And the LORD said to Moses and to Aaron, Take to you handfuls of ashes of the furnace…
I. THAT GREAT CALAMITIES ARE OFTEN INSIGNIFICANT IN THEIR COMMENCEMENT. All causes are potent to great effects. A trivial ailment may work death. A little misunderstanding may break up a Church. A little sin may ruin a soul.
II. THAT GREAT CALAMITIES ARE OFTEN MYSTERIOUS IN THEIR INFLICTION. It is astonishing how apparently trivial causes are influential to such great results. Men are at a loss to explain how little sins are so far-reaching in their effects. It must be recognized as the wondrous ordination of God, and as the efficient law of moral life, designed to keep men right.
III. THAT GREAT CALAMITIES ARE OFTEN IRREPRESSIBLE IN THEIR PROGRESS. When the judgments of God are abroad in the earth, and when little causes are working out their punitive issue in the lives of men and nations, they cannot be restrained by pride or power.
(J. S. Exell, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And the LORD said unto Moses and unto Aaron, Take to you handfuls of ashes of the furnace, and let Moses sprinkle it toward the heaven in the sight of Pharaoh.