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Exodus Chapter 7 | Parsha: Va-'era'

1The Lord replied to Moses, “See, I place you in the role of God to Pharaoh, with your brother Aaron as your prophet. 2You shall repeat all that I command you, and your brother Aaron shall speak to Pharaoh to let the Israelites depart from his land. 3But I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, that I may multiply My signs and marvels in the land of Egypt. 4When Pharaoh does not heed you, I will lay My hand upon Egypt and deliver My ranks, My people the Israelites, from the land of Egypt with extraordinary chastisements. 5And the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I stretch out My hand over Egypt and bring out the Israelites from their midst.” 6This Moses and Aaron did; as the Lord commanded them, so they did. 7Moses was eighty years old and Aaron eighty-three, when they made their demand on Pharaoh.

8The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, 9“When Pharaoh speaks to you and says, ‘Produce your marvel,’ you shall say to Aaron, ‘Take your rod and cast it down before Pharaoh.’ It shall turn into a serpent.” 10So Moses and Aaron came before Pharaoh and did just as the Lord had commanded: Aaron cast down his rod in the presence of Pharaoh and his courtiers, and it turned into a serpent. 11Then Pharaoh, for his part, summoned the wise men and the sorcerers; and the Egyptian magicians, in turn, did the same with their spells; 12each cast down his rod, and they turned into serpents. But Aaron’s rod swallowed their rods. 13Yet Pharaoh’s heart stiffened and he did not heed them, as the Lord had said.

14And the Lord said to Moses, “Pharaoh is stubborn; he refuses to let the people go. 15Go to Pharaoh in the morning, as he is coming out to the water, and station yourself before him at the edge of the Nile, taking with you the rod that turned into a snake. 16And say to him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, sent me to you to say, “Let My people go that they may worship Me in the wilderness.” But you have paid no heed until now. 17Thus says the Lord, “By this you shall know that I am the Lord.” See, I shall strike the water in the Nile with the rod that is in my hand, and it will be turned into blood; 18and the fish in the Nile will die. The Nile will stink so that the Egyptians will find it impossible to drink the water of the Nile.’”

19And the Lord said to Moses, “Say to Aaron: Take your rod and hold out your arm over the waters of Egypt—its rivers, its canals, its ponds, all its bodies of water—that they may turn to blood; there shall be blood throughout the land of Egypt, even in vessels of wood and stone.” 20Moses and Aaron did just as the Lord commanded: he lifted up the rod and struck the water in the Nile in the sight of Pharaoh and his courtiers, and all the water in the Nile was turned into blood 21and the fish in the Nile died. The Nile stank so that the Egyptians could not drink water from the Nile; and there was blood throughout the land of Egypt. 22But when the Egyptian magicians did the same with their spells, Pharaoh’s heart stiffened and he did not heed them—as the Lord had spoken. 23Pharaoh turned and went into his palace, paying no regard even to this. 24And all the Egyptians had to dig round about the Nile for drinking water, because they could not drink the water of the Nile.

25When seven days had passed after the Lord struck the Nile, 26the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord: Let My people go that they may worship Me. 27If you refuse to let them go, then I will plague your whole country with frogs. 28The Nile shall swarm with frogs, and they shall come up and enter your palace, your bedchamber and your bed, the houses of your courtiers and your people, and your ovens and your kneading bowls. 29The frogs shall come up on you and on your people and on all your courtiers.’”

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