Exodus 1:1-6 Tree of Life Version (TLV)
Oppression in Egypt
1 Now these are the names of Bnei-Yisrael who came into Egypt with Jacob, each man with his family: 2 Reuben, Simeon, Levi and Judah; 3 Issachar, Zebulun and Benjamin; 4 Dan, Naphtali, Gad and Asher. 5 The souls that came out of the line of Jacob numbered 70 in all, while Joseph was already in Egypt.
6 Then Joseph died, as did all his brothers and all that generation. 7 Yet Bnei-Yisrael were fruitful, increased abundantly, multiplied and grew extremely numerous—so the land was filled with them.
8 Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who did not know Joseph. 9 He said to his people, “Look, the people of Bnei-Yisrael are too numerous and too powerful for us. 10 Come, we must deal shrewdly with them, or else they will grow even more numerous, so that if war breaks out, they may join our enemies, fight against us, and then escape from the land.”
11 So they set slave masters over them to afflict them with forced labor, and they built Pithom and Raamses as storage cities for Pharaoh. 12 But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and the more they spread. So the Egyptians dreaded the presence of Bnei-Yisrael. 13 They worked them harshly, 14 and made their lives bitter with hard labor with mortar and brick, doing all sorts of work in the fields. In all their labors they worked them with cruelty.
15 Moreover the king of Egypt spoke to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other Puah, 16 and said, “When you help the Hebrew women during childbirth, look at the sex. If it’s a son, then kill him, but if it’s a daughter, she may live.” 17 Yet the midwives feared God, so they did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but let the boys live. 18 So the king of Egypt summoned the midwives and said to them, “Why have you done this—let the boys live?”
19 The midwives told Pharaoh, “Because the Hebrew women are not like Egyptian women. They are like animals,[a] and give birth before the midwife comes to them.” 20 So God was good to the midwives, and the people multiplied, growing very numerous. 21 Because the midwives feared God, He gave them families of their own.
22 But Pharaoh charged all his people saying, “You are to cast every son that is born into the river, but let every daughter live.”
2 Now a man from the house of Levi took as his wife a daughter of Levi. 2 The woman conceived and gave birth to a son. Now when she saw that he was delightful, she hid him for three months. [b] 3 But when she could no longer hide him, she took a basket of papyrus reeds, coated it with tar and pitch, put the child inside, and laid it in the reeds by the bank of the Nile. 4 His sister stood off at a distance to see what would happen to him.
5 Then the daughter of Pharaoh came down to bathe, while her maidens walked along by the riverside. When she saw the basket[c] among the reeds, she sent her handmaiden to fetch it. 6 When she opened it, she saw the child—a baby boy crying! She had compassion on him and said, “This is one of the Hebrew children.”
7 Then his sister said to Pharaoh’s daughter, “Should I go and call a nurse from the Hebrews to nurse the child for you?”
8 Pharaoh’s daughter told her, “Go!” So the girl went and called the child’s mother. 9 Then Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this child and nurse him for me, and I will pay you your wages.” So the woman took the child and nursed him. 10 After the boy grew older she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter and he became her son. So she named him Moses saying, “Because I drew him out of the water.”[d]
11 Now it happened in those days, after Moses had grown up, that he went out to his brothers and saw their burdens. He noticed an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his own people. [e] 12 So he looked around and when he saw that there was nobody, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. 13 Then he went out the following day, and saw two Hebrew men fighting. So he said to the guilty one, “Why are you beating your companion?”
14 But the man answered, “Who made you a ruler and a judge over us? Are you saying you’re going to kill me—just as you killed the Egyptian?”
Then Moses was afraid, and thought, “For sure the deed had become known.” 15 When Pharaoh heard about this, he tried to kill Moses.
But Moses fled from Pharaoh and settled in the land of Midian,[f] where he sat down by a well. 16 Now the priest of Midian had seven daughters who came and drew water. They filled the troughs to water their father’s flock. 17 But shepherds came and drove them away, so Moses stood up, helped them and watered their flock.
18 When they came to Reuel their father, he said, “How come you’ve returned so soon today?”
19 So they told him, “An Egyptian delivered us out of the hand of the shepherds. He also drew water for us and watered the flock.”
20 “Where is he then?” he said to his daughters. “Why did you leave the man behind? Invite him to have some food to eat!”
21 Moses was content to stay on with the man. Later he gave Moses his daughter Zipporah. 22 She gave birth to a son and he named him Gershom, saying, “I have been an outsider[g] in a foreign land.”
23 Now it came about over the course of those many days that the king of Egypt died. Bnei-Yisrael groaned because of their slavery. They cried out and their cry from slavery went up to God. 24 God heard their sobbing and remembered His covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. 25 God saw Bnei-Yisrael, and He was concerned about them.
Angel of Adonai in a Burning Bush
3 Now Moses was tending the flock of his father-in-law Jethro, the priest of Midian. So he led the flock to the farthest end of the wilderness, coming to the mountain of God, Horeb. [h] 2 Then the angel of Adonai appeared to him in a flame of fire from within a bush. So he looked and saw the bush burning with fire, yet it was not consumed. 3 Moses thought, “I will go now, and see this great sight. Why is the bush not burnt?”
4 When Adonai saw that he turned to look, He called to him out of the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!”
So he answered, “Hineni.”
5 Then He said, “Come no closer. Take your sandals off your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” 6 Moreover He said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.” So Moses hid his face, because he was afraid to look at God.
7 Then Adonai said, “I have surely seen the affliction of My people who are in Egypt, and have heard their cry because of their slave masters, for I know their pains. 8 So I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, to bring them up out of that land into a good and large land, a land flowing with milk and honey, into the place of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. [i] 9 Now behold, the cry of Bnei-Yisrael has come to Me. Moreover I have seen the oppression that the Egyptians have inflicted on them. 10 Come now, I will send you to Pharaoh, so that you may bring My people Bnei-Yisrael out from Egypt.”
11 But Moses said to God, “Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh, and bring Bnei-Yisrael out of Egypt?”
12 So He said, “I will surely be with you. So that will be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you. When you have brought the people out of Egypt: you will worship God on this mountain.”
13 But Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to Bnei-Yisrael and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is His Name?’ What should I say to them?”
14 God answered Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.[j]” Then He said, “You are to say to Bnei-Yisrael, ‘I AM’ has sent me to you.” 15 God also said to Moses: “You are to say to Bnei-Yisrael, Adonai, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, has sent me to you. This is My Name forever, and the Name by which I should be remembered from generation to generation.
16 “Go now, gather the elders of Israel together, and say to them: ‘Adonai, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob—has appeared to me, saying, I have been paying close attention to you and have seen what is done to you in Egypt. 17 So I promise I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt, into the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites, to a land flowing with milk and honey.’
18 “They will listen to your voice. So you will go, you along with the elders of Israel, to the king of Egypt, and say to him: ‘Adonai, the God of the Hebrews, has met with us. Now please let us take a three-day journey into the wilderness, so that we may sacrifice to Adonai our God.’ 19 Nevertheless, I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go, except by a mighty hand. 20 So I will stretch out My hand and strike Egypt with all My wonders that I will do in the midst of it. After that, he will let you go.
21 “Then I shall grant these people favor in the eyes of the Egyptians. So it will happen that when you go, you will not leave empty-handed. 22 Every woman is to ask her neighbor and the woman who lives in her house for silver and gold jewelry and clothing. You will put them on your sons and your daughters. So you will plunder the Egyptians.”
Objections and Excuses
4 Then Moses said, “But look, they will not believe me or listen to my voice. They will say, ‘Adonai has not appeared to you.’”
2 So Adonai said to him, “What is that in your hand?”
“A staff,” he said.
3 Then He said, “Cast it on the ground.” When he cast it to the ground, it became a serpent, so Moses fled from before it. 4 Then Adonai said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand, and take it by the tail.” So he put out his hand, laid hold of it, and it became a staff in his hand.
5 “This is so that they may believe Adonai, the God of their fathers—the God of Abra-ham, Isaac and Jacob—has appeared to you.”
6 Adonai also said to him, “Now put your hand within your cloak.” So he put his hand inside, and when he took it out, his hand had tza-ra’at—white as snow. 7 Then He said, “Put your hand back into your cloak.” So he put his hand back in, and when he took it out it was restored again as the rest of his skin.
8 Then He said, “If they do not believe you, or listen to the voice of the first sign, they will believe the message of the latter sign. 9 But if they do not believe even these two signs nor listen to your voice, you are to take the water of the river and pour it on the dry land. The water which you take out of the river will become blood on the ground.”
10 But Moses said to Adonai, “Adonai, I am not a man of words—not yesterday, nor the day before, nor since You have spoken to Your servant—because I have a slow mouth and a heavy tongue.”
11 So Adonai said to him, “Who made man’s mouth? Or who makes a man mute or deaf, seeing or blind? Is it not I, Adonai? 12 Now go! I will be with your mouth and teach you what to say.”
13 But he said, “Please, please, send it by another hand.”
14 Then the anger of Adonai was kindled against Moses, so He said, “In fact, Aaron the Levite is your brother. I know that he can speak well. Moreover, he is on his way to meet you! When he sees you, he will be glad in his heart. 15 You are to speak to him and put the words in his mouth. I will be with your mouth and with his, and teach you what to do. 16 He will be your spokesman to the people, so that he may act as a mouthpiece for you, and it will be as if you were as God for him. 17 Now then, you must take this staff in your hand to do the signs.”
Moses Returns to Egypt
18 So Moses went, returned to his father-in-law Jethro and said to him, “Please let me go, so I may return to my kinsmen who are in Egypt and see whether they are still alive.”
Jethro said to Moses, “Go in peace.”
19 Then Adonai said to Moses in Midian, “Go, return to Egypt, for all the men that sought your life are dead.” 20 So Moses took his wife and his sons, set them on a donkey and returned to the land of Egypt. Moses took the staff of God in his hand.
21 Adonai said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt, see that you do all the wonders before Pharaoh that I have put in your hand. Still, I will harden his heart, and he will not let the people go. 22 You are to say to Pharaoh, “This is what Adonai says: ‘Israel is My son, My firstborn. 23 So I have said to you, Let My son go, that he may serve Me, but you have refused to let him go. Behold, I will slay your son, your firstborn.’”
24 It happened along the way, at a lodging place, that Adonai met him and sought to kill him! 25 But Zipporah took a flint, cut off the foreskin of her son, and threw it at his feet, saying, “You are surely a bridegroom of blood to me.” 26 She said, “A bridegroom of blood” because of the circumcision. Then He let him alone.
27 Now Adonai said to Aaron, “Go into the wilderness to meet Moses.” So he went and met him at the mountain of God, and kissed him. 28 Then Moses told Aaron all the words of Adonai with which He had been sent, along with all the signs that He had commanded him to do. 29 Then Moses and Aaron went and assembled all the elders of Bnei-Yisrael. 30 Aaron spoke all the words that Adonai had spoken to Moses and did the signs in the sight of the people. 31 So the people believed. When they heard that Adonai had remembered Bnei-Yisrael and had seen their affliction, they bowed their heads and worshipped.
Pharaoh Will Not Let Israel Go
5 Afterward, Moses and Aaron went and said to Pharaoh, “This is what Adonai, God of Israel, says: Let My people go, so that they may hold a feast for Me in the wilderness.”
2 But Pharaoh said, “Who is Adonai, that I should listen to His voice and let Israel go? I do not know Adonai, and besides, I will not let Israel go.”
3 They answered, “The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Please let us take a three-day journey into the wilderness, so we may sacrifice to Adonai our God, or else He may strike us with pestilence or with the sword.”
4 But the king of Egypt said to them, “Why do you, Moses and Aaron, make the people break loose from their work? Go to your labors!” 5 Then Pharaoh said, “Look, the people of the land are now so numerous, yet you would have them rest from their labors?”
6 Then on the same day Pharaoh commanded the slave masters of the people and their foremen saying, 7 “You are not to give the people any more straw to make bricks, as before. Let them go and gather straw for themselves. 8 But impose on them the quota of bricks that they made previously; don’t reduce it. For they are lazy—that’s why they cry out saying, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to our God.’ 9 Let even heavier work be laid upon the men, so that they must labor, paying no attention to deceptive words.”
10 Then the slave masters of the people went out, along with their officers, and they spoke to the people saying: “This is what Pharaoh says: I will not give you straw. 11 Go and get straw for yourselves wherever you can find it, for there will be no reduction of your work.” 12 So the people were scattered throughout all the land of Egypt to gather stubble for straw. 13 But the slave masters pressured, saying, “Fulfill your work, your daily amount, just as when there was straw.” 14 Moreover the foremen of Bnei-Yisrael, whom Pharaoh’s slave masters had set over them, were beaten and asked, “Why haven’t you met your quota of bricks, both yesterday and today like before?”
15 The foremen of Bnei-Yisrael came and cried out to Pharaoh saying, “Why do you deal this way with your servants? 16 No straw is given to your servants, yet they say to us, ‘Make bricks!’ and look, your servants are beaten. But it is your own people at fault.”
17 But he said, “Lazy! You’re lazy! That’s why you were saying, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to Adonai.’ 18 So go now and work! No straw will be given to you—but you must deliver the quota of bricks.”
19 So the foremen of Bnei-Yisrael saw that they were in trouble when they were told, “You are not to reduce the number of bricks from day to day.” 20 Then they met Moses and Aaron, who were waiting for them as they came from Pharaoh.
21 So they said to them, “May Adonai look on you and judge, because you have made us a stench in the eyes of Pharaoh and in the eyes of his servants—putting a sword in their hand to kill us!”
22 So Moses returned to Adonai and said, “Adonai, why have You brought evil on these people? Is this why You sent me? 23 Ever since I came to Pharaoh to speak in Your Name, he has brought evil on these people. You have not delivered Your people at all.”
How Will Pharaoh Listen?
6 Adonai said to Moses, “Now you will see what I am going to do to Pharaoh. By way of a strong hand he will let them go, and drive them out of his land.”