God wanted to panish the Egyptians
KJV - 23 For the LORD will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and when he seeth the blood upon the lintel, and on the two side posts, the LORD will pass over the door, and will not suffer the destroyer to come in unto your houses to smite you.
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In my opinion, "the Destroyer" would have been an angel whom God specifically appointed or assigned to that purpose, similar (by my reading) to a later instance (recorded in 2 Samuel 24 and 1 Chronicles 21) when God sent the same (or a like) angel with the intent of destroying Jerusalem as punishment for David's prideful order to take a census of the men available for war.
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