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1 And the Lord spake vnto Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying,

2 This moneth shalbe vnto you the beginning of moneths: it shall be the first moneth of the yeere to you.

3 Speake ye vnto all the Congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this moneth they shall take to them euery man a lambe, according to the house of their fathers, a lambe for an house.

4 And if the houshold be too little for the lambe, let him and his neighbour next vnto his house, take it according to the number of the soules: euery man according to his eating shall make your count for the lambe.

5 Your lambe shall be without blemish, a male of the first yeere: yee shall take it out from the sheepe or from the goates.

6 And ye shall keepe it vp vntill the fourteenth day of the same moneth: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the euening.

7 And they shall take of the blood and strike it on the two side postes, and on the vpper doore poste, of the houses wherin they shall eate it.

8 And they shall eat the flesh in that night roste with fire, and vnleauened bread, and with bitter herbes they shall eate it.

9 Eate not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roste with fire: his head, with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof.

10 And ye shall let nothing of it remaine vntill the morning: and that which remaineth of it vntill the morning, ye shall burne with fire.

11 And thus shall ye eate it: with your loines girded, your shooes on your feet, and your staffe in your hand: and ye shall eate it in haste: it is the Lords Passeouer.

12 For I will passe through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the first borne in the land of Egypt, both man & beast, and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute iudgement: I am the Lord.

13 And the blood shall be to you for a token vpon the houses where you are: and when I see the blood, I will passe ouer you, and the plague shall not bee vpon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.

14 And this day shall be vnto you for a memoriall: and you shall keepe in a feast to the Lord, throughout your generations: you shall keepe it a feast by an ordinance for euer.

15 Seuen dayes shall ye eate vnleauened bread, euen the first day yee shall put away leauen out of your houses: For whosoeuer eateth leauened bread, from the first day vntil the seuenth day, that soule shall be cut off from Israel.

16 And in the first day there shalbe an holy conuocation, and in the seuenth day there shall be an holy conuocation to you: no maner of worke shalbe done in them, saue that which euery man must eate, that onely may bee done of you.

17 And yee shall obserue the feast of vnleauened bread: for in this selfe same day haue I brought your armies out of the land of Egypt; therefore shall ye obserue this day in your generations, by an ordinance for euer.

18 In the first moneth, on the fourteenth day of the moneth at euen, ye shall eate vnleauened bread vntill the one and twentieth day of the moneth at euen.

19 Seuen dayes shall there bee no leauen found in your houses: for whosoeuer eateth that which is leauened, euen that soule shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he be a stranger, or borne in the land.

20 Yee shall eate nothing leauened: in all your habitations shall ye eate vnleauened bread.

21 Then Moses called for all the Elders of Israel, and said vnto them; Draw out and take you a lambe, according to your families, and kill the Passeouer.

22 And ye shall take a bunch of hysope, and dip it in the blood that is in the bason, and strike the lintel and the two side postes with the blood that is in the bason: and none of you shall goe out at the doore of his house, vntill the morning.

23 For the Lord wil passe through to smite the Egyptians: and when hee seeth the blood vpon the lintel, and on the two side-postes, the Lord will passe ouer the doore, and will not suffer the destroyer to come in vnto your houses to smite you.

24 And ye shall obserue this thing for an ordinance to thee, and to thy sonnes for euer.

25 And it shall come to passe when yee bee come to the land, which the Lord will giue you, according as he hath promised, that ye shall keepe this seruice.

26 And it shall come to passe, when your children shall say vnto you, What meane you by this seruice?

27 That ye shall say, It is the sacrifice of the Lords Passeouer, who passed ouer the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when he smote the Egyptians, and deliuered our houses. And the people bowed the head, and worshipped.

28 And the children of Israel went away, and did as the Lord had commanded Moses and Aaron, so did they.

29 And it came to passe that at midnight the Lord smote all the first borne in the land of Egypt, from the first borne of Pharaoh that sate on his throne, vnto the first borne of the captiue that was in the dungeon, and all the first borne of cattell.

30 And Pharaoh rose vp in the night, hee and all his seruants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt: for there was not a house, where there was not one dead.

31 And hee called for Moses and Aaron by night, and said, Rise vp, and get you forth from amongst my people, both you and the children of Israel: and goe, serue the Lord, as ye haue said.

32 Also take your flockes and your heards, as ye haue said: and bee gone, and blesse me also.

33 And the Egyptians were vrgent vpon the people that they might send them out of the land in haste: for they said, We be all dead men.

34 And the people tooke their dough before it was leauened, their kneading troughes beeing bound vp in their clothes vpon their shoulders.

35 And the children of Israel did according to the word of Moses: and they borrowed of the Egyptians iewels of siluer, and iewels of gold, and raiment.

36 And the Lord gaue the people fauour in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they lent vnto them such things as they required: and they spoiled the Egyptians.

37 And the children of Israel iourneyed from Rameses to Succoth, about sixe hundred thousand on foote that were men, beside children.

38 And a mixed multitude went vp also with them, and flocks and heards, euen very much cattell.

39 And they baked vnleauened cakes of the dough, which they brought forth out of Egypt; for it was not leauened: because they were thrust out of Egypt, and could not tarry, neither had they prepared for themselues any victuall.

40 Now the soiourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was foure hundred and thirtie yeeres.

41 And it came to passe at the end of the foure hundred and thirtie yeeres, euen the selfe same day it came to passe, that all the hosts of the Lord went out from the land of Egypt.

42 It is a night to be much obserued vnto the Lord, for bringing them out from the land of Egypt: This is that night of the Lord to be obserued of all the children of Israel, in their generations.

43 And the Lord saide vnto Moses and Aaron, This is the ordinance of the Passeouer: there shall no stranger eate thereof.

44 But euery mans seruant that is bought for money, when thou hast circumcised him, then shall he eate thereof.

45 A forreiner, and an hired seruant shall not eate thereof.

46 In one house shall it be eaten, thou shalt not carie foorth ought of the flesh abroad out of the house, neither shall ye breake a bone thereof.

47 All the Congregation of Israel shall keepe it.

48 And when a stranger shall soiourne with thee, and will keepe the Passeouer to the Lord, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come neere, and keepe it: and he shall be as one that is borne in the land: for no vncircumcised person shall eate thereof.

49 One law shall be to him that is home-borne, and vnto the stranger that soiourneth among you.

50 Thus did all the children of Israel: as the Lord commanded Moses and Aaron, so did they.

51 And it came to passe the selfe same day, that the Lord did bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt, by their armies.

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Commentary for Exodus 12

The beginning of the year changed, The passover instituted. (1-20) The people instructed how to observe the passover. (21-28) The death of the first-born of the Egyptians The Israelites urged to leave the land of Egypt. (29-36) The Israelites' first journey to Succoth. (37-42) Ordinance respecting the passover. (43-51)1-20 The Lord makes all things new to those whom he delivers from the bondage of Satan, and takes to himself to be his people. The time when he does this is to them the beginning of a new life. God appointed that, on the night wherein they were to go out of Egypt, each family should kill a lamb, or that two or three families, if small, should kill one lamb. This lamb was to be eaten in the manner here directed, and the blood to be sprinkled on the door-posts, to mark the houses of the Israelites from those of the Egyptians. The angel of the Lord, when destroying the first-born of the Egyptians, would pass over the houses marked by the blood of the lamb: hence the name of this holy feast or ordinance. The passover was to be kept every year, both as a remembrance of Israel's preservation and deliverance out of Egypt, and as a remarkable type of Christ. Their safety and deliverance were not a reward of their own righteousness, but the gift of mercy. Of this they were reminded, and by this ordinance they were taught, that all blessings came to them through the shedding and sprinkling of blood. Observe, 1. The paschal lamb was typical. Christ is our passover, #1Co 5:7|. Christ is the Lamb of God, #Joh 1:29|; often in the Revelation he is called the Lamb. It was to be in its prime; Christ offered up himself in the midst of his days, not when a babe at Bethlehem. It was to be without blemish; the Lord Jesus was a Lamb without spot: the judge who condemned Christ declared him innocent. It was to be set apart four days before, denoting the marking out of the Lord Jesus to be a Saviour, both in the purpose and in the promise. It was to be slain, and roasted with fire, denoting the painful sufferings of the Lord Jesus, even unto death, the death of the cross. The wrath of God is as fire, and Christ was made a curse for us. Not a bone of it must be broken, which was fulfilled in Christ, #Joh 19:33|, denoting the unbroken strength of the Lord Jesus. 2. The sprinkling of the blood was typical. The blood of the lamb must be sprinkled, denoting the applying of the merits of Christ's death to our souls; we must receive the atonement, #Ro 5:11|. Faith is the bunch of hyssop, by which we apply the promises, and the benefits of the blood of Christ laid up in them, to ourselves. It was to be sprinkled on the door-posts, denoting the open profession we are to make of faith in Christ. It was not to be sprinkled upon the threshold; which cautions us to take heed of trampling under foot the blood of the covenant. It is precious blood, and must be precious to us. The blood, thus sprinkled, was a means of preserving the Israelites from the destroying angel, who had nothing to do where the blood was. The blood of Christ is the believer's protection from the wrath of God, the curse of the law, and the damnation of hell, #Ro 8:1|. 3. The solemn eating of the lamb was typical of our gospel duty to Christ. The paschal lamb was not to be looked upon only, but to be fed upon. So we must by faith make Christ our own; and we must receive spiritual strength and nourishment from him, as from our food, see #Joh 6:53,55|. It was all to be eaten; those who by faith feed upon Christ, must feed upon a whole Christ; they must take Christ and his yoke, Christ and his cross, as well as Christ and his crown. It was to be eaten at once, not put by till morning. To-day Christ is offered, and is to be accepted while it is called to-day, before we sleep the sleep of death. It was to be eaten with bitter herbs, in remembrance of the bitterness of their bondage in Egypt; we must feed upon Christ with sorrow and brokenness of heart, in remembrance of sin. Christ will be sweet to us, if sin be bitter. It was to be eaten standing, with their staves in their hands, as being ready to depart. When we feed upon Christ by faith, we must forsake the rule and the dominion of sin; sit loose to the world, and every thing in it; forsake all for Christ, and reckon it no bad bargain, #Heb 13:13,14|. 4. The feast of unleavened bread was typical of the Christian life, #1Co 5:7,8|. Having received Christ Jesus the Lord, we must continually delight ourselves in Christ Jesus. No manner of work must be done, that is, no care admitted and indulged, which does not agree with, or would lessen this holy joy. The Jews were very strict as to the passover, so that no leaven should be found in their houses. It must be a feast kept in charity, without the leaven of malice; and in sincerity, without the leaven of hypocrisy. It was by an ordinance for ever; so long as we live we must continue feeding upon Christ, rejoicing in him always, with thankful mention of the great things he has done for us.

21-28 That night, when the first-born were to be destroyed, no Israelite must stir out of doors till called to march out of Egypt. Their safety was owing to the blood of sprinkling. If they put themselves from under the protection of that, it was at their peril. They must stay within, to wait for the salvation of the Lord; it is good to do so. In after-times they should carefully teach their children the meaning of this service. It is good for children to ask about the things of God; they that ask for the way will find it. The keeping of this solemnity every year was, 1. To look backward, that they might remember what great things God had done for them and their fathers. Old mercies, to ourselves, or to our fathers, must not be forgotten, that God may be praised, and our faith in him encouraged. 2. It was designed to look forward, as an earnest of the great sacrifice of the Lamb of God in the fulness of time. Christ our passover was sacrificed for us; his death was our life.

29-36 The Egyptians had been for three days and nights kept in anxiety and horror by the darkness; now their rest is broken by a far more terrible calamity. The plague struck their first-born, the joy and hope of their families. They had slain the Hebrews' children, now God slew theirs. It reached from the throne to the dungeon: prince and peasant stand upon the same level before God's judgments. The destroying angel entered every dwelling unmarked with blood, as the messenger of woe. He did his dreadful errand, leaving not a house in which there was not one dead. Imagine then the cry that rang through the land of Egypt, the long, loud shriek of agony that burst from every dwelling. It will be thus in that dreadful hour when the Son of man shall visit sinners with the last judgment. God's sons, his first-born, were now released. Men had better come to God's terms at first, for he will never come to theirs. Now Pharaoh's pride is abased, and he yields. God's word will stand; we get nothing by disputing, or delaying to submit. In this terror the Egyptians would purchase the favour and the speedy departure of Israel. Thus the Lord took care that their hard-earned wages should be paid, and the people provided for their journey.

37-42 The children of Israel set forward without delay. A mixed multitude went with them. Some, perhaps, willing to leave their country, laid waste by plagues; others, out of curiosity; perhaps a few out of love to them and their religion. But there were always those among the Israelites who were not Israelites. Thus there are still hypocrites in the church. This great event was 430 years from the promise made to Abraham: see #Ga 3:17|. So long the promise of a settlement was unfulfilled. But though God's promises are not performed quickly, they will be, in their season. This is that night of the Lord, that remarkable night, to be celebrated in all generations. The great things God does for his people, are to be not only a few days' wonder, but to be remembered throughout all ages; especially the work of our redemption by Christ. This first passover-night was a night of the Lord, much to be observed; but the last passover-night, in which Christ was betrayed and in which the first passover, with the rest of the Jewish ceremonies, was done away, was a night of the Lord, much more to be observed. Then a yoke, heavier than that of Egypt, was broken from off our necks, and a land, better than that of Canaan, set before us. It was a redemption to be celebrated in heaven, for ever and ever.

43-51 In times to come, all the congregation of Israel must keep the passover. All that share in God's mercies should join in thankful praises for them. The New Testament passover, the Lord's supper, ought not to be neglected by any. Strangers, if circumcised, might eat of the passover. Here is an early indication of favour to the gentiles. This taught the Jews that their being a nation favoured by God, entitled them to their privileges, not their descent from Abraham. Christ our passover is sacrificed for us, #1Co 5:7|; his blood is the only ransom for our souls; without the shedding of it there is no remission; without the sprinkling of it there can be no salvation. Have we, by faith in him, sheltered our souls from deserved vengeance under the protection of his atoning blood? Do we keep close to him, constantly depending upon him? Do we so profess our faith in the Redeemer, and our obligations to him, that all who pass by may know to whom we belong? Do we stand prepared for his service, ready to walk in his ways, and to separate ourselves from his enemies? These are questions of vast importance to the soul; may the Lord direct our consciences honestly to answer them.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Exodus 12

  • John
    Why was Cannan left out in Exodus 12:40
  • BSP
    Verse 26~The Passover was a very important event in the lives of the Israelites and they were to explain this to their children and future generations to help them to appreciate the significance of the Passover.
  • A disciple
    "And Pharaoh rose up in the night, he and all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt; for there was not a house where there was not one dead." After defiantly resisting the Word of God through all their plagues and that great tribulation and ruin, at length God was left with one thing that would finally put them in fear and humble them to obey the Word of the LORD!
  • Jeffrey Berry
    Greetings, centuries before the birth of Moses, the were generations of people who hated God, and today they still hate God. Speaking specially of the God of the Hebrews. (Read Psalms 83) After numerous generations, God (Yahweh) decided to separate a certain seed of people, (see Matthew chapter 1) from all other people upon the face of the earth to carry His Spirit into the future.
  • Sandy
    God created us for him. ALL OF US! God has a lot of patients with us. When God tells us to do something he means it! God created us for him. Therefore God can do whatever he wants!
  • Junior
    The reason why God destroyed they're first born is because they were under Pharaoh's leadership and he would not let his people go

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