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Exodus 19:7-10

Context

19:7 So Moses came and summoned the elders of Israel. He set before them all these words that the Lord had commanded him, 19:8 and all the people answered together, “All that the Lord has commanded we will do!” 1  So Moses brought the words of the people back to the Lord.

19:9 The Lord said to Moses, “I am going to come 2  to you in a dense cloud, 3  so that the people may hear when I speak with you and so that they will always believe in you.” 4  And Moses told the words of the people to the Lord.

19:10 The Lord said to Moses, “Go to the people and sanctify them 5  today and tomorrow, and make them wash 6  their clothes

1 tn The verb is an imperfect. The people are not being presumptuous in stating their compliance – there are several options open for the interpretation of this tense. It may be classified as having a desiderative nuance: “we are willing to do” or, “we will do.”

2 tn The construction uses the deictic particle and the participle to express the imminent future, what God was about to do. Here is the first announcement of the theophany.

3 tn Heb “the thickness of the cloud”; KJV, ASV, NASB, NCV, TEV, CEV, NLT “in a thick cloud.”

4 tn Since “and also in you” begins the clause, the emphasis must be that the people would also trust Moses. See Exod 4:1-9, 31; 14:31.

5 tn This verb is a Piel perfect with vav (ו) consecutive; it continues the force of the imperative preceding it. This sanctification would be accomplished by abstaining from things that would make them defiled or unclean, and then by ritual washings and ablutions.

6 tn The form is a perfect 3cpl with a vav (ו) consecutive. It is instructional as well, but now in the third person it is like a jussive, “let them wash, make them wash.”



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