Bible: Exodus 5-15


Opposition to the Plan of God


Afterward Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said, “Thus says the Lord, 2  the God of Israel, ‘Release 3  my people so that they may hold a pilgrim feast 4  to me in the desert.’ 5:2 But Pharaoh said, “Who is the Lord 5  that 6  I should obey him 7  by releasing 8  Israel? I do not know the Lord, 9  and I will not release Israel! 5:3 And they said, “The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Let us go a three-day journey 10  into the desert so that we may sacrifice 11  to the Lord our God, so that he does not strike us with plague or the sword.” 12  5:4 The king of Egypt said to them, “Moses and Aaron, why do you cause the people to refrain from their work? 13  Return to your labor! 5:5 Pharaoh was thinking, 14 The people of the land are now many, and you are giving them rest from their labor.”

5:6 That same day Pharaoh commanded 15  the slave masters and foremen 16  who were 17  over the people: 18  5:7 You must no longer 19  give straw to the people for making bricks 20  as before. 21  Let them go 22  and collect straw for themselves. 5:8 But you must require 23  of them the same quota of bricks that they were making before. 24  Do not reduce it, for they are slackers. 25  That is why they are crying, ‘Let us go sacrifice to our God.’ 5:9 Make the work harder 26  for the men so they will keep at it 27  and pay no attention to lying words! 28 

5:10 So the slave masters of the people and their foremen went to the Israelites and said, 29 Thus says Pharaoh: ‘I am not giving 30  you straw. 5:11 You 31  go get straw for yourselves wherever you can 32  find it, because there will be no reduction at all in your workload.’ 5:12 So the people spread out 33  through all the land of Egypt to collect stubble for straw. 5:13 The slave masters were pressuring 34  them, saying, “Complete 35  your work for each day, just like when there was straw! 5:14 The Israelite foremen whom Pharaoh’s slave masters had set over them were beaten and were asked, 36 Why did you not complete your requirement for brickmaking as in the past – both yesterday and today? 37 

5:15 38 

The Israelite foremen went and cried out to Pharaoh, “Why are you treating 39  your servants this way? 5:16 No straw is given to your servants, but we are told, 40 Make bricks!’ Your servants are even 41  being beaten, but the fault 42  is with your people.”

5:17 But Pharaoh replied, 43 You are slackers! Slackers! 44  That is why you are saying, ‘Let us go sacrifice to the Lord.’ 5:18 So now, get back to work! 45  You will not be given straw, but you must still produce 46  your quota 47  of bricks! 5:19 The Israelite foremen saw 48  that they 49  were in trouble when they were told, 50 You must not reduce the daily quota of your bricks.”

5:20 When they went out from Pharaoh, they encountered Moses and Aaron standing there to meet them, 51  5:21 and they said to them, “May the Lord look on you and judge, 52  because you have made us stink 53  in the opinion of 54  Pharaoh and his servants, 55  so that you have given them an excuse to kill us! 56 


The Assurance of Deliverance


Moses returned 58  to the Lord, and said, “Lord, 59  why have you caused trouble for this people? 60  Why did you ever 61  send me? 5:23 From the time I went to speak to Pharaoh in your name, he has caused trouble 62  for this people, and you have certainly not rescued 63  them! 64 

6:1 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Now you will see what I will do to Pharaoh, 65  for compelled by my strong hand 66  he will release them, and by my strong hand he will drive them out of his land.” 67 

6:2 God spoke 68  to Moses and said to him, “I am the Lord. 69  6:3 I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob as 70  God Almighty, 71  but by 72  my name ‘the Lord 73  I was not known to them. 74  6:4 I also established my covenant with them 75  to give them the land of Canaan, where they were living as resident foreigners. 76  6:5 I 77  have also heard 78  the groaning of the Israelites, whom the Egyptians are enslaving, 79  and I have remembered my covenant. 80  6:6 Therefore, tell the Israelites, ‘I am the Lord. I will bring you out 81  from your enslavement to 82  the Egyptians, I will rescue you from the hard labor they impose, 83  and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments. 6:7 I will take you to myself for a people, and I will be your God. 84  Then you will know that I am the Lord your God, who brought you out from your enslavement to 85  the Egyptians. 6:8 I will bring you to the land I swore to give 86  to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob – and I will give it to you 87  as a possession. I am the Lord!’

6:9 88 

Moses told this 89  to the Israelites, but they did not listen to him 90  because of their discouragement 91  and hard labor. 6:10 Then the Lord said to Moses, 6:11 Go, tell Pharaoh king of Egypt that he must release 92  the Israelites from his land.” 6:12 But Moses replied to 93  the Lord, “If the Israelites did not listen to me, then 94  how will Pharaoh listen to me, since 95  I speak with difficulty? 96 

6:13 The Lord spoke 97  to Moses and Aaron and gave them a charge 98  for the Israelites and Pharaoh king of Egypt to bring the Israelites out of the land of Egypt.


The Ancestry of the Deliverer


These are the heads of their fathershouseholds: 100 

The sons 101  of Reuben, the firstborn son of Israel, were Hanoch and Pallu, Hezron and Carmi. These were the clans 102  of Reuben.

6:15 The sons of Simeon were Jemuel, Jamin, Ohad, Jakin, Zohar, and Shaul, the son of a Canaanite woman. These were the clans of Simeon.

6:16 Now these are the names of the sons of Levi, according to their records: 103  Gershon, Kohath, and Merari. (The length of Levi’s life was 137 years.)

6:17 The sons of Gershon, by their families, were Libni and Shimei.

6:18 The sons of Kohath were Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel. (The length of Kohath’s life was 133 years.)

6:19 The sons of Merari were Mahli and Mushi. These were the clans of Levi, according to their records.

6:20 Amram married 104  his father’s sister Jochebed, and she bore him Aaron and Moses. (The length of Amram’s life was 137 years.)

6:21 The sons of Izhar were Korah, Nepheg, and Zikri.

6:22 The sons of Uzziel were Mishael, Elzaphan, and Sithri.

6:23 Aaron married Elisheba, the daughter of Amminadab and sister of Nahshon, and she bore him Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar.

6:24 The sons of Korah were Assir, Elkanah, and Abiasaph. These were the Korahite clans.

6:25 Now Eleazar son of Aaron married one of the daughters of Putiel and she bore him Phinehas.

These are the heads of the fathershouseholds 105  of Levi according to their clans.

6:26 It was the same Aaron and Moses to whom the Lord said, “Bring the Israelites out of the land of Egypt by their regiments.” 106  6:27 They were the men who were speaking to Pharaoh king of Egypt, in order to bring the Israelites out of Egypt. It was the same Moses and Aaron.


The Authentication of the Word


When 108  the Lord spoke to Moses in the land of Egypt, 6:29 he said to him, 109 I am the Lord. Tell 110  Pharaoh king of Egypt all that 111  I am telling 112  you.” 6:30 But Moses said before the Lord, “Since I speak with difficulty, 113  why should Pharaoh listen to me?

7:1 So the Lord said to Moses, “See, I have made you like God 114  to Pharaoh, and your brother Aaron will be your prophet. 115  7:2 You are to speak 116  everything I command you, 117  and your brother Aaron is to tell Pharaoh that he must release 118  the Israelites from his land. 7:3 But I will harden 119  Pharaoh’s heart, and although I will multiply 120  my signs and my wonders in the land of Egypt, 7:4 Pharaoh will not listen to you. 121  I will reach into 122  Egypt and bring out my regiments, 123  my people the Israelites, from the land of Egypt with great acts of judgment. 7:5 Then 124  the Egyptians will know that I am the Lord, when I extend my hand 125  over Egypt and bring the Israelites out from among them.

7:6 And Moses and Aaron did so; they did just as the Lord commanded them. 7:7 Now Moses was eighty years old and Aaron was eighty-three years old when they spoke to Pharaoh.

7:8 The Lord said 126  to Moses and Aaron, 127  7:9 When Pharaoh says to you, ‘Do 128  a miracle,’ and you say to Aaron, ‘Take your staff and throw it down 129  before Pharaoh,’ it will become 130  a snake.” 7:10 When 131  Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh, they did so, just as the Lord had commanded them – Aaron threw 132  down his staff before Pharaoh and his servants and it became a snake. 133  7:11 Then Pharaoh also summoned wise men and sorcerers, 134  and the magicians 135  of Egypt by their secret arts 136  did the same thing. 7:12 Each man 137  threw down his staff, and the staffs became snakes. But Aaron’s staff swallowed up their staffs. 7:13 Yet Pharaoh’s heart became hard, 138  and he did not listen to them, just as the Lord had predicted.


The First Blow: Water to Blood


The Lord said to Moses, “Pharaoh’s heart is hard; 140  he refuses to release 141  the people. 7:15 Go to Pharaoh in the morning when 142  he goes out to the water. Position yourself 143  to meet him by the edge of the Nile, 144  and take 145  in your hand the staff 146  that was turned into a snake. 7:16 Tell him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has sent me to you to say, 147 Release my people, that they may serve me 148  in the desert!” But until now 149  you have not listened. 150  7:17 Thus says the Lord: “By this you will know that I am the Lord: I am going to strike 151  the water of the Nile with the staff that is in my hand, and it will be turned into blood. 152  7:18 Fish 153  in the Nile will die, the Nile will stink, and the Egyptians will be unable 154  to drink water from the Nile.”’ 7:19 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Tell Aaron, ‘Take your staff and stretch out your hand over Egypt’s waters – over their rivers, over their canals, 155  over their ponds, and over all their reservoirs 156 so that it becomes 157  blood.’ There will be blood everywhere in 158  the land of Egypt, even in wooden and stone containers.” 7:20 Moses and Aaron did so, 159  just as the Lord had commanded. Moses raised 160  the staff 161  and struck the water that was in the Nile right before the eyes 162  of Pharaoh and his servants, 163  and all the water that was in the Nile was turned to blood. 164  7:21 When the fish 165  that were in the Nile died, the Nile began 166  to stink, so that the Egyptians could not drink water from the Nile. There was blood 167  everywhere in the land of Egypt! 7:22 But the magicians of Egypt did the same 168  by their secret arts, and so 169  Pharaoh’s heart remained hard, 170  and he refused to listen to Moses and Aaron 171 just as the Lord had predicted. 7:23 And Pharaoh turned and went into his house. He did not pay any attention to this. 172  7:24 All the Egyptians dug around the Nile for water to drink, 173  because they could not drink the water of the Nile.


The Second Blow: Frogs


Seven full days passed 175  after the Lord struck 176  the Nile. 8:1 177  Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh and tell him, ‘Thus says the Lord: “Release my people in order that they may serve me! 8:2 But if you refuse to release them, then I am going to plague 178  all your territory with frogs. 179  8:3 The Nile will swarm 180  with frogs, and they will come up and go into your house, in your bedroom, and on your bed, and into the houses of your servants and your people, and into your ovens and your kneading troughs. 181  8:4 Frogs 182  will come up against you, your people, and all your servants.”’ 183 

8:5 The Lord spoke to Moses, “Tell Aaron, ‘Extend your hand with your staff 184  over the rivers, over the canals, and over the ponds, and bring the frogs up over the land of Egypt.’ 8:6 So Aaron extended his hand over the waters of Egypt, and frogs 185  came up and covered the land of Egypt.

8:7 The magicians did the same 186  with their secret arts and brought up frogs on the land of Egypt too. 187 

8:8 Then Pharaoh summoned 188  Moses and Aaron and said, “Pray 189  to the Lord that he may take the frogs away 190  from me and my people, and I will release 191  the people that they may sacrifice 192  to the Lord.” 8:9 Moses said to Pharaoh, “You may have the honor over me 193  – when shall I pray for you, your servants, and your people, for the frogs to be removed 194  from you and your houses, so that 195  they will be left 196  only in the Nile?” 8:10 He said, “Tomorrow.” And Moses said, 197 It will be 198  as you say, 199  so that you may know that there is no one like the Lord our God. 8:11 The frogs will depart from you, your houses, your servants, and your people; they will be left only in the Nile.”

8:12 Then Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh, and Moses cried 200  to the Lord because of 201  the frogs that he had brought on 202  Pharaoh. 8:13 The Lord did as Moses asked 203  – the 204  frogs died out of the houses, the villages, and the fields. 8:14 The Egyptians 205  piled them in countless heaps, 206  and the land stank. 8:15 But when Pharaoh saw that there was relief, 207  he hardened 208  his heart and did not listen to them, just as the Lord had predicted. 209 


The Third Blow: Gnats


The Lord said to Moses, “Tell Aaron, ‘Extend your staff and strike the dust of the ground, and it will become 211  gnats 212  throughout all the land of Egypt.’ 8:17 They did so; Aaron extended his hand with his staff, he struck the dust of the ground, and it became gnats on people 213  and on animals. All the dust of the ground became gnats throughout all the land of Egypt. 8:18 When 214  the magicians attempted 215  to bring forth gnats by their secret arts, they could not. So there were gnats on people and on animals. 8:19 The magicians said 216  to Pharaoh, “It is the finger 217  of God!” But Pharaoh’s heart remained hard, 218  and he did not listen to them, just as the Lord had predicted.


The Fourth Blow: Flies


The Lord 220  said to Moses, “Get up early in the morning and position yourself before Pharaoh as he goes out to the water, and tell him, ‘Thus says the Lord, “Release my people that they may serve me! 8:21 If you do not release 221  my people, then I am going to send 222  swarms of flies 223  on you and on your servants and on your people and in your houses. The houses of the Egyptians will be full of flies, and even the ground they stand on. 224  8:22 But on that day I will mark off 225  the land of Goshen, where my people are staying, 226  so that no swarms of flies will be there, that you may know that I am the Lord in the midst of this land. 227  8:23 I will put a division 228  between my people and your people. This sign will take place 229  tomorrow.”’ 8:24 The Lord did so; a 230  thick 231  swarm of flies came into 232  Pharaoh’s house and into the houses 233  of his servants, and throughout the whole land of Egypt the land was ruined 234  because of the swarms of flies.

8:25 Then Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron and said, “Go, sacrifice to your God within the land.” 235  8:26 But Moses said, “That would not be the right thing to do, 236  for the sacrifices we make 237  to the Lord our God would be an abomination 238  to the Egyptians. 239  If we make sacrifices that are an abomination to the Egyptians right before their eyes, 240  will they not stone us? 241  8:27 We must go 242  on a three-day journey 243  into the desert and sacrifice 244  to the Lord our God, just as he is telling us.” 245 

8:28 Pharaoh said, “I will release you 246  so that you may sacrifice 247  to the Lord your God in the desert. Only you must not go very far. 248  Do 249  pray for me.”

8:29 Moses said, “I am going to go out 250  from you and pray to the Lord, and the swarms of flies will go away from Pharaoh, from his servants, and from his people tomorrow. Only do not let Pharaoh deal falsely again 251  by not releasing 252  the people to sacrifice to the Lord.” 8:30 So Moses went out from Pharaoh and prayed to the Lord, 8:31 and the Lord did as Moses asked 253  – he removed the swarms of flies from Pharaoh, from his servants, and from his people. Not one remained! 8:32 But Pharaoh hardened 254  his heart this time also and did not release the people.


The Fifth Blow: Disease


Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh and tell him, ‘Thus says the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, “Release my people that they may serve me! 9:2 For if you refuse to release them 256  and continue holding them, 257  9:3 then the hand of the Lord will surely bring 258  a very terrible plague 259  on your livestock in the field, on the horses, the donkeys, the camels, 260  the herds, and the flocks. 9:4 But the Lord will distinguish 261  between the livestock of Israel and the livestock of Egypt, and nothing 262  will die of all that the Israelites have.”’ 263 

9:5 The Lord set 264  an appointed time, saying, “Tomorrow the Lord will do this 265  in the land.” 9:6 And the Lord did this 266  on the next day; 267  all 268  the livestock of the Egyptians 269  died, but of the Israeliteslivestock not one died. 9:7 Pharaoh sent representatives to investigate, 270  and indeed, not even one of the livestock of Israel had died. But Pharaoh’s heart remained hard, 271  and he did not release the people.


The Sixth Blow: Boils


Then the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “Take handfuls of soot 273  from a furnace, and have Moses throw it 274  into the air while Pharaoh is watching. 275  9:9 It will become fine dust over the whole land of Egypt and will cause boils to break out and fester 276  on both people and animals in all the land of Egypt.” 9:10 So they took soot from a furnace and stood before Pharaoh, Moses threw it into the air, and it caused festering boils to break out on both people and animals.

9:11 The magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils, for boils were on the magicians and on all the Egyptians. 9:12 But the Lord hardened 277  Pharaoh’s heart, and he did not listen to them, just as the Lord had predicted to Moses.


The Seventh Blow: Hail


The Lord said 279  to Moses, “Get up early in the morning, stand 280  before Pharaoh, and tell him, ‘Thus says the Lord, the God of the Hebrews: “Release my people so that they may serve me! 9:14 For this time I will send all my plagues 281  on your very self 282  and on your servants and your people, so that you may know that there is no one like me in all the earth. 9:15 For by now I could have stretched out 283  my hand and struck you and your people with plague, and you would have been destroyed 284  from the earth. 9:16 But 285  for this purpose I have caused you to stand: 286  to show you 287  my strength, and so that my name may be declared 288  in all the earth. 9:17 You are still exalting 289  yourself against my people by 290  not releasing them. 9:18 I am going to cause very severe hail to rain down 291  about this time tomorrow, such hail as has never occurred 292  in Egypt from the day it was founded 293  until now. 9:19 So now, send instructions 294  to gather 295  your livestock and all your possessions in the fields to a safe place. Every person 296  or animal caught 297  in the field and not brought into the house – the hail will come down on them, and they will die!”’

9:20 Those 298  of Pharaoh’s servants who feared the word of the Lord hurried to bring their 299  servants and livestock into the houses, 9:21 but those 300  who did not take 301  the word of the Lord seriously left their servants and their cattle 302  in the field.

9:22 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Extend your hand toward the sky 303  that there may be 304  hail in all the land of Egypt, on people and on animals, 305  and on everything that grows 306  in the field in the land of Egypt.” 9:23 When Moses extended 307  his staff toward the sky, the Lord 308  sent thunder 309  and hail, and fire fell to the earth; 310  so the Lord caused hail to rain down on the land of Egypt. 9:24 Hail fell 311  and fire mingled 312  with the hail; the hail was so severe 313  that there had not been any like it 314  in all the land of Egypt since it had become a nation. 9:25 The hail struck everything in the open fields, both 315  people and animals, throughout all the land of Egypt. The hail struck everything that grows 316  in the field, and it broke all the trees of the field to pieces. 9:26 Only in the land of Goshen, where the Israelites lived, was there no hail.

9:27 So Pharaoh sent and summoned Moses and Aaron and said to them, “I have sinned this time! 317  The Lord is righteous, and I and my people are guilty. 318  9:28 Pray to the Lord, for the mighty 319  thunderings and hail are too much! 320  I will release you and you will stay no longer.” 321 

9:29 Moses said to him, “When I leave the city 322  I will spread my hands to the Lord, the thunder will cease, and there will be no more hail, so that you may know that the earth belongs to the Lord. 323  9:30 But as for you 324  and your servants, I know that you do not yet fear 325  the Lord God.”

9:31 (Now the 326  flax and the barley were struck 327  by the hail, 328  for the barley had ripened 329  and the flax 330  was in bud. 9:32 But the wheat and the spelt 331  were not struck, for they are later crops.) 332 

9:33 So Moses left Pharaoh, went out of the city, and spread out his hands to the Lord, and the thunder and the hail ceased, and the rain stopped pouring on the earth. 9:34 When Pharaoh saw 333  that the rain and hail and thunder ceased, he sinned again: 334  both he and his servants hardened 335  their hearts. 9:35 So Pharaoh’s heart remained hard, 336  and he did not release the Israelites, as the Lord had predicted through Moses.


The Eighth Blow: Locusts


The Lord said 338  to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh, for I have hardened his heart and the heart of his servants, in order to display 339  these signs of mine before him, 340  10:2 and in order that in the hearing of your son and your grandson you may tell 341  how I made fools 342  of the Egyptians 343  and about 344  my signs that I displayed 345  among them, so that you may know 346  that I am the Lord.”

10:3 So Moses and Aaron came to Pharaoh and told him, “Thus says the Lord, the God of the Hebrews: ‘How long do you refuse 347  to humble yourself before me? 348  Release my people so that they may serve me! 10:4 But if you refuse to release my people, I am going to bring 349  locusts 350  into your territory 351  tomorrow. 10:5 They will cover 352  the surface 353  of the earth, so that you 354  will be unable to see the ground. They will eat the remainder of what escaped 355 what is left over 356  for you – from the hail, and they will eat every tree that grows for you from the field. 10:6 They will fill your houses, the houses of your servants, and all the houses of Egypt, such as 357  neither 358  your fathers nor your grandfathers have seen since they have been 359  in the land until this day!’” Then Moses 360  turned and went out from Pharaoh.

10:7 Pharaoh’s servants said to him, “How long 361  will this man be a menace 362  to us? Release the people so that they may serve the Lord their God. Do you not know 363  that Egypt is destroyed?

10:8 So Moses and Aaron were brought back to Pharaoh, and he said to them, “Go, serve the Lord your God. Exactly who is going with you? 364  10:9 Moses said, “We will go with our young and our old, with our sons and our daughters, and with our sheep and our cattle we will go, because we are to hold 365  a pilgrim feast for the Lord.”

10:10 He said to them, “The Lord will need to be with you 366  if I release you and your dependents! 367  Watch out! 368  Trouble is right in front of you! 369  10:11 No! 370  Go, you men 371  only, and serve the Lord, for that 372  is what you want.” 373  Then Moses and Aaron 374  were driven 375  out of Pharaoh’s presence.

10:12 The Lord said to Moses, “Extend your hand over the land of Egypt for 376  the locusts, that they may come up over the land of Egypt and eat everything that grows 377  in the ground, everything that the hail has left.” 10:13 So Moses extended his staff over the land of Egypt, and then the Lord 378  brought 379  an east wind on the land all that day and all night. 380  The morning came, 381  and the east wind had brought up 382  the locusts! 10:14 The locusts went up over all the land of Egypt and settled down in all the territory 383  of Egypt. It was very severe; 384  there had been no locusts like them before, nor will there be such ever again. 385  10:15 They covered 386  the surface 387  of all the ground, so that the ground became dark with them, 388  and they ate all the vegetation of the ground and all the fruit of the trees that the hail had left. Nothing green remained on the trees or on anything that grew in the fields throughout the whole land of Egypt.

10:16 389 

Then Pharaoh quickly 390  summoned Moses and Aaron and said, “I have sinned 391  against the Lord your God and against you! 10:17 So now, forgive my sin this time only, and pray to the Lord your God that he would only 392  take this death 393  away from me.” 10:18 Moses 394  went out 395  from Pharaoh and prayed to the Lord, 10:19 and the Lord turned a very strong west wind, 396  and it picked up the locusts and blew them into the Red Sea. 397  Not one locust remained in all the territory of Egypt. 10:20 But the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he did not release the Israelites.


The Ninth Blow: Darkness


The Lord said to Moses, “Extend your hand toward heaven 399  so that there may be 400  darkness over the land of Egypt, a darkness so thick it can be felt.” 401 

10:22 So Moses extended his hand toward heaven, and there was absolute darkness 402  throughout the land of Egypt for three days. 403  10:23 No one 404  could see 405  another person, and no one could rise from his place for three days. But the Israelites had light in the places where they lived.

10:24 Then Pharaoh summoned Moses and said, “Go, serve the Lordonly your flocks and herds will be detained. Even your families 406  may go with you.”

10:25 But Moses said, “Will you also 407  provide us 408  with sacrifices and burnt offerings that we may present them 409  to the Lord our God? 10:26 Our livestock must 410  also go with us! Not a hoof is to be left behind! For we must take 411  these animals 412  to serve the Lord our God. Until we arrive there, we do not know what we must use to serve the Lord.” 413 

10:27 But the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he was not willing to release them. 10:28 Pharaoh said to him, “Go from me! 414  Watch out for yourself! Do not appear before me again, 415  for when 416  you see my face you will die! 10:29 Moses said, “As you wish! 417  I will not see your face again.” 418 


The Tenth Blow: Death


The Lord said to Moses, “I will bring one more plague on Pharaoh and on Egypt; after that he will release you from this place. When he releases you, 420  he will drive you out completely 421  from this place. 11:2 Instruct 422  the people that each man and each woman is to request 423  from his or her neighbor 424  items of silver and gold.” 425 

11:3 (Now the Lord granted the people favor with 426  the Egyptians. Moreover, the man Moses was very great in the land of Egypt, respected by Pharaoh’s servants and by the Egyptian people.) 427 

11:4 Moses said, “Thus says the Lord: ‘About midnight 428  I will go throughout Egypt, 429  11:5 and all the firstborn in the land of Egypt will die, from the firstborn son of Pharaoh 430  who sits on his throne, to the firstborn son of the slave girl who is at her hand mill, and all the firstborn of the cattle. 11:6 There will be a great cry throughout the whole land of Egypt, such as there has never been, 431  nor ever will be again. 432  11:7 But against any of the Israelites not even a dog will bark 433  against either people or animals, 434  so that you may know that the Lord distinguishes 435  between Egypt and Israel.’ 11:8 All these your servants will come down to me and bow down 436  to me, saying, ‘Go, you and all the people who follow 437  you,’ and after that I will go out.” Then Moses 438  went out from Pharaoh in great anger.

11:9 The Lord said to Moses, “Pharaoh will not listen to you, so that my wonders 439  may be multiplied in the land of Egypt.”

11:10 So Moses and Aaron did all these wonders before Pharaoh, but the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he did not release the Israelites from his land.


The Institution of the Passover


The Lord said 441  to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, 442  12:2 This month is to be your beginning of months; it will be your first month of the year. 443  12:3 Tell the whole community of Israel, ‘In the tenth day of this month they each 444  must take a lamb 445  for themselves according to their families 446 a lamb for each household. 447  12:4 If any household is too small 448  for a lamb, 449  the man 450  and his next-door neighbor 451  are to take 452  a lamb according to the number of people – you will make your count for the lamb according to how much each one can eat. 453  12:5 Your lamb must be 454  perfect, 455  a male, one year old; 456  you may take 457  it from the sheep or from the goats. 12:6 You must care for it 458  until the fourteenth day of this month, and then the whole community 459  of Israel will kill it around sundown. 460  12:7 They will take some of the blood and put it on the two side posts and top of the doorframe of the houses where they will eat it. 12:8 They will eat the meat the same night; 461  they will eat it roasted over the fire with bread made without yeast 462  and with bitter herbs. 12:9 Do not eat it raw 463  or boiled in water, but roast it over the fire with its head, its legs, and its entrails. 12:10 You must leave nothing until morning, but you must burn with fire whatever remains of it until morning. 12:11 This is how you are to eat it – dressed to travel, 464  your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand. You are to eat it in haste. It is the Lord’s Passover. 465 

12:12 I will pass through 466  the land of Egypt in the same 467  night, and I will attack 468  all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both of humans and of animals, 469  and on all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment. 470  I am the Lord. 12:13 The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are, so that when I see 471  the blood I will pass over you, 472  and this plague 473  will not fall on you to destroy you 474  when I attack 475  the land of Egypt. 476 

12:14 This day will become 477  a memorial 478  for you, and you will celebrate it as a festival 479  to the Lordyou will celebrate it perpetually as a lasting ordinance. 480  12:15 For seven days 481  you must eat 482  bread made without yeast. 483  Surely 484  on the first day you must put away yeast from your houses because anyone who eats bread made with yeast 485  from the first day to the seventh day will be cut off 486  from Israel.

12:16 On the first day there will be a holy convocation, 487  and on the seventh day there will be a holy convocation for you. You must do no work of any kind 488  on them, only what every person will eat – that alone may be prepared for you. 12:17 So you will keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread, because on this very 489  day I brought your regiments 490  out from the land of Egypt, and so you must keep this day perpetually as a lasting ordinance. 491  12:18 In the first month, 492  from the fourteenth day of the month, in the evening, you will eat bread made without yeast until the twenty-first day of the month in the evening. 12:19 For seven days 493  yeast must not be found in your houses, for whoever eats what is made with yeast – that person 494  will be cut off from the community of Israel, whether a foreigner 495  or one born in the land. 12:20 You will not eat anything made with yeast; in all the places where you live you must eat bread made without yeast.’

12:21 Then Moses summoned all the elders of Israel, and told them, “Go and select 496  for yourselves a lamb or young goat 497  for your families, and kill the Passover animals. 498  12:22 Take a branch of hyssop, 499  dip it in the blood that is in the basin, 500  and apply to the top of the doorframe and the two side posts some of the blood that is in the basin. Not one of you is to go out 501  the door of his house until morning. 12:23 For the Lord will pass through to strike Egypt, and when he sees 502  the blood on the top of the doorframe and the two side posts, then the Lord will pass over the door, and he will not permit the destroyer 503  to enter your houses to strike you. 504  12:24 You must observe this event as an ordinance for you and for your children forever. 12:25 When you enter the land that the Lord will give to you, just as he said, you must observe 505  this ceremony. 12:26 When your children ask you, ‘What does this ceremony mean to you?’ 506  12:27 then you will say, ‘It is the sacrifice 507  of the Lord’s Passover, when he passed over the houses of the Israelites in Egypt, when he struck 508  Egypt and delivered our households.’” The people bowed down low 509  to the ground, 12:28 and the Israelites went away and did exactly as the Lord had commanded Moses and Aaron. 510 


The Deliverance from Egypt


It happened 512  at midnight – the Lord attacked all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the prison, and all the firstborn of the cattle. 12:30 Pharaoh got up 513  in the night, 514  along with all his servants and all Egypt, and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was no house 515  in which there was not someone dead. 12:31 Pharaoh 516  summoned Moses and Aaron in the night and said, “Get up, get out 517  from among my people, both you and the Israelites! Go, serve the Lord as you have requested! 518  12:32 Also, take your flocks and your herds, just as you have requested, and leave. But bless me also.” 519 

12:33 The Egyptians were urging 520  the people on, in order to send them out of the land quickly, 521  for they were saying, “We are all dead! 12:34 So the people took their dough before the yeast was added, 522  with their kneading troughs bound up in their clothing on their shoulders. 12:35 Now the Israelites had done 523  as Moses told them – they had requested from the Egyptians 524  silver and gold items and clothing. 12:36 The Lord 525  gave the people favor 526  in the sight of the Egyptians, and they gave them whatever they wanted, 527  and so they plundered Egypt. 528 

12:37 The Israelites journeyed 529  from Rameses 530  to Sukkoth. There were about 600,000 men 531  on foot, plus their dependants. 532  12:38 A mixed multitude 533  also went up with them, and flocks and herds – a very large number of cattle. 534  12:39 They baked cakes of bread without yeast using the dough they had brought from Egypt, for it was made without yeast – because they were thrust out 535  of Egypt and were not able to delay, they 536  could not prepare 537  food for themselves either.

12:40 Now the length of time the Israelites lived in Egypt was 430 years. 538  12:41 At the end of the 430 years, on the very day, all the regiments 539  of the Lord went out of the land of Egypt. 12:42 It was a night of vigil for the Lord to bring them out from the land of Egypt, 540  and so 541  on this night all Israel is to keep the vigil 542  to the Lord for generations to come.


Participation in the Passover


The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “This is the ordinance of the Passover. No foreigner may 544  share in eating it. 545  12:44 But everyone’s servant who is bought for money, after you have circumcised him, may eat it. 12:45 A foreigner and a hired worker must not eat it. 12:46 It must be eaten in one house; you must not bring any of the meat outside the house, and you must not break a bone of it. 12:47 The whole community of Israel must observe it.

12:48When a foreigner lives 546  with you and wants to observe the Passover to the Lord, all his males must be circumcised, 547  and then he may approach and observe it, and he will be like one who is born in the land 548 but no uncircumcised person may eat of it. 12:49 The same law will apply 549  to the person who is native-born and to the foreigner who lives among you.”

12:50 So all the Israelites did exactly as the Lord commanded Moses and Aaron. 550  12:51 And on this very day the Lord brought the Israelites out of the land of Egypt by their regiments.


The Law of the Firstborn


The Lord spoke 552  to Moses: 13:2 Set apart 553  to me every firstborn male – the first offspring of every womb 554  among the Israelites, whether human or animal; it is mine.” 555 

13:3 Moses said to the people, “Remember 556  this day on which you came out from Egypt, from the place where you were enslaved, 557  for the Lord brought you out of there 558  with a mighty hand – and no bread made with yeast may be eaten. 559  13:4 On this day, 560  in the month of Abib, 561  you are going out. 562 

13:5 When 563  the Lord brings you to the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Hivites, and Jebusites, which he swore to your fathers to give you, a land flowing with milk and honey, 564  then you will keep 565  this ceremony 566  in this month. 13:6 For seven days 567  you must eat 568  bread made without yeast, and on the seventh day there is to be 569  a festival to the Lord. 13:7 Bread made without yeast must be eaten 570  for seven days; 571  no bread made with yeast shall be seen 572  among you, and you must have no yeast among you within any of your borders.

13:8 You are to tell your son 573  on that day, 574 It is 575  because of what 576  the Lord did for me when I came out of Egypt.’ 13:9 577  It 578  will be a sign 579  for you on your hand and a memorial 580  on your forehead, 581  so that the law of the Lord may be 582  in your mouth, 583  for 584  with a mighty hand the Lord brought you out of Egypt. 13:10 So you must keep 585  this ordinance at its appointed time from year to year. 586 

13:11 When the Lord brings you 587  into the land of the Canaanites, 588  as he swore to you and to your fathers, and gives it 589  to you, 13:12 then you must give over 590  to the Lord the first offspring of every womb. 591  Every firstling 592  of a beast that you have 593 the males will be the Lord’s. 594  13:13 Every firstling 595  of a donkey you must redeem 596  with a lamb, and if you do not redeem it, then you must break its neck. 597  Every firstborn of 598  your sons you must redeem.

13:14 599 

In the future, 600  when your son asks you 601  ‘What is this?’ 602  you are to tell him, ‘With a mighty hand 603  the Lord brought us out from Egypt, from the land of slavery. 604  13:15 When Pharaoh stubbornly refused 605  to release us, the Lord killed all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of people to the firstborn of animals. 606  That is why I am sacrificing 607  to the Lord the first male offspring of every womb, but all my firstborn sons I redeem.’ 13:16 It will be for a sign on your hand and for frontlets 608  on your forehead, for with a mighty hand the Lord brought us out of Egypt.” 609 


The Leading of God


When Pharaoh released 611  the people, God did not lead them 612  by the way to the land 613  of the Philistines, 614  although 615  that was nearby, for God said, 616 Lest 617  the people change their minds 618  and return to Egypt when they experience 619  war.” 13:18 So God brought the people around by the way of the desert to the Red Sea, 620  and the Israelites went up from the land of Egypt prepared for battle. 621 

13:19 Moses took the bones of Joseph with him, for Joseph 622  had made the Israelites solemnly swear, 623 God will surely attend 624  to you, and you will carry 625  my bones up from this place with you.”

13:20 They journeyed from Sukkoth and camped in Etham, on the edge of the desert. 13:21 Now the Lord was going before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead them in the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, 626  so that they could 627  travel day or night. 628  13:22 He did not remove the pillar of cloud by day nor the pillar of fire by night from before the people. 629 


The Victory at the Red Sea


The Lord spoke to Moses: 14:2 Tell the Israelites that they must turn and camp 631  before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea; you are to camp by the sea before Baal Zephon opposite it. 632  14:3 Pharaoh will think 633  regarding the Israelites, ‘They are wandering around confused 634  in the land – the desert has closed in on them.’ 635  14:4 I will harden 636  Pharaoh’s heart, and he will chase after them. I will gain honor 637  because of Pharaoh and because of all his army, and the Egyptians will know 638  that I am the Lord.” So this is what they did. 639 

14:5 When it was reported 640  to the king of Egypt that the people had fled, 641  the heart of Pharaoh and his servants was turned against the people, and the king and his servants said, 642 What in the world have we done? 643  For we have released the people of Israel 644  from serving us! 14:6 Then he prepared 645  his chariots and took his army 646  with him. 14:7 He took six hundred select 647  chariots, and all the rest of the chariots of Egypt, 648  and officers 649  on all of them.

14:8 But the Lord hardened the heart of Pharaoh king of Egypt, and he chased after the Israelites. Now the Israelites were going out defiantly. 650  14:9 The Egyptians chased after them, and all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh and his horsemen and his army overtook them camping by the sea, beside Pi-hahiroth, before Baal-Zephon. 14:10 When 651  Pharaoh got closer, 652  the Israelites looked up, 653  and there were the Egyptians marching after them, 654  and they were terrified. 655  The Israelites cried out to the Lord, 656  14:11 and they said to Moses, “Is it because there are no graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the desert? 657  What in the world 658  have you done to us by bringing 659  us out of Egypt? 14:12 Isn’t this what we told you 660  in Egypt, ‘Leave us alone so that we can serve the Egyptians, 661  because it is better for us to serve 662  the Egyptians than to die in the desert!’ 663 

14:13 Moses said to the people, “Do not fear! 664  Stand firm 665  and see 666  the salvation 667  of the Lord that he will provide 668  for you today; for the Egyptians that you see today you will never, ever see again. 669  14:14 The Lord 670  will fight for you, and you can be still.” 671 

14:15 The Lord said to Moses, “Why do you cry out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on. 672  14:16 And as for you, 673  lift up your staff and extend your hand toward the sea and divide it, so that 674  the Israelites may go through the middle of the sea on dry ground. 14:17 And as for me, I am going to harden 675  the hearts of the Egyptians so that 676  they will come after them, that I may be honored 677  because 678  of Pharaoh and his army and his chariots and his horsemen. 14:18 And the Egyptians will know 679  that I am the Lord when I have gained my honor 680  because of Pharaoh, his chariots, and his horsemen.”

14:19 The angel of God, who was going before the camp of Israel, moved and went behind them, and the pillar 681  of cloud moved from before them and stood behind them. 14:20 It came between the Egyptian camp and the Israelite camp; it was a dark cloud 682  and it lit up the night so that one camp did not come near the other 683  the whole night. 684  14:21 Moses stretched out his hand toward the sea, and the Lord drove the sea apart 685  by a strong east wind all that night, and he made the sea into dry land, and the water was divided. 14:22 So the Israelites went through the middle of the sea on dry ground, the water forming a wall 686  for them on their right and on their left.

14:23 The Egyptians chased them and followed them into the middle of the sea – all the horses of Pharaoh, his chariots, and his horsemen. 14:24 In the morning watch 687  the Lord looked down 688  on the Egyptian army 689  through the pillar of fire and cloud, and he threw the Egyptian army 690  into a panic. 691  14:25 He jammed 692  the wheels of their chariots so that they had difficulty driving, 693  and the Egyptians said, “Let’s flee 694  from Israel, for the Lord fights 695  for them against Egypt!

14:26 The Lord said to Moses, “Extend your hand toward the sea, so that the waters may flow 696  back on the Egyptians, on their chariots, and on their horsemen! 14:27 So Moses extended his hand toward the sea, and the sea returned to its normal state 697  when the sun began to rise. 698  Now the Egyptians were fleeing 699  before it, but the Lord overthrew 700  the Egyptians in the middle of the sea. 14:28 The water returned and covered the chariots and the horsemen and all the army of Pharaoh that was coming after the Israelites into the sea 701 not so much as one of them survived! 702  14:29 But the Israelites walked on dry ground in the middle of the sea, the water forming a wall for them on their right and on their left. 14:30 So the Lord saved 703  Israel on that day from the power 704  of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians dead 705  on the shore of the sea. 14:31 When Israel saw 706  the great power 707  that the Lord had exercised 708  over the Egyptians, they 709  feared the Lord, and they believed in 710  the Lord and in his servant Moses. 711 


The Song of Triumph


Then Moses and the Israelites sang 713  this song to the Lord. They said, 714 

“I will sing 715  to the Lord, for he has triumphed gloriously, 716 

the horse and its rider 717  he has thrown into the sea.

15:2 The Lord 718  is my strength and my song, 719 

and he has become my salvation.

This is my God, and I will praise him, 720 

my father’s God, and I will exalt him.

15:3 The Lord is a warrior, 721 

the Lord is his name. 722 

15:4 The chariots of Pharaoh 723  and his army he has thrown into the sea,

and his chosen 724  officers were drowned 725  in the Red Sea.

15:5 The depths have covered them, 726 

they went down to the bottom 727  like a stone.

15:6 Your right hand, O Lord, was majestic 728  in power,

your right hand, O Lord, shattered the enemy.

15:7 In the abundance of your majesty 729  you have overthrown 730 

those who rise up against you. 731 

You sent forth 732  your wrath; 733 

it consumed them 734  like stubble.

15:8 By the blast of your nostrils 735  the waters were piled up,

the flowing water stood upright like a heap, 736 

and the deep waters were solidified in the heart of the sea.

15:9 The enemy said, ‘I will chase, 737  I will overtake,

I will divide the spoil;

my desire 738  will be satisfied on them.

I will draw 739  my sword, my hand will destroy them.’ 740 

15:10 But 741  you blew with your breath, and 742  the sea covered them.

They sank 743  like lead in the mighty waters.

15:11 Who is like you, 744  O Lord, among the gods? 745 

Who is like you? – majestic in holiness, fearful in praises, 746  working wonders?

15:12 You stretched out your right hand,

the earth swallowed them. 747 

15:13 By your loyal love you will lead 748  the people whom 749  you have redeemed;

you will guide 750  them by your strength to your holy dwelling place.

15:14 The nations will hear 751  and tremble;

anguish 752  will seize 753  the inhabitants of Philistia.

15:15 Then the chiefs of Edom will be terrified, 754 

trembling will seize 755  the leaders of Moab,

and the inhabitants of Canaan will shake.

15:16 Fear and dread 756  will fall 757  on them;

by the greatness 758  of your arm they will be as still as stone 759 

until 760  your people pass by, O Lord,

until the people whom you have bought 761  pass by.

15:17 You will bring them in 762  and plant them in the mountain 763  of your inheritance,

in the place you made 764  for your residence, O Lord,

the sanctuary, O Lord, that your hands have established.

15:18 The Lord will reign forever and ever!

15:19 For the horses of Pharaoh came with his chariots and his footmen into the sea,

and the Lord brought back the waters of the sea on them,

but the Israelites walked on dry land in the middle of the sea.”

15:20 Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a hand-drum in her hand, and all the women went out after her with hand-drums and with dances. 765  15:21 Miriam sang in response 766  to them, “Sing to the Lord, for he has triumphed gloriously; the horse and its rider he has thrown into the sea.” 767 


The Bitter Water


Then Moses led Israel to journey 769  away from the Red Sea. They went out to the Desert of Shur, walked for three days 770  into the desert, and found no water. 15:23 Then they came to Marah, 771  but they were not able to drink 772  the waters of Marah, because 773  they were bitter. 774  (That is 775  why its name was 776  Marah.)

15:24 So the people murmured 777  against Moses, saying, “What can 778  we drink? 15:25 He cried out to the Lord, and the Lord showed him 779  a tree. 780  When Moses 781  threw it into the water, the water became safe to drink. There the Lord 782  made for them 783  a binding ordinance, 784  and there he tested 785  them. 15:26 He said, “If you will diligently obey 786  the Lord your God, and do what is right 787  in his sight, and pay attention 788  to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, then all 789  the diseases 790  that I brought on the Egyptians I will not bring on you, for I, the Lord, am your healer.” 791 

15:27 Then they came to Elim, 792  where there were twelve wells of water and seventy palm trees, and they camped there by the water.

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