passed to the other shore. Some have recently tried to account for these two events by invoking the eruption of a Mediterranean volcano. The volcano, named Thera, had a sudden and violent explosion which caused severe damage to the cultures of the region. According to this theory, the Hebrews saw the massive volcanic plume of the erupting volcano and the fireworks that accompanied the explosion. The parting of the sea could have caused by an enormous tidal wave or tsunami produced by this eruption.

Another argument that steals or at least dims the miracle light of a divided sea episode comes from the biblical text. The body of water that the Hebrews crossed often referred to as the Red Sea. However, the Hebrew words from the Bible are “yam suf,” which means the Sea of Reeds. This defines a marshy area, typical for the northern delta region of Egypt. This entails that the Jewish people crossed a much shallower and shorter body of water than the Red Sea.