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Noahide Fellowship

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David Keller
Got here and is ready to learn. Contributed with his personal questions.Blue Raising Star
Has completed with Success the Orach Chaim Study Program of the Noahide Academy.Orach Chaim Graduate

Parahas Bo


Disclaimer: "The author died in 1919, so this work is in the public domain in its country of origin and other countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 100 years or fewer.

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published (or registered with the U.S. Copyright Office) before January 1, 1929."

Moshe asked Pharaoh again to let the Children of Israel out so they could serve Hashem and bring offerings in the wilderness.

Pharaoh's servants entreated Pharaoh to let the people out to serve Hashem.

Pharaoh inquired of Moshe who was going to go, Moshe replied that the whole nation, youngsters, elders, their sons and daughters, their flock and their cattle should go.

Pharaoh's inquiry was more of a trick. When he heard that the children were supposed to go as well he was convinced that the Children of Israel were intending to go permanently. He therefore only allowed the men of the Children of Israel to go.

As a consequence, Hashem said to Moshe to stretch out his hand over the land of Egypt so the locust swarm would ascend over the land.

The locust swarm covered the entire surface of the land, and darkened the land.

The locust swarm ate all the grass of the land and all the fruit of the tree that was left after the hail. No greenery remained on the trees or the grass of the field in Egypt.

Pharaoh entreated Moshe and Aaron to take away the plague.

Since Pharaoh still refused to send out the Children of Israel, Hashem told Moshe to stretch for his hand to bring forth darkness over the land of Egypt.

No one could see their fellow or even rise from their bed because of the darkness except for the Children of Israel.

Pharaoh was now willing to let even the children go to bring offerings to Hashem in the wilderness alongside their parents. However, he was not willing for them to bring their flock and cattle.

Hashem told Moshe he would bring one more plague over Pharaoh and the Egyptians. Hashem asked Moshe to tell the people to request precious vessels from their neighbours before they leave to fulfill the promise Hashem had made to Abraham that his descendants would leave the exile with great wealth.

Moshe related the words of Hashem to the people, and also told Pharaoh what would happen, telling them that there would be a great outcry in the entire land of Egypt, since Hashem would go out and every first born in Egypt was to die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh, to the firstborn of maidservants, and the firstborn of beasts.

Nothing would happen to the Children of Israel, as Hashem would have differentiated between Egypt and Israel.

Hashem then gave Moshe and Aaron the commandments of Rosh Chodesh (the New Moon).

Hashem also gave them the commandments of the Pessach offering.

On the tenth of the month each man was to take for themselves or for their entire household respectively, a lamb.

The pessach offering was to be an unblemished male or kid from the sheep or goats in its first year.

The pessach offering was furthermore to be examined until the 14th of the month of Nissan, at which point it shall be slaughtered in the afternoon.

Hashem also gave them the commandments of the Pessach offering.

On the tenth of the month each man was to take for themselves or for their entire household respectively, a lamb.

The pessach offering was to be a unblemished male or kid from the sheep or goats in its first year.

The pessach offering was furthermore to be examined until the 14th of the month of Nissan, at which point it shall be slaughtered in the afternoon.

Some of the blood of the offering was to be put on the two doorposts and lintel on the houses of the Children of Israel.

They were to eat its on that night – roasted over fire – and matzos, and with bitter herbs, not to leave any of it until morning, leftovers were to be burned in fire.

They were to eat it with their loins girded, shoes on their feet, staff in their hand, in haste, it was a Pessach offering to Hashem.

G'd Himself would carry out the last plague against the Egyptians, the blood shall be a sign to pass over that house.

This day was to become an eternal remembrance for the Jewish people to be celebrated as a festival for seven days they were to eat matzos, on the day before the festival they were to get rid of all the leavened food from their houses.

Hashem told them to have a holy convocation on the first and seventh day, no work should be done on them; except for preparing food.

Matzos should be eaten from the evening of 14 Nissan to 21 Nissan.

Moshe then informed the elders of Israel to get a Pessach offering by taking or buying one animal of the flock and slaughter them. He told them to take a bundle of hyssop and dip it into the blood in the basin. No one was to leave their house until morning.

Moshe furthermore informed them that when they would enter the land, they were to observe this service.

G'd then carried out the Tenth Plague against Egypt.

G'd smote every firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh, to the firstborn in the dungeon and every firstborn animal.

There was a great outcry in Egypt, Pharaoh and his servants and all Egypt rose at midnight.

Pharaoh summoned Moshe and Aaron at night and told them, and the Children of Israel, to go. This time he told them to even take their sheep and cattle, and he asked for their blessing.

The people picked up their dough before it could become leavened, baked it into cake, and they also requested valuables from the Egyptians, silver, and gold vessels, and garments, as Moshe had requested of the Children of Israel on behalf of Hashem to fulfill his promise to Abraham.

The Children of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth. They were about six hundred thousand men, and also their women, children, a mixed multitude and livestock.

The Torah records the duration of the Egyptian exile as 430 years.

The Exodus is called a night of anticipation for Hashem, a protection for all the Children of Israel.

Hashem then gave some additional laws of the Pessach offering: No alienated person may eat it, only slaves, who were circumsized may eat it, a sojourner or hired laborer may not eat it. It shall be eaten in one house, the meat should not be taken outside, the entire assembly of Israel shall perform it, proselytes should also perform it after they have been circumcised, no uncircumcised person shall eat of it.

Hashem took the Children of Israel out of Egypt, so right after the Plague of the Firstborn, G'd made Israel his Firstborn, and then He gave Commandments to sanctify them.

Hashem then told Moshe to sanctify to Him every firstborn, the first issue of every womb among the Children of Israel, of Man and Beast, is His.

Moshe told the people to remember the Exodus, and told them that Chametz may not be eaten, and that they should be performing a service, it should be a sign on their arm, and a reminder between eyes, referring to Tefillin.

Moshe told them that Hashem removed them with a strong hand from Egypt.

Moshe then told them to set apart every first issue of the womb to Hashem, and every first issue dropped by livestock that belong to them, the males are Hashem's.

First issue donkeys should be redeemed with a lamb or kid.

If a son should inquire regarding the redemption of the first-born, the father should reply by telling him: With a strong hand Hashem removed them from Egypt from the house of bondage. And it happened when Pharaoh stubbornly refused to send us out, Hashem killed all the firstborn in the land of Egypt. Therefore I offer to Hashem all male first issue of the womb, and redeem all the firstborn of my sons. And it shall be a sign upon your arm, and an ornament between your eyes.


The seminal event of the Exodus is remembered every year, it is chronicled in the Chumash, on Pessach, and even commandments such as Tefillin go back to the Exodus.

When I read about the plague of the Firstborn as an adult, one question I had was who was even considered a first born in Egypt. I came up with a concept that I like to refer to as the "Cross Product of Egypt". In a society filled with depravity, one could go so far as to assume that every male that is part of that society, and every woman that is part of the part society had marital relations with each other. This would then also be the maximum number of firstborns in such a society. The sages discuss at length, and there are varying opinions about which firstborns were struck: Was it only the firstborn of every woman, or every woman's firstborns of each man that she had relations with? How about the men?

One of the takeaway points from the plague of the firstborn for me personally is that I see it as a sign that G'd wants us to have steady relationships with the same partners.

Please read Exodus 11:7: Why no dog whet its tongue against the Children of Israel and their animals?



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