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Exodus 5 GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

Moses and Aaron Confront Pharaoh

Later Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said, “This is what the Lord God of Israel says: Let my people go into the desert to celebrate a festival in my honor.”

Pharaoh asked, “Who is the Lord? Why should I obey him and let Israel go? I don’t know the Lord, and I won’t let Israel go.”

They replied, “The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Please let us travel three days into the desert to offer sacrifices to the Lord our God. If we don’t go, he may kill us with a plague or a war.”

The king of Egypt said to them, “Moses and Aaron, why are you distracting the people from their work? Get back to work!” Then Pharaoh added, “Look how many people there are in the land! Do you want them to quit working?”

Pharaoh Increases the Israelites’ Labor

That same day Pharaoh gave these orders to the slave drivers and foremen: “Don’t give the people any more straw to make bricks as you have been doing. Let them gather their own straw, but insist that they make the same number of bricks they were making before. Making fewer bricks will not be acceptable. They’re lazy! That’s why they’re crying, ‘Let us go offer sacrifices to our God.’ Make the work harder for these people so that they will be too busy to listen to lies.”

10 The slave drivers and foreman went out and said to them, “This is what Pharaoh says: I’m no longer giving you straw. 11 Get your own straw wherever you can find it, but your work load will not be reduced one bit.”

12 So the people scattered all over Egypt to gather stubble for straw. 13 The slave drivers kept hurrying them. They said, “Finish the same amount of work each day, just as when you had straw.”

14 Pharaoh’s slave drivers had placed Israelite foremen in charge of the people. The slave drivers beat the foremen and said, “You didn’t finish all the bricks you were ordered to make yesterday or today. Why didn’t you make as many as you used to?”

15 Then the Israelite foremen complained to Pharaoh. They asked, “Why are you treating us this way? 16 We’re given no straw, and yet we’re told to make bricks. We’re being beaten, but your men are at fault.”

17 “You’re lazy! ⌞Just plain⌟ lazy!” Pharaoh answered. “That’s why you keep saying, ‘Let us go offer sacrifices to the Lord.’ 18 Now get back to work! You won’t be given any straw, but you must still make the same number of bricks.”

19 The Israelite foremen realized they were in trouble when they were told, “Don’t make fewer bricks each day than you’re supposed to.”

20 As they left Pharaoh, they found Moses and Aaron waiting for them. 21 So they said, “May the Lord see what you have done and judge you! You have made Pharaoh and his officials hate us. You have given them an excuse to kill us.”

22 Moses went back to the Lord and asked, “Why have you brought this trouble on your people? Why did you send me? 23 Ever since I went to Pharaoh to speak for you, he has treated your people cruelly, and you have done nothing at all to rescue your people.”

GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

Copyright © 1995, 2003, 2013, 2014, 2019, 2020 by God’s Word to the Nations Mission Society. All rights reserved.

Exodus 5 New International Version (NIV)

Bricks Without Straw

Afterward Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘Let my people go, so that they may hold a festival to me in the wilderness.’”

Pharaoh said, “Who is the Lord, that I should obey him and let Israel go? I do not know the Lord and I will not let Israel go.”

Then they said, “The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Now let us take a three-day journey into the wilderness to offer sacrifices to the Lord our God, or he may strike us with plagues or with the sword.”

But the king of Egypt said, “Moses and Aaron, why are you taking the people away from their labor? Get back to your work!” Then Pharaoh said, “Look, the people of the land are now numerous, and you are stopping them from working.”

That same day Pharaoh gave this order to the slave drivers and overseers in charge of the people: “You are no longer to supply the people with straw for making bricks; let them go and gather their own straw. But require them to make the same number of bricks as before; don’t reduce the quota. They are lazy; that is why they are crying out, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to our God.’ Make the work harder for the people so that they keep working and pay no attention to lies.”

10 Then the slave drivers and the overseers went out and said to the people, “This is what Pharaoh says: ‘I will not give you any more straw. 11 Go and get your own straw wherever you can find it, but your work will not be reduced at all.’” 12 So the people scattered all over Egypt to gather stubble to use for straw. 13 The slave drivers kept pressing them, saying, “Complete the work required of you for each day, just as when you had straw.” 14 And Pharaoh’s slave drivers beat the Israelite overseers they had appointed, demanding, “Why haven’t you met your quota of bricks yesterday or today, as before?”

15 Then the Israelite overseers went and appealed to Pharaoh: “Why have you treated your servants this way? 16 Your servants are given no straw, yet we are told, ‘Make bricks!’ Your servants are being beaten, but the fault is with your own people.”

17 Pharaoh said, “Lazy, that’s what you are—lazy! That is why you keep saying, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to the Lord.’ 18 Now get to work. You will not be given any straw, yet you must produce your full quota of bricks.”

19 The Israelite overseers realized they were in trouble when they were told, “You are not to reduce the number of bricks required of you for each day.” 20 When they left Pharaoh, they found Moses and Aaron waiting to meet them, 21 and they said, “May the Lord look on you and judge you! You have made us obnoxious to Pharaoh and his officials and have put a sword in their hand to kill us.”

God Promises Deliverance

22 Moses returned to the Lord and said, “Why, Lord, why have you brought trouble on this people? Is this why you sent me? 23 Ever since I went to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has brought trouble on this people, and you have not rescued your people at all.”

New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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