Exodus 1-10 New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
The Israelites Become Slaves in Egypt
1 Here are the names of Israel’s children who went to Egypt with Jacob. Each one went with his family. 2 Jacob’s sons were
Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah,
3 Issachar, Zebulun, Benjamin,
4 Dan, Naphtali,
Gad and Asher.
5 The total number of Jacob’s children and grandchildren was 70. Joseph was already in Egypt.
6 Joseph and all his brothers died. So did all their children. 7 The people of Israel had many children. The number of them greatly increased. There were so many of them that they filled the land.
8 Then a new king came to power in Egypt. Joseph didn’t mean anything to him. 9 “Look,” he said to his people. “The Israelites are far too many for us. 10 Come. We must deal with them carefully. If we don’t, there will be even more of them. Then if war breaks out, they’ll join our enemies. They’ll fight against us and leave the country.”
11 So the Egyptians put slave drivers over the people of Israel. The slave drivers treated them badly and made them work hard. The Israelites built the cities of Pithom and Rameses so Pharaoh could store things there. 12 But the worse the slave drivers treated the Israelites, the more Israelites there were. So the Egyptians became afraid of them. 13 They made them work hard. They didn’t show them any pity. 14 The people suffered because of their hard labor. The slave drivers forced them to work with bricks and mud. And they made them do all kinds of work in the fields. The Egyptians didn’t show them any pity at all. They made them work very hard.
15 There were two Hebrew women named Shiphrah and Puah. They helped other women having babies. The king of Egypt spoke to them. He said, 16 “You are the ones who help the other Hebrew women. Watch them when they get into a sitting position to have their babies. Kill the boys. Let the girls live.” 17 But Shiphrah and Puah had respect for God. They didn’t do what the king of Egypt had told them to do. They let the boys live. 18 Then the king of Egypt sent for the women. He asked them, “Why have you done this? Why have you let the boys live?”
19 The women answered Pharaoh, “Hebrew women are not like the women of Egypt. They are strong. They have their babies before we get there.”
20 So God was kind to Shiphrah and Puah. And the number of Israelites became even greater. 21 Shiphrah and Puah had respect for God. So he gave them families of their own.
22 Then Pharaoh gave an order to all his people. He said, “You must throw every Hebrew baby boy into the Nile River. But let every Hebrew baby girl live.”
Moses Is Born
2 A man and a woman from the tribe of Levi got married. 2 She became pregnant and had a son by her husband. She saw that her baby was a fine child. And she hid him for three months. 3 After that, she couldn’t hide him any longer. So she got a basket made out of the stems of tall grass. She coated the basket with tar. She placed the child in the basket. Then she put it in the tall grass that grew along the bank of the Nile River. 4 The child’s sister wasn’t very far away. She wanted to see what would happen to him.
5 Pharaoh’s daughter went down to the Nile River to take a bath. Her attendants were walking along the river bank. She saw the basket in the tall grass. So she sent her female slave to get it. 6 When she opened it, Pharaoh’s daughter saw the baby. He was crying. She felt sorry for him. “This is one of the Hebrew babies,” she said.
7 Then his sister spoke to Pharaoh’s daughter. She asked, “Do you want me to go and get one of the Hebrew women? She could breast-feed the baby for you.”
8 “Yes. Go,” she answered. So the girl went and got the baby’s mother. 9 Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this baby and feed him for me. I’ll pay you.” So the woman took the baby and fed him. 10 When the child grew older, she took him to Pharaoh’s daughter. And he became her son. She named him Moses. She said, “I pulled him out of the water.”
Moses Escapes to Midian
11 Moses grew up. One day, he went out to where his own people were. He watched them while they were hard at work. He saw an Egyptian hitting a Hebrew man. The man was one of Moses’ own people. 12 Moses looked around and didn’t see anyone. So he killed the Egyptian. Then he hid his body in the sand. 13 The next day Moses went out again. He saw two Hebrew men fighting. He asked the one who had started the fight a question. He said, “Why are you hitting another Hebrew man?”
14 The man said, “Who made you ruler and judge over us? Are you thinking about killing me as you killed the Egyptian?” Then Moses became afraid. He thought, “People must have heard about what I did.”
15 When Pharaoh heard about what had happened, he tried to kill Moses. But Moses escaped from Pharaoh and went to live in Midian. There he sat down by a well. 16 A priest of Midian had seven daughters. They came to fill the stone tubs with water. They wanted to give water to their father’s flock. 17 Some shepherds came along and chased the girls away. But Moses got up and helped them. Then he gave water to their flock.
18 The girls returned to their father Reuel. He asked them, “Why have you returned so early today?”
19 They answered, “An Egyptian saved us from the shepherds. He even got water for us and gave it to the flock.”
20 “Where is he?” Reuel asked his daughters. “Why did you leave him? Invite him to have something to eat.”
21 Moses agreed to stay with the man. And the man gave his daughter Zipporah to Moses to be his wife. 22 Zipporah had a son by him. Moses named him Gershom. That’s because Moses said, “I’m an outsider in a strange land.”
23 After a long time, the king of Egypt died. The people of Israel groaned because they were slaves. They also cried out to God. Their cry for help went up to him. 24 God heard their groans. He remembered his covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. 25 So God looked on the Israelites with concern for them.
Moses and the Burning Bush
3 Moses was taking care of the flock of his father-in-law Jethro. Jethro was the priest of Midian. Moses led the flock to the western side of the desert. He came to Horeb. It was the mountain of God. 2 There the angel of the Lord appeared to him from inside a burning bush. Moses saw that the bush was on fire. But it didn’t burn up. 3 So Moses thought, “I’ll go over and see this strange sight. Why doesn’t the bush burn up?”
4 The Lord saw that Moses had gone over to look. So God spoke to him from inside the bush. He called out, “Moses! Moses!”
“Here I am,” Moses said.
5 “Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals. The place you are standing on is holy ground.” 6 He continued, “I am the God of your father. I am the God of Abraham. I am the God of Isaac. And I am the God of Jacob.” When Moses heard that, he turned his face away. He was afraid to look at God.
7 The Lord said, “I have seen how my people are suffering in Egypt. I have heard them cry out because of their slave drivers. I am concerned about their suffering. 8 So I have come down to save them from the Egyptians. I will bring them up out of that land. I will bring them into a good land. It has a lot of room. It is a land that has plenty of milk and honey. The Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites live there. 9 And now Israel’s cry for help has reached me. I have seen how badly the Egyptians are treating them. 10 So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh. I want you to bring the Israelites out of Egypt. They are my people.”
11 But Moses spoke to God. “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh?” he said. “Who am I that I should bring the Israelites out of Egypt?”
12 God said, “I will be with you. I will give you a sign. It will prove that I have sent you. When you have brought the people out of Egypt, all of you will worship me on this mountain.”
13 Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to the people of Israel. Suppose I say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you.’ And suppose they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what should I tell them?”
14 God said to Moses, “I am who I am. Here is what you must say to the Israelites. Tell them, ‘I am has sent me to you.’ ”
15 God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘The Lord is the God of your fathers. He has sent me to you. He is the God of Abraham. He is the God of Isaac. And he is the God of Jacob.’ My name will always be The Lord. Call me this name for all time to come.
16 “Go. Gather the elders of Israel together. Say to them, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers, appeared to me. He is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. God said, “I have watched over you. I have seen what the Egyptians have done to you. 17 I have promised to bring you up out of Egypt where you are suffering. I will bring you into the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. It is a land that has plenty of milk and honey.” ’
18 “The elders of Israel will listen to you. Then you and the elders must go to the king of Egypt. You must say to him, ‘The Lord has met with us. He is the God of the Hebrews. Let us take a journey that lasts about three days. We want to go into the desert to offer sacrifices to the Lord our God.’ 19 But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you and your people go. Only a mighty hand could make him do that. 20 So I will reach out my hand. I will strike the Egyptians with all the amazing things I will do. After that, their king will let you go.
21 “I will cause the Egyptians to treat you in a kind way. Then when you leave, you will not go with your hands empty. 22 Every woman should ask her neighbor and any woman living in her house for things made out of silver and gold. Ask them for clothes too. Put them on your children. In that way, you will take the wealth of Egypt along with you.”
Signs for Moses to Do
4 Moses answered, “What if the elders of Israel won’t believe me? What if they won’t listen to me? Suppose they say, ‘The Lord didn’t appear to you.’ Then what should I do?”
2 The Lord said to him, “What do you have in your hand?”
“A walking stick,” he said.
3 The Lord said, “Throw it on the ground.”
So Moses threw it on the ground. It turned into a snake. He ran away from it. 4 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Reach your hand out. Take the snake by the tail.” So he reached out and grabbed the snake. It turned back into a walking stick in his hand. 5 The Lord said, “When they see this sign, they will believe that I appeared to you. I am the Lord, the God of their fathers. I am the God of Abraham. I am the God of Isaac. And I am the God of Jacob.”
6 Then the Lord said, “Put your hand inside your coat.” So Moses put his hand inside his coat. When he took it out, the skin had become as white as snow. His hand was covered with a skin disease.
7 “Now put it back into your coat,” the Lord said. So Moses put his hand back into his coat. When he took it out, the skin was healthy again. His hand was like the rest of his skin.
8 Then the Lord said, “Suppose they do not believe you or pay attention to the first sign. Then maybe they will believe the second one. 9 But suppose they do not believe either sign. Suppose they will not listen to you. Then get some water from the Nile River. Pour it on the dry ground. The water you take from the river will turn into blood on the ground.”
10 Moses spoke to the Lord. He said, “Lord, I’ve never been a good speaker. And I haven’t gotten any better since you spoke to me. I don’t speak very well at all.”
11 The Lord said to him, “Who makes human beings able to talk? Who makes them unable to hear or speak? Who makes them able to see? Who makes them blind? It is I, the Lord. 12 Now go. I will help you speak. I will teach you what to say.”
13 But Moses said, “Lord, please send someone else to do it.”
14 Then the Lord became very angry with Moses. He said, “What about your brother, Aaron the Levite? I know he can speak well. He is already on his way to meet you. He will be glad to see you. 15 Speak to him. Tell him what to say. I will help both of you speak. I will teach you what to do. 16 He will speak to the people for you. He will be like your mouth. And you will be like God to him. 17 But take this walking stick in your hand. You will be able to do signs with it.”
Moses Returns to Egypt
18 Then Moses went back to his father-in-law Jethro. He said to him, “Let me return to my own people in Egypt. I want to see if any of them are still alive.”
Jethro said, “Go. I hope everything goes well with you.”
19 The Lord had said to Moses in Midian, “Go back to Egypt. All those who wanted to kill you are dead.” 20 So Moses got his wife and sons. He put them on a donkey. Together they started back to Egypt. And he took the walking stick in his hand. It was the stick God would use in a powerful way.
21 The Lord spoke to Moses. He said, “When you return to Egypt, do all the amazing things I have given you the power to do. Do them in the sight of Pharaoh. But I will make him stubborn. He will not let the people go. 22 Then say to Pharaoh, ‘The Lord says, “Israel is like an oldest son to me. 23 I told you, ‘Let my son go. Then he will be able to worship me.’ But you refused to let him go. So I will kill your oldest son.” ’ ”
24 On the way to Egypt, Moses stopped for the night. There the Lord met him and was about to kill him. 25 But Zipporah got a knife made out of flint. She circumcised her son with it. Then she touched Moses’ feet with the skin she had cut off. “Surely, you are a husband who has forced me to spill my son’s blood,” she said. 26 So the Lord didn’t kill Moses. When she said “husband who has forced me to spill my son’s blood,” she was talking about circumcision.
27 The Lord said to Aaron, “Go into the desert to see Moses.” So Aaron greeted Moses at the mountain of God and kissed him. 28 Then Moses told Aaron everything the Lord had sent him to say. Moses also told him about all the signs the Lord had commanded him to do.
29 Moses and Aaron gathered all the elders of Israel together. 30 Aaron told them everything the Lord had said to Moses. He also performed the signs in the sight of the people. 31 And they believed. They heard that the Lord was concerned about them. He had seen their suffering. So they bowed down and worshiped him.
5 Later on, Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh. They said, “The Lord is the God of Israel. He says, ‘Let my people go. Then they will be able to hold a feast to honor me in the desert.’ ”
2 Pharaoh said, “Who is the Lord? Why should I obey him? Why should I let Israel go? I don’t even know the Lord. And I won’t let Israel go.”
3 Then Moses and Aaron said, “The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Now let us take a journey that lasts about three days. We want to go into the desert to offer sacrifices to the Lord our God. If we don’t, he might strike us with plagues. Or he might let us be killed by swords.”
4 But the king of Egypt said, “Moses and Aaron, why are you taking the people away from their work? Get back to work!” 5 Pharaoh continued, “There are large numbers of your people in the land. But you are stopping them from working.”
6 That same day Pharaoh gave orders to the slave drivers and the overseers in charge of the people. 7 He said, “Don’t give the people any more straw to make bricks. Let them go and get their own straw. 8 But require them to make the same number of bricks as before. Don’t lower the number they have to make. They are lazy. That’s why they are crying out, ‘Let us go. We want to offer sacrifices to our God.’ 9 Make them work harder. Then they will be too busy to pay attention to lies.”
10 The slave drivers and the overseers left. They said to the people, “Pharaoh says, ‘I won’t give you any more straw. 11 Go and get your own straw anywhere you can find it. But you still have to make the same number of bricks.’ ” 12 So the people scattered all over Egypt. They went to gather any pieces of straw left in the fields. 13 Pharaoh’s slave drivers kept making the people work hard. They said, “Finish the work you are required to do each day. Make the same number of bricks you made when you had straw.” 14 The slave drivers whipped the Israelite overseers they had appointed. The slave drivers asked, “Why haven’t you made the same number of bricks yesterday or today, just as before?”
15 Then the Israelite overseers appealed to Pharaoh. They asked, “Why have you treated us like this? 16 You didn’t give us any straw. But you told us, ‘Make bricks!’ We are being whipped. But it’s the fault of your own people.”
17 Pharaoh said, “You are lazy! That’s why you keep saying, ‘Let us go. We want to offer sacrifices to the Lord.’ 18 Now get to work. We won’t give you any straw. But you still have to make the same number of bricks.”
19 The Israelite overseers realized they were in trouble. They knew it when they were told, “Don’t reduce the number of bricks you are required to make each day.” 20 When they left Pharaoh, they found Moses and Aaron waiting to meet them. 21 They said to Moses and Aaron, “We want the Lord to look at what you have done! We want him to judge you for it! We are like a very bad smell to Pharaoh and his officials. You have given them an excuse to kill us with their swords.”
The Lord Promises to Save the Israelites
22 Moses returned to talk to the Lord. He said to him, “Why, Lord? Why have you brought trouble on these people? Is this why you sent me? 23 I went to Pharaoh to speak to him in your name. Ever since then, he has brought nothing but trouble on these people. And you haven’t saved your people at all.”
6 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Now you will see what I will do to Pharaoh. Because of my powerful hand, he will let the people of Israel go. Because of my mighty hand, he will drive them out of his country.”
2 God continued, “I am the Lord. 3 I appeared to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as the Mighty God. But I did not show them the full meaning of my name, The Lord. 4 I also made my covenant with them. I promised to give them the land of Canaan. That is where they lived as outsiders. 5 Also, I have heard the groans of the Israelites. The Egyptians are keeping them as slaves. But I have remembered my covenant.
6 “So tell the people of Israel, ‘I am the Lord. I will throw off the heavy load the Egyptians have put on your shoulders. I will set you free from being slaves to them. I will reach out my arm and save you with mighty acts when I judge Egypt. 7 I will take you to be my own people. I will be your God. I throw off the load the Egyptians have put on your shoulders. Then you will know that I am the Lord your God. 8 I will bring you to the land I promised to give to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. I lifted up my hand and promised it to them. The land will belong to you. I am the Lord.’ ”
9 Moses reported these things to the Israelites. But they didn’t listen to him. That’s because they had lost all hope and had to work very hard.
10 Then the Lord said to Moses, 11 “Go. Tell Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, to let the people of Israel leave his country.”
12 But Moses said to the Lord, “The people won’t listen to me. So why would Pharaoh listen to me? After all, I don’t speak very well.”
The Family Record of Moses and Aaron
13 The Lord had spoken to Moses and Aaron. He had talked with them about the Israelites and about Pharaoh, the king of Egypt. He had commanded Moses and Aaron to bring the people of Israel out of Egypt.
14 Here were the leaders of the family groups of Reuben, Simeon and Levi.
Reuben was the oldest son of Israel. Reuben’s sons were
Hanok, Pallu, Hezron and Karmi.
These were the family groups of Reuben.
15 The sons of Simeon were
Jemuel, Jamin, Ohad, Jakin, Zohar and Shaul. Shaul was the son of a woman from Canaan.
These were the family groups of Simeon.
16 Here are the names of the sons of Levi written in their family record. They were
Gershon, Kohath and Merari.
Levi lived for 137 years.
17 The sons of Gershon, by their family groups, were
Libni and Shimei.
18 The sons of Kohath were
Amram, Izhar, Hebron and Uzziel.
Kohath lived for 133 years.
19 The sons of Merari were
Mahli and Mushi.
These are the family groups of Levi written in their family record.
20 Amram married his father’s sister Jochebed. Aaron and Moses were members of Amram’s family line.
Amram lived for 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. She was the daughter of Amminadab and the sister of Nahshon. She had Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar by Aaron.
24 The sons of Korah were
Assir, Elkanah and Abiasaph.
These were the family groups of Korah.
25 Eleazar, the son of Aaron, married one of the daughters of Putiel. She had Phinehas by Eleazar.
These are the leaders of the families of Levi. Their names are written in their family records.
26 The Lord had spoken to this same Aaron and Moses. He had told them, “Bring the Israelites out of Egypt like an army on the march.” 27 They spoke to Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, about bringing the people of Israel out of Egypt. It was this same Moses and Aaron.
Aaron Speaks for Moses
28 The Lord had spoken to Moses in Egypt. 29 He had told him, “I am the Lord. Tell Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, everything I tell you.”
30 But Moses said to the Lord, “I don’t speak very well. So why would Pharaoh listen to me?”
7 Then the Lord said to Moses, “I have made you like God to Pharaoh. And your brother Aaron will be like a prophet to you. 2 You must say everything I command you to say. Then your brother Aaron must tell Pharaoh to let the people of Israel leave his country. 3 But I will make Pharaoh stubborn. I will multiply the signs and amazing things I will do in Egypt. 4 In spite of that, he will not listen to you. So I will use my powerful hand against Egypt. When I judge them with mighty acts, I will bring my people Israel out like an army on the march. 5 Then the Egyptians will know that I am the Lord. I will reach out my powerful hand against them. I will bring the people of Israel out of Egypt.”
6 Moses and Aaron did exactly as the Lord had commanded them. 7 Moses was 80 years old and Aaron was 83 when they spoke to Pharaoh.
Aaron’s Walking Stick Becomes a Snake
8 The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron. 9 He said, “Pharaoh will say to you, ‘Do a miracle.’ When he does, speak to Aaron. Tell him, ‘Take your walking stick and throw it down in front of Pharaoh.’ It will turn into a snake.”
10 So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh. They did exactly as the Lord had commanded them. Aaron threw the stick down in front of Pharaoh and his officials. It turned into a snake. 11 Then Pharaoh sent for wise men and people who do evil magic. By doing their magic tricks, the Egyptian magicians did the same things Aaron had done. 12 Each one threw down his walking stick. Each stick turned into a snake. But Aaron’s walking stick swallowed theirs up. 13 In spite of that, Pharaoh became stubborn. He wouldn’t listen to them, just as the Lord had said.
The Plague of Blood
14 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Pharaoh is very stubborn. He refuses to let the people go. 15 In the morning Pharaoh will go down to the Nile River. Go and meet him on the bank of the river. Take in your hand the walking stick that turned into a snake. 16 Say to Pharaoh, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has sent me to you. He says, “Let my people go. Then they will be able to worship me in the desert. But up to now you have not listened.” 17 The Lord says, “Here is how you will know that I am the Lord. I will strike the water of the Nile River with the walking stick that is in my hand. The river will turn into blood. 18 The fish in the river will die. The river will stink. The Egyptians will not be able to drink its water.” ’ ”
19 The Lord said to Moses, “Tell Aaron, ‘Get your walking stick. Reach your hand out over the waters of Egypt. The streams, canals, ponds and all the lakes will turn into blood. There will be blood everywhere in Egypt. It will even be in the wooden buckets and stone jars.’ ”
20 Moses and Aaron did exactly as the Lord had commanded them. Aaron held out his staff in front of Pharaoh and his officials. He struck the water of the Nile River. And all the water turned into blood. 21 The fish in the Nile died. The river smelled so bad the Egyptians couldn’t drink its water. There was blood everywhere in Egypt.
22 But the Egyptian magicians did the same things by doing their magic tricks. So Pharaoh became stubborn. He wouldn’t listen to Moses and Aaron, just as the Lord had said. 23 Even that miracle didn’t change Pharaoh’s mind. In fact, he turned around and went into his palace. 24 All the Egyptians dug holes near the Nile River to get drinking water. They couldn’t drink water from the river.
The Plague of Frogs
25 Seven days passed after the Lord struck the Nile River. 8 1 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh. Tell him, ‘The Lord says, “Let my people go. Then they will be able to worship me. 2 If you refuse to let them go, I will send a plague of frogs on your whole country. 3 The Nile River will be full of frogs. They will come up into your palace. You will have frogs in your bedroom and on your bed. They will be in the homes of your officials and your people. They will be in your ovens and in the bowls for kneading your bread. 4 The frogs will be on you, your people and all your officials.” ’ ”
5 Then the Lord spoke to Moses. He said, “Tell Aaron, ‘Reach out your hand. Hold your walking stick over the streams, canals and ponds. Make frogs come up on the land of Egypt.’ ”
6 So Aaron reached out his hand over the waters of Egypt. The frogs came up and covered the land. 7 But the magicians did the same things by doing their magic tricks. They also made frogs come up on the land of Egypt.
8 Pharaoh sent for Moses and Aaron. He said to them, “Pray to the Lord to take the frogs away from me and my people. Then I’ll let your people go to offer sacrifices to the Lord.”
9 Moses said to Pharaoh, “You can have the honor of setting the time for me to pray. I will pray for you, your officials and your people. I’ll pray that the frogs will leave you and your homes. The only frogs left will be the ones in the Nile River.”
10 “Tomorrow,” Pharaoh said.
Moses replied, “It will happen just as you say. Then you will know that there is no one like the Lord our God. 11 The frogs will leave you and your houses. They will leave your officials and your people. The frogs will remain only in the Nile River.”
12 Moses and Aaron left Pharaoh. Then Moses cried out to the Lord about the frogs he had brought on Pharaoh. 13 And the Lord did what Moses asked. The frogs died in the houses, courtyards and fields. 14 The Egyptians piled them up. The land smelled very bad because of them. 15 But when Pharaoh saw that the frogs were dead, he became stubborn. He wouldn’t listen to Moses and Aaron, just as the Lord had said.
The Plague of Gnats
16 Then the Lord spoke to Moses. He said, “Tell Aaron, ‘Reach out your walking stick. Strike the dust on the ground with it.’ Then all over the land of Egypt the dust will turn into gnats.” 17 So they did it. Aaron reached out the stick that was in his hand. He struck the dust on the ground with it. The dust all over the land of Egypt turned into gnats. They landed on people and animals alike. 18 The magicians tried to produce gnats by doing their magic tricks. But they couldn’t.
The gnats stayed on people and animals everywhere. 19 So the magicians said to Pharaoh, “God’s powerful finger has done this.” But Pharaoh remained stubborn. He wouldn’t listen, just as the Lord had said.
The Plague of Flies
20 Then the Lord spoke to Moses. He said, “Get up early in the morning. Talk to Pharaoh as he goes down to the Nile River. Say to him, ‘The Lord says, “Let my people go. Then they will be able to worship me. 21 If you do not let my people go, I will send large numbers of flies. I will send them on you and your officials. I will send them on your people and into your homes. The houses of the Egyptians will be full of flies. Even the ground will be covered with them.
22 “ ‘ “But on that day I will treat the area of Goshen differently from yours. That is where my people live. There will not be large numbers of flies in Goshen. Then you will know that I, the Lord, am in this land. 23 I will treat my people differently from yours. This sign will take place tomorrow.” ’ ”
24 So the Lord did it. Huge numbers of flies poured into Pharaoh’s palace. They came into the homes of his officials. All over Egypt the flies destroyed the land.
25 Then Pharaoh sent for Moses and Aaron. He said to them, “Go. Offer sacrifices to your God here in the land.”
26 But Moses said, “That wouldn’t be right. The sacrifices we offer to the Lord our God wouldn’t be accepted by the Egyptians because of their beliefs. For that reason, they would throw stones at us and try to kill us. 27 We have to take a journey that lasts about three days. We want to go into the desert to offer sacrifices to the Lord our God, just as he commands us.”
28 Pharaoh said, “I will let you and your people go to offer sacrifices. You can offer them to the Lord your God in the desert. But you must not go very far. Now pray for me.”
29 Moses replied, “As soon as I leave you, I will pray to the Lord. Tomorrow the flies will leave you. They will also leave your officials and your people. Just be sure you don’t try to trick us again. Let the people go to offer sacrifices to the Lord.”
30 Then Moses left Pharaoh and prayed to the Lord. 31 And the Lord did what Moses asked. The flies left Pharaoh, his officials and his people. Not one fly remained. 32 But Pharaoh became stubborn this time also. He wouldn’t let the people go.
The Plague on Livestock
9 Then the Lord spoke to Moses. He said, “Go to Pharaoh. Tell him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, says, “Let my people go. Then they will be able to worship me. 2 Do not refuse to let them go. Do not keep holding them back. 3 If you refuse, my powerful hand will bring a terrible plague on you. I will strike your livestock in the fields. I will strike your horses, donkeys, camels, cattle, sheep and goats. 4 But I will treat Israel’s livestock differently from yours. No animal that belongs to the people of Israel will die.” ’ ”
5 The Lord set a time for the plague. He said, “Tomorrow I will send it on the land.” 6 So the next day the Lord sent it. All the livestock of the Egyptians died. But not one animal that belonged to the Israelites died. 7 Pharaoh searched and found out what had happened. He discovered that not even one animal that belonged to the Israelites had died. But he was still very stubborn. He wouldn’t let the people go.
The Plague of Boils
8 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron. He said, “Take handfuls of ashes from a furnace. Have Moses toss them into the air in front of Pharaoh. 9 The ashes will turn into fine dust over the whole land of Egypt. Then painful boils will break out on people and animals all over the land. Their bodies will be covered with them.”
10 So Moses and Aaron took ashes from a furnace and stood in front of Pharaoh. Moses tossed them into the air. Then boils broke out on people and animals alike. 11 The bodies of all the Egyptians were covered with boils. The magicians couldn’t stand in front of Moses because of the boils that were all over them. 12 But the Lord made Pharaoh stubborn. Pharaoh wouldn’t listen to Moses and Aaron, just as the Lord had said to Moses.
The Plague of Hail
13 Then the Lord spoke to Moses. He said, “Get up early in the morning. Go to Pharaoh and say to him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, says, “Let my people go. Then they will be able to worship me. 14 If you do not let them go, I will send the full force of my plagues against you this time. They will strike your officials and your people. Then you will know that there is no one like me in the whole earth. 15 By now I could have reached out my hand. I could have struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the earth. 16 But I had a special reason for making you king. I decided to show you my power. I wanted my name to become known everywhere on earth. 17 But you are still against my people. You will not let them go. 18 So at this time tomorrow I will send the worst hailstorm ever to fall on Egypt in its entire history. 19 Give an order now to bring your livestock inside to a safe place. Bring in everything that is outside. The hail will fall on all the people and animals that are left outside. They will die.” ’ ”
20 The officials of Pharaoh who had respect for what the Lord had said obeyed him. They hurried to bring their slaves and their livestock inside. 21 But others didn’t pay attention to what the Lord had said. They left their slaves and livestock outside.
22 Then the Lord spoke to Moses. He said, “Reach out your hand toward the sky. Then hail will fall all over Egypt. It will beat down on people and animals alike. It will strike everything growing in the fields of Egypt.” 23 Moses reached out his walking stick toward the sky. Then the Lord sent thunder and hail. Lightning flashed down to the ground. The Lord rained hail on the land of Egypt. 24 Hail fell and lightning flashed back and forth. It was the worst storm in Egypt’s entire history. 25 Hail struck everything in the fields all over Egypt. It fell on people and animals alike. It beat down everything growing in the fields. It tore all the leaves off the trees. 26 The only place it didn’t hail was in the area of Goshen. That’s where the people of Israel were.
27 Then Pharaoh sent for Moses and Aaron. “This time I’ve sinned,” he said to them. “The Lord has done what is right. I and my people have done what is wrong. 28 Pray to the Lord, because we’ve had enough thunder and hail. I’ll let you and your people go. You don’t have to stay here any longer.”
29 Moses replied, “When I’ve left the city, I’ll lift up my hands and pray to the Lord. The thunder will stop. There won’t be any more hail. Then you will know that the earth belongs to the Lord. 30 But I know that you and your officials still don’t have any respect for the Lord God.”
31 The barley was ripe. The flax was in bloom. So they were both destroyed. 32 But the wheat and spelt weren’t destroyed. That’s because they ripen later.
33 Then Moses left Pharaoh and went out of the city. Moses lifted up his hands and prayed to the Lord. The thunder and hail stopped. The rain didn’t pour down on the land any longer. 34 Pharaoh saw that the rain, hail and thunder had stopped. So he sinned again. He and his officials became stubborn. 35 So Pharaoh was stubborn. He wouldn’t let the people of Israel go, just as the Lord had said through Moses.
The Plague of Locusts
10 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh. I have made him stubborn. I have also made his officials stubborn so I can perform my signs among them. 2 Then you will be able to tell your children and grandchildren how hard I was on the Egyptians. You can tell them I performed my signs among the people of Egypt. And all of you will know that I am the Lord.”
3 So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh. They said to him, “The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, says, ‘How long will you refuse to obey me? Let my people go. Then they will be able to worship me. 4 If you refuse to let them go, I will bring locusts into your country tomorrow. 5 They will cover the ground so that it can’t be seen. They will eat what little you have left after the hail. That includes every tree growing in your fields.
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