The deeper the darkness, the more dazzling the victory of light.
Humbling the Pharaoh meant ending the fantasy of autonomy or self-creation that so many civilizations develop.
But let us not fool ourselves: Pharaoh is not an ordinary opponent of God.
In Jewish mysticism, Evil is a very powerful reality and the forces within it are necessarily powerful as well.
In the Bible, Egypt is called the "nakedness of the land,” (Genesis 42:9: "You have come to see the nakedness of the land.") a place of extreme decadence.
The contrast is extremely striking, since the greatest powers of holiness lie buried precisely where the darkness is the most impenetrable.
–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz
From The Seven Lights by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz