The history and therefore religious beliefs of Egypt and the Jews are closely intertwined.
The Egyptians regarded their subjects as “children” meaning immature and innocent and but did have concern for them. After all it was these “children” who worked to create wealth! They avoided committing their children to wars but as will be shown had no scruples about getting other peoples to fight for them.
Surrounded by natural barriers for long periods Egypt was relatively peaceful. However as the icecap melted the climate changed and the surrounding grasslands turned to desert. In the end the major source of water in the eastern Mediterranean was the Nile. The ranks of those who worked for the Egyptian Rulers were swollen by refugees from the surrounding countryside who migrated to the Nile delta to avoid the impact of the drought elsewhere. Around 4000 years ago the pressure of refugees became too great. Some of the refugees, known as the Hyskos, rebelled and established their own state in the Nile delta, Lower Egypt
This group, or at least the dominant faction in this group, were the ancestors of the Hebrews. The “Gods” retained control of Upper Egypt and spent considerable time and effort trying to teach this new generation of “children” the error of their ways. This was all to no avail. The Hyskos, to distinguish themselves from the Egyptians, chose Set as their God, whom they then proclaimed as the only God. Set was the God of desert, storm, crocodiles, hippopotamuses and foreigners, all the things Egyptians most feared, he was therefore the God of retribution, the God who punished the Egyptians for their misdemeanours. Set, the Hyskos chosen god had also had a bad record with women. In legend he killed his brother Osiris because he was jealous that Osiris married Isis. Still rejected by Isis he fathered a child with Nephthis, who had disguised herself as Isis. Once he discovered this ploy he disowned the child.
Slowly but surely the Egyptian rulers reclaimed Lower Egypt in what was perhaps the first religious war, the followers of Isis against the followers of Set. Multitudes of Hyskos were taken into servitude. Finally around 3500 years ago a combination of their own determination to be independent and the Egyptian God’s impatience with these unruly children led to them being expelled from Egypt. Later Hebrew and Jewish records knew this event as the “Exodus”.
Plagues and pestilence
We are now back in the area of pure speculation. At this point then Old Testament, rejected by Cathars as influenced by Set, the Bad God, resorts to sticks turning into snakes, water issuing from rocks and a parting of the waters of the Red Sea as it tries to explain how and why the Hebrews left Egypt. According to the Old Testament, the last days of the servitude of the Hebrews (Hyscos) caused great distress on both sides.