Exodus 4-13 New English Translation (NET Bible)
The Source of Sufficiency
4 [a] Moses answered again,[b] “And if[c] they do not believe me or pay attention to me,[d] but say, ‘The Lord has not appeared to you’?” 2 The Lord said to him, “What is that in your hand?” He said, “A staff.”[e] 3 The Lord[f] said, “Throw it to the ground.” So he threw it to the ground, and it became a snake,[g] and Moses ran from it. 4 But the Lord said to Moses, “Put out your hand and grab it by the tail”—so he put out his hand and caught it, and it became a staff in his hand[h]— 5 “that they may believe that the Lord, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has appeared to you.”
6 The Lord also said to him, “Put your hand into your robe.”[i] So he put his hand into his robe, and when he brought it out—there was his hand,[j] leprous like snow![k] 7 He said, “Put your hand back into your robe.” So he put his hand back into his robe, and when he brought it out from his robe—there it was,[l] restored[m] like the rest of his skin![n] 8 “If[o] they do not believe you or pay attention to[p] the former sign, then they may[q] believe the latter sign.[r] 9 And if[s] they do not believe even these two signs or listen to you,[t] then take[u] some water from the Nile and pour it out on the dry ground. The water you take out of the Nile will become blood on the dry ground.”[v]
11 The Lord said to him, “Who gave[ac] a mouth to man, or who makes a person mute or deaf or seeing or blind? Is it not I, the Lord?[ad] 12 So now go, and I will be with your mouth[ae] and will teach you[af] what you must say.”[ag]
14 Then the Lord became angry with[ak] Moses, and he said, “What about[al] your brother Aaron the Levite?[am] I know that he can speak very well.[an] Moreover, he is coming[ao] to meet you, and when he sees you he will be glad in his heart.[ap]
15 “So you are to speak to him and put the words in his mouth. And as for me, I will be with your mouth[aq] and with his mouth,[ar] and I will teach you both[as] what you must do.[at] 16 He[au] will speak for you to the people, and it will be as if[av] he[aw] were your mouth[ax] and as if you were his God.[ay] 17 You will also take in your hand this staff, with which you will do the signs.”[az]
The Return of Moses
18 [ba] So Moses went back[bb] to his father-in-law Jethro and said to him, “Let me go, so that I may return[bc] to my relatives[bd] in Egypt and see[be] if they are still alive.” Jethro said to Moses, “Go in peace.” 19 The Lord said to Moses in Midian, “Go back[bf] to Egypt, because all the men who were seeking your life are dead.”[bg] 20 Then Moses took[bh] his wife and sons[bi] and put them on a donkey and headed back[bj] to the land of Egypt, and Moses took the staff of God in his hand. 21 The Lord said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt,[bk] see that you[bl] do before Pharaoh all the wonders I have put under your control.[bm] But I will harden[bn] his heart[bo] and[bp] he will not let the people go. 22 You must say to Pharaoh, ‘This is what the Lord has said, “Israel is my son, my firstborn,[bq] 23 and I said to you, ‘Let my son go that he may serve[br] me,’ but since you have refused to let him go,[bs] I will surely kill[bt] your son, your firstborn!”’”
24 Now on the way, at a place where they stopped for the night,[bu] the Lord met Moses and sought to kill him.[bv] 25 But Zipporah took a flint knife, cut off the foreskin of her son and touched it to Moses’ feet,[bw] and said, “Surely you are a bridegroom of blood[bx] to me.” 26 So the Lord[by] let him alone. (At that time[bz] she said, “A bridegroom of blood,” referring to[ca] the circumcision.)
27 The Lord said[cb] to Aaron, “Go to the wilderness to meet Moses. So he went and met him at the mountain of God[cc] and greeted him with a kiss.[cd] 28 Moses told Aaron all the words of the Lord who had[ce] sent him and all the signs that he had commanded him. 29 Then Moses and Aaron went and brought together all the Israelite elders.[cf] 30 Aaron spoke[cg] all the words that the Lord had spoken to Moses and did the signs in the sight of the people, 31 and the people believed. When they heard[ch] that the Lord had attended to[ci] the Israelites and that he had seen their affliction, they bowed down close to the ground.[cj]
Opposition to the Plan of God
5 [ck] Afterward Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, has said, ‘Release[cl] my people so that they may hold a pilgrim feast[cm] to me in the wilderness.’” 2 But Pharaoh said, “Who is the Lord[cn] that[co] I should obey him[cp] by releasing[cq] Israel? I do not know the Lord,[cr] and I will not release Israel!” 3 And they said, “The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Let us go a three-day journey[cs] into the wilderness so that we may sacrifice[ct] to the Lord our God, so that he does not strike us with plague or the sword.”[cu] 4 The king of Egypt said to them, “Moses and Aaron, why do you cause the people to refrain from their work?[cv] Return to your labor!” 5 Pharaoh was thinking,[cw] “The people of the land are now many, and you are giving them rest from their labor.”
6 That same day Pharaoh commanded[cx] the slave masters and foremen[cy] who were[cz] over the people:[da] 7 “You must no longer[db] give straw to the people for making bricks[dc] as before.[dd] Let them go[de] and collect straw for themselves. 8 But you must require[df] of them the same quota of bricks that they were making before.[dg] Do not reduce it, for they are slackers.[dh] That is why they are crying, ‘Let us go sacrifice to our God.’ 9 Make the work harder[di] for the men so they will keep at it[dj] and pay no attention to lying words!”[dk]
10 So the slave masters of the people and their foremen went to the Israelites and said,[dl] “Thus says Pharaoh: ‘I am not giving[dm] you straw. 11 You[dn] go get straw for yourselves wherever you can[do] find it, because there will be no reduction at all in your workload.’” 12 So the people spread out[dp] through all the land of Egypt to collect stubble for straw. 13 The slave masters were pressuring[dq] them, saying, “Complete[dr] your work for each day, just like when there was straw!” 14 The Israelite foremen whom Pharaoh’s slave masters had set over them were beaten and were asked,[ds] “Why did you not complete your requirement for brickmaking as in the past—both yesterday and today?”[dt]
15 [du] The Israelite foremen went and cried out to Pharaoh, “Why are you treating[dv] your servants this way? 16 No straw is given to your servants, but we are told,[dw] ‘Make bricks!’ Your servants are even[dx] being beaten, but the fault[dy] is with your people.”
17 But Pharaoh replied,[dz] “You are slackers! Slackers![ea] That is why you are saying, ‘Let us go sacrifice to the Lord.’” 18 So now, get back to work![eb] You will not be given straw, but you must still produce[ec] your quota[ed] of bricks!” 19 The Israelite foremen saw[ee] that they[ef] were in trouble when they were told,[eg] “You must not reduce the daily quota of your bricks.”
20 When they went out from Pharaoh, they encountered Moses and Aaron standing there to meet them,[eh] 21 and they said to them, “May the Lord look on you and judge,[ei] because you have made us stink[ej] in the opinion of[ek] Pharaoh and his servants,[el] so that you have given them an excuse to kill us!”[em]
The Assurance of Deliverance
22 [en] Moses returned[eo] to the Lord, and said, “Lord,[ep] why have you caused trouble for this people?[eq] Why did you ever[er] send me? 23 From the time I went to speak to Pharaoh in your name, he has caused trouble[es] for this people, and you have certainly not rescued[et] them!”[eu]
6 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Now you will see what I will do to Pharaoh,[ev] for compelled by my strong hand[ew] he will release them, and by my strong hand he will drive them out of his land.”[ex]
2 God spoke[ey] to Moses and said to him, “I am the Lord.[ez] 3 I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob as[fa] God Almighty,[fb] but by my name ‘the Lord’[fc] I was not known to them.[fd] 4 I also established my covenant with them[fe] to give them the land of Canaan, where they were living as resident foreigners.[ff] 5 I[fg] have also heard[fh] the groaning of the Israelites, whom the Egyptians are enslaving,[fi] and I have remembered my covenant.[fj] 6 Therefore, tell the Israelites, ‘I am the Lord. I will bring you out[fk] from your enslavement to[fl] the Egyptians, I will rescue you from the hard labor they impose,[fm] and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments. 7 I will take you to myself for a people, and I will be your God.[fn] Then you will know that I am the Lord your God, who brought you out from your enslavement to[fo] the Egyptians. 8 I will bring you to the land I swore to give[fp] to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob—and I will give it to you[fq] as a possession. I am the Lord.’”
9 [fr] Moses told this[fs] to the Israelites, but they did not listen to him[ft] because of their discouragement[fu] and hard labor. 10 Then the Lord said to Moses, 11 “Go, tell Pharaoh king of Egypt that he must release[fv] the Israelites from his land.” 12 But Moses replied to[fw] the Lord, “If the Israelites did not listen to me, then[fx] how will Pharaoh listen to me, since[fy] I speak with difficulty?”[fz]
The Ancestry of Moses and Aaron
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.
16 Now these were the names of the sons of Levi, according to their records:[gg] Gershon, Kohath, and Merari. (The length of Levi’s life was 137 years.)
17 The sons of Gershon, by their families, were Libni and Shimei.
18 The sons of Kohath were Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel. (The length of Kohath’s life was 133 years.)
19 The sons of Merari were Mahli and Mushi. These were the clans of Levi, according to their records.
20 Amram married[gh] his father’s sister Jochebed, and she bore him Aaron and Moses. (The length of Amram’s life was 137 years.)
21 The sons of Izhar were Korah, Nepheg, and Zikri.
22 The sons of Uzziel were Mishael, Elzaphan, and Sithri.
23 Aaron married Elisheba, the daughter of Amminadab and sister of Nahshon, and she bore him Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar.
24 The sons of Korah were Assir, Elkanah, and Abiasaph. These were the Korahite clans.
25 Now Eleazar son of Aaron married one of the daughters of Putiel and she bore him Phinehas.
These were the heads of the fathers’ households[gi] of Levi according to their clans.
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.”[gj] 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
28 [gk] When[gl] the Lord spoke to Moses in the land of Egypt, 29 he said to him,[gm] “I am the Lord. Tell[gn] Pharaoh king of Egypt all that[go] I am telling[gp] you.” 30 But Moses said before the Lord, “Since I speak with difficulty,[gq] why should Pharaoh listen to me?”
7 So the Lord said to Moses, “See, I have made you like God[gr] to Pharaoh, and your brother Aaron will be your prophet.[gs] 2 You are to speak[gt] everything I command you,[gu] and your brother Aaron is to tell Pharaoh that he must release[gv] the Israelites from his land. 3 But I will harden[gw] Pharaoh’s heart, and although I will multiply[gx] my signs and my wonders in the land of Egypt, 4 Pharaoh will not listen to you.[gy] I will reach into[gz] Egypt and bring out my regiments,[ha] my people the Israelites, from the land of Egypt with great acts of judgment. 5 Then[hb] the Egyptians will know that I am the Lord when I extend my hand[hc] over Egypt and bring the Israelites out from among them.”
6 And Moses and Aaron did so; they did just as the Lord commanded them. 7 Now Moses was eighty years old and Aaron was eighty-three years old when they spoke to Pharaoh.
8 The Lord said[hd] to Moses and Aaron,[he] 9 “When Pharaoh says to you, ‘Do[hf] a miracle,’ and you say to Aaron, ‘Take your staff and throw it down[hg] before Pharaoh,’ it will become[hh] a snake.” 10 When[hi] Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh, they did so, just as the Lord had commanded them—Aaron threw down[hj] his staff before Pharaoh and his servants and it became a snake.[hk] 11 Then Pharaoh also summoned wise men and sorcerers,[hl] and the magicians[hm] of Egypt by their secret arts[hn] did the same thing. 12 Each man[ho] threw down his staff, and the staffs became snakes. But Aaron’s staff swallowed up their staffs. 13 Yet Pharaoh’s heart became hard,[hp] and he did not listen to them, just as the Lord had predicted.
Plague One: Water to Blood
14 [hq] The Lord said to Moses, “Pharaoh’s heart is hard;[hr] he refuses to release[hs] the people. 15 Go to Pharaoh in the morning when[ht] he goes out to the water. Position yourself[hu] to meet him by the edge of the Nile,[hv] and take[hw] in your hand the staff[hx] that was turned into a snake. 16 Tell him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has sent me to you to say,[hy] “Release my people, that they may serve me[hz] in the wilderness!” But until now[ia] you have not listened.[ib] 17 This is what the Lord has said: “By this you will know that I am the Lord: I am going to strike[ic] the water of the Nile with the staff that is in my hand, and it will be turned into blood.[id] 18 Fish[ie] in the Nile will die, the Nile will stink, and the Egyptians will be unable[if] to drink water from the Nile.”’” 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,[ig] over their ponds, and over all their reservoirs[ih]—so that it becomes[ii] blood.’ There will be blood everywhere in[ij] the land of Egypt, even in wooden and stone containers.” 20 Moses and Aaron did so,[ik] just as the Lord had commanded. He raised[il] the staff[im] and struck the water that was in the Nile right before the eyes[in] of Pharaoh and his servants,[io] and all the water that was in the Nile was turned to blood.[ip] 21 When the fish[iq] that were in the Nile died, the Nile began[ir] to stink, so that the Egyptians could not drink water from the Nile. There was blood[is] everywhere in the land of Egypt! 22 But the magicians of Egypt did the same[it] by their secret arts, and so[iu] Pharaoh’s heart remained hard,[iv] and he refused to listen to Moses and Aaron[iw]—just as the Lord had predicted. 23 And Pharaoh turned and went into his house. He did not pay any attention to this.[ix] 24 All the Egyptians dug around the Nile for water to drink,[iy] because they could not drink the water of the Nile.
Plague Two: Frogs
25 [iz] Seven full days passed[ja] after the Lord struck[jb] the Nile. 8 1 (7:26)[jc] Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh and tell him, ‘This is what the Lord has said: “Release my people in order that they may serve me! 2 But if you refuse to release them, then I am going to plague[jd] all your territory with frogs.[je] 3 The Nile will swarm[jf] 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.[jg] 4 Frogs[jh] will come up against you, your people, and all your servants.”’”[ji]
5 The Lord spoke to Moses, “Tell Aaron, ‘Extend your hand with your staff[jj] over the rivers, over the canals, and over the ponds, and bring the frogs up over the land of Egypt.’” 6 So Aaron extended his hand over the waters of Egypt, and frogs[jk] came up and covered the land of Egypt.
8 Then Pharaoh summoned[jn] Moses and Aaron and said, “Pray[jo] to the Lord that he may take the frogs away[jp] from me and my people, and I will release[jq] the people that they may sacrifice[jr] to the Lord.” 9 Moses said to Pharaoh, “You may have the honor over me[js]—when shall I pray for you, your servants, and your people, for the frogs to be removed[jt] from you and your houses, so that[ju] they will be left[jv] only in the Nile?” 10 He said, “Tomorrow.” And Moses said,[jw] “It will be[jx] as you say,[jy] so that you may know that there is no one like the Lord our God. 11 The frogs will depart from you, your houses, your servants, and your people; they will be left only in the Nile.”
12 Then Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh, and Moses cried[jz] to the Lord because of[ka] the frogs that he had brought on[kb] Pharaoh. 13 The Lord did as Moses asked[kc]—the frogs died[kd] in the houses, the villages, and the fields. 14 The Egyptians[ke] piled them in countless heaps,[kf] and the land stank. 15 But when Pharaoh saw that there was relief,[kg] he hardened[kh] his heart and did not listen to them, just as the Lord had predicted.[ki]
Plague Three: Gnats
16 [kj] The Lord said to Moses, “Tell Aaron, ‘Extend your staff and strike the dust of the ground, and it will become[kk] gnats[kl] throughout all the land of Egypt.’” 17 They did so; Aaron extended his hand with his staff, he struck the dust of the ground, and it became gnats on people[km] and on animals. All the dust of the ground became gnats throughout all the land of Egypt. 18 When[kn] the magicians attempted[ko] to bring forth gnats by their secret arts, they could not. So there were gnats on people and on animals. 19 The magicians said[kp] to Pharaoh, “It is the finger[kq] of God!” But Pharaoh’s heart remained hard,[kr] and he did not listen to them, just as the Lord had predicted.
Plague Four: Flies
20 [ks] The Lord said to Moses, “Get up early in the morning and position yourself before Pharaoh as he goes out to the water, and tell him, ‘This is what the Lord has said, “Release my people that they may serve me! 21 If you do not release[kt] my people, then I am going to send[ku] swarms of flies[kv] 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.[kw] 22 But on that day I will mark off[kx] the land of Goshen, where my people are staying,[ky] so that no swarms of flies will be there, that you may know that I am the Lord in the midst of this land.[kz] 23 I will put a division[la] between my people and your people. This sign will take place[lb] tomorrow.”’” 24 The Lord did so; a[lc] thick[ld] swarm of flies came into[le] Pharaoh’s house and into the houses[lf] of his servants, and throughout the whole land of Egypt the land was ruined[lg] because of the swarms of flies.
25 Then Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron and said, “Go, sacrifice to your God within the land.”[lh] 26 But Moses said, “That would not be the right thing to do,[li] for the sacrifices we make[lj] to the Lord our God would be an abomination[lk] to the Egyptians.[ll] If we make sacrifices that are an abomination to the Egyptians right before their eyes,[lm] will they not stone us?[ln] 27 We must go[lo] on a three-day journey[lp] into the wilderness and sacrifice[lq] to the Lord our God, just as he is telling us.”[lr]
29 Moses said, “I am going to go out[lw] 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[lx] by not releasing[ly] the people to sacrifice to the Lord.” 30 So Moses went out from Pharaoh and prayed to the Lord, 31 and the Lord did as Moses asked[lz]—he removed the swarms of flies from Pharaoh, from his servants, and from his people. Not one remained! 32 But Pharaoh hardened[ma] his heart this time also and did not release the people.
Plague Five: Disease
9 [mb] Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh and tell him, ‘This is what the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has said, “Release my people that they may serve me! 2 For if you refuse to release them[mc] and continue holding them,[md] 3 then the hand of the Lord will surely bring[me] a very terrible plague[mf] on your livestock in the field, on the horses, the donkeys, the camels,[mg] the herds, and the flocks. 4 But the Lord will distinguish[mh] between the livestock of Israel and the livestock of Egypt, and nothing[mi] will die of all that the Israelites have.”’”[mj]
5 The Lord set[mk] an appointed time, saying, “Tomorrow the Lord will do this[ml] in the land.” 6 And the Lord did this[mm] on the next day;[mn] all[mo] the livestock of the Egyptians[mp] died, but of the Israelites’ livestock not one died. 7 Pharaoh sent representatives to investigate,[mq] and indeed, not even one of the livestock of Israel had died. But Pharaoh’s heart remained hard,[mr] and he did not release the people.
Plague Six: Boils
8 [ms] Then the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “Take handfuls of soot[mt] from a furnace, and have Moses throw it[mu] into the air while Pharaoh is watching.[mv] 9 It will become fine dust over the whole land of Egypt and will cause boils to break out and fester[mw] on both people and animals in all the land of Egypt.” 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.
11 The magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils, for boils were on the magicians and on all the Egyptians. 12 But the Lord hardened[mx] Pharaoh’s heart, and he did not listen to them, just as the Lord had predicted to Moses.
Plague Seven: Hail
13 [my] The Lord said to Moses, “Get up early in the morning, stand[mz] before Pharaoh, and tell him, ‘This is what the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has said: “Release my people so that they may serve me! 14 For this time I will send all my plagues[na] on your very self[nb] and on your servants and your people, so that you may know that there is no one like me in all the earth. 15 For by now I could have stretched out[nc] my hand and struck you and your people with plague, and you would have been destroyed[nd] from the earth. 16 But[ne] for this purpose I have caused you to stand:[nf] to show you[ng] my strength, and so that my name may be declared[nh] in all the earth. 17 You are still exalting[ni] yourself against my people by[nj] not releasing them. 18 I am going to cause very severe hail to rain down[nk] about this time tomorrow, such hail as has never occurred[nl] in Egypt from the day it was founded[nm] until now. 19 So now, send instructions[nn] to gather[no] your livestock and all your possessions in the fields to a safe place. Every person[np] or animal caught[nq] in the field and not brought into the house—the hail will come down on them, and they will die!”’”
20 Those[nr] of Pharaoh’s servants who feared the Lord’s message hurried to bring their servants and livestock into the houses, 21 but those[ns] who did not take[nt] the Lord’s message seriously left their servants and their cattle in the field.
22 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Extend your hand toward the sky[nu] that there may be[nv] hail in all the land of Egypt, on people and on animals,[nw] and on everything that grows[nx] in the field in the land of Egypt.” 23 When Moses extended[ny] his staff toward the sky, the Lord[nz] sent thunder[oa] and hail, and fire fell to the earth;[ob] so the Lord caused hail to rain down on the land of Egypt. 24 Hail fell[oc] and fire mingled[od] with the hail; the hail was so severe[oe] that there had not been any like it[of] in all the land of Egypt since it had become a nation. 25 The hail struck everything in the open fields, both[og] people and animals, throughout all the land of Egypt. The hail struck everything that grows[oh] in the field, and it broke all the trees of the field to pieces. 26 Only in the land of Goshen, where the Israelites lived, was there no hail.
27 So Pharaoh sent and summoned Moses and Aaron and said to them, “I have sinned this time![oi] The Lord is righteous, and I and my people are guilty.[oj] 28 Pray to the Lord, for the mighty[ok] thunderings and hail are too much![ol] I will release you and you will stay no longer.”[om]
29 Moses said to him, “When I leave the city[on] 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.[oo] 30 But as for you[op] and your servants, I know that you do not yet fear[oq] the Lord God.”
31 (Now the[or] flax and the barley were struck[os] by the hail,[ot] for the barley had ripened[ou] and the flax[ov] was in bud. 32 But the wheat and the spelt[ow] were not struck, for they are later crops.)[ox]
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. 34 When Pharaoh saw[oy] that the rain and hail and thunder ceased, he sinned again:[oz] both he and his servants hardened[pa] their hearts. 35 So Pharaoh’s heart remained hard,[pb] and he did not release the Israelites, as the Lord had predicted through Moses.
Plague Eight: Locusts
10 [pc] The Lord said[pd] to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh, for I have hardened his heart and the heart of his servants, in order to display[pe] these signs of mine before him,[pf] 2 and in order that in the hearing of your son and your grandson you may tell[pg] how I made fools[ph] of the Egyptians[pi] and about[pj] my signs that I displayed[pk] among them, so that you may know[pl] that I am the Lord.”
3 So Moses and Aaron came to Pharaoh and told him, “This is what the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has said: ‘How long do you refuse[pm] to humble yourself before me?[pn] Release my people so that they may serve me! 4 But if you refuse to release my people, I am going to bring[po] locusts[pp] into your territory[pq] tomorrow. 5 They will cover[pr] the surface[ps] of the earth, so that you[pt] will be unable to see the ground. They will eat the remainder of what escaped[pu]—what is left over[pv] for you—from the hail, and they will eat every tree that grows for you from the field. 6 They will fill your houses, the houses of your servants, and all the houses of Egypt, such as[pw] neither[px] your fathers nor your grandfathers have seen since they have been[py] in the land until this day!’” Then Moses[pz] turned and went out from Pharaoh.
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?”[qd] 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[qe] a pilgrim feast for the Lord.”
10 He said to them, “The Lord will need to be with you[qf] if I release you and your dependents![qg] Watch out![qh] Trouble is right in front of you.[qi] 11 No![qj] Go, you men[qk] only, and serve the Lord, for that[ql] is what you want.”[qm] Then Moses and Aaron[qn] were driven[qo] out of Pharaoh’s presence.
12 The Lord said to Moses, “Extend your hand over the land of Egypt for[qp] the locusts, that they may come up over the land of Egypt and eat everything that grows[qq] in the ground, everything that the hail has left.” 13 So Moses extended his staff over the land of Egypt, and then the Lord[qr] brought[qs] an east wind on the land all that day and all night.[qt] The morning came,[qu] and the east wind had brought up[qv] the locusts! 14 The locusts went up over all the land of Egypt and settled down in all the territory[qw] of Egypt. It was very severe;[qx] there had been no locusts like them before, nor will there be such ever again.[qy] 15 They covered[qz] the surface[ra] of all the ground so that the ground became dark with them,[rb] 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.
16 [rc] Then Pharaoh quickly[rd] summoned Moses and Aaron and said, “I have sinned[re] against the Lord your God and against you! 17 So now, forgive my sin this time only, and pray to the Lord your God that he would only[rf] take this death[rg] away from me.” 18 Moses[rh] went out[ri] from Pharaoh and prayed to the Lord, 19 and the Lord turned a very strong west wind,[rj] and it picked up the locusts and blew them into the Red Sea.[rk] Not one locust remained in all the territory of Egypt. 20 But the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he did not release the Israelites.
Plague Nine: Darkness
22 So Moses extended his hand toward heaven, and there was absolute darkness[rp] throughout the land of Egypt for three days.[rq] 23 No one[rr] could see[rs] another person, and no one could rise from his place for three days. But the Israelites had light in the places where they lived.
24 Then Pharaoh summoned Moses and said, “Go, serve the Lord—only your flocks and herds will be detained. Even your families[rt] may go with you.”
25 But Moses said, “Will you also[ru] provide us[rv] with sacrifices and burnt offerings that we may present them[rw] to the Lord our God? 26 Our livestock must[rx] also go with us! Not a hoof is to be left behind! For we must take[ry] these animals[rz] to serve the Lord our God. Until we arrive there, we do not know what we must use to serve the Lord.”[sa]
27 But the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and he was not willing to release them. 28 Pharaoh said to him, “Go from me![sb] Watch out for yourself! Do not appear before me again,[sc] for when[sd] you see my face you will die!” 29 Moses said, “As you wish![se] I will not see your face again.”[sf]
Plague Ten: Death
11 [sg] 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,[sh] he will drive you out completely[si] from this place. 2 Instruct[sj] the people that each man and each woman is to request[sk] from his or her neighbor[sl] items of silver and gold.”[sm]
4 Moses said, “This is what the Lord has said: ‘About midnight I will go throughout Egypt,[sp] 5 and all the firstborn in the land of Egypt will die, from the firstborn son of Pharaoh[sq] 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. 6 There will be a great cry throughout the whole land of Egypt, such as there has never been,[sr] nor ever will be again.[ss] 7 But against any of the Israelites not even a dog will bark[st] against either people or animals,[su] so that you may know that the Lord distinguishes[sv] between Egypt and Israel.’ 8 All these your servants will come down to me and bow down[sw] to me, saying, ‘Go, you and all the people who follow[sx] you,’ and after that I will go out.” Then Moses[sy] went out from Pharaoh in great anger.
9 The Lord said to Moses, “Pharaoh will not listen to you, so that my wonders[sz] may be multiplied in the land of Egypt.”
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
12 [ta] The Lord said[tb] to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt,[tc] 2 “This month is to be your beginning of months; it will be your first month of the year.[td] 3 Tell the whole community of Israel, ‘On the tenth day of this month they each[te] must take a lamb[tf] for themselves according to their families[tg]—a lamb for each household.[th] 4 If any household is too small[ti] for a lamb,[tj] the man[tk] and his next-door neighbor[tl] are to take[tm] a lamb according to the number of people—you will make your count for the lamb according to how much each one can eat.[tn] 5 Your lamb must be[to] perfect,[tp] a male, one year old;[tq] you may take[tr] it from the sheep or from the goats. 6 You must care for it[ts] until the fourteenth day of this month, and then the whole community[tt] of Israel will kill it around sundown.[tu] 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. 8 They will eat the meat the same night;[tv] they will eat it roasted over the fire with bread made without yeast[tw] and with bitter herbs. 9 Do not eat it raw[tx] or boiled in water, but roast it over the fire with its head, its legs, and its entrails. 10 You must leave nothing until morning, but you must burn with fire whatever remains of it until morning. 11 This is how you are to eat it—dressed to travel,[ty] your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand. You are to eat it in haste. It is the Lord’s Passover.[tz]
12 ‘I will pass through[ua] the land of Egypt in the same[ub] night, and I will attack[uc] all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both of humans and of animals,[ud] and on all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment.[ue] I am the Lord. 13 The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are, so that when I see[uf] the blood I will pass over you,[ug] and this plague[uh] will not fall on you to destroy you[ui] when I attack[uj] the land of Egypt.[uk]
14 ‘This day will become[ul] a memorial[um] for you, and you will celebrate it as a festival[un] to the Lord—you will celebrate it perpetually as a lasting ordinance.[uo] 15 For seven days[up] you must eat[uq] bread made without yeast.[ur] Surely[us] on the first day you must put away yeast from your houses because anyone who eats bread made with yeast[ut] from the first day to the seventh day will be cut off[uu] from Israel.
16 ‘On the first day there will be a holy convocation,[uv] and on the seventh day there will be a holy convocation for you. You must do no work of any kind[uw] on them, only what every person will eat—that alone may be prepared for you. 17 So you will keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread, because on this very[ux] day I brought your regiments[uy] out from the land of Egypt, and so you must keep this day perpetually as a lasting ordinance.[uz] 18 In the first month,[va] 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. 19 For seven days[vb] yeast must not be found in your houses, for whoever eats what is made with yeast—that person[vc] will be cut off from the community of Israel, whether a resident foreigner[vd] or one born in the land. 20 You will not eat anything made with yeast; in all the places where you live you must eat bread made without yeast.’”
21 Then Moses summoned all the elders of Israel, and told them, “Go and select[ve] for yourselves a lamb or young goat[vf] for your families, and kill the Passover animals.[vg] 22 Take a branch of hyssop,[vh] dip it in the blood that is in the basin,[vi] 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[vj] the door of his house until morning. 23 For the Lord will pass through to strike Egypt, and when he sees[vk] 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[vl] to enter your houses to strike you.[vm] 24 You must observe this event as an ordinance for you and for your children forever. 25 When you enter the land that the Lord will give to you, just as he said, you must observe[vn] this ceremony. 26 When your children ask you, ‘What does this ceremony mean to you?’[vo]— 27 then you will say, ‘It is the sacrifice[vp] of the Lord’s Passover, when he passed over the houses of the Israelites in Egypt, when he struck[vq] Egypt and delivered our households.’” The people bowed down low to the ground,[vr] 28 and the Israelites went away and did exactly as the Lord had commanded Moses and Aaron.[vs]
The Deliverance from Egypt
29 [vt] It happened[vu] 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. 30 Pharaoh got up[vv] in the night,[vw] along with all his servants and all Egypt, and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was no house[vx] in which there was not someone dead. 31 Pharaoh[vy] summoned Moses and Aaron in the night and said, “Get up, get out[vz] from among my people, both you and the Israelites! Go, serve the Lord as you have requested![wa] 32 Also, take your flocks and your herds, just as you have requested, and leave. But bless me also.”[wb]
33 The Egyptians were urging[wc] the people on, in order to send them out of the land quickly,[wd] for they were saying, “We are all dead!” 34 So the people took their dough before the yeast was added,[we] with their kneading troughs bound up in their clothing on their shoulders. 35 Now the Israelites had done[wf] as Moses told them—they had requested from the Egyptians[wg] silver and gold items and clothing. 36 The Lord[wh] gave the people favor[wi] in the sight of the Egyptians, and they gave them whatever they wanted,[wj] and so they plundered Egypt.[wk]
37 The Israelites journeyed[wl] from Rameses[wm] to Sukkoth. There were about 600,000 men[wn] on foot, plus their dependents.[wo] 38 A mixed multitude[wp] also went up with them, and flocks and herds—a very large number of cattle.[wq] 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[wr] of Egypt and were not able to delay, they[ws] could not prepare[wt] food for themselves either.
40 Now the length of time the Israelites lived in Egypt was 430 years.[wu] 41 At the end of the 430 years, on the very day, all the regiments[wv] of the Lord went out of the land of Egypt. 42 It was a night of vigil for the Lord to bring them out from the land of Egypt,[ww] and so[wx] on this night all Israel is to keep the vigil[wy] to the Lord for generations to come.
Participation in the Passover
43 [wz] The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “This is the ordinance of the Passover. No foreigner may[xa] share in eating it.[xb] 44 But everyone’s servant who is bought for money, after you have circumcised him, may eat it. 45 A foreigner and a hired worker must not eat it. 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. 47 The whole community of Israel must observe it.
48 “When a resident foreigner[xc] lives with you and wants to observe the Passover to the Lord, all his males must be circumcised,[xd] and then he may approach and observe it, and he will be like one who is born in the land[xe]—but no uncircumcised person may eat of it. 49 The same law will apply[xf] to the person who is native-born and to the resident foreigner[xg] who lives among you.”
50 So all the Israelites did exactly as the Lord commanded Moses and Aaron.[xh] 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
3 Moses said to the people, “Remember[xn] this day on which you came out from Egypt, from the place where you were enslaved,[xo] for the Lord brought you out of there[xp] with a mighty hand—and no bread made with yeast may be eaten.[xq] 4 On this day,[xr] in the month of Abib,[xs] you are going out.[xt]
5 “When[xu] 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,[xv] then you will keep[xw] this ceremony[xx] in this month. 6 For seven days[xy] you must eat[xz] bread made without yeast, and on the seventh day there is to be[ya] a festival to the Lord. 7 Bread made without yeast must be eaten[yb] for seven days;[yc] no bread made with yeast shall be seen[yd] among you, and you must have no yeast among you within any of your borders.
8 “You are to tell your son[ye] on that day,[yf] ‘It is[yg] because of what[yh] the Lord did for me when I came out of Egypt.’ 9 [yi] It[yj] will be a sign[yk] for you on your hand and a memorial[yl] on your forehead,[ym] so that the law of the Lord may be[yn] in your mouth,[yo] for[yp] with a mighty hand the Lord brought you out of Egypt. 10 So you must keep[yq] this ordinance at its appointed time from year to year.[yr]
11 “When the Lord brings you[ys] into the land of the Canaanites,[yt] as he swore to you and to your fathers, and gives it[yu] to you, 12 then you must give over[yv] to the Lord the first offspring of every womb.[yw] Every firstling[yx] of a beast that you have[yy]—the males will be the Lord’s.[yz] 13 Every firstling[za] of a donkey you must redeem[zb] with a lamb, and if you do not redeem it, then you must break its neck.[zc] Every firstborn of[zd] your sons you must redeem.
14 [ze] “In the future,[zf] when your son asks you[zg] ‘What is this?’[zh] you are to tell him, ‘With a mighty hand[zi] the Lord brought us out from Egypt, from the land of slavery.[zj] 15 When Pharaoh stubbornly refused[zk] to release us, the Lord killed all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of people to the firstborn of animals.[zl] That is why I am sacrificing[zm] to the Lord the first male offspring of every womb, but all my firstborn sons I redeem.’ 16 It will be for a sign on your hand and for frontlets[zn] on your forehead, for with a mighty hand the Lord brought us out of Egypt.”[zo]
The Leading of God
17 [zp] When Pharaoh released[zq] the people, God did not lead them[zr] by the way to the land[zs] of the Philistines,[zt] although[zu] that was nearby, for God said,[zv] “Lest[zw] the people change their minds[zx] and return to Egypt when they experience[zy] war.” 18 So God brought the people around by the way of the wilderness to the Red Sea,[zz] and the Israelites went up from the land of Egypt prepared for battle.[aaa]
19 Moses took the bones of Joseph with him, for Joseph[aab] had made the Israelites solemnly swear,[aac] “God will surely attend to[aad] you, and you will carry[aae] my bones up from this place with you.”
20 They journeyed from Sukkoth and camped in Etham, on the edge of the desert. 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,[aaf] so that they could[aag] travel day or night.[aah] 22 He did not remove the pillar of cloud by day nor the pillar of fire by night from before the people.[aai]