Moses Warns the Egyptians That the Lord Will Kill Their First-Born Sons
11 The Lord said to Moses:
I am going to punish the king[a] of Egypt and his people one more time. Then the king will gladly let you leave his land, so that I will stop punishing the Egyptians. He will even chase you out. 2 Now go and tell my people to ask their Egyptian neighbors for gold and silver jewelry.
3 So the Lord made the Egyptians greatly respect the Israelites, and everyone, including the king and his officials, considered Moses an important leader.
4 Moses went to the king and said:
I have come to let you know what the Lord is going to do. About midnight he will go through the land of Egypt, 5 and wherever he goes, the first-born son in every family will die. Your own son will die, and so will the son of the lowest slave woman. Even the first-born males of cattle will die. 6 Everywhere in Egypt there will be loud crying. Nothing like this has ever happened before or will ever happen again.
7 But there won’t be any need for the Israelites to cry. Things will be so quiet that not even a dog will be heard barking. Then you Egyptians will know that the Lord is good to the Israelites, even while he punishes you. 8 Your leaders will come and bow down, begging me to take my people and leave your country. Then we will leave.
Moses was very angry; he turned and left the king.
9 What the Lord had earlier said to Moses came true. He had said, “The king of Egypt won’t listen. Then I will perform even more miracles.” 10 So the king of Egypt saw Moses and Aaron work miracles, but the Lord made him stubbornly refuse to let the Israelites leave his country.
12.2This month: Abib (also called Nisan), the first month of the Hebrew calendar, from about mid-March to mid-April.
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