SECTION XV.

 

BO EL PHAROH.

 

 

X. AND the Lord said to Mosheh, Go in unto Pharoh; for I have hardened his heart., and the heart of his servants, to set these My signs among them; and that thou mayest relate before thy son and the son of thy son the miracles which I wrought in Mizraim and the signs that I did set among them, that ye may know that I am the Lord. And Mosheh and Aharon entered unto Pharoh, and said to him, Thus saith the Lord the God of the Jehudaee, Until now thou hast obstinately refused to humble thyself before Me; send My people away, that they may serve Me. For if thou refuse to release My people, behold, to‑morrow I will bring the locust into thy borders, and he shall cover the eye of the sun of the earth, (or, shall hide the sun (which is) the eye of the earth,[1]) so that it will not be possible to see the ground; and he will devour the residue which hath been spared (saved) and that hath been reserved to you from the hail, and will devour every tree which groweth up for you from the field; and they shall fill thy house, and the houses of thy servants, and the houses of all the Mizraee, which thy fathers have not seen, nor the fathers of thy fathers, from the day they were upon the earth until this day. And he turned and went out from Pharoh.

 

And the servants of Pharoh said to him, How long shall this man be an injury (stumbling‑block) to us? Send the men away, that they may serve before the Lord their God. Knowest thou not yet that Mizraim hath perished? And Mosheh and Aharon were made to return unto Pharoh; and he said to them; Go, serve before the Lord your God: (but) who and who shall go? And Mosheh said, With our young ones and with our old men will we go; with our sons and with our daughters, with our sheep and with our oxen, will we go; for we have a feast before the Lord. And he said to them, So be the Word of the Lord in your help when I send you away and your little ones: beware, for the evil that you are thinking to do will be turned against your faces. Not so: but let the men go and serve before the Lord; for it was that which you demanded. And they were driven from before Pharoh.

 

       And the Lord said to Mosheh, Lift up thy hand over the land of Mizraim, that the locusts may come, and go up on the land of Mizraim, and devour every herb of the earth, even all which the b hail hath left. And Mosheh stretched forth his rod upon the land of Mizraim, and the Lord led an east wind upon the land all that day and all the night; at morn the east wind bare the locust. And the locust came up on all the land of Mizraim, and abode in all the boundary of Mizraim exceedingly strong. Before him the locust had never been like him nor afterward will he be so; and he covered the eye of the sun of all the earth, and the earth was darkened; and he devoured every herb of the ground, and all the fruit of the trees which the hail had left; and there did not remain any green on the trees nor herbage of the field in all the land of Mizraim. And Pharoh made haste to call Mosheh and Aharon, and said, I have sinned before the Lord your God, and you. And now, forgive my sin only this time, and intercede before the Lord your God, that He may remove from me only this death. And they went out from Pharoh, and prayed before the Lord. And the Lord turned a west wind exceedingly strong, and it carried the locust and drave him into the sea of Suph, nor did one locust remain in all the border of Mizraim. Yet the heart of Pharoh was hardened, and he would not send the sons of Israel away.

 

And the Lord said to Mosheh, Uplift thy hand towards heaven,[2] and there shall be darkness[3] upon the land of Mizraim after the darkness of the night hath passed away. And Mosheh lifted up his hand towards heaven, and there was darkness of darkness in all the land of Mizraim three days: a man saw not his brother, nor did any man rise up from his place, three days. Yet, all the sons of Israel had light in their dwellings. And Pharoh called Mosheh and said, Go, serve before the Lord; only leave your sheep and your oxen, your little ones also may go with you. But Mosheh said, Thou must give into our hands also the holy victims and holocausts, that we may serve before the Lord our God. Our cattle too shall go with us, and there shall not remain any thereof; for of it we must take to serve the Lord our God, and we know not with what we have to do service before Him until we come thither. But the Lord hardened Pharoh's heart, and he was not willing to send them away. And Pharoh said to him, Go from me. Beware for thyself. See my face no more; for in the day that thou seest my face thou shalt die. And Mosheh said, Thou hast spoken well. I will see thy face no more.

 

XI. But the Lord said to Mosheh, Yet one plague will I bring upon Pharoh and upon Mizraim; after which he will send you hence. When sending away he thoroughly driving will drive you from hence. Speak now before the people of Israel that a man shall require of his companion, and a woman of her companion, vessels of silver and vessels of gold. And the Lord gave the people favour in the eyes of the Mizraee; also the man Mosheh was very great in the land of Mizraim, in the eyes of the servants of Pharoh and in the eyes of the people.

 

And Mosheh said, Thus saith the Lord, At the dividing of the night I will be revealed in the midst of Mizraim, and all the firstborn in the land of Mizraim shall die; from the firstborn of Pharoh who would sit upon the throne of his kingdom, unto the firstborn of the womanservant who is behind[4] the mills, and all the firstborn of cattle. And there shall be a great cry in all the land of Mizraim, the like of which hath not been, nor will be the like of it again. But any one of the sons of Israel no dog will hurt even with his tongue by barking, from man and to beast, so that you shall know that the Lord hath distinguished between the Mizraee and Israel. And all these thy servants shall come down to me, and beseech of me, saying, Go forth, thou and all thy people who are with thee: and after that I will go forth. And he went out from Pharoh with vehement anger.

 

And the Lord said to Mosheh, Pharoh will not hearken to you; therefore will I multiply My wonders in the land of Mizraim. And Mosheh and Aharon wrought all these wonders before Pharoh; but the Lord hardened Pharoh's heart, that he would not send the children of Israel from his land.

 

XII. And the Lord spake to Mosheh and Aharon in the land of Mizraim, saying, This month shall be to you the beginning of the months; the first, it shall be to you, of the months of the year. Speak with all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb for the house of a father, a lamb for the house. And if the house be smaller than the numbering (required) for the lamb, let him take himself, and his neighbour who is nearest to his house, according to the number of the souls, every man according to the mouth of his eating shall you count over the lamb. The lamb shall be perfect, a male, the son of a year; it shall be to you; from the sheep or from the goats[5] you may take it. And you shall have it in keeping till the fourteenth day of this month, and the whole church (kehala) of the congregation of Israel shall kill him between the suns. And they shall take of the blood, and apply it upon the two posts and upon the lintel of the houses in which they eat him. And they shall eat the flesh in that night roasted with fire, and (with) unleavened cake with bitters you shall eat him. You shall not eat of it while living, neither boiled with boiling in water, but roasted with fire; his head with his feet and his inwards. And you shall not leave of it till the morning; and that which remains of it till morning you shall burn in the fire. And thus shall you eat it; with your loins girded, with your sandals on your feet, and your staves in your hands, and you shall eat it in haste; it is the Pascha before the Lord. And I will appear in the land of Mizraim in that night, and will kill every firstborn in the land from man unto beast, and on all the idols of Mizraim I will execute judgment: I am the Lord. And the blood shall be for you a sign upon the houses where you are; and I will see the blood, and will have mercy upon you, and there shall not be among you the destruction of death when I slay in the land of Mizraim. And this day shall be to you for a memorial, and you shall solemnize it a festival before the Lord in your generations; an everlasting ordinance (covenant) shall you solemnize it. And on the first day there shall be an holy congregation, and on the seventh day an holy congregation shall there be to you. Every kind of work may not be done in them; save what pertains to the eating of every soul, that only may be done by you. And you shall keep the (feast of the) Unleavened; for on this very day shall I have brought your hosts out of the land of Mizraim, and you shall keep this day to all your generations for ever.[6] In Nisan, on the fourteenth day of the month in the evening you shall eat unleavened, until the twenty and first of the mouth in the evening. Seven days leaven shall not be found in your houses; for whosoever will eat of that which is leavened, that man shall perish from the congregation of Israel, of the stranger, or of the native of the land. You shall eat no leavened (food), in all your dwellings you shall eat unleavened.

 

And Mosheh called for all the elders of Israel, and said to them, Draw out, and take to you from the sons of the flock for your families, and kill the pascha. And you shall take a bundle of hyssop and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and sprinkle upon the lintel and the two posts from the blood which is in the basin; and you shall not go forth from the door of your house[7] until the morning. For the Lord will be revealed to smite the Mizraee; and seeing the blood upon the lintel and upon the two posts, the Lord will be merciful upon the door, and will not suffer the Destroyer (or destruction) to enter your houses to smite. And you shall observe the thing for an ordinance to thee and to thy sons for ever. And it shall be, when you have entered into the land which the Lord will give you as He hath said, that you shall (still) keep this service. And it shall be, when your children say to you, What is this service to you? you shall say, It is a sacrifice for compassion before the Lord, because He had compassion on the house of the sons of Israel in Mizraim, when He smote the Mizraee, but spared our houses. And the people bowed and worshipped. And the sons of Israel went and did as the Lord had commanded Mosheh and Aharon, so did they.

 

And it came to pass at the dividing of the night that the Lord slew all the firstborn in the land of Mizraim; from the firstborn of Pharoh who should sit on the throne of his kingdom unto the firstborn of the captive in the house of the chained, and all the firstborn of cattle. And Pharoh rose up in that night, and all his servants and all the Mizraee; and there was a great cry in Mizraim, because there was no house in which there was not the dead. And he cried to Mosheh and to Aharon by night, and said, Arise, go out from among my people, you and the sons of Israel, and go and serve before the Lord, as you have said. Your flocks and your herds take also, as you have spoken, and go, and pray also for me. And the Mizraee were forcible on the people to hasten to send them away; for they said, All of us are dead. And the people took their dough while not leavened, remaining in the kneading pans, bound with their clothes upon their shoulders. And the children of Israel did according to the word of Mosheh, and demanded of the Mizraee vessels of silver, and vessels of gold, and raiment. And the Lord gave the people favour in the eyes of the Mizraee, and they demanded of them, and left the Mizraee empty.[8]

 

       And the children of Israel journeyed from Ramases to Succoth; about six hundred thousand men on foot, besides children (or families); and a multitude of strangers also went up with them, and flocks and herds and very much cattle. And they baked the dough which they had brought out from Mizraim (into) unleavened cakes; for it had not been leavened, because they had been driven out from Mizraim and could not stay, and they had not made provision. And the dwelling of the sons of Israel in their abode in Mizraim (was) four hundred and thirty years. And it was at the end of four hundred and thirty years, in that same day, that all the hosts of the Lord went forth from the land of Mizraim. It is a night to be kept before the Lord for bringing them forth from the land of Mizraim: this is that night before the Lord kept by all the children of Israel in their generations.

 

And the Lord said to Mosheh and to Aharon, This is the rite of the Pascha. Every son of Israel who apostatizes shall not eat of it; but every male servant bought with silver, and thou hast circumcised him, may eat thereof. A sojourner and a hireling shall not eat thereof. In one company it shall be eaten. You shall not carry any of the flesh from the house without, and a bone shall not be broken in him. All the congregation of Israel shall do this. And when the sojourner who sojourneth with thee will perform the pascha before the Lord, every male of his shall be circumcised, and he may then approach and perform it; he shall be as one born in the land, but none uncircumcised shall eat of it. One law shall there be for the native and for the proselyte who sojourneth among you. And all the children of Israel did as the Lord commanded Mosheh and Aharon, so did they. And it was on the same day that the Lord led forth the sons of Israel from the land of Mizraim by their armies.

 

XIII. And the Lord spake with Mosheh, saying, Sanctify unto Me all the firstborn. Every one which openeth the womb among the children of Israel, of man and of beast, that is Mine. And Mosheh said to the people, Remember this day, in which you went forth from Mizraim from the house of servitude; for with a mighty hand hath the Lord brought you forth from thence; and you shall not eat what is leavened. This day have you come out, in the month of Abiba. And it shall be when the Lord hath led thee into the land of the Kenaanaee and Hittaee and Emoraee and Hivaee and Jebusaee, which He covenanted to thy fathers to give thee, a land producing milk and honey, that thou shalt perform this service in this month. Seven days thou shalt eat the (phatira) unleavened cake, and in the seventh day solemnize a feast before the Lord. The unleavened cake thou shalt eat seven days; that which is leavened shall not be seen with thee; the leavened thing shall not be seen with thee in all thy limits. And thou shalt teach thy son on that day, saying, (It is) on account of that which the Lord did for me in bringing me out of Mizraim. And it shall be a sign to thee on thy hand, and for a memorial between thine eyes, that the Law of the Lord may be in thy mouth, for that with a mighty hand did the Lord bring thee forth from Mizraim: and thou shalt keep this ordinance in its season from time to time.

 

And it shall be, when the Lord hath brought thee into the land of the Kenaanaee, as He sware to thee and to thy fathers, and hath given it to thee, that thou shalt make over whatsoever openeth the womb before the Lord; among the cattle which thou hast the male shall be consecrate before the Lord. And every firstling of an ass thou shalt ransom with a lamb; but if thou wilt not ransom it, thou shalt destroy it; and every firstborn of man among thy children thou shalt ransom. And it shall be, when thy son shall ask thee to‑morrow, saying, Why is this? thou shalt say to him, By a mighty hand the Lord brought us out of Mizraim from the house of servitude. And it was when Pharoh was obdurate about letting us go away that the Lord slew all the firstborn in the land of Mizraim, from the firstborn of man to the firstborn of cattle: therefore I sacrifice before the Lord of all that openeth the womb, the males, and all the firstborn of my children I ransom. And it shall be for a sign upon thy hand and for Tephillin between thine eyes, because with a mighty hand hath the Lord brought thee out of Mizraim.

 

 

 

 



[1] Sam. Vers., “shall cover the appearance of the earth.”

[2] Al tsaith shemay, “towards the height of the heavens.” Sam. Vers., “towards the height.”

[3] Sam. Vers., “That darkness may be brought.”

[4] Some copies, “who is in the house of the mills.”

[5] Other copies, “from the sons of the goats.”

[6] Other copies, “an everlasting ordinance in all your.”

[7] Other copies, “any man from the door of his house.”

[8] Sam. Vers., “stripped.”