The Escape From Egypt
Moses called together all the leaders of Israel, and said to them, "Take
lambs from the herds according to your families and kill the passover
lamb. You shall also take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood
that is in the basin and strike the lintel and the two door posts with
the blood that is in the basin. And not one of you shall go out of the
door of his house until morning, for Jehovah will pass through to kill
the Egyptians, and when he sees the blood upon the lintel and on the two
door posts, he will pass over the door and will not let the destroyer
come into your houses to destroy you. You and your children shall
observe this event as a custom forever.
"When your children shall say to you, 'What do you mean by this
service?' you shall say, 'It is the sacrifice of the passover of
Jehovah, for he passed over the houses of the Israelites in Egypt, when
he destroyed the Egyptians and released our people.'"
Then the people bowed their heads and worshipped; and the Israelites
went and did as Jehovah had commanded Moses and Aaron.
At midnight Jehovah destroyed all the eldest sons in the land of Egypt,
from the eldest son of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the eldest son
of the captive who was in prison. Then Pharaoh arose in the night,
together with all his servants and all the Egyptians, and there was a
great cry of sorrow, for there was not a house in Egypt in which there
was not one dead. Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron at night and said, "Go
away from among my people, both you and the Israelites; go, worship
Jehovah as you have asked. Also take with you your sheep and your
cattle, as you have asked, go and ask a blessing for me also." The
Egyptians also told the people to hasten out of the land, for they said,
"We shall all perish." So the people took their dough before the yeast
had worked, and their kneading-troughs were bound up in their clothes
upon their shoulders.
The Israelites went on foot from Rameses to Succoth; and a mixed
multitude went with them, and they had a great many flocks and herds.
They baked unraised cakes of the dough which they had brought with them
from Egypt, for there was no yeast in it, because they had been driven
out of Egypt and could not wait, neither had they prepared for
themselves any food for the journey.
And they went from Succoth and camped at Etham on the border of the
wilderness. Jehovah went before them by day in a pillar of cloud, to
show them the way, and at night in a pillar of fire, to give them light,
that they might march both by day and by night; the pillar of cloud by
day and the pillar of fire at night stayed in front of the people.
When the king of Egypt was told that the people had fled, the feeling of
Pharaoh and his servants toward them was changed, and they said, "Why
have we done this and let the Israelites escape from serving us?" So he
made ready his chariot and took his people with him. He also took six
hundred chosen chariots and the rest of the chariots of Egypt with
captains over all of them; and Jehovah let the heart of Pharaoh, king of
Egypt, remain stubborn, so that he followed the Israelites, because they
had defied him.
When Pharaoh drew near to them the Israelites looked up and saw the
Egyptians marching after them; and they were very much afraid and cried
to Jehovah. And they said to Moses, "Why have you misled us by bringing
us out of Egypt? Is not this what we told you in Egypt, when we said,
'Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it is better for us
to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.'" But Moses said
to the people, "Do not be frightened, remain quiet and you will see how
Jehovah will save you to-day; for as surely as you now see the Egyptians
you shall never see them again. Jehovah will fight for you, and you are
to keep still."
Then the angel of God who went before the army of Israel changed his
position and went behind them. The pillar of cloud also changed its
position from in front of them and stood behind them, coming between the
army of the Egyptians and the army of the Israelites. On the one side
the cloud was dark and on the other side it lighted up the night, so
that throughout all the night neither army came near the other.
Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and Jehovah by means of
a strong east wind caused the sea to go back all that night and made the
bed of the sea dry. And the Israelites crossed over on the dry bed of
the sea. The Egyptians followed and all of Pharaoh's horses, his
chariots, and his horsemen went after them into the sea. In the morning
before sunrise, Jehovah looked out through the pillar of fire and of
cloud upon the army of the Egyptians and threw them into confusion. He
also bound their chariot wheels, so that they dragged heavily. Therefore
the Egyptians said, "Let us flee from the Israelites, for Jehovah fights
for them against us."
Then Jehovah said to Moses, "Stretch out your hand over the sea, that
the waters may come back upon the Egyptians, upon their chariots, and
upon their horsemen." So Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and
toward morning the sea returned to its ordinary level while the
Egyptians were flying before it. So Jehovah overthrew the Egyptians in
the midst of the sea, and the waters returned and covered the chariots
and the horsemen, and all the army of Pharaoh that went after them into
the sea, so that not one of them was left. Thus Jehovah saved the
Israelites that day from the power of the Egyptians; and they saw the
Egyptians dead upon the seashore. When the Israelites saw the great work
which Jehovah did to the Egyptians, the people feared Jehovah and
believed in him and in his servant Moses.
And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a tambourine in her
hand; and as all the women followed her with tambourines and with
dancing, she sang with them:
"Sing to Jehovah, for he has triumphed gloriously:
Both horse and rider has he hurled into the sea."
Then Moses and the Israelites sang this song to Jehovah:
"I will sing to Jehovah, for he has triumphed gloriously:
Both horse and rider he has hurled into the sea.
Jehovah is my strength and song, he has delivered me;
He is my God, I will praise him; my father's God whom I honor."
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