Exodus Chapter 13 to 14 : Easy-to-Read Version  | SearchSearch | Next Version | Previous Page | Next Page |

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13 Then the Lord said to Moses, 2“You must give me every male in Israel that is its mother's first child. That means that every firstborn baby {boy} and every firstborn {male} animal will be mine.” 3Moses said to the people, “Remember this day. You were slaves in Egypt. But on this day the Lord used his great power and made you free. You must not eat bread with yeast. 4Today, in the month of Abib,* you are leaving {Egypt}. 5The Lord made a special promise to your ancestors.* The Lord promised to give you the land of the Canaanite people, the Hittite people, the Amorite people, the Hivite people, and the Jebusite people. After the Lord leads you to the land filled with many good things,* then you must remember this day. You must have a special day of worship on this day during the first month of every year. 6“For seven days you must eat only bread that has no yeast. On the seventh day there will be a great feast. This feast will show honor to the Lord. 7So for seven days you must not eat any bread made with yeast. There must be no bread with yeast any place in your land. 8On this day, you should tell your children, ‘We are having this feast because the Lord took me out of Egypt.’ 9“This holiday will help you remember—it will be like a string tied on your hand. It will be like a sign before your eyes.* This holiday will help you remember the Lord’s teachings. It will help you remember that the Lord used his great power to take you out of Egypt. 10So remember this holiday every year at the right time. 11“The Lord will lead you into the land he promised to give you. The Canaanite people now live there. But God promised your ancestors* that he would give you this land. After God gives you this land, 12you must remember to give him every firstborn boy. And every male animal that is the firstborn must be given to the Lord. 13Every firstborn donkey can be bought back from the Lord. You can offer a lamb and keep the donkey. If you don’t want to buy the donkey from the Lord, then kill it. It will be a sacrifice* —you must break its neck. But every firstborn baby boy* must be bought back from the Lord. 14“In the future, your children will ask why you do this. They will say, ‘What does all this mean?’ And you will answer, ‘The Lord used his great power to save us from Egypt. We were slaves in that place. But the Lord led us out and brought us here. 15In Egypt, Pharaoh was stubborn. He refused to let us leave. So the Lord killed every firstborn* in all the land. (The Lord killed the firstborn animals and the firstborn sons.*) That is why I give every firstborn male animal to the Lord. And that is why I buy back each of my firstborn sons from the Lord.’ 16This is like a string tied on your hand. And it is like a sign in front of your eyes.* It helps you remember that the Lord brought us out of Egypt with his great power.”

The Trip out of Egypt

17Pharaoh made the people leave Egypt. The Lord did not let the people take the road leading to the land of the Philistines. That road {by the sea} is the shortest way, but the Lord said, “{If the people go that way} they will have to fight. Then they might change their minds and go back to Egypt.” 18So the Lord led them another way. He led them through the desert by the Red Sea.* The people of Israel were dressed for war when they left Egypt.

Joseph Goes Home

19Moses carried the bones of Joseph with him. Before Joseph died, he made the sons of Israel promise to do this for him. Joseph said, “When God saves you, remember to carry my bones with you out of Egypt.”

The Lord Leads His People

20The people of Israel left Succoth and camped at Etham. Etham was near the desert. 21The Lord led the way. During the day, the Lord used a tall cloud to lead the people. And during the night, the Lord used a tall column of fire to lead the way. This fire gave them light so they could also travel at night. 22The tall cloud was always with them during the day, and the column of fire was always with them at night.

Abib Or, “spring.” This is Nisan, the first month of the ancient Jewish year. ancestors Literally, “fathers.” This means a person’s parents, grandparents, and all the people they are descended from. filled with many good things Literally, “flowing with milk and honey.” string … eyes Literally, “a mark on your hands and a reminder between your eyes.” This might refer to the special things a Jewish man ties to his arm and forehead to help him remember God’s laws for him. sacrifice(s) A gift to God. Usually it was a special animal that was killed and burned on an altar. baby boy Or, “baby.” firstborn The first child born into a family. The firstborn son was very important in ancient times. sons Or, “children.” Red Sea Or, “Reed Sea.” See 1 Kings 9:26.

14 Then the Lord said to Moses, 2“Tell the people to go back to Pi Hahiroth. Tell them to spend the night between Migdol and the {Red} Sea, near Baal Zephon. 3Pharaoh will think that the people of Israel are lost in the desert. And he will think that the people will have no place to go. 4I will make Pharaoh brave, and he will chase you. But I will defeat Pharaoh and his army. This will bring honor to me. Then the people of Egypt will know that I am the Lord.” The people of Israel obeyed God—they did what he told them.

Pharaoh Chases the Israelites

5Pharaoh received a report that the people of Israel had escaped. When he heard this, he and his officials changed their minds about what they had done. Pharaoh said, “Why did we let the people of Israel leave? Why did we let them run away? Now we have lost our slaves!” 6So Pharaoh prepared his chariot* and took his men with him. 7Pharaoh took 600 of his best men and all of his chariots. There was an officer in each chariot. 8The people of Israel were leaving with their arms raised in victory. But the Lord caused Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, to become brave. And Pharaoh chased the people of Israel. 9The Egyptian army had many horse soldiers and chariots. They chased the people of Israel and caught up with them while they were camped near the Red Sea* at Pi Hahiroth, east of Baal Zephon. 10The people of Israel saw Pharaoh and his army coming toward them. The people were very scared. They cried to the Lord for help. 11They said to Moses, “Why did you bring us out of Egypt? Why did you bring us out here in the desert to die? We could have died peacefully in Egypt—there were plenty of graves in Egypt. 12We told you this would happen! In Egypt we said, ‘Please don’t bother us. Let us stay and serve the Egyptians.’ It would have been better for us to stay and be slaves than to come out here and die in the desert.” 13But Moses answered, “Don’t be afraid! Stand where you are and watch the Lord save you today. You will never see these Egyptians again! 14You won’t have to do anything but stay calm. The Lord will do the fighting for you.” 15Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you still crying to me! Tell the people of Israel to start moving. 16Raise the walking stick in your hand over the Red Sea,* and the sea will split. Then the people can go across on dry land. 17I have made the Egyptians brave, so they will chase you. But I will show you that I am more powerful than Pharaoh and all of his horses and chariots. 18Then Egypt will know that I am the Lord. They will honor me when I defeat Pharaoh and his horse soldiers and chariots.”

The Lord Defeats the Egyptian Army

19Then the angel of the Lord moved to the back of the people. (The angel of the Lord was usually at the front of the people, leading them.) So the tall cloud moved from in front of the people and went to the back of the people. 20In this way the cloud stood between the Egyptians and the people of Israel. There was light for the people of Israel. But there was darkness for the Egyptians. So the Egyptians did not come any closer to the people of Israel that night. 21Moses raised his arm over the Red Sea,* and the Lord caused a strong wind to blow from the east. The wind blew all night long. The sea split, and the wind made the ground dry. 22The people of Israel went through the sea on dry land. The water was like a wall on their right and on their left. 23Then all of Pharaoh’s chariots and horse soldiers followed them into the sea. 24Early that morning, the Lord looked down from the tall cloud and column of fire at the Egyptian army. Then the Lord attacked and defeated them all. 25The wheels of the chariots became stuck. It was very hard to control the chariots. The Egyptians shouted, “Let’s get out of here! The Lord is fighting against us. The Lord is fighting for the people of Israel.” 26Then the Lord told Moses, “Raise your hand over the sea to make the water fall and cover the Egyptian chariots and horse soldiers.” 27So, just before daylight, Moses raised his hand over the sea. And the water rushed back to its proper level. The Egyptians were running as fast as they could from the water, but the Lord swept them away with the sea. 28The water returned to its proper level and covered the chariots and horse soldiers. Pharaoh’s army had been chasing the people of Israel, but that army was destroyed. None of them survived! 29But the people of Israel crossed the sea on dry land. The water was like a wall on their right and on their left. 30So that day, the Lord saved the people of Israel from the Egyptians. And later the people of Israel saw the dead bodies of the Egyptians on the shore of the Red Sea.* 31The people of Israel saw the great power of the Lord when he defeated the Egyptians. So the people feared and respected the Lord. They began to trust the Lord and his servant Moses.

chariot(s) A small wagon used in war. Red Sea Or, “Reed Sea.” See 1 Kings 9:26.

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