Exodus 15

 

אָז יָשִׁיר־מֹשֶׁה וּבְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אֶת־הַשִּׁירָה הַזֹּאת לַיהוָה וַיֹּאמְרוּ לֵאמֹר אָשִׁירָה לַיהוָה כִּי־גָאֹה גָּאָה    15:1

סוּס וְרֹכְבֹו רָמָה בַיָּם

Exod. 15:1  Then Moses could sing with the children of Israel this song to the Lord and he spoke saying,

                      “I will sing to the Lord for He is gloriously triumphant;

                            the horse and its rider He throws into the sea.”

עָזִּי וְזִמְרָת יָהּ וַיְהִי־לִי לִישׁוּעָה זֶה אֵלִי וְאַנְוֵהוּ אֱלֹהֵי אָבִי וַאֲרֹמְמֶנְהוּ   15:2

Exod. 15:2  “The Lord is My strength and a Song;

                            He is mine for salvation. 

                      This is my God, and I will celebrate Him,

                            God of my father, and exalt Him.”

In this verse of the poetry, there are two first-person imperfect verbs with non-inverting vav prefixes, as my theory suggests. They are the fourth word from the end, WhwêEn>a;w>, translated as and I will celebrate Him, and the last word, Whn>m,m.roa]w:, translated as and [I will] exalt Him.

יְהוָה אִישׁ מִלְחָמָה יְהוָה שְׁמֹו   15:3

Exod. 15:3  “The Lord is a Warrior;

                            His name is Adonai.”

מַרְכְּבֹת פַּרְעֹה וְחֵילֹו יָרָה בַיָּם וּמִבְחַר שָׁלִשָׁיו טֻבְּעוּ בְיַם־סוּף   15:4

Exod. 15:4  “From the chariots of Pharoah to his host,

                             He has cast into the sea,

                       and his chosen captains

                             are drowned in the Reed Sea.”

תְּהֹמֹת יְכַסְיֻמוּ יָרְדוּ בִמְצֹולֹת כְּמֹו־אָבֶן   15:5

Exod. 15:5   “The deep places must have covered them;

                             they went down into the depths like stone.”

יְמִינְךָ יְהוָה נֶאְדָּרִי בַּכֹּחַ יְמִינְךָ יְהוָה תִּרְעַץ אֹויֵב   15:6

Exod. 15:6  “Your right ‘hand,’ Lord, is noble in power;

                            Your right ‘hand,’ Lord, can shatter the enemy.”

וּבְרֹב גְּאֹונְךָ תַּהֲרֹס קָמֶיךָ תְּשַׁלַּח חֲרֹנְךָ יֹאכְלֵמֹו כַּקַּשׁ   15:7

Exod. 15:7  “And with the magnitude of Your majesty,

                             You can overthrow any rising up against You;

                      You will send forth Your wrath,

                              it will devour them as stubble.”

וּבְרוּחַ אַפֶּיךָ נֶעֶרְמוּ מַיִם נִצְּבוּ כְמֹו־נֵד נֹזְלִים קָפְאוּ תְהֹמֹת בְּלֶב־יָם   15:8

Exod. 15:8  “And with the blast of Your ‘nostrils’

                             the waters are gathered up;

                       they stand upright like a heap;

                             congealed are the deep places in the heart of the sea.”

אָמַר אֹויֵב אֶרְדֹּף אַשִּׂיג אֲחַלֵּק שָׁלָל תִּמְלָאֵמֹו נַפְשִׁי אָרִיק חַרְבִּי תֹּורִישֵׁמֹו יָדִי   15:9

Exod. 15:9  “Said the enemy, ‘I will pursue, I will overtake,

                             I will divide the spoil; my lust will be satisfied;

                       I will draw my sword,

                             my hand will dispose of them.’”

נָשַׁפְתָּ בְרוּחֲךָ כִּסָּמֹו יָם צָלֲלוּ כַּעֹופֶרֶת בְּמַיִם אַדִּירִים    15:10

Exod. 15:10  “You blow with Your ‘breath,’ the sea covers them;

                               they sink like lead in the mighty waters.”

מִי־כָמֹכָה בָּאֵלִם יְהוָה מִי כָּמֹכָה נֶאְדָּר בַּקֹּדֶשׁ נֹורָא תְהִלֹּת עֹשֵׂה פֶלֶא   15:11

Exod. 15:11   “Who is like You among the mighty, Lord?

                                Who is like You, glorious in holiness,

                          revered in praises, doing wonders?”                           [Return to Deut. 4:24]

נָטִיתָ יְמִינְךָ תִּבְלָעֵמֹו אָרֶץ   15:12

Exod. 15:12   “You stretch forth Your right ‘hand,’

                                the earth will have swallowed them up.”

נָחִיתָ בְחַסְדְּךָ עַם־זוּ גָּאָלְתָּ נֵהַלְתָּ בְעָזְּךָ אֶל־נְוֵה קָדְשֶׁךָ   15:13

Exod. 15:13   “You lead with Your loving kindness

                                this people You have redeemed.

                          You guide with Your might

                                to the habitation of Your holiness.”

שָׁמְעוּ עַמִּים יִרְגָּזוּן חִיל אָחַז יֹשְׁבֵי פְּלָשֶׁת   15:14

Exod. 15:14   “The peoples hear, they must tremble;

                                 anguish possesses the inhabitants of Philistia.”

אָז נִבְהֲלוּ אַלּוּפֵי אֱדֹום אֵילֵי מֹואָב יֹאחֲזֵמֹו רָעַד נָמֹגוּ כֹּל יֹשְׁבֵי כְנָעַן   15:15

Exod. 15:15   “Then are terrified the chieftains of Edom;

                               The mighty of Moab, trembling will seize them;

                          all the inhabitants of Canaan will melt away.”

תִּפֹּל עֲלֵיהֶם אֵימָתָה וָפַחַד בִּגְדֹל זְרֹועֲךָ יִדְּמוּ כָּאָבֶן עַד־יַעֲבֹר עַמְּךָ יְהוָה עַד־יַעֲבֹר עַם־זוּ קָנִיתָ   15:16

Exod. 15:16   “Terror and dread will fall on them;

                                in the greatness of Your power

                          they will be still as stone till Your people will pass beyond,

                                Lord, till this people, Your redeemed, will pass beyond.”

תְּבִאֵמֹו וְתִטָּעֵמֹו בְּהַר נַחֲלָתְךָ מָכֹון לְשִׁבְתְּךָ פָּעַלְתָּ יְהוָה מִקְּדָשׁ אֲדֹנָי כֹּונְנוּ יָדֶיךָ   15:17

Exod. 15:17   “You will bring them in

                                and plant them on the mountain of Your inheritance,

                          the place for Your dwelling that the Lord has made;

                                Your ‘hands’ have established the sanctuary of the Master.”

יְהוָה יִמְלֹךְ לְעֹלָם וָעֶד   15:18

Exod. 15:18   “The Lord shall reign forever and ever.”

כִּי בָא סוּס פַּרְעֹה בְּרִכְבֹּו וּבְפָרָשָׁיו בַּיָּם וַיָּשֶׁב יְהוָה עֲלֵהֶם אֶת־מֵי הַיָּם וּבְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל הָלְכוּ   15:19

בַיַּבָּשָׁה בְּתֹוךְ הַיָּם

Exod. 15:19   For the horse of Pharoah had gone into the sea with his chariot, and his horsemen, as the Lord had brought back the waters of the sea upon them, while the children of Israel had gone in the midst of the sea on dry land.

וַתִּקַּח מִרְיָם הַנְּבִיאָה אֲחֹות אַהֲרֹן אֶת־הַתֹּף בְּיָדָהּ וַתֵּצֶאןָ כָל־הַנָּשִׁים אַחֲרֶיהָ בְּתֻפִּים וּבִמְחֹלֹת   15:20

Exod. 15:20   And Miriam, the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took the tambourine in her hand and all the women went out after her with tambourines and with dancers.

I find it difficult to understand why Miriam is abruptly referred to here as a prophetess. Tradition has it that Miriam had predicted Moses’ birth.  That tradition also helps explain why she is called the sister of Aaron and not also of Moses, as she was a prophetess before Moses was born.  She was only the sister of Aaron at the time.  Make of that what you will.

וַתַּעַן לָהֶם מִרְיָם שִׁירוּ לַיהוָה כִּי־גָאֹה גָּאָה סוּס וְרֹכְבֹו רָמָה בַיָּם   15:21

Exod. 15:21   And Miriam sang to them:

                                “Sing to the Lord for He is gloriously triumphant; 

                          horse and its chariot He throws into the sea.”

וַיַּסַּע מֹשֶׁה אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵל מִיַּם־סוּף וַיֵּצְאוּ אֶל־מִדְבַּר־שׁוּר וַיֵּלְכוּ שְׁלֹשֶׁת־יָמִים בַּמִּדְבָּר וְלֹא־מָצְאוּ   15:22

מָיִם

Exod. 15:22   And Moses led Israel out from the Reed Sea and they went forth to the wilderness of Shur. And they walked three days in the wilderness and found no water.

וַיָּבֹאוּ מָרָתָה וְלֹא יָכְלוּ לִשְׁתֹּת מַיִם מִמָּרָה כִּי מָרִים הֵם עַל־כֵּן קָרָא־שְׁמָהּ מָרָה   15:23

Exod. 15:23   Then they came to Marah, but they were not able to drink the waters from Marah because they were bitter.  Therefore its name is called Marah.

The name Marah can mean bitter.

וַיִּלֹּנוּ הָעָם עַל־מֹשֶׁה לֵּאמֹר מַה־נִּשְׁתֶּה    15:24

Exod. 15:24   And the people grumbled to Moses saying, “What shall we drink?” 

When the word people is the subject in a verse, its verb is usually singular, because people is treated as a singular noun.  In this verse the verb grumbled is plural.  To me this signifies that the people complained individually or in groups to Moses, not as a single body.

וַיִּצְעַק אֶל־יְהוָה וַיֹּורֵהוּ יְהוָה עֵץ וַיַּשְׁלֵךְ אֶל־הַמַּיִם וַיִּמְתְּקוּ הַמָּיִם שָׁם שָׂם לֹו חֹק וּמִשְׁפָּט וְשָׁם   15:25

נִסָּהוּ

Exod. 15:25   So he cried to the Lord and the Lord showed him a tree that He cast down to the waters; then the waters became sweet.  There He made it for a statute and an ordinance, and there He tested it,                                                                                           [Return to Exod. 15 notes]

See the discussion on the next verse for reference to the two instances of the seemingly strange object pronoun it.

וַיֹּאמֶר אִם־שָׁמֹועַ תִּשְׁמַע לְקֹול יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ וְהַיָּשָׁר בְּעֵינָיו תַּעֲשֶׂה וְהַאֲזַנְתָּ לְמִצְוֹתָיו וְשָׁמַרְתָּ כָּל־   15:26

חֻקָּיו כָּל־הַמַּחֲלָה אֲשֶׁר־שַׂמְתִּי בְמִצְרַיִם לֹא־אָשִׂים עָלֶיךָ כִּי אֲנִי יְהוָה רֹפְאֶךָ

Exod. 15:26   and He said, “If you will diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord, your God, and you will do what is right in His eyes, and will listen to His commandments and keep all His statutes, all the diseases that I set on Egypt I will not place on you.  For I am the Lord, your Healer.”

This is the statute and the ordinance referred to in v 15:25.  Please note that the second occurrence of the pronoun translated as it in the previous verse must refer to the people of Israel, which is named in v. 15:24.      More >>

וַיָּבֹאוּ אֵילִמָה וְשָׁם שְׁתֵּים עֶשְׂרֵה עֵינֹת מַיִם וְשִׁבְעִים תְּמָרִים וַיַּחֲנוּ־שָׁם עַל־הַמָּיִם   15:27

Exod. 15:27   And they came to Elim, and there were twelve fountains of water and seventy palm trees, and they encamped there by the water.

 

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