131The LORD said to Moses, 2
“Dedicate all the firstborn males to me, for every firstborn male Israelite and every firstborn male animal belongs to me.”
3Moses said to the people, “Remember this day — the day on which you left Egypt, the place where you were slaves. This is the day the LORD brought you out by his great power. No leavened bread is to be eaten. 4You are leaving Egypt on this day in the first month, the month of Abib. 5The LORD solemnly promised your ancestors to give you the land of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. When he brings you into that rich and fertile land, you must celebrate this festival in the first month of every year. 6For seven days you must eat unleavened bread and on the seventh day there is to be a festival to honour the LORD. 7For seven days you must not eat any bread made with yeast; there must be no yeast or leavened bread anywhere in your land. 8When the festival begins, explain to your sons that you do all this because of what the LORD did for you when you left Egypt. 9This observance will be a reminder, like something tied on your hand or on your forehead; it will remind you to continue to recite and study the Law of the LORD, because the LORD brought you out of Egypt by his great power. 10Celebrate this festival at the appointed time each year.
11“The LORD will bring you into the land of the Canaanites, which he solemnly promised to you and your ancestors. When he gives it to you, 12
you must offer every firstborn male to the LORD. Every firstborn male of your animals belongs to the LORD, 13but you must buy back from him every firstborn male donkey by offering a lamb in its place. If you do not want to buy back the donkey, break its neck. You must buy back every firstborn male child of yours. 14In the future, when your son asks what this observance means, you will answer him, ‘By using great power the LORD brought us out of Egypt, the place where we were slaves. 15When the king of Egypt was stubborn and refused to let us go, the LORD killed every firstborn male in the land of Egypt, both human and animal. That is why we sacrifice every firstborn male animal to the LORD, but buy back our firstborn sons. 16This observance will be a reminder, like something tied on our hands or on our foreheads; it will remind us that the LORD brought us out of Egypt by his great power.’ ”
17When the king of Egypt let the people go, God did not take them by the road that goes up the coast to Philistia, although it was the shortest way. God thought, “I do not want the people to change their minds and return to Egypt when they see that they are going to have to fight.” 18Instead, he led them in a roundabout way through the desert towards the Red Sea.13.18 Red Sea: (in Hebrew literally “Sea of Reeds”) evidently referred to (1) a series of lakes and marshes between the head of the Gulf of Suez and the Mediterranean, the region generally regarded as the site of the events described in Exodus 13, and was also used to designate (2) the Gulf of Suez, and (3) the Gulf of Aqaba. The Israelites were armed for battle.
Moses took the body of Joseph with him, as Joseph had made the Israelites solemnly promise to do. Joseph had said, “When God rescues you, you must carry my body with you from this place.”
20The Israelites left Sukkoth and camped at Etham on the edge of the desert. 21During the day the LORD went in front of them in a pillar of cloud to show them the way, and during the night he went in front of them in a pillar of fire to give them light, so that they could travel night and day. 22The pillar of cloud was always in front of the people during the day, and the pillar of fire at night.
141Then the LORD said to Moses, 2“Tell the Israelites to turn back and camp in front of Pi Hahiroth, between Migdol and the Red Sea, near Baal Zephon. 3The king will think that the Israelites are wandering about in the country and are closed in by the desert. 4I will make him stubborn, and he will pursue you, and my victory over the king and his army will bring me honour. Then the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD.” The Israelites did as they were told.
5When the king of Egypt was told that the people had escaped, he and his officials changed their minds and said, “What have we done? We have let the Israelites escape, and we have lost them as our slaves!” 6The king got his war chariot and his army ready. 7He set out with all his chariots, including the 600 finest, commanded by their officers. 8The LORD made the king stubborn, and he pursued the Israelites, who were leaving triumphantly.14.8 triumphantly; or under the protection of the LORD. 9The Egyptian army, with all the horses, chariots, and drivers, pursued them and caught up with them where they were camped by the Red Sea near Pi Hahiroth and Baal Zephon.
10When the Israelites saw the king and his army marching against them, they were terrified and cried out to the LORD for help. 11They said to Moses, “Weren't there any graves in Egypt? Did you have to bring us out here in the desert to die? Look what you have done by bringing us out of Egypt! 12Didn't we tell you before we left that this would happen? We told you to leave us alone and let us go on being slaves of the Egyptians. It would be better to be slaves there than to die here in the desert.”
13Moses answered, “Don't be afraid! Stand your ground, and you will see what the LORD will do to save you today; you will never see these Egyptians again. 14The LORD will fight for you, and there is no need for you to do anything.”
15The LORD said to Moses, “Why are you crying out for help? Tell the people to move forward. 16Lift up your stick and hold it out over the sea. The water will divide, and the Israelites will be able to walk through the sea on dry ground. 17I will make the Egyptians so stubborn that they will go in after them, and I will gain honour by my victory over the king, his army, his chariots, and his drivers. 18When I defeat them, the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD.”
19The angel of God, who had been in front of the army of Israel, moved and went to the rear. The pillar of cloud also moved until it was 20between the Egyptians and the Israelites. The cloud made it dark for the Egyptians, but gave light to the people of Israel,14.20 Probable text The cloud… Israel; Hebrew unclear. and so the armies could not come near each other all night.
Moses held out his hand over the sea, and the LORD drove the sea back with a strong east wind. It blew all night and turned the sea into dry land. The water was divided, 22
and the Israelites went through the sea on dry ground, with walls of water on both sides. 23The Egyptians pursued them and went after them into the sea with all their horses, chariots, and drivers. 24Just before dawn the LORD looked down from the pillar of fire and cloud at the Egyptian army and threw them into a panic. 25He made the wheels of their chariots get stuck, so that they moved with great difficulty. The Egyptians said, “The LORD is fighting for the Israelites against us. Let's get out of here!”
26The LORD said to Moses, “Hold out your hand over the sea, and the water will come back over the Egyptians and their chariots and drivers.” 27So Moses held out his hand over the sea, and at daybreak the water returned to its normal level. The Egyptians tried to escape from the water, but the LORD threw them into the sea. 28The water returned and covered the chariots, the drivers, and all the Egyptian army that had followed the Israelites into the sea; not one of them was left. 29But the Israelites walked through the sea on dry ground, with walls of water on both sides.
30On that day the LORD saved the people of Israel from the Egyptians, and the Israelites saw them lying dead on the seashore. 31When the Israelites saw the great power with which the LORD had defeated the Egyptians, they stood in awe of the LORD; and they had faith in the LORD and in his servant Moses.
Then Moses and the Israelites sang this song to the LORD:
“I will sing to the LORD, because he has won a glorious victory;
he has thrown the horses and their riders into the sea.
The LORD is my strong defender;
he is the one who has saved me.
He is my God, and I will praise him,
my father's God, and I will sing about his greatness.
3The LORD is a warrior;
the LORD is his name.
4“He threw Egypt's army and its chariots into the sea;
the best of its officers were drowned in the Red Sea.
5The deep sea covered them;
they sank to the bottom like a stone.
6“Your right hand, LORD, is awesome in power;
it breaks the enemy in pieces.
7In majestic triumph you overthrow your foes;
your anger blazes out and burns them up like straw.
8You blew on the sea and the water piled up high;
it stood up straight like a wall;
the deepest part of the sea became solid.
9The enemy said, ‘I will pursue them and catch them;
I will divide their wealth and take all I want;
I will draw my sword and take all they have.’
10But one breath from you, LORD, and the Egyptians were drowned;
they sank like lead in the terrible water.
11“LORD, who among the gods is like you?
Who is like you, wonderful in holiness?
Who can work miracles and mighty acts like yours?
12You stretched out your right hand,
and the earth swallowed our enemies.
13Faithful to your promise, you led the people you had rescued;
by your strength you guided them to your sacred land.
14The nations have heard, and they tremble with fear;
the Philistines are seized with terror.
15The leaders of Edom are terrified;
Moab's mighty men are trembling;
the people of Canaan lose their courage.
16Terror and dread fall upon them.
They see your strength, O LORD,
and stand helpless with fear
until your people have marched past —
the people you set free from slavery.
17You bring them in and plant them on your mountain,
the place that you, LORD, have chosen for your home,
the Temple that you yourself have built.
18You, LORD, will be king for ever and ever.”
19The Israelites walked through the sea on dry ground. But when the Egyptian chariots with their horses and drivers went into the sea, the LORD brought the water back, and it covered them.
20The prophet Miriam, Aaron's sister, took her tambourine, and all the women followed her, playing tambourines and dancing. 21Miriam sang for them:
“Sing to the LORD, because he has won a glorious victory;
he has thrown the horses and their riders into the sea.”
22Then Moses led the people of Israel away from the Red Sea into the desert of Shur. For three days they walked through the desert, but found no water. 23Then they came to a place called Marah, but the water there was so bitter that they could not drink it. That is why it was named Marah.15.23 Marah: This name in Hebrew means “bitter”. 24The people complained to Moses and asked, “What are we going to drink?” 25Moses prayed earnestly to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a piece of wood, which he threw into the water; and the water became fit to drink.
There the LORD gave them laws to live by, and there he also tested them. 26He said, “If you will obey me completely by doing what I consider right and by keeping my commands, I will not punish you with any of the diseases that I brought on the Egyptians. I am the LORD, the one who heals you.”
27Next they came to Elim, where there were twelve springs and seventy palm trees; there they camped by the water.