And Aaron said unto Moses, alas, my lord!
&c.] The word for "alas" is generally interpreted by the Jewish writers as a note of beseeching and entreating, as it is here by the Targums of Onkelos and Jonathan,
``I beseech thee, my lord,''or "upon me, my lord" F11, be all the blame; such was his tenderness to his sister, and the compassion he had on her; and such reverence and respect did he show to Moses his brother, though younger than he, because of his superior dignity as a prophet, and chief magistrate, and prime minister, and servant of the Lord, calling him "my lord":
I beseech thee, lay not the sin upon us;
the punishment of it, bear not hard upon us, or suffer us to be punished in a rigorous manner, without interceding to the Lord for us, for the abatement of removal of it; such a powerful and prevailing interest he knew he had with God, that by his prayers their punishment would be mitigated, or not laid, or, if laid, removed:
wherein we have done foolishly, and wherein we have sinned;
he owns they had sinned, but suggests, and so he would have it understood, that it was not through malice, and purposely and presumptuously, but through and ignorance, inadvertency and weakness, and hoped it would be forgiven.