Exodus 11
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1  And Hashem said to Moshe, “I will bring but one more plague upon Pharaoh and upon Egypt; after that he shall let you go from here; indeed, when he lets you go, he will drive you out of here one and all.

א  וַיֹּאמֶר יְהֹוָה אֶל־מֹשֶׁה עוֹד נֶגַע אֶחָד אָבִיא עַל־פַּרְעֹה וְעַל־מִצְרַיִם אַחֲרֵי־כֵן יְשַׁלַּח אֶתְכֶם מִזֶּה כְּשַׁלְּחוֹ כָּלָה גָּרֵשׁ יְגָרֵשׁ אֶתְכֶם מִזֶּה׃

2  Tell the people to borrow, each man from his neighbor and each woman from hers, objects of silver and gold.”

ב  דַּבֶּר־נָא בְּאָזְנֵי הָעָם וְיִשְׁאֲלוּ אִישׁ מֵאֵת רֵעֵהוּ וְאִשָּׁה מֵאֵת רְעוּתָהּ כְּלֵי־כֶסֶף וּכְלֵי זָהָב׃

3  Hashem disposed the Egyptians favorably toward the people. Moreover, Moshe himself was much esteemed in the land of Egypt, among Pharaoh’s courtiers and among the people.

va-yi-TAYN a-do-NAI et KHAYN ha-AM b’-ay-NAY mitz-RA-yim GAM ha-EESH mo-SHEH ga-DOL m’-OD b’-E-retz mitz-RA-yim b’-ay-NAY av-DAY far-OH uv-ay-NAY ha-AM

ג  וַיִּתֵּן יְהֹוָה אֶת־חֵן הָעָם בְּעֵינֵי מִצְרָיִם גַּם הָאִישׁ מֹשֶׁה גָּדוֹל מְאֹד בְּאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם בְּעֵינֵי עַבְדֵי־פַרְעֹה וּבְעֵינֵי הָעָם׃

 11:3   Hashem disposed the Egyptians favorably toward the people

What transpires at this time that causes the Egyptians to finally find value in the Jewish nation and Moshe? Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch posits that after the plague of darkness, when the Egyptians were able to see again, they finally acknowledge the morality of the people they have cruelly enslaved. For three days, Egypt was blind and immobilized; the Jews could have easily taken advantage of this situation. Yet, when the light returns at the conclusion of the plague, the Egyptians discover that nothing has been moved from its rightful place. At this juncture, the Egyptians stand in awe of the Jewish people and Moshe, their leader. The Jewish mission is to be a light unto the nations, an example of honesty, morality and closeness to Hashem. When the People of Israel live up to this mission, the world is in awe.1 comment

4  Moshe said, “Thus says Hashem: Toward midnight I will go forth among the Egyptians,

ד  וַיֹּאמֶר מֹשֶׁה כֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה כַּחֲצֹת הַלַּיְלָה אֲנִי יוֹצֵא בְּתוֹךְ מִצְרָיִם׃

5  and every first-born in the land of Egypt shall die, from the first-born of Pharaoh who sits on his throne to the first-born of the slave girl who is behind the millstones; and all the first-born of the cattle.

ה  וּמֵת כָּל־בְּכוֹר בְּאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם מִבְּכוֹר פַּרְעֹה הַיֹּשֵׁב עַל־כִּסְאוֹ עַד בְּכוֹר הַשִּׁפְחָה אֲשֶׁר אַחַר הָרֵחָיִם וְכֹל בְּכוֹר בְּהֵמָה׃

6  And there shall be a loud cry in all the land of Egypt, such as has never been or will ever be again;

ו  וְהָיְתָה צְעָקָה גְדֹלָה בְּכָל־אֶרֶץ מִצְרָיִם אֲשֶׁר כָּמֹהוּ לֹא נִהְיָתָה וְכָמֹהוּ לֹא תֹסִף׃

7  but not a dog shall snarl at any of the Israelites, at man or beast—in order that you may know that Hashem makes a distinction between Egypt and Yisrael.

ז  וּלְכֹל בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לֹא יֶחֱרַץ־כֶּלֶב לְשֹׁנוֹ לְמֵאִישׁ וְעַד־בְּהֵמָה לְמַעַן תֵּדְעוּן אֲשֶׁר יַפְלֶה יְהֹוָה בֵּין מִצְרַיִם וּבֵין יִשְׂרָאֵל׃

8  Then all these courtiers of yours shall come down to me and bow low to me, saying, ‘Depart, you and all the people who follow you!’ After that I will depart.” And he left Pharaoh’s presence in hot anger.

ח  וְיָרְדוּ כָל־עֲבָדֶיךָ אֵלֶּה אֵלַי וְהִשְׁתַּחֲוּוּ־לִי לֵאמֹר צֵא אַתָּה וְכָל־הָעָם אֲשֶׁר־בְּרַגְלֶיךָ וְאַחֲרֵי־כֵן אֵצֵא וַיֵּצֵא מֵעִם־פַּרְעֹה בָּחֳרִי־אָף׃

9  Now Hashem had said to Moshe, “Pharaoh will not heed you, in order that My marvels may be multiplied in the land of Egypt.”

ט  וַיֹּאמֶר יְהֹוָה אֶל־מֹשֶׁה לֹא־יִשְׁמַע אֲלֵיכֶם פַּרְעֹה לְמַעַן רְבוֹת מוֹפְתַי בְּאֶרֶץ מִצְרָיִם׃

10  Moshe and Aharon had performed all these marvels before Pharaoh, but Hashem had stiffened the heart of Pharaoh so that he would not let the Israelites go from his land.

י  וּמֹשֶׁה וְאַהֲרֹן עָשׂוּ אֶת־כָּל־הַמֹּפְתִים הָאֵלֶּה לִפְנֵי פַרְעֹה וַיְחַזֵּק יְהֹוָה אֶת־לֵב פַּרְעֹה וְלֹא־שִׁלַּח אֶת־בְּנֵי־יִשְׂרָאֵל מֵאַרְצוֹ׃

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Exodus 12

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Exodus 11

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