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Exodus 14:14-18

Context
14:14 The Lord 1  will fight for you, and you can be still.” 2 

14:15 The Lord said to Moses, “Why do you cry out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on. 3  14:16 And as for you, 4  lift up your staff and extend your hand toward the sea and divide it, so that 5  the Israelites may go through the middle of the sea on dry ground. 14:17 And as for me, I am going to harden 6  the hearts of the Egyptians so that 7  they will come after them, that I may be honored 8  because 9  of Pharaoh and his army and his chariots and his horsemen. 14:18 And the Egyptians will know 10  that I am the Lord when I have gained my honor 11  because of Pharaoh, his chariots, and his horsemen.”

Exodus 15:3-10

Context

15:3 The Lord is a warrior, 12 

the Lord is his name. 13 

15:4 The chariots of Pharaoh 14  and his army he has thrown into the sea,

and his chosen 15  officers were drowned 16  in the Red Sea.

15:5 The depths have covered them, 17 

they went down to the bottom 18  like a stone.

15:6 Your right hand, O Lord, was majestic 19  in power,

your right hand, O Lord, shattered the enemy.

15:7 In the abundance of your majesty 20  you have overthrown 21 

those who rise up against you. 22 

You sent forth 23  your wrath; 24 

it consumed them 25  like stubble.

15:8 By the blast of your nostrils 26  the waters were piled up,

the flowing water stood upright like a heap, 27 

and the deep waters were solidified in the heart of the sea.

15:9 The enemy said, ‘I will chase, 28  I will overtake,

I will divide the spoil;

my desire 29  will be satisfied on them.

I will draw 30  my sword, my hand will destroy them.’ 31 

15:10 But 32  you blew with your breath, and 33  the sea covered them.

They sank 34  like lead in the mighty waters.

1 tn The word order places emphasis on “the Lord” (Heb “Yahweh”).

2 tn The imperfect tense needs to be interpreted in contrast to all that Yahweh will be doing. It may be given a potential imperfect nuance (as here), or it may be obligatory to follow the command to stand firm: “you must be still.”

3 tn The text literally says, “speak to the Israelites that they may journey.” The intent of the line, using the imperative with the subordinate jussive or imperfect expressing purpose is that the speaking is the command to move.

4 tn The conjunction plus pronoun (“and you”) is emphatic – “and as for you” – before the imperative “lift up.” In contrast, v. 17 begins with “and as for me, I….”

5 tn The imperfect (or jussive) with the vav (ו) is sequential, coming after the series of imperatives instructing Moses to divide the sea; the form then gives the purpose (or result) of the activity – “that they may go.”

6 tn הִנְנִי (hinni) before the participle gives it the force of a futur instans participle, meaning “I am about to harden” or “I am going to harden” their heart.

7 tn The form again is the imperfect tense with vav (ו) to express the purpose or the result of the hardening. The repetition of the verb translated “come” is interesting: Moses is to divide the sea in order that the people may cross, but God will harden the Egyptians’ hearts in order that they may follow.

8 tn For the comments on this verb see the discussion in v. 4. God would get glory by defeating Egypt.

9 tn Or “I will get glory over.”

10 tn The construction is unusual in that it says, “And Egypt will know.” The verb is plural, and so “Egypt” must mean “the Egyptians.” The verb is the perfect tense with the vav consecutive, showing that this recognition or acknowledgment by Egypt will be the result or purpose of the defeat of them by God.

11 tn The form is בְּהִכָּבְדִי (bÿhikkavÿdi), the Niphal infinitive construct with a preposition and a suffix. For the suffix on a Niphal, see GKC 162-63 §61.c. The word forms a temporal clause in the line.

12 tn Heb “man of war” (so KJV, ASV). “Warrior” is now the preferred translation since “man of war” is more commonly known today as a warship. The expression indicates that Yahweh is one who understands how to fight and defeat the enemy. The word “war” modifies “man” to reveal that Yahweh is a warrior. Other passages use similar descriptions: Isa 42:13 has “man of wars”; Ps 24:8 has “mighty man of battle.” See F. Cross, “The Divine Warrior in Israel’s Early Cult,” Biblical Motifs, 11-30.

13 tn Heb “Yahweh is his name.” As throughout, the name “Yahweh” is rendered as “the Lord” in the translation, as is typically done in English translations.

14 tn Gesenius notes that the sign of the accusative, often omitted in poetry, is not found in this entire song (GKC 363 §117.b).

15 tn The word is a substantive, “choice, selection”; it is here used in the construct state to convey an attribute before a partitive genitive – “the choice of his officers” means his “choice officers” (see GKC 417 §128.r).

16 tn The form is a Qal passive rather than a Pual, for there is not Piel form or meaning.

17 tn The verb form is יְכַסְיֻמוּ (yÿkhasyumu) is the Piel preterite. Normally a vav (ו) consecutive is used with the preterite, but in some ancient poems the form without the vav appears, as is the case frequently in this poem. That such an archaic form is used should come as no surprise, because the word also uses the yod (י) of the root (GKC 214 §75.dd), and the archaic suffix form (GKC 258 §91.l). These all indicate the antiquity of the poem.

18 tn The parasynonyms here are תְּהֹמֹת (tÿhomot, “deep, ocean depths, deep waters”) and מְצוֹלֹת (mÿtsolot, “the depths”); S. R. Driver says properly the “gurgling places” (Exodus, 134).

19 tn The form נֶאְדָּרִי (nedari) may be an archaic infinitive with the old ending i, used in place of the verb and meaning “awesome.” Gesenius says that the vowel ending may be an old case ending, especially when a preposition is inserted between the word and its genitive (GKC 253 §90.l), but he suggests a reconstruction of the form.

20 sn This expression is cognate with words in v. 1. Here that same greatness or majesty is extolled as in abundance.

21 tn Here, and throughout the song, these verbs are the prefixed conjugation that may look like the imperfect but are actually historic preterites. This verb is to “overthrow” or “throw down” – like a wall, leaving it in shattered pieces.

22 tn The form קָמֶיךָ (qamekha) is the active participle with a pronominal suffix. The participle is accusative, the object of the verb, but the suffix is the genitive of nearer definition (see GKC 358 §116.i).

23 sn The verb is the Piel of שָׁלַח (shalakh), the same verb used throughout for the demand on Pharaoh to release Israel. Here, in some irony, God released his wrath on them.

24 sn The word wrath is a metonymy of cause; the effect – the judgment – is what is meant.

25 tn The verb is the prefixed conjugation, the preterite, without the consecutive vav (ו).

26 sn The phrase “the blast of your nostrils” is a bold anthropomorphic expression for the wind that came in and dried up the water.

27 tn The word “heap” describes the walls of water. The waters, which are naturally fluid, stood up as though they were a heap, a mound of earth. Likewise, the flowing waters deep in the ocean solidified – as though they were turned to ice (U. Cassuto, Exodus, 175).

28 sn W. C. Kaiser observes the staccato phrases that almost imitate the heavy, breathless heaving of the Egyptians as, with what reserve of strength they have left, they vow, “I will…, I will…, I will…” (“Exodus,” EBC 2:395).

29 tn The form is נַפְשִׁי (nafshi, “my soul”). But this word refers to the whole person, the body and the soul, or better, a bundle of appetites in a body. It therefore can figuratively refer to the desires or appetites (Deut 12:15; 14:26; 23:24). Here, with the verb “to be full” means “to be satisfied”; the whole expression might indicate “I will be sated with them” or “I will gorge myself.” The greedy appetite was to destroy.

30 tn The verb רִיק (riq) means “to be empty” in the Qal, and in the Hiphil “to empty.” Here the idea is to unsheathe a sword.

31 tn The verb is יָרַשׁ (yarash), which in the Hiphil means “to dispossess” or “root out.” The meaning “destroy” is a general interpretation.

32 tn “But” has been supplied here.

33 tn Here “and” has been supplied.

34 tn The verb may have the idea of sinking with a gurgling sound, like water going into a whirlpool (R. A. Cole, Exodus [TOTC], 124; S. R. Driver, Exodus, 136). See F. M. Cross and D. N. Freedman, “The Song of Miriam,” JNES 14 (1955): 243-47.



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