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Exodus 12:2-3 New English Translation (NET Bible)

“This month is to be your beginning of months; it will be your first month of the year.[a] Tell the whole community of Israel, ‘On the tenth day of this month they each[b] must take a lamb[c] for themselves according to their families[d]—a lamb for each household.[e]


  1. Exodus 12:2 sn B. Jacob (Exodus, 294-95) shows that the intent of the passage was not to make this month in the spring the New Year—that was in the autumn. Rather, when counting months this was supposed to be remembered first, for it was the great festival of freedom from Egypt. He observes how some scholars have unnecessarily tried to date one New Year earlier than the other.
  2. Exodus 12:3 tn Heb “and they will take for them a man a lamb.” This is clearly a distributive, or individualizing, use of “man.”
  3. Exodus 12:3 tn The שֶּׂה (seh) is a single head from the flock, or smaller cattle, which would include both sheep and goats.
  4. Exodus 12:3 tn Heb “according to the house of their fathers.” The expression “house of the father” is a common expression for a family. sn The Passover was to be a domestic institution. Each lamb was to be shared by family members.
  5. Exodus 12:3 tn Heb “house” (also at the beginning of the following verse).
New English Translation (NET)

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