Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States
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I have a few questions regarding the following plaques:

  1. What does it mean that all the fish in the Nile were dead (Exodus 7:21)? Does it mean that there were no living fish at all in the Nile for a long time?

  2. How come all livestock of Egypt died in Livestock plague (Exodus 9:6)? The animals had Boils plague (Exodus 9:9), then they had the Hail plague (Exodus 9:25), then they had the Firstborn plague (Exodus 11:5).

1)In this plague, God causedchemical change and environmental havocto pollutethe Nile so that fish and waterwere not available to the people, until God restored it once again at a later time. This is the same God, in whose holy hands, took two fish and five loaves, and in another incident took seven loaves and a few fish,and fed thousands. Thus, in due time, God restored the Nile, and until this day, we pray in the Divine Liturgy for the rising of the waters of the Nile.

2) Livestock generally refers to farm animals whose primary function is not only for food, butalso for the production of other essentials, such as, wool, clothing, utensils, tools, and labor. When the Holy Scripture refers to man and beast after the destruction of the livestock in Exodus 9:6 in regards to the plagues, it is referring to the undomesticatedanimals and beasts.

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