The institution of the judges (Ex 18:13-18:27)

“The next day Moses sat as judge for the people, while the people stood around him from morning until evening.  When Moses’ father-in-law saw all that he was doing for the people, he said, ‘What is this that you are doing for the people?  Why do you sit alone, while all the people stand around you from morning until evening?’ Moses said to his father-in-law, ‘Because the people come to me to inquire of God.  When they have a dispute, they come to me and I decide between one person and another, and I make known to them the statues and instructions of God.’   Moses’ father-in-law said to him, ‘What you are doing is not good.  You will surely wear yourself out, both you and these people with you.  For the task is too heavy for you, you cannot do it alone.  Now listen to me.  I will give you counsel, and God be with you!  You should represent the people before God, and you should bring their cases before God.  Teach them the statues and instructions.  Make known to them the way they are to go and the things that they are to do.  You should also look for able men among all the people, men who fear God, are trustworthy, and hate dishonest gain, set them as officers over thousands, hundred, fifties, and tens.  Let them sit as judges for the people at all times.  Let them bring every important case to you, but decide every minor case themselves.  So it will be easier for you, and they will bear the burden with you.  If you do this, and God so commands you, then you will be able to endure, and all these people will go to their home in peace.’”

The next day Moses sat as judge for the people from morning until evening.  Then Jethro said to Moses, why are you doing this for all the people.  Moses replied that the people come to me to inquire of God or when they have a dispute.    Jethro said that Moses was going to wear himself out with this heavy load.  Both of these guys were old, if Moses was 80 then his father-in-law was up in the 100s.  Jethro told him to teach others the statues and instructions, instead of having everyone come to him.  Find some able men who fear God and are trustworthy.  Make them officers over thousands, hundred, fifties, and tens.  Let them judge the minor cases so that you only decide the important cases.

“So Moses listened to his father-in-law and did all that he had said.  Moses chose able men from all Israel.  He appointed them as heads over the people, as officers over thousands, hundreds, fifties, and tens. They judged the people at all times.  Hard cases they brought to Moses, but any minor case they decided themselves.  Then Moses let his father-in-law depart, and he went off to his own country.”

Moses listened to his father-in-law. Then his father-in-law went back to his own country in Midian.  There is no indication what happened to Moses’ wife and children.  Thus this institution of the judges made life simpler for Moses.

The meeting of Jethro and Moses (Ex 18:1-18:12)

“Jethro, the priest of Midian, Moses’ father-in-law, heard of all that God had done for Moses and for his people Israel, how Yahweh had brought Israel out of Egypt.  After Moses had sent away his wife Zipporah, his father-in-law Jethro took her back, along with her two sons.   The name of one was Gershom.  For he said, ‘I have been an alien in a foreign land.’   The name of the other is Eliezer.  For he said, ‘The God of my father was my help, and delivered me from the sword of Pharaoh.’   Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, came into the wilderness where Moses was encamped at the mountain of God, bringing Moses’ sons and his wife to him.  He sent word to Moses, ‘I, your father-in-law Jethro am coming to you, with your wife and her two sons.’  Moses went out to meet his father-in-law.  He bowed down, and kissed him.  Each asked after the other’s welfare, and they went into the tent. Then Moses told his father-in-law all that Yahweh had done to Pharaoh and to the Egyptians for Israel’s sake, all the hardship that had beset them on the way, and how Yahweh had delivered them.”

Here the family of Moses at Midian makes an appearance.  Jethro, Moses’ father in law, the priest of Midian, met Moses at the mountain of God that according to chapter 4 was Horeb in Midian.  Jethro brought Moses’ wife and two sons with him.  However, in chapter 4, they went with Moses to Egypt, but here it says that Moses had sent away his wife and two sons, apparently because things were tricky in Egypt.  There was no mention of a second son in chapter 2, just Gershom and an explanation of this name.  In chapter 4, it says Moses took his sons, but never mentioned the name of Eliezer or the explanation of his name like here.  Eliezer’s name implies a problem with Pharaoh.  Moses went out to meet his father-in-law. Interesting enough, there is more emphasis on their reunion rather than with his wife and children.  This is probably from the Elohist tradition.

“Jethro rejoiced for all the good that Yahweh had done to Israel, in delivering them from the Egyptians.  Jethro said, ‘Blessed be Yahweh, who has delivered you from the Egyptians and from Pharaoh.  Now I know that Yahweh is greater than all gods, because he delivered the people from the Egyptians, when they dealt arrogantly with them.  Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law brought a burnt offering and sacrifices to God.  Aaron came with all the elders of Israel to eat bread with Moses’ father-in-law in the presence of God.”

Jethro rejoiced for all the good that Yahweh had done. He is now sure that Yahweh is greater than all gods, because of what he did to the Egyptians.  He brought a burnt offering and sacrifices to God.  Then Aaron and the elders of Israel broke bread with Moses’ father-in-law.  Obviously, the priest of Midian is now clear that Yahweh is the god of gods.

The battle with Amalek (Ex 17:8-17:16)

“Then Amalek came and fought with Israel at Rephidim.   Moses said to Joshua, ‘Choose some men for us, and go out, fight with Amalek.  Tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the staff of God in my hand.’  So Joshua did as Moses told him, and fought with Amalek, while Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill.  Whenever Moses held up his hand, Israel prevailed.  Whenever he lowered his hand, Amalek prevailed.  But Moses’ hands grew weary.  So they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat upon it.  Aaron and Hur held up his hands, one on one side and other on the other side.  So his hands were steady until the sun set.  Joshua defeated Amalek and his people with the sword.”

The Amalekites were a desert tribe that controlled some of the wilderness.  Amalek was the grandson of Esau, according to Genesis, chapter 36, the son of Esau’s son Eliphaz with his concubine, Timna, thus one of the bad folks. Whether it was him or not, clearly the allusion to a grandson of Esau as opposed to great-grandson of Jacob is clearly indicated.   Moses called Joshua to lead a select team of warriors to fight Amalek.  This is the first mention of Joshua.  Moses stands on the top of a hill with the staff of God in his hand.  Aaron and Hur went with Moses to the top of the hill.  This mysterious Hur was somehow related to Miriam or died in some battle according to some rabbinical sources.  However, Exodus has only one other mention of him and that is on a mountain with Aaron in chapter 24.  Whenever Moses held up his hand, Israel prevailed; and whenever he lowered his hand, Amalek prevailed.  Moses got tired so he sat on a stone while Aaron and Hur helped him hold up his hands.  Finally Joshua defeated Amalek.

“Yahweh said to Moses, ‘Write this as a reminder in a book and recite it in the hearing of Joshua.  I will utterly blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.’ Moses built an altar and called it, Yahweh is my banner.  He said, ‘A hand upon the banner of Yahweh.  Yahweh will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.’”

To commemorate
this event, Yahweh told Moses to write it in a book as a reminder of Joshua’s battle.  This is the first mention of a book to be written by Moses.  Yahweh wanted to blot out the memory of Amalek.  They really did not like this guy.  Moses built an altar here called Yahweh is my banner.  There probably will be more wars with these guys.

Water from the rock (Ex 17:1-17:7)

“From the wilderness of Sin the whole congregation of the Israelites journeyed by stages, as Yahweh commanded.  They camped at Rephidim, but there was no water for the people to drink.  The people quarreled with Moses, and said, ‘Give us water to drink.’  Moses said to them, ‘Why do you quarrel with me?  Why do you test Yahweh?’  But the people thirsted there for water, and the people complained against Moses, and said, ‘Why did you bring us out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and livestock with thirst?  So Moses cried out to Yahweh, ‘What shall I do with this people?  They are almost ready to stone me.’  Yahweh said to Moses, ‘Go on ahead of the people, and take some of the elders of Israel with you.  Take in your hand the staff with which you struck the Nile, and go.  I will be standing there in front of you on the rock at Horeb.  Strike the rock, and water will come out of it, so that the people may drink.’  Moses did so, in the sight of the elders of Israel.   He called the place Massah and Meribah, because of the Israelites quarreled and tested Yahweh, ‘Is Yahweh among us or not?’”

They went to Rephidim, a little further southwest, but there was no water there.  Once again they complained. This certainly was a complaining group, and Moses asked them why they were quarreling with him and testing Yahweh.  They complained some more when they said that they would be better off if they stayed in Egypt.  So Moses asked Yahweh, ‘What shall I do with these people?’  Then Yahweh told him to take his staff and go to a rock at Horeb and strike the rock, and water will come out of it. So he decided to call this place Massah and Meribah, because the Israelites tested Yahweh here.  The place seems to have two names.  This worked because water was beneath the limestone in the Sinai area.  It is difficult to tell who is doing the complaining and how widespread it is.  With 600,000 men, it would be easy to find some people who would be complaining all the time.

 

Manna and quails (Ex 16:1-16:36)

“The whole congregation of the Israelites set out from Elim.  Israel came to the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after they had departed from the land of Egypt.   The whole congregation of the Israelites complained against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness.  The Israelites said to them, ‘If only we had died by the hand of Yahweh in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the fleshpots and ate our fill of bread.  You have brought us out into the wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.’”

They set out from Elim, into the wilderness of Sin, between Elim and Sinai.  They began to complain.  Would it not have been better to die in Egypt where they could eat bread whenever they were hungry?

“Then Yahweh said to Moses, ‘I am going to rain bread from heaven for you, and each day the people shall go out and gather enough for that day.  By this way I will test them whether they will follow my instructions or not.  On the sixth day, when they prepare what they bring in, it will be twice as much as they gather on other days.’   So Moses and Aaron said to all the Israelites, ‘In the evening you shall know that it was Yahweh who brought you out of the land of Egypt, and in the morning you shall see the glory of Yahweh, because he has heard your complaining against Yahweh.  For what are we, that you complain against us?’  Moses said, ‘Yahweh gives you meat to eat in the evening and your fill of bread in the morning, because Yahweh has heard your complaining that you utter against him.  What are we?  Your complaining is not against us but against Yahweh.’”

Yahweh told Moses that he was going to rain bread from heaven each day.  This was a test to see if they could follow instructions.   Moses warned that their complaining against him was actual complaints against Yahweh.

 “Then Moses said to Aaron, ‘Say to the whole congregation of the Israelites, draw near to Yahweh, for he has heard your complaining.’   And as Aaron spoke to the whole congregation of the Israelites, they looked toward the wilderness, and the glory of Yahweh appeared in the cloud.  Yahweh spoke to Moses and said, ‘I have heard the complaints of the Israelites.  Say to them, At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall have your fill of bread.  Then you shall know that I am Yahweh, your God.’”

Aaron gathered all the people as the glory of Yahweh appeared in a cloud.  Yahweh told Moses that he had heard their complaints so that he was going to send meat and bread.  This way they would know that Yahweh was their God.

“In the evening quails came up and covered the camp.  And in the morning there was a layer of dew around the camp.   When the layer of dew lifted, there was on the surface of the wilderness a fine, flaky substance, as fine as frost on the ground.   When the Israelites saw it, they said to one another, ‘What is it?’  They did not know what it was.  Moses said to them, ‘It is the bread that Yahweh has given you to eat.  This is what Yahweh has commanded. `Gather as much of it as each of you need, an omer to a person according to the number of the persons for those in their own tents.’ The Israelites did so.  Some gathered more, some less.  But when they measured it with an omer, those who gathered much had nothing over, and those who gathered little had no shortage.  They gathered as much as each of them needed. Moses said to them, ‘Let no man leave any of it over until morning.’ But they did not listen to Moses.  Some left part of it until morning, and it bred worms and became foul.  Moses was angry with them.  Morning by morning they gathered it, each as much as each needed.  But when the sun grew hot, it melted.”

In the evening quails came up and covered the camp; and in the morning there was layer of dew around the camp.   They were confused about the dew with its fine flaky substance.  Moses explained that it was bread.  Manna comes from the expression, what is that?  They had no confusion about the quails, although it is not clear whether they were dead or alive.  The quails seem to fly in at twilight and then let themselves be captured and eaten.  Then they went out to gather the bread, as much as they needed.  Whether you gathered a lot or a little, there was no shortage or overage. They were not to leave any of it until morning. But they did not listen to Moses.  Moses was angry with them.  Every morning they gathered it as much as they needed, but when the sun grew hot, it melted.

“On the sixth day they gathered twice as much food, two omers apiece.  When all the leaders of the congregation came and told Moses, he said to them, ‘This is what Yahweh has commanded. Tomorrow is a day of solemn rest, a holy Sabbath to Yahweh.  Bake what you want to bake and boil what you want to boil, and all that is left over put aside to be kept until morning.’   So they put it aside until morning, as Moses commanded them.  It did not become foul, and there were no worms in it.  Moses said, ‘Eat it today, for today is a Sabbath to Yahweh.  Today you will not find it in the field.  Six days you shall gather it.  But on the seventh day, which is a Sabbath, there will be none.’”

On the sixth day they gathered twice as much food, two omers apiece.  An omer is nearly four quarts. On the Sabbath, the seventh day, there would be no heavenly bread.  The food from the day before would not rot.

“On the seventh day some of the people went out to gather, and they found none. Yahweh said to Moses, ‘How long will you refuse to keep my commandments and my instructions?  See! Yahweh has given you the Sabbath, therefore on the sixth day he gives you food for two days.  Each of you stay where you are.  Do not leave your place on the seventh day.’   So the people rested on the seventh day.”

On the seventh day, some of the people went out to gather food and there was nothing.  Yahweh was mad at Moses, saying they were not keeping his instructions.  Once again, the emphasis on the Sabbath dominates.

“The the house of Israel called its name manna.  It was like coriander seed, white, and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey.  Moses said, ‘This is what Yahweh has commanded.  Let an omer of it be kept throughout your generations, in order that they may see the food with which I fed you in the wilderness, when I brought you out of the land of Egypt.’   Moses said to Aaron, ‘Take a jar and put an omer of manna in it, and place it before Yahweh, to be kept throughout your generations.’  As Yahweh commanded Moses, so Aaron placed it before the covenant for safe keeping.  The Israelites ate the manna forty years, until they came to a habitable land.  They ate manna, until they came to the border of the land of Canaan.  An omer is the tenth part of an ephah.”

The text itself tries to explain what manna is, like a coriander seed, white, with the taste of honey.   Coriander is both a spice and an herb like cilantro.  Other commentators have called it a honey-dew excretion of insects that feed on a tamarisk tree.  Anyway, Moses wanted to keep an omer of this manna for future generations, in order that they may see the food that they ate in the wilderness. They took a jar with an omer of manna in it and placed it before Yahweh.  The Israelites ate this manna for 40 years.  In case you did not know, the text explains that an omer is a tenth of an ephah, roughly the equivalent to a bushel or 33 liters.

Marah (Ex 15:22-15:27

Then Moses ordered Israel to set out from the Red Sea.  They went into the wilderness of Shur.  They went three days in the wilderness and found no water.  When they came to Marah, they could not drink the water of Marah because it was bitter.  That is why it is called Marah.  The people complained against Moses, saying, ‘What shall we drink?’  He cried out to Yahweh.  Yahweh showed him a piece of wood.  He threw it into the water, and the water became sweet.”

Now begins the desert journey as they are free from Egypt.  They went out into the wilderness of Shur, which is on the eastern border of Egypt.  Both Abraham and Hagar had visited here on their way to Egypt.   Three days later they arrived at Marah, a place of bitter water.  They could not drink the water so they began to complain to Moses.  Yahweh told Moses to take a piece of wood and throw it into the water, and the water would become sweet.  He did that and the problem was solved.

“There Yahweh made for them a statute and an ordinance and there he put them to the test.  He said, ‘If you will listen carefully to the voice of Yahweh your God, and do what is right in his sight, and give heed to his commandments and keep all his statutes, I will not bring upon you any of the diseases that I brought upon the Egyptians.  I am Yahweh, who heals you.’ Then they came to Elim, where there were twelve springs of water and seventy palm trees.  They camped there by the water.” 

God said to them they would have to listen or he might bring the diseases that he sent on the Egyptians.  Then good news, they came to Elim, where there were 12 springs of water and 70 palm trees, so they camped there.  Elim has been identified as Wadi Ghurundel in the southwest Suez area.  Both of these places may have been pretty close to the Egyptian border.

The victory chant (Ex 15:1-15:21)

“Then Moses and the Israelites sang this song to Yahweh. 

I will sing to Yahweh, for he has triumphed gloriously.  Horse and rider he has thrown into the sea.

Yahweh is my strength and my might.  He has become my salvation. This is my God.  I will praise him, my father’s God and I will exalt him.

Yahweh is a warrior.  Yahweh is his name. Pharaoh’s chariots and his army he cast into the sea.  His picked officers are sunk in the Red Sea. The floods cover them.  They went down into the depths like a stone.

Your right hand, Yahweh, glorious in power, your right hand, O Yahweh, shattered the enemy.

In the greatness of your majesty you overthrew your adversaries.  You sent out your fury.  It consumed them like stubble.

At the blast of your nostrils the waters piled up.  The floods stood up in a heap.  The deeps congealed in the heart of the sea

The enemy said, `I will pursue.  I will overtake.   I will divide the spoil. My desire shall have its fill of them.  I will draw my sword.  My hand shall destroy them.’

You blew with your wind.  The sea covered them.  They sank like lead in the mighty waters.” 

The parting of the Red Sea is the great miracle or wonder of Moses.  It is part of our imagination. This is a poetic song of worship, praise and thanksgiving.  The victorious warrior God, Yahweh is to be feared because of his power over all, especially the wind and the sea, as well as Israel’s enemy, the Egyptians.

“Who is like you, O Yahweh, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness, awesome in splendor, doing wonders? 

You stretched out your right hand, the earth swallowed them. 

In your steadfast love you led the people whom you redeemed.  You guided them by your strength to your holy abode.

The peoples heard.  They trembled.  Pangs seized the inhabitants of Philistia.

Then the chiefs of Edom were dismayed.  Trembling seized the leaders of Moab.  All the inhabitants of Canaan melted away.

Terror and dread fall upon them.  By the might of your arm, they became still as a stone. Until your people, O Yahweh passed by, until the people whom you acquired passed by.

You brought them in and planted them on the mountain of your own possession, the place, O Yahweh that you made your abode, the sanctuary, O Yahweh, that your hands have established.

Yahweh will reign forever, and ever.

When the horses of Pharaoh with his chariots and his chariot drivers went into the sea, Yahweh brought back the waters of the sea upon them.  But the Israelites walked on dry ground.”

The second half of this song of praise shows how Yahweh is greater than any other gods, as if there is some sort of competition among the gods.  In fact, it assumes that they are in their new home, since it talks about the Philistines, the Canaanites, the Edomites, and the Moabites. God is more protective than merely powerful.

“Then the prophet Miriam, Aaron’s sister, took a tambourine in her hand, and all the women went out after her with tambourines and with dancing.  And Miriam sang to them.  Sing to Yahweh, for he has triumphed gloriously, horse and rider he has thrown into the sea.”

Now for the first time we hear explicitly about Miriam, the sister of Aaron and Moses.  In fact, she is called a prophet like her brother Aaron, pretty high praise for a woman, as she leads the women in praising God.  This is the first instance of women worshiping God, since it was all men until this time. Many believe that parts of this chant may have been composed by her.

The passage of the Red Sea (Ex 14:15-14:31)

“Then Yahweh said to Moses, ‘Why do you cry to me? Tell the Israelites to go forward.  Lift up your staff, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, that the Israelites may go on into the sea on dry ground.  Then I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they will go in after them.  So I will gain glory for myself over Pharaoh and all his army, his chariots, and his chariot drivers.  The Egyptians shall know that I am Yahweh, when I have gained glory for myself over Pharaoh, his chariots, and his chariot drivers.”

Yahweh told Moses to move forward.  This is the big dramatic moment from the old 1956 movie, “The Ten Commandments” when Charlton Heston has his staff in his hand outstretched parting the waters.  The Egyptians will recognize the power of Yahweh.

 “The angel of God who was going before the Israelite army moved and went behind them.  The pillar of cloud moved from in front of them and took its place behind them.  It came between the army of Egypt and the army of Israel.  So the cloud was there with the darkness, and it lit up the night. One did not come near the other all night.”

The pillar of cloud now went behind the Israelites between them and the Egyptian army.  The cloud was so bright it lit up the night.  Here it is the angel of God and not Yahweh who is in the cloud.

“Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea.  Yahweh drove the sea back by a strong east wind all night, and turned the sea into day land.  The waters were divided.  The Israelites went into the sea on dry ground, the waters forming a wall for them on their right and on their left. The Egyptians pursued, and went into the sea after them, all Pharaoh’s horses, chariots, and chariot drivers.  At the morning watch Yahweh in the pillar of fire and cloud looked down upon the Egyptian army, and threw the Egyptian army into panic.  He clogged their chariot wheels so that they turned with difficulty.  The Egyptians said, ‘Let us flee from the Israelites, for Yahweh is fighting for them against the Egypt.’”

The Israelites made it safe to the other side on foot.  However, the Egyptians, who were following in chariots, went into panic due to the power of the cloud.   Their chariots got stuck in mud so that the Egyptian army wanted to turn away.

“Then Yahweh said to Moses, ‘Stretch out your hand over the sea, so that the water may come back upon the Egyptians, upon their chariots, and upon their chariot drivers.’  So Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and at dawn the sea returned to its normal depth.  As the Egyptians fled before it, Yahweh tossed the Egyptians into the sea.  The waters returned and covered the chariots and the chariot drivers, the entire army of Pharaoh that had followed them into the sea.  Not one of them remained.  But the Israelites walked on dry ground through the sea, the waters forming a wall for them on their right hand and on their left.  Thus Yahweh saved Israel that day from the Egyptians.  Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore. Israel saw the great work that Yahweh did against the Egyptians.  So that the people feared Yahweh and believed in Yahweh and his servant Moses.”

The entire army of Egypt was wiped out and the Israelites saw the dead Egyptians on the shore.  The waters returned, perhaps the east wind switched to a west wind.  Nevertheless, the Israelites feared and believed in Yahweh and his servant Moses.  We do not know exactly where this took place, in a deep or shallow part of the Rea Sea.  However, the story is the story.

The pursuit of the Egyptians (Ex 14:5-14:14)

“When the king of Egypt was told that the people had fled, the minds of Pharaoh and his officials were changed toward the people.  They said, ‘What have we done, letting Israel leave our service?’   So he had his chariot made ready, and took his army with him.  He took six hundred picked chariots and all the other chariots of Egypt with officers over all of them.  Yahweh hardened the heart of Pharaoh King of Egypt and he pursued the Israelites, who were going out boldly. The Egyptians pursued them, all Pharaoh’s horses and chariots and his chariot divers and his army.  They overtook them camped by the sea, by Pi-hahiroth, in front of Baal-zephon.”

The chase is on.  Pharaoh and his officials changed their minds asking what they had done.  They went after the Israelite people.  They took over 600 chariots and pursued them and caught them by the sea, at Pi-hahiroth, in front of Baal-zephon.

“As Pharaoh drew near, the Israelites looked back, and there were the Egyptians advancing on them.  In great fear the Israelites cried out to Yahweh.  They said to Moses, ‘Was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the wilderness?   What have you done to us, in bringing us out of Egypt?  Is this not the very thing that we told you in Egypt, Let us alone and let us serve the Egyptians?  For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.’  But Moses said to the people, ‘Do not be afraid, stand firm, and see the deliverance that Yahweh will accomplish for you today.  For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again.  Yahweh will fight for you and you have only to keep still.’”

The Israelites saw the Egyptians coming and said to Moses that they were afraid to die in the wilderness.  They could have rather been buried in Egypt than die in the wilderness.  Moses told them to not be afraid since Yahweh would take care of things.

From Etham to the Red Sea (Ex 14:1-14:4)

“Then Yahweh said to Moses, ‘Tell the Israelites to turn back and encamp in front of Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea, in front of Baal-zephon.  You shall camp opposite it, by the sea.  Pharaoh will say of the Israelites, ‘They are wandering aimlessly in the land.  The wilderness has closed in on them.’  I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will pursue them, so that I will gain glory for myself over Pharaoh and all his army.  The Egyptians shall know that I am Yahweh.’ And they did so.”

Then Yahweh told Moses to turn back and camp opposite the sea, near the area of Lake Timsah.  Pi-hahiroth and Baal-zephon are difficult to locate but they might have been about 10 miles from the modern city of Suez.  Migdol is close to the Red Sea.  Pharaoh will think that they are wandering aimlessly.  Then Yahweh will show him.