But against any of the children of Israel shall not a dog move
his tongue, against man or beast
That is, as no hurt should be done to man or beast among them, to the firstborn of either of them, so there would be no noise or cry in their dwellings, but the profoundest silence, stillness, and quietness among them; though this is generally understood of what would be their case when on their march departing out of Egypt, which was immediately upon the slaying of the firstborn; and, if literally understood, it was a very extraordinary thing that a dog, which barks at the least noise that is made, especially in the night, yet not one should move his tongue or bark, or rather "sharpen" F21 his tongue, snarl and grin, when 600,000 men, besides women and children, with their flocks and herds, set out on their journey, and must doubtless march through many places where dogs were, before they came to the Red sea; though it may also be interpreted figuratively, that not an Egyptian, though ever so spiteful and malicious, and ill disposed to the children of Israel, should offer to do any hurt either to the Israelites or their cattle, or exclaim against them on account of the slaughter of their firstborn, or say one word against their departure, or attempt to stop them, but on the contrary would hasten their going, and be urgent for it: that ye may know how that the Lord doth put a difference between the
Egyptians and Israel;
by preserving them and theirs, when the firstborn of Egypt were destroyed, and by causing stillness and quietness among them when there was an hideous outcry and doleful lamentation among the Egyptians; and by bringing Israel quietly out from among them, none offering to give the least molestation.
F21 (Urxy al) non acuet, Noldius, p. 517. No. 1471. so Jarchi.