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016 Escape from Egypt - A Bible Story for Children
MyWikiBiz, Author Your Legacy — Monday March 10, 2014
Moses and Aaron went to Egypt, as God had commanded, and came before Pharaoh. "The God of Israel says, 'Let my people go, so they can hold a feast for me in the wilderness,'" they told Pharaoh.
"I do not know who this God of yours is, or why I should obey him," answered Pharaoh. "The children of Israel are my slaves, and I will not let them go."
So Pharaoh sent Moses and Aaron away. That same day he ordered the Egyptian taskmasters to make the Israelites work harder. "From now on, do not give the Israelites the straw they use to make the bricks," Pharaoh said. "Let them gather the straw themselves, but do not give them any extra time to do it."
The work was impossible for the Israelites. They spent each day gathering straw and had no time left to make the bricks. But at the end of each day the Egyptians demanded the bricks, and beat the Israelites, telling them that they were just lazy. Confused and angry, the Israelites complained to Moses.
Moses had no answer for his people, and so he turned to God.
"Know that I am the Lord," God said, "and tell this to the Israelites: I have promised my people that I will free them from slavery and lead them to the land of Canaan. This I promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The children of Israel will be my people, and I will be their God.
"I have hardened Pharaoh's heart so that I can show him that I am the Lord, who can do powerful things and who will lead my people out of Egypt with an outstretched arm. So go back to Pharaoh, and ask him again to let my people go."
Moses and Aaron returned to Pharaoh's palace. To show God's power, Aaron threw down his rod, and it became a snake. Pharaoh called in his magicians, and when they threw down their rods, they also became snakes. But to their surprise, Aaron's rod swallowed up their rods. As God promised, though, Pharaoh did not change his mind.
The next morning, when Pharaoh was standing by the river, God told Moses and Aaron to speak to him again, and again to show him the power of the God of Israel. Aaron lifted his rod over the River Nile, and struck the waters with it. As Pharaoh and his servants stood watching, the waters turned to blood, and all the fish died. The river and all the waters of Egypt had an awful smell, and no one could drink for a week. But Pharaoh's magicians did the same trick, and Pharaoh would not change his mind. This was the first of ten plagues that God sent to the Egyptians.
Next God filled the land of Egypt with frogs--frogs in every stream, frogs in every house, frogs in every bed. Pharaoh's magicians made frogs, too, but no one could make them go away. So Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron to him and said, "Ask the Lord to take the frogs away, and I will let your people have their feast." But once the frogs were gone, Pharaoh broke his promise.
To show his power, God sent still more plagues to the Egyptians. The dust of the earth became lice, tiny insects that bit and stuck to all the people and animals. He sent flies that buzzed in the house of every Egyptian and every corner of Egypt, except where the Israelites lived. A terrible disease killed all the Egyptians' cattle and horses, camels and sheep, but the Israelites' animals did not get the disease, and they lived. One morning the Egyptians awoke to find themselves covered with boils, although the Israelites did not suffer from these painful sores. But Pharaoh's heart was still hardened against the Israelites. Each time Moses and Aaron asked him to let their people go, he answered no, just as God had planned.
So the Lord sent a violent hailstorm, with thunder and lightning, that destroyed everything in the fields, man and beast and all the plants, But where the Israelites lived, there was no storm.
After that, the Lord blackened the sky with locusts, great flying grasshoppers that ate all the crops and every green thing left by the hailstorm. But once the Lord answered Moses' prayer and blew the locusts into the Red Sea, Pharaoh refused to let the children of Israel go.
When, at God's command, Moses stretched out his hand the next time, a great darkness spread over Egypt for three days. No one could see anything or go anywhere, except where the Israelites lived. Then God said to Moses, "I will send one more plague, and after that, Pharaoh will surely let you go. He will chase you out of Egypt."
So Moses warned of the tenth plague: "At midnight the Lord will pass through Egypt, and he will kill the oldest child of each family, from Pharaoh's son who sits next to him on the throne to the oldest child of the servant girl at the mill. A great cry of mourning will be heard all over Egypt. But among the Israelites, no one, not even a dog, will be harmed." With these angry words, Moses left Pharaoh.
To Moses and Aaron the Lord said, "On the tenth day of this month, every family of Israel should bring a perfect lamb to its house. On the evening of the fourteenth day, the lamb should be killed, and its blood smeared on the doorposts and above the door of the house. That night the lamb should be roasted and eaten in great haste, for it is the night of the Lord's Passover. On that night I will go through Egypt and kill all the firstborn children, but where I see blood, I will pass over the house, and the firstborn child will be saved. And you shall keep the feast of Passover forever, to remember how I brought you out of Egypt."
At midnight the Lord sent the tenth plague, killing the firstborn of every Egyptian family. A great cry went up, and while it was still dark, Pharaoh sent for Moses and Aaron, "Wake your people, and go, go all of you," ordered Pharaoh. The Egyptians hurried the Israelites along, for now they were terrified of the Lord and afraid they would all die..
To lead the Israelites out of Egypt, the Lord sent a great pillar of clouds by day and a great pillar of fire by night, so they would know the way.
After the Israelites left, the Lord again hardened Pharaoh's heart. "Why did we ever let the Israelites go? Who will work for us now?" Pharaoh wondered aloud, and he decided he would try to bring the Israelites back again. So Pharaoh chose his best soldiers and six hundred of his fastest chariots and set out after the Israelites. At the shores of the Red Sea, the Egyptian army caught up with them.
Seeing this great army, the Israelites were frightened. "Did you lead us out of Egypt so we could be killed in the wilderness?" they asked Moses. "We would rather be slaves in Egypt."
"Do not be afraid," he answered. "The Lord will save us." Then the Lord told Moses to lift his rod. All night long a great east wind blew the waters of the Red Sea apart, making a path of dry land from one shore to the other. The children of Israel walked through the sea on dry ground, with walls of water on either side of them.
When the Egyptians saw this, they chased after the Israelites, but in the morning, when they were halfway across the sea, the Lord looked through his pillar of clouds and fire and confused them. He broke the wheels off their chariots and scared the soldiers. "Let us turn back," the soldiers cried. "The Lord is fighting for the Israelites against us."
Just then the Lord told Moses to stretch his hand out over the sea. With a great roar, the sea crashed over the Egyptians and drowned Pharaoh's whole army, while the Israelites watched from dry land. Not one soldier remained.
In this way the Lord freed the children of Israel from slavery and led them out of Egypt. And they saw the great things the Lord had done for them, and give thanks to him.