The Burning Bush

Now Moses was pasturing the flock of (A)Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian; and he led the flock to the [a]west side of the wilderness and came to (B)Horeb, the (C)mountain of God. (D)The angel of the Lord appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of [b]a (E)bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed. So Moses said, “[c](F)I must turn aside now and see this [d]marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up.” When the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, (G)God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then He said, “Do not come near here; (H)remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” He said also, “(I)I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” (J)Then Moses hid his face, for he was (K)afraid to look at God.

The Lord said, “I have surely (L)seen the affliction of My people who are in Egypt, and have given heed to their cry because of their taskmasters, for I am aware of their sufferings. So I have come down (M)to deliver them from the [e]power of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a (N)good and spacious land, to a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of (O)the Canaanite and the Hittite and the Amorite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite. Now, behold, (P)the cry of the sons of Israel has come to Me; furthermore, I have seen the oppression with which the Egyptians are oppressing them.

The Mission of Moses

10 Therefore, come now, and I will send you to Pharaoh, (Q)so that you may bring My people, the sons of Israel, out of Egypt.” 11 But Moses said to God, “(R)Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the sons of Israel out of Egypt?” 12 And He said, “Certainly (S)I will be with you, and this shall be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: (T)when you have brought the people out of Egypt, (U)you shall [f]worship God at this mountain.”

13 Then Moses said to God, “Behold, I am going to the sons of Israel, and I will say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you.’ Now they may say to me, ‘What is His name?’ What shall I say to them?” 14 God said to Moses, “[g](V)I AM WHO [h]I AM”; and He said, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘[i]I AM has sent me to you.’” 15 God, furthermore, said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘(W)The Lord, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is My name forever, and this is My (X)memorial-name [j]to all generations. 16 Go and (Y)gather the elders of Israel together and say to them, ‘(Z)The Lord, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, has appeared to me, saying, “[k](AA)I am indeed concerned about you and what has been done to you in Egypt. 17 So (AB)I said, I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt to the land of (AC)the Canaanite and the Hittite and the Amorite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite, to a land (AD)flowing with milk and honey.”’ 18 (AE)They will [l]pay heed to what you say; and (AF)you with the elders of Israel will come to the king of Egypt and you will say to him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has met with us. So now, please, let us go a (AG)three days’ journey into the wilderness, that we may sacrifice to the Lord our God.’ 19 But I know that the king of Egypt (AH)will not permit you to go, (AI)except [m]under compulsion. 20 So I will stretch out (AJ)My hand and strike Egypt with all My (AK)miracles which I shall do in the midst of it; and (AL)after that he will let you go. 21 I will grant this people (AM)favor in the sight of the Egyptians; and it shall be that when you go, you will not go empty-handed. 22 But every woman (AN)shall ask of her neighbor and the woman who lives in her house, articles of silver and articles of gold, and clothing; and you will put them on your sons and daughters. Thus you will (AO)plunder the Egyptians.”

Moses Given Powers

Then Moses said, “What if they will not believe me or (AP)listen [n]to what I say? For they may say, ‘(AQ)The Lord has not appeared to you.’” The Lord said to him, “What is that in your hand?” And he said, “(AR)A staff.” Then He said, “Throw it on the ground.” So he threw it on the ground, and (AS)it became a serpent; and Moses fled from it. But the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand and grasp it by its tail”—so he stretched out his hand and caught it, and it became a staff in his [o]hand— “that (AT)they may believe that (AU)the Lord, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has appeared to you.”

The Lord furthermore said to him, “Now put your hand into your bosom.” So he put his hand into his bosom, and when he took it out, behold, his hand was (AV)leprous like snow. Then He said, “Put your hand into your bosom again.” So he put his hand into his bosom again, and when he took it out of his bosom, behold, (AW)it was restored like the rest of his flesh. “If they will not believe you or [p]heed the [q]witness of the first sign, they may believe the [r]witness of the last sign. But if they will not believe even these two signs or heed what you say, then you shall take some water from the Nile and pour it on the dry ground; and the water which you take from the Nile (AX)will become blood on the dry ground.”

10 Then Moses said to the Lord, “Please, Lord, (AY)I have never been [s]eloquent, neither [t]recently nor in time past, nor since You have spoken to Your servant; for I am [u]slow of speech and [v]slow of tongue.” 11 The Lord said to him, “Who has made man’s mouth? Or (AZ)who makes him mute or deaf, or seeing or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? 12 Now then go, and (BA)I, even I, will be with your mouth, and (BB)teach you what you are to say.” 13 But he said, “Please, Lord, now [w]send the message by whomever You will.”

Aaron to Be Moses’ Mouthpiece

14 Then the anger of the Lord burned against Moses, and He said, “Is there not your brother Aaron the Levite? I know that [x]he speaks fluently. And moreover, behold, (BC)he is coming out to meet you; when he sees you, he will be glad in his heart. 15 You are to speak to him and (BD)put the words in his mouth; and I, even I, will be with your mouth and his mouth, and I will teach you what you are to do. 16 Moreover, (BE)he shall speak for you to the people; and he will be as a mouth for you and you will be as God to him. 17 You shall take in your hand (BF)this staff, (BG)with which you shall perform the signs.”

18 Then Moses departed and returned to [y]Jethro (BH)his father-in-law and said to him, “Please, let me go, that I may return to my brethren who are in Egypt, and see if they are still alive.” And Jethro said to Moses, “Go in peace.” 19 Now the Lord said to Moses in Midian, “Go [z]back to Egypt, for (BI)all the men who were seeking your life are dead.” 20 So Moses took his wife and his (BJ)sons and mounted them on a donkey, and returned to the land of Egypt. Moses also took the (BK)staff of God in his hand.

21 The Lord said to Moses, “When you go [aa]back to Egypt see that you perform before Pharaoh all (BL)the wonders which I have put in your [ab]power; but (BM)I will harden his heart so that he will not let the people go. 22 Then you shall say to Pharaoh, ‘Thus says the Lord, “(BN)Israel is My son, My firstborn. 23 So I said to you, ‘(BO)Let My son go that he may serve Me’; but you have refused to let him go. Behold, (BP)I will kill your son, your firstborn.”’”

24 Now it came about at the lodging place on the way that the Lord met him and (BQ)sought to put him to death. 25 Then Zipporah took (BR)a flint and cut off her son’s foreskin and [ac]threw it at Moses’ feet, and she said, “You are indeed a bridegroom of blood to me.” 26 So He let him alone. At that time she said, “You are a bridegroom of blood”—[ad]because of the circumcision.

27 (BS)Now the Lord said to Aaron, “Go to meet Moses in the wilderness.” So he went and met him at the (BT)mountain of God and kissed him. 28 (BU)Moses told Aaron all the words of the Lord with which He had sent him, and (BV)all the signs that He had commanded him to do. 29 Then Moses and Aaron went and (BW)assembled all the elders of the sons of Israel; 30 and (BX)Aaron spoke all the words which the Lord had spoken to Moses. He then performed the (BY)signs in the sight of the people. 31 So (BZ)the people believed; and when they heard that the Lord [ae](CA)was concerned about the sons of Israel and that He had seen their affliction, then (CB)they bowed low and worshiped.


  1. Exodus 3:1 Or rear part
  2. Exodus 3:2 Lit the
  3. Exodus 3:3 Lit Let me turn
  4. Exodus 3:3 Lit great
  5. Exodus 3:8 Lit hand
  6. Exodus 3:12 Or serve
  7. Exodus 3:14 Related to the name of God, YHWH, rendered Lord, which is derived from the verb HAYAH, to be
  8. Exodus 3:14 Related to the name of God, YHWH, rendered Lord, which is derived from the verb HAYAH, to be
  9. Exodus 3:14 Related to the name of God, YHWH, rendered Lord, which is derived from the verb HAYAH, to be
  10. Exodus 3:15 Lit to generation of generation
  11. Exodus 3:16 Lit Visiting I have visited
  12. Exodus 3:18 Lit hear your voice
  13. Exodus 3:19 Lit by a strong hand
  14. Exodus 4:1 Lit to my voice
  15. Exodus 4:4 Lit palm
  16. Exodus 4:8 Lit listen to
  17. Exodus 4:8 Lit voice
  18. Exodus 4:8 Lit voice
  19. Exodus 4:10 Lit a man of words
  20. Exodus 4:10 Lit yesterday
  21. Exodus 4:10 Lit heavy
  22. Exodus 4:10 Lit heavy
  23. Exodus 4:13 Lit send by the hand which You send
  24. Exodus 4:14 Lit speaking he speaks
  25. Exodus 4:18 Heb Jether
  26. Exodus 4:19 Lit return
  27. Exodus 4:21 Lit to return
  28. Exodus 4:21 Lit hand
  29. Exodus 4:25 Lit made it touch at his feet
  30. Exodus 4:26 Lit with reference to
  31. Exodus 4:31 Lit had visited