Exodus 5

And after this Moses and Aaron went in to Pharaoh, and they said to him, Thus says the Lord God of Israel: Let My people go, that they may keep a feast to Me in the wilderness. And Pharaoh said, Who is He that I should listen to His voice, so that I should send away the children of Israel? I do not know the Lord, and I will not let Israel go. And they said to him, The God of the Hebrews has called us to Him: we will go, therefore, on a three days' journey into the wilderness, that we may sacrifice to the Lord our God, lest at any time death or slaughter happen to us. And the king of Egypt said to them, Why do you, Moses and Aaron, turn the people from their works? Depart, each of you, to your works. And Pharaoh said, Behold now, the people are very numerous; let us not then give them rest from their work. And Pharaoh gave orders to the taskmasters of the people and the accountants, saying, You shall no longer give straw to the people for brickmaking as yesterday and the third day; but let them go themselves, and collect straw for themselves. And you shall impose on them daily the rate of brickmaking which they perform: you shall not reduce anything, for they are idle. Therefore have they cried, saying, Let us arise and do sacrifice to our God. Let the works of these men be made grievous, and let them care for these things, and not care for vain words. 10 And the taskmasters and the accountants hastened them, and they spoke to the people, saying, thus says Pharaoh: I will give you straw no longer. 11 Go yourselves, get for yourselves straw wherever you can find it, for nothing is diminished from your rate. 12 So the people were dispersed in all the land of Egypt, to gather stubble for straw. 13 And the taskmasters hastened them, saying, Fulfill your regular daily tasks, even as when straw was given to you. 14 And the accountants of the race of the children of Israel, who were set over them by the masters of Pharaoh, were scourged, and were asked, Why have you not fulfilled your rates of brickwork as yesterday and the third day, and today also? 15 And the accountants of the children of Israel went in and cried to Pharaoh, saying, Why do you act thus to your servants? 16 Straw is not given to your servants, and they tell us to make bricks; and behold, your servants have been scourged; therefore you will injure your people. 17 And he said to them, You are idle, you are idlers. Therefore you say, Let us go and do sacrifice to our God. 18 Now then go and work, for straw shall not be given to you, yet you shall return the rate of bricks. 19 And the accountants of the children of Israel saw themselves in an evil plight, for men were saying, You shall not fail to deliver the daily rate of the brick-making. 20 And they met Moses and Aaron coming forth to meet them, as they came forth from Pharaoh. 21 And they said to them, The Lord look upon you and judge you, for you have made our scent abominable before Pharaoh, and before his servants, to put a sword into his hands to kill us. 22 And Moses turned to the Lord and said, I pray, O Lord, why have You afflicted this people? And why have You sent me? 23 For from the time that I went to Pharaoh to speak in Your name, he has afflicted this people, and You have not delivered Your people.
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