Ver. 1. Went in alone. Aaron was substituted instead of the ancients, chap. iii. 16.
--- Pharao Amasis, Cenchres, or Amenophis. Usher.
--- Sacrifice, which is the principal part of a religious festival. M.
Ver. 2. The Lord. Is there anyone above me?
Ver. 3. Upon us. They include themselves in the common danger, in case of disobedience; and they admonish the king respectfully, that there is no resisting the God of the Hebrews with impunity.
Ver. 4. Get you. He knew not that Moses had been so long absent; and if he had known, he would not probably have treated him more mildly. H.
Ver. 5. Increased, the edict against children being abrogated. M.
--- He insists upon their labour being so intense and toilsome, as to thin their ranks.
Ver. 6. Overseers, natives of Egypt, who had under them some Hebrews for task-masters, as the people were more willing to obey them, v. 14.
Ver. 7. Straw, beaten small and mixed with clay, to make brick and mortar. See Ezec. xiii. 11. 15. Chardin, Perse ii. p. 76.
Ver. 8. Idle. Thus the impious speak of those who consecrate any part of their time to the service of God: and thus Protestants often condemn the holy-days prescribed by the Catholic Church!
Ver. 9. Lying words, alluding to the proposals of Moses. H.
--- Let them not spend their time in idle conversation. C.
Ver. 12. Straw. While some continued at the works, (M.) others went about the fields to gather up every grain of chaff and piece of straw which they could find.
Ver. 14. And they, the officers of the children of Israel, established over their brethren, as the Heb. more clearly insinuates, were scourged, or bastinadoed on the soles of the feet, as smaller faults are commonly punished in the East; (C.) or they were beaten also with rods, v. 16. H.
Ver. 16. Withal. Heb. "the fault is in thy own people," who require impossibilities. C.
--- They throw the blame upon the king's officers, (M.) though it was his own. H.
Ver. 21. Kill us. You are the occasion of our more cruel treatment. You have made the king have a bad opinion of us. Heb. "you have made our savour to be abhorred in the eyes of Pharao." So Jacob said, (Gen. xxxiv. 30,) you have made me stink or become odious. Those who attempt to do a kindness, unsuccessfully, often experience a similar ingratitude. C. xiv. 11. M. It does not appear from the original, whether the officers or Moses was coming from the king's presence. They met in some appointed place. C.
Ver. 22. Wherefore. These are not words of anger, but of earnest prayer. S. Aug. q. 14. Moses does not attempt to satisfy the exasperated officers, but commits the whole to God. M.
--- In great undertakings, there are commonly many difficulties; which ought not to discourage us. T.