7 Then the Lord said to Moses, “See, I have appointed you as my ambassador to Pharaoh, and your brother, Aaron, shall be your spokesman. 2 Tell Aaron everything I say to you, and he will announce it to Pharaoh, demanding that the people of Israel be allowed to leave Egypt. 3 But I will cause Pharaoh to stubbornly refuse, and I will multiply my miracles in the land of Egypt. 4 Yet even then Pharaoh won’t listen to you; so I will crush Egypt with a final major disaster and then lead my people out. 5 The Egyptians will find out that I am indeed God when I show them my power and force them to let my people go.”
6 So Moses and Aaron did as the Lord commanded them. 7 Moses was eighty years old and Aaron eighty-three at this time of their confrontation with Pharaoh.
8 Then the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, 9 “Pharaoh will demand that you show him a miracle to prove that God has sent you; when he does, Aaron is to throw down his rod, and it will become a serpent.”
10 So Moses and Aaron went in to see Pharaoh, and performed the miracle, as Jehovah had instructed them—Aaron threw down his rod before Pharaoh and his court, and it became a serpent. 11 Then Pharaoh called in his sorcerers—the magicians of Egypt—and they were able to do the same thing with their magical arts! 12 Their rods became serpents, too! But Aaron’s serpent swallowed their serpents! 13 Pharaoh’s heart was still hard and stubborn, and he wouldn’t listen, just as the Lord had predicted. 14 The Lord pointed this out to Moses, that Pharaoh’s heart had been unmoved, and that he would continue to refuse to let the people go.
15 “Nevertheless,” the Lord said, “go back to Pharaoh in the morning, to be there as he goes down to the river. Stand beside the riverbank and meet him there, holding in your hand the rod that turned into a serpent. 16 Say to him, ‘Jehovah, the God of the Hebrews, has sent me back to demand that you let his people go to worship him in the wilderness. You wouldn’t listen before, 17 and now the Lord says this: “You are going to find out that I am God. For I have instructed Moses to hit the water of the Nile with his rod, and the river will turn to blood! 18 The fish will die and the river will stink, so that the Egyptians will be unwilling to drink it.”’”
19 Then the Lord instructed Moses: “Tell Aaron to point his rod toward the waters of Egypt: all its rivers, canals, marshes, and reservoirs, and even the water stored in bowls and pots in the homes will turn to blood.”
20 So Moses and Aaron did as the Lord commanded them. As Pharaoh and all of his officials watched, Aaron hit the surface of the Nile with the rod, and the river turned to blood. 21 The fish died and the water became so foul that the Egyptians couldn’t drink it; and there was blood throughout the land of Egypt. 22 But then the magicians of Egypt used their secret arts and they, too, turned water into blood; so Pharaoh’s heart remained hard and stubborn, and he wouldn’t listen to Moses and Aaron, just as the Lord had predicted, 23 and he returned to his palace, unimpressed. 24 Then the Egyptians dug wells along the riverbank to get drinking water, for they couldn’t drink from the river.
25 A week went by.
The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.