Benevolent or Competitive
Kathy — The competitiveness of the Egyptian magicians was destructive to their own nation because their determined pride and worship of power was more important than loyalty or any benefit to their kingdom. In the beginning stages of the showdown, the magicians did the same supernatural acts as Moses, turning their rods to serpents, turning water to blood and producing frogs. It is interesting that the Egyptian magicians could not and did not even try to reverse the plagues loosed by Moses, (which would have been really beneficial to their nation.) Their only goal was to compete in a power display. Instead of trying to help, they simply battled to prove themselves superior, no matter what the cost to their people. Of course, it is also evident that they would not have been able to reverse the plagues. In Exodus 9:11, they could not even keep themselves from the boil plague and you know they would have invoked personal protection and relief to save their own hide if they could! There is a key insight exposed here about the nature of the powers of darkness: they are selfish and competitive. There is no loyalty or benevolence, just worship of power. Being interpreted, that means they will work against each other or their human agent when necessary. The human agent for darkness is totally deceived if he or she believes the powers of darkness will be loyal or trustworthy or ever think about unity of purpose or a common good. God can be trusted that His love and faithfulness insure His power is released for good. Since ONLY God is good, all other sources and agents have lesser motives. No matter how humanely and beneficently packaged, powers of darkness will always be deceptive and ultimately abusive. And those human agents who ally with darkness will ultimately face the hidden but costly consequences of betrayal.