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12 Israel go out of his land. And Moses spake before the Lord,

saying, Behold, the children of Israel have not hearkened

unto me; how then shall Pharaoh hear me, who am of uncir13 cumcised lips? 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. 14

These be the heads of their fathers' houses : The sons of Reuben the first-born of Israel; Hanoch, and Pallu, Hezron, 15 and Carmi: these be the families of Reuben. And the sons

of Simeon; Jemuel, and Jamin, and Ohad, and Jachin, and Zohar, and Shaul the son of a Canaanitish woman : these are

the families of Simeon. 16 And these are the names of the sons of Levi according to

their generations ; Gershon, and Kohath, and Merari. And means, lit. shortening (cp. gasping of a sharp pain). It thus may represent here, utter impatience, of what is found unbearable completely, especially when the sufferer is thrown out of his expectation of relief, a disappointment sharp and sudden taking his breath away. Especially the point here is in spirit (cp. the side-thrust in Lu. ii. 35) the inmost deep of men, as overcome by this cruelty. The word for cruel here is that for hard in i. 14 (note there). Go out of his land (under iii. 18). The expression does not necessarily mean more than, go to the outside of Goshen. God was not bound to let Pharaoh know everything. He gave him enough of knowledge for his own guidance in duty (De. xxix. 29). But the expression (it is Heb. for exodus," see Introd. chap. i.) as here employed, without reservation or qualification, appears to mean, complete separation from Egypt :-clear away, a "flitting: After Pharaoh's refusal to obey the first request, an enlarged demand (witness the Sibyl with her Books) may be appropriate,-"froward to the froward.” 12, 13. The shrinking here (under iv. I, etc.) is natural after his experience of Israel (ver. 9). The argument is a fortiori : if there be failure with them, much more with Pharaoh. But the excuse (of unbelief) is the same as in Sinai (iv. 10-12). Uncircumcised lips : may refer to uncleanness or unworthiness of the speaker (Is. vi. 7), constituting moral unfitness to bear Jehovah's message. Perhaps not. And in any case it specially refers to the natural deficiency of Moses, pleaded as a physical disability. (Demosthenes was not kept by a stutter from being an orator, he wanted to be one.) There is now no record of rebuke (as in iv. 14). But there is recognition of the promised provision (iv. 14-16) as now made ;--"and the Lord spake unto Moses and unto Aaron." Charge: command. 14-27 is properly-Genealogy of the two leaders. Consequently the vidimus of the people is not completed except in relation to that. The details extend to families only with a reference to that one case. In relation to the two senior tribes, defining the place of Levi (as third), even that detail extends only to "heads of houses.” The external character of the genealogy is that of a careful extract from authentic records. 14. Fathers' houses : familia, divisions or subdivisions of tribes. The first-born : mark the corresponding place of honour (cp. under iv. 22). 15. A Canaanitish woman: here see the adoption (Ro. ix. 5). 16. Sons of

the years of the life of Levi were an hundred thirty and seven 17 years. The sons of Gershon; Libni and Shimi, according to 18 their families. And the sons of Kohath; Amram, and Izhar,

and Hebron, and Uzziel. And the years of the life of Kohath 19 were an hundred thirty and three years. And the sons of

Merari; Mahli and Mushi : these are the families of Levi, 20 according to their generations. And Amram took him

Jochebed his father's sister to wife: and she bare him Aaron and Moses; and the years of the life of Amram were an hundred and thirty and seven years.

And the sons of Izhar ; Korah, and Nepheg, and Zichri. 22 And the sons of Uzziel ; Mishael, and Elzaphan, and Zichri

. 23 And Aaron took him Elisheba, daughter of Amminadab,

sister of Naashon, to wife ; and she bare him Nadab and 24 Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar. And the sons of Korah;

Assir, and Elkanah, and Abiasaph: these are the families of 25 the Korhites. And Eleazar, Aaron's son, took him one of the

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Levi : here variously honoured. (1) They are specified, as if honour had gone to their father from them (cp. Abu-bekr, “father of the virgin”). (2) Minute details about their families with the children in these. (3) Above all, culmination in the two great leaders (of law and of priesthood). According to their generations : in the lines of their genealogy or descent." In Ex. i. 1, aster V' Ellèh Shemoth (these are the names”) we have, every man and his household.” One hundred years : cp. other lives in vers. 18, 20; as also, those of the patriarchs, and of Moses, Aaron, Miriam. This is eminently a long-lived race. The proverbial vital force of the Hebrews appears to have been peculiarly great in Levi (see under i. 19, and cp. xx. 12). There are long-lived families. The late Rev. Dr. Ingram of Unst, in Shetland, had his portrait taken when in his 104th year: his father (he told the present writer) had lived 95 years, and his grandfather, 102.

But that great age was rare in Israel: therefore, it is noted in a great history. 17. Gershom : oldest first. 18-20. Amram: this is not necessarily the Amram of ver. 20. The suggestion here, that the historian wants to make out the four generations of Ge. xv. 16, appears excessively jejune, - even for a scholar” who has forgotten to be a man. We know that in a genealogy names may be omitted, consistently with the purpose, namely to make manifest the line of descent. As to the numbers in this section, see Introd. on Exodus Chronology. Father's sister's wife. This is within the prohibited degrees of Lev. xviii., which in relation to marriage excludes all within the first degree, and makes affinity count as consanguinity. What are we to think of it? (1) Amram may have done wrong. (2) The law in such cases may not have been applied with strictness until the time of rehabilitation of natural law at Sinai. Jochebed (as to her name, note under ver. 3). Her name may indicate that she was of a peculiarly pious family. The history of her household (cp. He. xi. 23, “by faith,'

;" were not afraid ”) illustrates the proverb, that piety, though not running in the blood, runs in the line” (cp. 2 Ti. i. 3 and 5). 23. Elisheba, apparently in Judah’s tribe (1 Chron. ii. 3-10).

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daughters of Putiel to wife; and she bare him Phinehas:

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

the Lord said, Bring out the children of Israel from the land 27 of Egypt according to their armies. 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. 28 And it came to pass, on the day when the Lord spake unto 29 Moses in the land of Egypt, that the Lord spake unto Moses,

saying, I am the Lord : speak thou unto Pharaoh king of 30 Egypt all that I say unto thee. And Moses said before the

Lord, Behold, I am of uncircumcised lips, and how shall

Pharaoh hearken unto me? The priestly and kingly are here seen blending, as if " coming events cast their shadows before ' by anticipation (in the ancestry of Messiah, Mat. i. 3). 25. Putiel, supposed to come from an Egyptian word, put. It can come from Hebrew (“afflicted of God”), 26, 27. Aaron and Moses--Moses and Aaron : last first and first last : transition from the order of nature to that of God's new kingdom (Jn. i. 13). The plain straightforward statement of ver. 20 puts to shame the morbidly foolish invention, of a separation of husband and wife, followed by a reunion, all in order to manufacture, for the greatest man before Christ, a right of primogeniture in an obscure subdivision of Hebrews. His nobility was "by creation of God Almighty” (Robert Burns). 28–30 is a résumé. On the day: at the time when (as in Ge. ii. 4). Then-me. Bringing us up to the point of time at which Moses, charged with Jehovah's answer to the Egyptian king's defiance, (again) gave way to faint heart.

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Exercise 14. 1. Confidence in God. (1) Give a case of tempting God by pleading a promise

of God. (2) When are we clearly entitled to incur the peril against which there is a promise of protection ? (3) Does “faith” mean, being sure that

God will save us ? And why? 2. Nations and God. (1) Has a nation a right to serve God? Give your reason.

(2) If a nation have a right to serve God, can it have a right to make laws at variance with the Bible intimation of God's mind? Give your reason, (3) On the supposition that the nation is bound to serve God in Christ, show how this may affect the duty of individual citizens, and of the nation,

relatively to the law of marriage. 3. Primogeniture. (1) Give three Scripture cases in which the first-born was

placed first, and three in which he was not. (2) Give the reason of the preference, and of the absence of it, in the cases. (3) What natural reasons are there in favour of the custom of primogeniture? and show some case in

which these do not apply. Note on the statement as to the name, Jehovah, in vi. 3.—The substance of what seems necessary to be said on the whole subject is intimated in the Introduction and the notes on iii. 12-14. The statement in vi. 3, in its connection with what immediately follows, and with the framework of history at that point, shows that the publication of this name is to be regarded as a decisive new beginning in the manner of God's manifestation of Himself. The specialty of His manner of proceeding now is twofold. (1) He actually redeems His people

CHAP. VII. 1. And the Lord said unto Moses, See, I have made

thee a god to Pharaoh; and Aaron thy brother shall be thy 2 prophet. Thou shalt speak all that I command thee; and

(visible kingdom), and (2) He vindicates His claim to be owned as the only true and living God (the only true religion asserting supremacy).

The name revealed to Abraham, El Shaddai, may be regarded as equivalent to Nebuchadnezzar's Most High, representing the divine transcendency in relation to the universe and the world. What thus remains, as distinctive in the manifestation to Moses and through Mosaism, is, the redemptive grace of God, in effective application to mankind. If we take the description, the Covenant God, as distinguished from the Creator, that may enable us to understand the varied use of “ Jehovah” in Scripture.

SECOND APPEAL TO PHARAOH (vii. 1-13). The first appeal consisted in the message of Jehovah, delivered by His ambassadors, to the king of Egypt. The second appeal is constituted by miracle, in attestation of the divinity of the message, or of the divine mission of the ambassadors. This is the first occasion in history on which, on our side of the flood, the Bible religion addressed itself to the world of mankind, claiming to be received and honoured as divine. We therefore note with interest the fact, that-unlike the Sibyl-on this first occasion it offered evidence of its truth and divinity. That, we now find, was in the plan of the whole Egyptian Campaign. It was distinctly intimated to Moses and Aaron at the outset as being in the plan, and it appeared all through the work until the Passage of the Red' Sea, that the evidence of this religion was to accompany its claim to respect and obedience. Not only the Israelites, but all the Egyptians who were reached by this work, had, all the time, placed within their view visible proof that the claim which was now being made upon them was really made by the one Living and True God, the rightful King of earth as well as heaven. The significance of the counter-demonstration of the Egyptian miracle-workers, in connection with the heathen system of religion, will fall to be considered in due place. In the present section it falls to be considered as occasioning a test of the trustworthiness of that evidence, by which Israel's religion was shown to be the religion of the Living God, the real God.

1. A God (under iii. 16): not simply in that general sense in which (Ps. lxxxii. 1, 6; see under Ex. xxi. 6) magistrates may be spoken of as “gods," but in the specific sense, of authoritatively prescribing, so that the speech of Aaron is oracular for Pharaoh, since in Moses he has to deal with God. Prophet : here, as appears from the after proceedings, not only in special, one who foretells, predicting what God has decreed, but also in general, one who forth-tells, declaring what God now commands. Abraham was a prophet (nabhi, Ge. xx. 7), in respect of intimacy with God, qualifying him for efficacious intercession on a man's behalf. But now, the official prophet is one, whose appropriate work it is authoritatively to declare God's mind to men, whether that mind be regarding the future, or the present, or, though it should be, the past. No means are left unemployed for conveying the

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Aaron thy brother shall speak unto Pharaoh, that he send the 3 children of Israel out of his land. And I will harden Pharaoh's

heart, and multiply my signs and my wonders in the land of 4 Egypt. But Pharaoh shall not hearken unto you, that I may

lay my hand upon Egypt, and bring forth mine armies, and

my people the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt, by 5 great judgments. And the Egyptians shall know that I am the

Lord, when I stretch forth mine hand upon Egypt, and bring 6 out the children of Israel from among them. And Moses and 7 Aaron did as the Lord commanded them, so did they. And

Moses was fourscore years old, and Aaron fourscore and three

years old, when they spake unto Pharaoh. 8 And the Lord spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying, 9 When Pharaoh shall speak unto you, saying, Show a miracle

for you: then thou shalt say unto Aaron, Take thy rod, and

cast it before Pharaoh, and it shall become a serpent. message to its destination. And a leading means employed is, an ambassador, a “messenger duly authorized. Send: not simply, give him leave to, but commission him, command and authorize him (cp. vi. I). 3, 4. hard saying.' To Pharaoh himself it will by and by be plainly said (ix. 16), that "for this very end” God hath raised him up. Harden (note on Induration, under iv. 18-31). In iv. 21 the word (Chasaq) means, lit. to make stiff, or, strong (cp.“ stiff-necked," "unbending obstinacy”). Here it (quashah) means, to make hard (“heart of stone”), as if producing insensibility (Eph. iv. 19, 20) to rational influences (He. vi. 4-8). This is ascribed to God's action (cp. Ro. i. 18), for accomplishment of His own purpose (Mat. xiii. 13-15): that purpose being, not simply to deliver Israel, but to do this manifestly by the Lord's hand upon Egypt. Hence, mine armies, and my people (the and of our Version here is needless, and so a weakness). Israel is delivered as being Jehovah's. And this has to be shown (see on the spoiling, under iii. 22) by the manner of the exodus. That departure is not to be a flight, or an escape, but a triumph over prostrate enemies (great judgments). Thus, that I may: perhaps better, and I will. 5. Here again that hand (Da. v. 5-9). When bring out: lit. in my stretching--and bringing. That hand, when extended, will compel a feeling of the reality, so scornfully repelled now (v. 2). 6. Exact obedience : “ pure and entire.” 7. This, marked as an ever memorable point of time, turning on the hinge of these two lives (on their length see under vi., note on genealogy) at this moment. The foolish representation of Moses, as a feeble old man leaning on a crutch, is the opposite of historical (De. xxxiv. 7). Did (this) Pharaoh ask them about their ages (Ge. xlvii. 8)? 8, 9. Miracle : the Heb. word here is (mõphěth) not (ôlh) the ordinary Old Testament word for “sign,” but the vaguer one for “wonder”—perhaps, terrific wonder, like a heathen prodigy or “monster” (see on miracle in Introd.). Pharaoh, like Herod, might desire to see a miracle out of simple or morbid curiosity. Rod: their whole munition of war (Ge. iv. 6). See note under iv. Only to point, not, to strike : this time no one is hurt. But this is prelusive warning of the judgment strokes.

10-13. The word for serpent here (tannin) is not, as in

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