Exodus 14:5

5 And it was told the king of Egypt that the people fled: and the heart of Pharaoh and of his servants was turned against the people, and they said, Why have we done this, that we have let Israel go from serving us?

Exodus 14:5 Meaning and Commentary

Exodus 14:5

And it was told the king of Egypt
By some of the Egyptians, or mixed multitude that went out with Israel, but returned upon their encampment at the Red sea, or by some spies Pharaoh sent with them to observe their motions: the Targums of Jonathan and Jarchi make use of a word which Buxtorf translates military officers: and the latter says, they went out with them the three days' journey, but the Israelites not returning to Egypt (as expected), they tell Pharaoh of it the fourth day; and on the fifth and sixth he pursued them, and in the night of the seventh went into the sea after them, and on the morning they (the Israelites) sung the song, which was the seventh of the passover: these reported to Pharaoh:

that the people fled;
that under a pretence of going three days' journey into the wilderness, to serve and sacrifice to the Lord, they were about to make their escape out of the land:

and the heart of Pharaoh and of his servants were turned against the
people;
who had so much favour in their sight, not only to give them leave to go, and to hasten their departure, but to lend and give them things of great value; but now their hearts were filled with hatred of them, and with malice and revenge:

and they said, why have we done this, that we have let Israel go from
serving us?
not Pharaoh only, but his servants said so, even those who had entreated him to let them go, ( Exodus 10:7 ) yet now repent of it, and cannot think what reason they had to do it, when at that time they saw reason, and gave a very sufficient one, namely, the destruction of Egypt; but now the judgments and plagues of God being no more upon them, they recollect the great service of the Israelites to them and the benefits and advantages they had reaped by it, and the loss they had sustained by parting with them, and therefore reflect upon themselves for such a piece of conduct.

Exodus 14:5 In-Context

3 For Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel, They are entangled in the land, the wilderness hath shut them in.
4 And I will harden Pharaoh's heart, that he shall follow after them; and I will be honoured upon Pharaoh, and upon all his host; that the Egyptians may know that I am the LORD. And they did so.
5 And it was told the king of Egypt that the people fled: and the heart of Pharaoh and of his servants was turned against the people, and they said, Why have we done this, that we have let Israel go from serving us?
6 And he made ready his chariot, and took his people with him:
7 And he took six hundred chosen chariots, and all the chariots of Egypt, and captains over every one of them.