Remembering the Exodus

Exodus 13:1-16

In the closing verses of the portion, God instructs Moses on various ways the Children of Israel are to commemorate the Exodus on an annual basis. In addition to celebrating Passover each year, the people are to dedicate their firstborn children and animals to God’s service, in appreciation for being saved from the Death of the Firstborn in Egypt; and males are to place phylacteries between their eyes and upon their arms each day as a sign of God’s strong arm in taking them out of Egypt.


God states that the people are to remember the day they left Egypt, saying it is in the month of Aviv, which means ‘springtime’. The Israel Bible asks why He makes a point of saying that it is the spring month. The answer: this shows us that God is compassionate, taking the Israelites out of slavery and on a desert journey at a time of year when the weather is most pleasant. It is also a time of rebirth, and what better time to establish the birth of a nation than spring!


Virtual Classroom Discussion

The commandments mentioned here, along with many others throughout the Torah, are specifically said to be to “remember this day in which ye came out of Egypt.” In fact, when it comes to giving a reason for a command, to remember leaving Egypt is the most popular one! Why do you think this is so fundamental?

Comments ( 7 )

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  • Herman Arentsen

    It is fundamental to remember repeatedly what you have been going through. Men forgets so easy. Things in this world are going so fast. Men is inclined to forget esp. the unagreable things. HaShem knows His people. For everybody is has so much value to G-d that he/she had to leave his/her exile, step out over the borders of easiness and go on their way to the promised (this is G-ds) land. Not staying around in bad surroundings, but getting out of your Egypt. Join your people and walk together the trail of G-ds Torah.

  • Angela B

    I think the reason we are told to remember the day we came out of Egypt is so that we never ever take our redemption for granted. We could have remained slaves, and oh! how it HURTS SO BADLY to be a slave, to live under HaSatan's oppression, his rules and ways. So for me whenever I remember this day, I am forever grateful, because I know how terrible it is to be a slave. One may argue that Yahweh had anyway promised that He would redeem Israel from Egypt; well, that is true, but this is all because He chose to love Israel; He could have chosen to love another people. This is why remembering this day is so important.

  • Kenneth Osterman

    The people of Israel experienced a great deliverance when they came out of Egypt from their bondage. They were free and going to a land of Milk & Honey.
    But the Lord left a few pages blank on the itinerary when he told Moses to lead them forth. We can look back through history and see that the people of Israel have not yet experienced the expected blessings.
    So, they through the ages adapt and remember this great deliverance with the hope of next year in Jerusalem and the fifth cup fulfilled.
    But Moses brought with the children of Israel the bones of Joseph because Joseph had faith of the greater deliverance. May we have the faith of Joseph and look to the greater deliverance referred to in Jeremiah 31:30-34
    But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the LORD, I will put My law in their inward parts, and in their heart will I write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people
    The LORD is bringing his people home, but His work in the heart is pending. We will know it complete sometime about when Joseph and the Fathers again walk in the Land that God gave to them and their seed.

  • Drew

    I have been getting the following in my inbox for a few years now and thought what a great place to share them. Of course if any objections i will delete.
    Bo (Exodus 10:1-13:16)

    12 great Torah Teasers.
    1. Aside from the actual plague of darkness, when else does the land of Egypt become dark?
    2. In what context is an “east wind” mentioned in this parsha? Where else in the book of Exodus is an east wind mentioned?
    3. The Red Sea is mentioned in Parshas Beshalach with regard to the splitting of the sea. In what context is it mentioned in this parsha – with regard to the ten plagues?
    4. Which name of a plague from Parshas Va’erah is also mentioned in this parsha? (2 answers)
    5. In this parsha, where is an animal hoof mentioned?
    6. In this parsha, where is a dog mentioned? What other two places in the Torah is a dog mentioned?
    7. In what way is the number 21 associated with the command to eat matzah?
    8. In what context are shoes mentioned in this parsha?
    9. Which law in this parsha involves a bone?
    10. In what context are shoulders mentioned?
    11. What two-letter word appears four times in this parsha, and has two different meanings?
    12. What two-letter word appears 27 times in this parsha and has four different meanings in the Torah?
    Answers next week:-)
    A teacher friend of mine gives them to her 8th graders, teaches them a little bit Hebrew and makes them go look things up themselves.
    I never get all the answers right..ever.

    • Na'ahma

      These are GREAT!! Torah study is all about the details. And these are definitely about details. Plus, who knows what revelations will come as a result? For me, I would love to have you continue to share!

  • Diana Brown

    After the LORD commands the children of Israel to remember Aviv as the first of the months for them and also that the firstborn of the womb, whether man or beast, belonged to Him, He reminds them HE IS THE LORD. The only who exiles for preservation and then redeems and returns. Pretty awesome I believe. Springtime always reminds us of seeds sown, beginning to sprout, with a harvest in the future. There is always Hope with a G-d who creates life and wants it to flourish until the whole earth is full of the knowledge of Him.

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