Moses Given Signs

Then Moses said, “What if they will not believe me or (A)listen [a]to what I say? For they may say, ‘(B)The Lord has not appeared to you.’” The Lord said to him, “What is that in your hand?” And he said, “(C)A staff.” Then He said, “Throw it on the ground.” So he threw it on the ground, and (D)it turned into a serpent; and Moses fled from it. But the Lord said to Moses, “Reach out with your hand and grasp it by its tail”—so he reached out with his hand and caught it, and it turned into a staff in his [b]hand— “so that (E)they may believe that (F)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 inside the fold of your robe.” So he put his hand inside the fold, and when he took it out, behold, his hand was (G)leprous like snow. Then He said, “Put your hand inside the fold of your robe again.” So he put his hand into the fold again, and when he took it out of the fold, behold, (H)it was restored like the rest of his flesh. “So if they will not believe you nor [c]pay attention to the [d]evidence of the first [e]sign, they may believe the [f]evidence of the last [g]sign. But if they will not believe even these two [h]signs nor pay attention to 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 (I)will turn into blood on the dry ground.”

10 Then Moses said to the Lord, “Please, Lord, (J)I have never been [i]eloquent, neither [j]recently nor in time past, nor since You have spoken to Your servant; for I am [k]slow of speech and [l]slow of tongue.” 11 But the Lord said to him, “Who has made the human mouth? Or (K)who makes anyone unable to speak or deaf, or able to see or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? 12 Now then go, and (L)I Myself will be with your mouth, and (M)instruct you in what you are to say.” 13 But he said, “Please, Lord, now send the message by [m]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 [n]he speaks fluently. And moreover, behold, (N)he is coming out to meet you; when he sees you, he will be [o]overjoyed. 15 So you are to speak to him and (O)put the words in his mouth; and I Myself will be with your mouth and his mouth, and I will instruct you in what you are to do. 16 (P)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 And you shall take in your hand (Q)this staff, (R)with which you shall perform the signs.”

18 Then Moses departed and returned to (S)his father-in-law [p]Jethro, and said to him, “Please, let me go, that I may return to my brothers 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 [q]back to Egypt, for (T)all the men who were seeking your life are dead.” 20 So Moses took his wife and his (U)sons and mounted them on a donkey, and returned to the land of Egypt. Moses also took the (V)staff of God in his hand.

21 And the Lord said to Moses, “When you go [r]back to Egypt, see that you perform before Pharaoh all (W)the wonders which I have put in your [s]power; but (X)I will harden his heart so that he will not let the people go. 22 Then you shall say to Pharaoh, ‘This is what the Lord says: “(Y)Israel is My son, My firstborn. 23 So I said to you, ‘(Z)Let My son go so that he may serve Me’; but you have refused to let him go. Behold, (AA)I am going to kill your son, your firstborn.”’”

24 But it came about at the overnight encampment on the way, that the Lord met [t]Moses, and (AB)sought to put him to death. 25 So Zipporah took (AC)a flint and cut off her son’s foreskin and [u]threw it at Moses’ feet; and she said, “You are indeed a groom of blood to me!” 26 So He left him alone. At that time she said, “You are a groom of blood”—[v]because of the circumcision.

27 (AD)Now the Lord said to Aaron, “Go to meet Moses in the wilderness.” So he went and met him at the (AE)mountain of God and kissed him. 28 (AF)Moses told Aaron all the words of the Lord with which He had sent him, and (AG)all the signs that He had commanded him to do. 29 Then Moses and Aaron went and (AH)assembled all the elders of the sons of Israel; 30 and (AI)Aaron spoke all the words which the Lord had spoken to Moses. He then performed the (AJ)signs in the sight of the people. 31 So (AK)the people believed; and when they heard that the Lord [w](AL)was concerned about the sons of Israel and that He had seen their affliction, (AM)they bowed low and worshiped.

Israel’s Labor Increased

And afterward Moses and Aaron came and said to Pharaoh, “(AN)This is what the Lord, the God of Israel says: ‘(AO)Let My people go so that they may celebrate a feast to Me in the wilderness.’” But Pharaoh said, “(AP)Who is the Lord that I should obey His voice to let Israel go? I do not know the Lord, and besides, (AQ)I will not let Israel go.” Then they said, “(AR)The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Please, let us go a three days’ journey into the wilderness so that we may sacrifice to the Lord our God, otherwise He will strike us with plague or with the sword.” But the king of Egypt said to them, “Moses and Aaron, why do you let the people neglect their [x]work? Get back to your (AS)labors!” Again Pharaoh said, “Look, (AT)the people of the land are now many, and you would have them cease from their labors!” So the same day Pharaoh commanded (AU)the taskmasters over the people and their (AV)foremen, saying, “You are no longer to give the people straw to make bricks as previously; have them go and gather straw for themselves. But you shall impose on them the quota of bricks which they were making before; you are not to reduce any of it. Because they are (AW)lazy, for that reason they cry [y]out, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to our God.’ Let the labor be heavier on the men, and have them work at it so that they will pay no attention to false words.”

10 So (AX)the taskmasters of the people and their foremen went out and spoke to the people, saying, “This is what Pharaoh says: ‘I am not going to give you any straw. 11 You go, get straw for yourselves wherever you can find it; but none of your labor will be reduced.’” 12 So the people scattered through all the land of Egypt to gather stubble for straw. 13 And the taskmasters pressed them, saying, “Complete your [z]work quota, [aa]your daily amount, just as when [ab]you had straw.” 14 Moreover, (AY)the foremen of the sons of Israel, whom Pharaoh’s taskmasters had set over them, (AZ)were beaten [ac]and asked, “Why have you not completed your required task of making bricks either yesterday or today, as before?”

15 Then the foremen of the sons of Israel came and cried out to Pharaoh, saying, “Why do you deal this way with your servants? 16 There is no straw given to your servants, yet they keep saying to us, ‘Make bricks!’ And behold, your servants are being beaten; but it is the fault of your own people.” 17 But he said, “You are (BA)lazy, very lazy; for that reason you say, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to the Lord.’ 18 So go now and work; for you will be given no straw, but you must deliver the quota of bricks.” 19 The foremen of the sons of Israel saw that they were in trouble, [ad]since they were told, “You must not reduce [ae]your daily amount of bricks.” 20 When they left Pharaoh’s presence, they met Moses and Aaron as they were [af]waiting for them. 21 And (BB)they said to them, “(BC)May the Lord look upon you and judge you, because you have (BD)made [ag]us repulsive in Pharaoh’s sight and in the sight of his servants, to put a sword in their hand to kill us!”

22 Then Moses returned to the Lord and said, “(BE)Lord, why have You brought harm to this people? Why did You ever send me? 23 Ever since I came to Pharaoh to speak in Your name, he has done harm to this people, (BF)and You have not rescued Your people at all.”

God Promises Action

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh; for [ah](BG)under compulsion he will let them go, and [ai]under compulsion he will drive them out of his land.”

God spoke further to Moses and said to him, “I am (BH)the Lord; and I appeared to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob as [aj](BI)God Almighty, but by (BJ)My name, [ak]Lord, I did not make Myself known to them. I also established (BK)My covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the [al]land in which they lived as strangers. Furthermore I have (BL)heard the groaning of the sons of Israel, because the Egyptians are holding them in bondage, and I have remembered My covenant. Say, therefore, to the sons of Israel, ‘(BM)I am the Lord, and (BN)I will bring you out from under the labors of the Egyptians, and I will rescue you from their bondage. I will also (BO)redeem you with (BP)an outstretched arm, and with great judgments. Then I will take you [am](BQ)as My people, and (BR)I will be [an]your God; and (BS)you shall know that I am the Lord your God, who brought you out from under the labors of the Egyptians. I will bring you to the land which (BT)I [ao]swore to give to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and (BU)I will give it to you as a possession; (BV)I am the Lord.’” So Moses said this to the sons of Israel, but they did not listen to Moses on (BW)account of their [ap]despondency and cruel bondage.

10 Now the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 11 (BX)Go, [aq]tell Pharaoh king of Egypt [ar]to let the sons of Israel go out of his land.” 12 But Moses spoke before the Lord, saying, “Behold, the sons of Israel have not listened to me; (BY)how then will Pharaoh listen to me, as I am [as](BZ)unskilled in speech?” 13 Nevertheless, the Lord spoke to Moses and to Aaron and gave them a command concerning the sons of Israel and Pharaoh king of Egypt, to bring the sons of Israel out of the land of Egypt.

The Heads of Israel

14 These are the heads of their fathers’ households. (CA)The sons of Reuben, Israel’s firstborn: Hanoch and Pallu, Hezron and Carmi; these are the families of Reuben. 15 And the (CB)sons of Simeon: [at]Jemuel, Jamin, Ohad, Jachin, Zohar, and Shaul the son of a Canaanite woman; these are the families of Simeon. 16 And these are the names of (CC)the sons of Levi according to their generations: Gershon, Kohath, and Merari; and the [au]length of Levi’s life was 137 years. 17 (CD)The sons of Gershon: [av]Libni and Shimei, according to their families. 18 And (CE)the sons of Kohath: Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel; and the [aw]length of Kohath’s life was 133 years. 19 And (CF)the sons of Merari: Mahli and Mushi. These are the families of the Levites according to their generations. 20 Now (CG)Amram [ax]married his father’s sister Jochebed, and she bore him Aaron and Moses; and the [ay]length of Amram’s life was 137 years. 21 And (CH)the sons of Izhar: Korah, Nepheg, and Zichri. 22 And (CI)the sons of Uzziel: Mishael, [az]Elzaphan, and Sithri. 23 Aaron [ba]married Elisheba, the daughter of (CJ)Amminadab, the sister of (CK)Nahshon, and she bore him (CL)Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar. 24 And the (CM)sons of Korah: Assir, Elkanah, and [bb]Abiasaph; these are the families of the Korahites. 25 Now Aaron’s son (CN)Eleazar [bc]married one of the daughters of Putiel, and she bore him (CO)Phinehas. These are the heads of the fathers’ households of the Levites according to their families. 26 It was the same Aaron and Moses to whom the Lord said, “(CP)Bring out the sons of Israel from the land of Egypt according to their [bd](CQ)multitudes.” 27 They were the ones (CR)who spoke to Pharaoh king of Egypt [be]about bringing out the sons of Israel from Egypt; it was the same Moses and Aaron.

28 Now it came about on the day when the Lord spoke to Moses in the land of Egypt, 29 that the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “(CS)I am the Lord; (CT)say to Pharaoh king of Egypt all that I say to you.” 30 But Moses said before the Lord, “Behold, I am [bf](CU)unskilled in speech; how then will Pharaoh listen to me?”

Footnotes

  1. Exodus 4:1 Lit to my voice
  2. Exodus 4:4 Lit palm
  3. Exodus 4:8 Lit listen to
  4. Exodus 4:8 Lit voice
  5. Exodus 4:8 I.e., confirming miracle
  6. Exodus 4:8 Lit voice
  7. Exodus 4:8 I.e., confirming miracle
  8. Exodus 4:9 I.e., confirming miracles
  9. Exodus 4:10 Lit a man of words
  10. Exodus 4:10 Lit yesterday
  11. Exodus 4:10 Lit heavy
  12. Exodus 4:10 Lit heavy
  13. Exodus 4:13 Lit the hand You send
  14. Exodus 4:14 Lit speaking he speaks
  15. Exodus 4:14 Lit joyful in his heart
  16. Exodus 4:18 Heb Jether
  17. Exodus 4:19 Lit return
  18. Exodus 4:21 Lit to return
  19. Exodus 4:21 Lit hand
  20. Exodus 4:24 Lit him
  21. Exodus 4:25 Lit made it touch at his feet
  22. Exodus 4:26 Lit with reference to
  23. Exodus 4:31 Lit had visited
  24. Exodus 5:4 Lit works
  25. Exodus 5:8 Lit out, saying,
  26. Exodus 5:13 Lit works
  27. Exodus 5:13 Lit the matter of a day in its day
  28. Exodus 5:13 Lit there was
  29. Exodus 5:14 Lit saying
  30. Exodus 5:19 Lit saying
  31. Exodus 5:19 Lit from your bricks the matter of a day in its day
  32. Exodus 5:20 Lit standing to meet
  33. Exodus 5:21 Lit our odor stink
  34. Exodus 6:1 Lit by a strong hand
  35. Exodus 6:1 Lit by a strong hand
  36. Exodus 6:3 Heb El Shaddai
  37. Exodus 6:3 Heb YHWH, usually rendered Lord
  38. Exodus 6:4 Lit land of their sojournings in which...
  39. Exodus 6:7 Lit to Me for a people
  40. Exodus 6:7 Lit to you for a God
  41. Exodus 6:8 Lit lifted up My hand
  42. Exodus 6:9 Or impatience
  43. Exodus 6:11 Lit speak to
  44. Exodus 6:11 Lit that he let
  45. Exodus 6:12 Lit uncircumcised of lips
  46. Exodus 6:15 In Num 26:12 and 1 Chr 4:24, Nemuel
  47. Exodus 6:16 Lit years
  48. Exodus 6:17 In 1 Chr 23:7, Ladan
  49. Exodus 6:18 Lit years
  50. Exodus 6:20 Lit took to him as a wife
  51. Exodus 6:20 Lit years
  52. Exodus 6:22 In Num 3:30, Elizaphan
  53. Exodus 6:23 Lit took to him as a wife
  54. Exodus 6:24 In 1 Chr 6:23 and 9:19, Ebiasaph
  55. Exodus 6:25 Lit took to him as a wife
  56. Exodus 6:26 I.e., multitudes in battle formation
  57. Exodus 6:27 Lit to bring out
  58. Exodus 6:30 Lit uncircumcised of lips