When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter. For God said, "If they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt."118
So God led2 the people around by the desert road toward the Red Sea.a The Israelites went up out of Egypt armed for battle.319
Moses took the bones of Joseph4 with him because Joseph had made the sons of Israel swear an oath. He had said, "God will surely come to your aid, and then you must carry my bones up with you from this place."b520
After leaving Succoth6 they camped at Etham on the edge of the desert.721
By day the LORD went ahead8 of them in a pillar of cloud9 to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so that they could travel by day or night.
Neither the pillar of cloud by day nor the pillar of fire by night left10 its place in front of the people.