Now these are the names of the sons of Israel who came to Egypt with Jacob; they came each one with his household:
Reuben, Simeon, Levi and Judah;
Issachar, Zebulun and Benjamin;
Dan and Naphtali, Gad and Asher.
All the persons who came from the loins of Jacob were seventy in number, but Joseph was already in Egypt.
Joseph died, and all his brothers and all that generation.
But the sons of Israel were fruitful and increased greatly, and multiplied, and became exceedingly mighty, so that the land was filled with them.
Now a new king arose over Egypt, who did not know Joseph.
He said to his people, ``Behold, the people of the sons of Israel are more and mightier than we.
``Come, let us deal wisely with them, or else they will multiply and in the event of war, they will also join themselves to those who hate us, and fight against us and depart from the land."
So they appointed taskmasters over them to afflict them with hard labor. And they built for Pharaoh storage cities, Pithom and Raamses.
But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and the more they spread out, so that they were in dread of the sons of Israel.
The Egyptians compelled the sons of Israel to labor rigorously;
and they made their lives bitter with hard labor in mortar and bricks and at all kinds of labor in the field, all their labors which they rigorously imposed on them.
Then the king of Egypt spoke to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other was named Puah;
and he said, ``When you are helping the Hebrew women to give birth and see them upon the birthstool, if it is a son, then you shall put him to death; but if it is a daughter, then she shall live."
But the midwives feared God, and did not do as the king of Egypt had commanded them, but let the boys live.
So the king of Egypt called for the midwives and said to them, ``Why have you done this thing, and let the boys live?"
The midwives said to Pharaoh, ``Because the Hebrew women are not as the Egyptian women; for they are vigorous and give birth before the midwife can get to them."
So God was good to the midwives, and the people multiplied, and became very mighty.
Because the midwives feared God, He established households for them.
Then Pharaoh commanded all his people, saying, ``Every son who is born you are to cast into the Nile, and every daughter you are to keep alive."
Now a man from the house of Levi went and married a daughter of Levi.
The woman conceived and bore a son; and when she saw that he was beautiful, she hid him for three months.
But when she could hide him no longer, she got him a wicker basket and covered it over with tar and pitch. Then she put the child into it and set it among the reeds by the bank of the Nile.
His sister stood at a distance to find out what would happen to him.
The daughter of Pharaoh came down to bathe at the Nile, with her maidens walking alongside the Nile; and she saw the basket among the reeds and sent her maid, and she brought it to her.
When she opened it, she saw the child, and behold, the boy was crying. And she had pity on him and said, ``This is one of the Hebrews' children."
Then his sister said to Pharaoh's daughter, ``Shall I go and call a nurse for you from the Hebrew women that she may nurse the child for you?"
Pharaoh's daughter said to her, ``Go ahead. " So the girl went and called the child's mother.
Then Pharaoh's daughter said to her, ``Take this child away and nurse him for me and I will give you your wages." So the woman took the child and nursed him.
The child grew, and she brought him to Pharaoh's daughter and he became her son. And she named him Moses, and said, ``Because I drew him out of the water."
Now it came about in those days, when Moses had grown up, that he went out to his brethren and looked on their hard labors; and he saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his brethren.
So he looked this way and that, and when he saw there was no one around, he struck down the Egyptian and hid him in the sand.
He went out the next day, and behold, two Hebrews were fighting with each other; and he said to the offender, ``Why are you striking your companion?"
But he said, ``Who made you a prince or a judge over us? Are you intending to kill me as you killed the Egyptian?" Then Moses was afraid and said, ``Surely the matter has become known."
When Pharaoh heard of this matter, he tried to kill Moses. But Moses fled from the presence of Pharaoh and settled in the land of Midian, and he sat down by a well.
Now the priest of Midian had seven daughters; and they came to draw water and filled the troughs to water their father's flock.
Then the shepherds came and drove them away, but Moses stood up and helped them and watered their flock.
When they came to Reuel their father, he said, ``Why have you come back so soon today?"
So they said, ``An Egyptian delivered us from the hand of the shepherds, and what is more, he even drew the water for us and watered the flock."
He said to his daughters, ``Where is he then? Why is it that you have left the man behind? Invite him to have something to eat."
Moses was willing to dwell with the man, and he gave his daughter Zipporah to Moses.
Then she gave birth to a son, and he named him Gershom, for he said, ``I have been a sojourner in a foreign land."
Now it came about in the course of those many days that the king of Egypt died. And the sons of Israel sighed because of the bondage, and they cried out; and their cry for help because of their bondage rose up to God.
So God heard their groaning; and God remembered His covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
God saw the sons of Israel, and God took notice of them.
Now Moses was pasturing the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian; and he led the flock to the west side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God.
The angel of the LORD appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed.
So Moses said, ``I must turn aside now and see this marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up."
When the LORD saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, ``Moses, Moses!" And he said, ``Here I am."
Then He said, ``Do not come near here; remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground."
He said also, ``I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob." Then Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.
The LORD said, ``I have surely seen the affliction of My people who are in Egypt, and have given heed to their cry because of their taskmasters, for I am aware of their sufferings.
``So I have come down to deliver them from the power of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a good and spacious land, to a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanite and the Hittite and the Amorite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite.
``Now, behold, the cry of the sons of Israel has come to Me; furthermore, I have seen the oppression with which the Egyptians are oppressing them.
``Therefore, come now, and I will send you to Pharaoh, so that you may bring My people, the sons of Israel, out of Egypt."
But Moses said to God, ``Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the sons of Israel out of Egypt?"
And He said, ``Certainly I will be with you, and this shall be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall worship God at this mountain."
Then Moses said to God, ``Behold, I am going to the sons of Israel, and I will say to them, `The God of your fathers has sent me to you.' Now they may say to me, `What is His name?' What shall I say to them?"
God said to Moses, `` I AM WHO I AM"; and He said, ``Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, `I AM has sent me to you.'"
God, furthermore, said to Moses, ``Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, `The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.' This is My name forever, and this is My memorial-name to all generations.
``Go and gather the elders of Israel together and say to them, `The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, has appeared to me, saying, ``I am indeed concerned about you and what has been done to you in Egypt.
``So I said, I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt to the land of the Canaanite and the Hittite and the Amorite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite, to a land flowing with milk and honey."'
``They will pay heed to what you say; and you with the elders of Israel will come to the king of Egypt and you will say to him, `The LORD, the God of the Hebrews, has met with us. So now, please, let us go a three days' journey into the wilderness, that we may sacrifice to the LORD our God.'
``But I know that the king of Egypt will not permit you to go, except under compulsion.
``So I will stretch out My hand and strike Egypt with all My miracles which I shall do in the midst of it; and after that he will let you go.
``I will grant this people favor in the sight of the Egyptians; and it shall be that when you go, you will not go empty-handed.
``But every woman shall ask of her neighbor and the woman who lives in her house, articles of silver and articles of gold, and clothing; and you will put them on your sons and daughters. Thus you will plunder the Egyptians."