Chapter 3

  1. And afterward, Moses and Aaron went in and told Pharaoh, Thus says the Lord God of Israel: Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness. 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. And they said, The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Let us go, we urge you, three days’ journey into the desert and sacrifice unto the Lord our God, lest he fall upon us with pestilence or with the sword. And the king of Egypt said unto them, Why do you, Moses and Aaron, lead the people from their works? Get unto your burdens. And Pharaoh said, Behold, the people of the land now are many, and you make them rest from their burdens.
  2. And Pharaoh commanded the same day the taskmasters of the people and their officers, saying, You shall no more give the people straw to make brick as before now; let them go and gather straw for themselves. And the quota of the bricks which they did make before now you shall lay upon them. You shall not diminish any thereof, for they are idle; therefore, they cry, saying, Let us go and sacrifice to our God. Let there more work be laid upon the men, that they may labor therein, and let them not regard vain words. And the taskmasters of the people went out, and their officers, and they spoke to the people, saying, Thus says Pharaoh: I will not give you straw. Go, get straw where you can find it, yet none of your work shall be diminished. So the people were scattered abroad throughout all the land of Egypt to gather stubble instead of straw. And the taskmasters hastened them, saying, Fulfill your works, your daily tasks, as when there was straw. And the officers of the children of Israel, whom Pharaoh’s taskmasters had set over them, were beaten and demanded, Why have you not fulfilled your task in making brick both yesterday and today as before now? Then the officers of the children of Israel came and cried unto Pharaoh, saying, Why do you deal thus with your servants? There is no straw given unto your servants, and they say to us, Make brick. And behold, your servants are beaten, but the fault is in your own people. But he said, You are idle; you are idle, therefore you say, Let us go and do sacrifice to the Lord. Go therefore now and work, for there shall no straw be given you, yet shall you deliver the quota of bricks. And the officers of the children of Israel did see that they were in trouble after it was said, You shall not diminish any from your bricks of your daily task. And they met Moses and Aaron, who stood in the way as they came forth from Pharaoh. And they said unto them, The Lord look upon you and judge, because you have made our savor to be abhorred in the eyes of Pharaoh and in the eyes of his servants, to put a sword in their hand to slay us.
  3. And Moses returned unto the Lord and said, Lord, why have you so evil treated this people? Why is it that you have sent me? For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has done evil to this people, neither have you delivered your people at all.