Exodus 3:18–4:9

18 “The elders of Israel will listenb to you. Then you and the elders are to go to the king of Egypt and say to him, ‘The Lord, the God of the Hebrews,c has metd with us. Let us take a three-day journeye into the wilderness to offer sacrificesf to the Lord our God.’ 19 But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless a mighty handg compels him. 20 So I will stretch out my handh and strike the Egyptians with all the wondersi that I will perform among them. After that, he will let you go.j

21 “And I will make the Egyptians favorably disposedk toward this people, so that when you leave you will not go empty-handed.l 22 Every woman is to ask her neighbor and any woman living in her house for articles of silverm and goldn and for clothing, which you will put on your sons and daughters. And so you will plundero the Egyptians.”p

Signs for Moses

4 Moses answered, “What if they do not believe me or listenq to me and say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you’?”

Then the Lord said to him, “What is that in your hand?”

“A staff,”r he replied.

The Lord said, “Throw it on the ground.”

Moses threw it on the ground and it became a snake,s and he ran from it. Then the Lord said to him, “Reach out your hand and take it by the tail.” So Moses reached out and took hold of the snake and it turned back into a staff in his hand. “This,” said the Lord, “is so that they may believet that the Lord, the God of their fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has appeared to you.”

Then the Lord said, “Put your hand inside your cloak.” So Moses put his hand into his cloak, and when he took it out, the skin was leprousa—it had become as white as snow.u

“Now put it back into your cloak,” he said. So Moses put his hand back into his cloak, and when he took it out, it was restored,v like the rest of his flesh.

Then the Lord said, “If they do not believew you or pay attention to the first sign,x they may believe the second. But if they do not believe these two signs or listen to you, take some water from the Nile and pour it on the dry ground. The water you take from the river will become bloody on the ground.”

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