Exodus 13

1 And the Lorde spake vnto Moses saynge:
2 sanctifie vnto me all the firstborne that ope all maner matrices amoge the childern of Israel, as well of me as of beestes: for they are myne.
3 And Moses sayde vnto the people: thike on thys daye i which ye came out of Egipte and out of the housse of bondage: for with a myghtie hade the Lorde broughte you out fro thece. Se therfore that ye eate no leuended bred.
4 This daye come ye out of Egipte in the moneth of Abib.
5 whe the Lorde hath broughte the i to the lode of the Canaanites, Hethites, Amorites, Heuites ad Iebusites, which he sware vnto thi fathers that he wolde geue the: a londe where in milke ad honye floweth, the se that thou kepe this servyce in this same moneth.
6 Seue dayes thou shalt eate swete bred, ad the .vij. daye shalbe feastfull vnto the Lorde.
7 Therfore thou shalt eate swete bred .vij. dayes, and se that there be no leuended bred sene nor yet leue amonge you in all youre quarters.
8 And thou shalt shewe thy sonne at that tyme saynge: this is done, because of that which the Lorde dyd vnto me when I came out of Egipte.
9 Therfore it shall be a signe vnto the vppon thine hande and a remembraunce betwene thine eyes, that the Lordes lawe maye be in thy mouth. For with a stronge hade the Lorde broughte the out of Egipte,
10 se thou kepe therfore this ordinauce in his season from yere to yere.
11 Moreouer when the Lorde hath broughte the in to the londe of the Canaanytes, as he hath sworne vnto the and to thi fathers, and hath geuen it the,
12 the thou shalt appoynte vnto the Lorde all that openeth the matrice, and all the firstborne among the beestes which thou hast yf they be males.
13 And all the firstborne of the asses, thou shalt redeme with a shepe: yf thou redeme him not, then breake hys necke. But all the firstborne amonge thi childern shalt thou bye out.
14 And when thi sonne axeth the in tyme to come saynge: what is this? thou shalt saye vnto him: with a mightie hande the Lorde broughte us out of Egipte, out of the housse of bondage.
15 And when Pharao was looth to lete us goo, the Lorde slewe all the firstborne in the lande of Egipte: as well the firstborne of men as of beastes. And therfore I sacrifice vnto the Lorde all the males that open the matrice, but all the firstborne of my childern I must redeme.
16 And this shall be as a token in thine hande, and as a thinge hanged vpp betwene thine eyes: because the Lorde broughte us out of Egipte with a mightie hande.
17 when Pharao had let the people goo, God caried them not thorow the londe of the Philistines, though it were a nye waye. For God sayde: the people myghte happly repent when they se warre, and so turne agayne to Egipte:
18 therfore God led the aboute thorow the wyldernesse that bordreth on the redd see. The childern of Israel went harnessed out of the lade of Egipte.
19 And Moses toke the bones of Ioseph with him: for he made the childern of Israel swere saynge: God will surely vyset you, take my bones therfore away hence with you,
20 And they toke their iorney from Suchoth: and pitched their tentes in Etham in the edge of the wyldernesse.
21 And the Lorde went before them by daye in a piler of a cloude to lede them the waye: and by nyghte in a piler of fyre to geue the lighte: that they myghte goo both by day ad nyghte.
22 And the piler of the cloude neuer departed by daye nor the piler of fyre by nyghte out of the peoples sighte.

Exodus 13 Commentary

Chapter 13

The first-born sanctified to God The remembrance of the passover commanded. (1-10) The firstlings of beasts set apart. (11-16) Joseph's bones carried with the Israelites, They come to Etham. (17-20) God guideth the Israelites by a pillar of cloud fire. (21,22)

Verses 1-10 In remembrance of the destruction of the first-born of Egypt, both of man and of beast, and the deliverance of the Israelites out of bondage, the first-born males of the Israelites were set apart to the Lord. By this was set before them, that their lives were preserved through the ransom of the atonement, which in due time was to be made for sin. They were also to consider their lives, thus ransomed from death, as now to be consecrated to the service of God. The parents were not to look upon themselves as having any right in their first-born, till they solemnly presented them to God, and allowed his title to them. That which is, by special mercy, spared to us, should be applied to God's honour; at least, some grateful acknowledgment, in works of piety and charity, should be made. The remembrance of their coming out of Egypt must be kept up every year. The day of Christ's resurrection is to be remembered, for in it we were raised up with Christ out of death's house of bondage. The Scripture tells us not expressly what day of the year Christ rose, but it states particularly what day of the week it was; as the more valuable deliverance, it should be remembered weekly. The Israelites must keep the feast of unleavened bread. Under the gospel, we must not only remember Christ, but observe his holy supper. Do this in remembrance of him. Also care must be taken to teach children the knowledge of God. Here is an old law for catechising. It is of great use to acquaint children betimes with the histories of the Bible. And those who have God's law in their heart should have it in their mouth, and often speak of it, to affect themselves, and to teach others.

Verses 11-16 The firstlings of beast not used in sacrifice, were to be changed for others so used, or they were to be destroyed. Our souls are forfeited to God's justice, and unless ransomed by the sacrifice of Christ, will certainly perish. These institutions would continually remind them of their duty, to love and serve the Lord. In like manner, baptism and the Lord's supper, if explained and attended to, would remind us, and give us occasion to remind one another of our profession and duty.

Verses 17-20 There were two ways from Egypt to Canaan. One was only a few days' journey; the other was much further about, through the wilderness, and that was the way in which God chose to lead his people Israel. The Egyptians were to be drowned in the Red sea; the Israelites were to be humbled and proved in the wilderness. God's way is the right way, though it seems about. If we think he leads not his people the nearest way, yet we may be sure he leads them the best way, and so it will appear when we come to our journey's end. The Philistines were powerful enemies; it was needful that the Israelites should be prepared for the wars of Canaan, by passing through the difficulties of the wilderness. Thus God proportions his people's trials to their strength, 1Co. 10:13 . They went up in good order. They went up in five in a rank, some; in five bands, so others, which it seems rather to their faith and hope, that God would bring them to Canaan, in expectation of which they carried these bones with them while in the desert.

Verses 21-22 The Lord went before them in a pillar, or appearance of the Divine Majesty. Christ was with the church in the ( 1 Corinthians. 10:13 ) he will not leave nor lose there, but will take care to lead them through it. It was great satisfaction to Moses and the pious Israelites, to be sure that they were under Divine guidance. Those who make the glory of God their end, and the word of God their rule, the Spirit of God the guide of their affections, and the providence of God the guide of their affairs, may be sure that the Lord goes before them, though they cannot see it with their eyes: we must now live by faith. When Israel marched, this pillar went before, and pointed out the place of encampment, as Divine Wisdom saw fit. It sheltered by day from the heat, and gave light by night. The Bible is a light to our feet, a lantern to our paths, with which the Saviour's love has provided us. It testifies of Christ. It is to us like the pillar to the Israelites. Listen to that voice which cries, I am the Light of the world; he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the Light of life, ( John 8:12 ) . Jesus Christ alone, as shown in the Bible, and as the Holy Spirit, in answer to prayer, recommends him to the soul, is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, ( John 14:6 ) .

Chapter Summary


This chapter begins with an order to sanctify or set apart the firstborn of man and beast to the Lord, Ex 13:1,2 and the people of Israel are charged to keep the feast of unleavened bread in its season, from year to year, when they came into the land of Canaan, the reason of which they were to acquaint their children with, Ex 13:3-10 and they are also directed, when come into the land of Canaan, to set apart every firstling of a beast unto the Lord, and particularly the firstling of an ass was to be redeemed with a lamb, or its neck to be broke, and all the firstborn of men were to be redeemed also, Ex 13:11-13, and when their children inquired the reason of it, they were to be told it was on account of the Lord's slaying the firstborn of men and beast among the Egyptians, when Pharaoh would not let Israel go, and of saving the firstborn of his people, Ex 13:14-16, and it is observed, that when the children of Israel went out of Egypt, they were not led by the nearest way, the way of the land of the Philistines, but a round about way, the way of the wilderness of the Red sea, when they took the bones of Joseph with them, as he had adjured them to do, Ex 13:17-19, and the chapter is concluded with an account of their journeying from Succoth to Etham, the Lord going before them in a pillar of cloud by day, and in a pillar of fire by night, Ex 13:20-22.

Exodus 13 Commentaries

The Tyndale Bible is in the public domain.