Exodus 5

And afterwards, Moses and Aaron went in and said unto Pharaoh,—Thus, saith Yahweh God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a festival to me in the desert. Then said Pharaoh, Who is Yahweh that I should hearken to his voice, to let Israel go? I know not Yahweh, and certainly. Israel, will I not let go!

And they said, the God of the Hebrews, hath met with us,—let us go, we pray thee, a journey of three days into the desert and sacrifice to Yahweh our God, lest he fall upon us with pestilence or with sword. And the king of Egypt said unto them, Wherefore O Moses and Aaron should ye loose the people from their works? Get you to your burdens. And Pharaoh said, Lo! many—now, are the people of the land,—and are ye to make them rest from their burdens? So then Pharaoh gave command on that day, unto the taskmasters over the people and unto their overseers—saying: Ye shall no more give straw unto the people, for making the bricks as heretofore: Let them, go, themselves, so shall they gather for themselves straw: Nevertheless, the fixed number of bricks, which they have been making heretofore, shall ye lay upon them, ye shall not diminish therefrom,—for idle, they are, on this account, it is that they are making an outcry, saying, We must go our way, we must sacrifice to our God. The service must be made heavy on the men that they may labour on it,—and let them not pay regard to words of falsehood.

10 Then went forth the taskmasters of the people and their overseers, and spake unto the people,—saying,—Thus, saith Pharaoh, I am not going to give you straw, 11 Ye yourselves go fetch you straw, of any ye can find,—yet hath there not been diminished from your service a single thing. 12 So the people dispersed themselves throughout all the land of Egypt,—to gather stubble for straw: 13 the taskmasters, meanwhile, being urgent saying,—Complete your works, The task of a day, in its day, as when the straw was provided. 14 Then were beaten the overseers of the sons of Israel, whom the taskmasters of Pharaoh had set over them saying: Wherefore have ye not completed your task for making bricks, as heretofore, so also, yesterday and, to-day?

15 Then came in the overseers of the sons of Israel, and made outcry unto Pharaoh, saying, Wherefore shouldst thou do thus to thy servants? 16 No straw, is given to thy servants, yet bricks,—they keep saying to us—make ye! And lo, thy servants, are beaten—thou dost, therefore, wrong thy people. 17 But he said: Idle, ye are—idle, on this account, are, ye, saying, We must take our journey, we must sacrifice to Yahweh. 18 Now, therefore, go labour, but, straw, shall not be given you,—yet the tale of bricks, shall ye render. 19 Then did the overseers of the sons of Israel see themselves to be in an evil case, when it was said,—Ye shall not diminish from your bricks—the task of a day, in its day 20 So they fell upon Moses and upon Aaron, stationing themselves to meet them,—as they came forth from Pharaoh; 21 and they said unto them, Yahweh look upon you and judge,—in that ye have made us odious in the eyes of Pharaoh and in the eyes of his servants, putting a sword into their hand to slay us. 22 And Moses returned unto Yahweh and said,—O My Lord wherefore hast thou caused harm to this people? Wherefore now didst thou send me? 23 seeing that from what time I came in unto Pharaoh to speak in thy name, he hath done harm to this people, and thou hast not delivered, thy people,

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