Thursday, April 14, 2022

The Egyptians in the Passover tradition


YHWH Battles the Egyptians with a Fiery Cloud (Dr.David Ben-Gad HaCohen)

When the Egyptians pursue Israel into the wilderness, Moses tells the Israelites to “stand by and witness the deliverance which YHWH will work for you today” (Exodus 14:13). YHWH brings panic upon the enemy, as he does in the battle of Gibeon and the war against Sisera. This is J’s story of Israel’s escape, hidden in the biblical accounts of the escape by the sea.

Punishing Egypt Measure-for-Measure (Prof.Ishay Rosen-Zvi)

The plagues and the drowning of the Egyptians were designed to showcase YHWH’s power throughout the world (Exodus 9:16). Both the Wisdom of Solomon (1st cent. C.E.) and Mekhilta (2nd cent. C.E.) develop systematic interpretations of the plagues, showing how the details were measure-for-measure punishments, they differ on the meaning of the lesson when it comes to non-Jews.

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