Page images
PDF
EPUB

6. And Pharaoh' commanded the same day the task masters of

the people, and their officers, Israelites who were employed una 7 der the task masters, saying, Ye shall no more give the people

straw to make brick, as heretofore, to mingle with the clay, or rather, to burn the bricks with : let them go and gather straw 8 for themselves. And the tale of the bricks, which they did make heretofore, ye shall lay upon them ; ye shall not diminish (aught thereof; for they (be) idle, they have not work

enough, and their minds wander ; therefore they cry, saying, 9 Let us go [and] sacrifice to our God. Let there more work be laid upon the men, that they may labour therein ; and let

them not regard vain words, and what these men say unto them. 10 And the task masters of the people went out, and their of

ficers, and they spake to the people, saying, Thus saith Pha11 raoh, I will not give you straw. Go ye, get ye straw where

ye can find it : yet not aught of your work shall be dimin12 ished. So the people were scattered abroad throughout all 13 the land of Egypt to gather stubble instead of straw. And

the task masters hasted (them,] saying, Fulfil your works, 14 [your] daily tasks, as when there was straw. And the of.

ficers of the children of Israel, which Pharaoh's task masters - had set over them, were beaten, [and] demanded, Where-'

fore have ye not fulfilled your task in making brick both yes-'

terday and today, as heretofore ? 25 Then the officers of the children of Israel came and cried

unto Pharaoh,* saying, Wherefore dealest thou thus with 16 thy servants ? There is no straw given unto thy servants, and

they say to us, Make brick : and, behold, thy servants [are] 17 beaten ; but the fault [is] in thine own people. But he said,

Ye [arc] idle, [ye are] idle : therefore ye say, Let us go, [and] do sacrifice to the Lord, This was a bitter sarcasm ; when

their hearts were broken with the extremities of their labours, they 18 are taxed with idleness. He then ratifies the command; Go there."

fore now, [and] work ; for there shall no straw be given you, 19 yet shall ye deliver the tale of bricks. And the officers of the

children of Israel did see [that] they (were] in evil [case,] after it was said, Ye shall not minish (aught] from your

bricks of your daily task. | 20 And they met Moses and Aaron, who stood in the way,

waiting to know what success they had met with, as they came' 21 forth from Pharaoh : And they said unto them, in a violent

passion, The LORD look upon you, and judge ; because you have made our savour to be abhorred in the eves of Pharaoh, and in the eyes of his servants, to put a sword in their hand to slay us ; you have been the cause of increasing our burdens

. In those davs the meanest of the people had access to their prince ; and their buss." alss now was to know whether it was his order or not.

22

and punishment. They began to suspect their divine commis. sion, and used God's messengers in this cruel and outrageous таппеr.

And Moses returned unto the Lord; he betook himself to some retired place, where he might pour out and present his own, and the people's distress unto God, and said, with too much heal,

Lord, wherefore hast thou (so] evil cntreated this people ? 23 why [is] it (that) thou hast sent me ? For since I came to

Pharaoh to speak in thy name, he hath done evil to this people ; neither hast thou delivered thy people at all, as thou hast promised.

CHAP. VI. Then the LORD, pitying the warmth and weakness of his servant, said unto Moses, As thou canst make nothing of Pharaoh, I will take him in hand, and humble this proud prince ; now shalt thou see what I will do to Pharaoh : for with a strong hand shall he let them go, and with a strong hand shall he drive them out of his land ; he who now so insolently refuses to let them go, shall even be glad to drive them out of his land, because of the terrible judgments which I shall inflict upon him.

REFLECTIONS.

1. INTE may observe that those who do not know God are

V the persons who refuse to obey him, v.2. And Pharaoh said, Who is the LORD, that I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I know not the LORD, neither will I let Israel go. While men are ignorant of God, and neglect his service, they say this, if not in words, yet by their actions. It is a sad thing to be ignorant of God : the more we know of him, the more we shall love him, and more cheerfully and steadily obey him.

2. The displeasure of God must be expected, where the known duties of his service are omitted. If we neglect his worship in public, in our families, or in secret, he will be displeased, and we must expect to meet the tokens of his anger. God is jealous of his honour, and will not suffer his creatures to neglect his work. The best security for his favour, is to walk in all his statutes and ordinances blameless.

3. God often brings his people into extremities, that he may magnify his mercy in their extraordinary deliverance. Persecutions are often most extreme, whep liberty is near. Thus God manifests his power and justice over his enemies, and his favour and mercy to his friends. Deliverance is nearest when difficulties are greatest, for then their desires of deliverance are most earnest, and they put the greatest value upon it.

4. It is no new thing for worldly minded men to charge religion with idleness ; Ye are idle. Luther tells us, he once heard a great man say, “They must nceds bc idle fellow's who are so much taken up with the business of religion. Any thing scenis proper work to a carnal mind, but God's service ; nothing is superfluous to them, but religious duties; though true religion will make a man diligent in his business. Industry is a duty which we owe to God, to our families, and to the public ; and religious duties should be so timed as not to interfere with worldly business ; and this may easily be done : but any time that is separated for religious purposes, is apt to be reckoned lost time by men of the world. Yet let such remember, that if a man be ever so diligent in worldly business, if he rise up early, and sit un late, and eat the breed of sorrows, and at the same time neglect religion, he will be condemned at last as a slothful servant.

5. How ready are men in aMiction to quarrel with their best friends! Moses and Aaron promised the Israelites deliverance, but, because it did not come at the time they expected, they were insulted and abused by them. Persons in affliction often censure their best friends ; but let us guard against this temper. Israel never needed the pity and prayers of Moses and Aaron so much, as when they were quarrelling with them and reproaching them.

6. Those whom God calls to public services must seek their comfort in him, when things wear a discouraging aspect among those to whom they are sent. The officers insulted Moses, and Moses returned to the Lord, when disappointed in his attempts of service. Thus should ministers and christian parents do ; lay the case before God, plead before him their sincere, though feeble endeavours : plead his promises, and then they may hope that in his good time things will take a more favourable turn. However, though they labour in vain, and spend their strength for nought, this is their comfort, that their work is with the Lord, and their judgment with their God.

CHAP. VI, 2, to the end.

God renerus his promises to Israck by Moses ; and encourages him

in his addresses to them and to Pharuoh. 2 AND God spake unto Moses, and said unto him, I [am] 3 A the LORD: And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac,

and unto Jacob, by (the name of] God Almighty, and displayed to them my great power', but by my name JEHOVAI was I not known to them ; that is, he had dispiayed his Almighty power, but not his immutability and faithfulness to his promises, which the word Jchovah principially signifes. He had promised many things to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and now they shall see them acco nplished, and perceive the name Jehovah was fully answered in all its import. See Isaiah lii.

.4 5., 6.* And I have also established my covenant with them,

to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage, 5 wherein they were strangers. And I have also heard the

groaning of the children of Israel, whom the Egyptians keep 6 in bondage ; and I have remembered my covenant. Where,

fore say unto the children of Israel, I [am] the Lord, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rid you out of their bondage, and I will redeem you

with a stretched out arm, with great power, and with great 7 judgments, which I will inflict upon them : And I will take

you to me for a people, under mine own immediate government, and you shall know and serve me, and enjoy all manner of temporal and spiritual blessings, and I will be to you a God : and

ye shall know that I [am] the LORD your God, which bring8 eth you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. And

I will bring you in unto the land, concerning the which I did swear to give it to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob ; and I will give it you for an heritage ; I sam] the LORD, and therefore have authority to dispose of lands and kingdoms as I please, and

will faithfully give you what I have promised. 9 And Moses spake so unto the children of Israel : but they hearkened not unto Moses for anguish of spirit, and for cruel bondage ; they could neither mind what he said, nor believe any thing concerning their deliverance, judging it to be impossible.

And Moses went to the place where he used to converse with 10 God, And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Go in, speak 11. unto Pharaoh king of Egypt, that he let the children of 12 Israel go out of his land. And Moses spake before the LORD,

saying, Behold, the children of Israel have not hearkened un

to me ; how then shall Pharaoh hear me, who [am] of un13 circumcised lips ?t And the LORD spake unto Moses and

unto Aaron, and gave them a charge unto the children of Israel, and unto Pharaoh king of Egypt, to bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt. Now follows the genealogy

of Reuben, Simeon, and Levi. 14 These [be] the heads of their fathers' houses ; the sons of

Reuben the firstborn of Israel ; Hanoch, and Pallu, Hezron,

and Carmi : these [be] the families of Reuben. 15 And the sons of Simeon ; Jemuel, and Jamin, and Ohad, · and Jachin, and Zohar, and Shaul the son of a Canaanitish

* But my name Fehovah I did not make manifest te them. Kennicott. It appears from many passages in Genesis, and particularly from chap xxii. 14 that the name Jehovah was known to them, though they might not under tand its full import. But if we only change the pointing, and read the passage with an interrogation, it removes the difficulty ; Did noi loppear to Abraham by the name of God Almighty, and by my name Jchovah was I not nous to them?

Circumcision being a mark of God's people, uncircumcision was reckoned a blemish; so that any thing which had a blemish, tural or moral, was called uncircumcised. Moe Ses pleads, that he had a liemish or defect in his speech, and was therefore unable to speak in a prevailing manner. Nevertheless God confirined the charge, v. 15.

woman : these [are] the families of Simeon. Moses inave ing just mentioned these, enlarges on the tribe or genealogy of Levi, from whom he himself was descended, and this was the

more necessary, as he was a foundling. 16 And these are the names of the sons of Levi according

to their generations ; Gershon, and Kohath, and Merari : and

the years of the life of Levi (were] an hundred thirty and 17 seven years. The sons of Gershon ; Libni, and Shimi, ac18 cording to their families. And the sons of Kohath ; Ani

ram, and Izhar, and Hebron, and Uzziel : and the years of

the life of Kohath (were] an hundred thirty and three years. 19 And the sons of Merari; Mahali, and Mushi : these sare] 20 the families of Levi according to their generations. And

Amram took him Jochebed his father's sister, or kinswoman. to wife ; and she bare him Aaron and Moses, and Miriam

(see Numb. xxvi. 59.) and the years of the life of Amram 21 [were] an hundred and thirty and seven years. And the sons 22 of Izhar ; Korah, and Nepheg, and Zithri. And the sons of 23 Uzziel ; Mishael, and Elzaphan, and Zithri. And Aaron took

him Elisheba, or El sabeth, daughter of Amminadab, sister of

Naashon, to wife ; and she bare him Nadab, and Abihu, Ele24 azar, and Ithamar. And the sons of Korah ; Assir, and El

kanah, and Abiasaph : these [are) the families of the Korhites, 25 And Eleazar Aaron's son took him (one) of the daughters of

Putiel to wife ; and she bare him Phinehas: these [are] the

heads of the fathers of the Levites according to their families. 26 These are] that Aaron and Moses, to whom the LORD said,

Bring out the children of Israel from the land of Egypt according to their armies, or numerous families, which went out

of Egypt, like several armies in military order, and with great 27 power. These [are] they which spake to Pharaoh king of

Egypt, to bring out the children of Israel from Egypt: these [are] that Moses and Aaron.

And it came to pass on the day [when] the Lord spake 29 unto Moses in the land of Egypt, That the Lord spake unto

Moses, saying, I (am) the LORD: speak thou unto Pharaoh 30 king of Egypt all that I say unto thee. And Moses said be,

fore the Lord, Behold, I [am] of uncircumcised lips, and how shall Pharaoh hearken unto me ? Moses reports what passed between him and God, to make way for what follows in the next chahter.

« PreviousContinue »