Exodus 8:21
Parallel Verses
New International Version
If you do not let my people go, I will send swarms of flies on you and your officials, on your people and into your houses. The houses of the Egyptians will be full of flies; even the ground will be covered with them.

New Living Translation
If you refuse, then I will send swarms of flies on you, your officials, your people, and all the houses. The Egyptian homes will be filled with flies, and the ground will be covered with them.

English Standard Version
Or else, if you will not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies on you and your servants and your people, and into your houses. And the houses of the Egyptians shall be filled with swarms of flies, and also the ground on which they stand.

New American Standard Bible
"For if you do not let My people go, behold, I will send swarms of insects on you and on your servants and on your people and into your houses; and the houses of the Egyptians will be full of swarms of insects, and also the ground on which they dwell.

King James Bible
Else, if thou wilt not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies upon thee, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thy houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground whereon they are.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
But if you will not let My people go, then I will send swarms of flies against you, your officials, your people, and your houses. The Egyptians' houses will swarm with flies, and so will the land where they live.

International Standard Version
But if you don't let my people go, I'll send swarms of insects upon you, your servants, your people, and your households. The houses of Egypt—and even the ground on which they stand—will be filled with swarms of insects.

NET Bible
If you do not release my people, then I am going to send swarms of flies on you and on your servants and on your people and in your houses. The houses of the Egyptians will be full of flies, and even the ground they stand on.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
If you will not let my people go, I will send swarms of flies on you, your officials, your people, and your houses. The homes of the Egyptians will be filled with flies, and even the ground outside will be covered with them.

Jubilee Bible 2000
For if thou wilt not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies upon thee and upon thy slaves and upon thy people and into thy houses; and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of all kinds of flies and also the ground upon which they are.

King James 2000 Bible
Else, if you will not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies upon you, and upon your servants, and upon your people, and into your houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground on which they are.

American King James Version
Else, if you will not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies on you, and on your servants, and on your people, and into your houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground where on they are.

American Standard Version
Else, if thou wilt not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies upon thee, and upon they servants, and upon thy people, and into thy houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground whereon they are.

Douay-Rheims Bible
But if thou wilt not let them go, behold I will send in upon thee, and upon thy servants, and upon thy houses all kind of flies: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be filled with flies of divers kinds, and the whole land wherein they shall be.

Darby Bible Translation
For, if thou do not let my people go, behold, I will send dog-flies upon thee, and upon thy bondmen, and upon thy people, and into thy houses; and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of dog-flies, and also the ground on which they are.

English Revised Version
Else, if thou wilt not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies upon thee, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thy houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground whereon they are.

Webster's Bible Translation
Else, if thou wilt not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies upon thee, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thy houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground on which they are.

World English Bible
Else, if you will not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies on you, and on your servants, and on your people, and into your houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground whereon they are.

Young's Literal Translation
for, if thou art not sending My people away, lo, I am sending against thee, and against thy servants, and against thy people, and against thy houses, the beetle, and the houses of the Egyptians have been full of the beetle, and also the ground on which they are.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

8:20-32 Pharaoh was early at his false devotions to the river; and shall we be for more sleep and more slumber, when any service to the Lord is to be done? The Egyptians and the Hebrews were to be marked in the plague of flies. The Lord knows them that are his, and will make it appear, perhaps in this world, certainly in the other, that he has set them apart for himself. Pharaoh unwillingly entered into a treaty with Moses and Aaron. He is content they should sacrifice to their God, provided they would do it in the land of Egypt. But it would be an abomination to God, should they offer the Egyptian sacrifices; and it would be an abomination to the Egyptians, should they offer to God the objects of the worship of the Egyptians, namely, their calves or oxen. Those who would offer acceptable sacrifice to God, must separate themselves from the wicked and profane. They must also retire from the world. Israel cannot keep the feast of the Lord, either among the brick-kilns or among the flesh-pots of Egypt. And they must sacrifice as God shall command, not otherwise. Though they were in slavery to Pharaoh, yet they must obey God's commands. Pharaoh consents for them to go into the wilderness, provided they do not go so far but that he might fetch them back again. Thus, some sinners, in a pang of conviction, part with their sins, yet are loth they should go very far away; for when the fright is over, they will turn to them again. Moses promised the removal of this plague. But let not Pharaoh deal deceitfully any more. Be not deceived; God is not mocked: if we think to cheat God by a sham repentance and a false surrender of ourselves to him, we shall put a fatal cheat upon our own souls. Pharaoh returned to his hardness. Reigning lusts break through the strongest bonds, and make men presume and go from their word. Many seem in earnest, but there is some reserve, some beloved, secret sin. They are unwilling to look upon themselves as in danger of everlasting misery. They will refrain from other sins; they do much, give much, and even punish themselves much. They will leave it off sometimes, and, as it were, let their sin depart a little way; but will not make up their minds to part with all and follow Christ, bearing the cross. Rather than that, they venture all. They are sorrowful, but depart from Christ, determined to keep the world at present, and they hope for some future season, when salvation may be had without such costly sacrifices; but, at length, the poor sinner is driven away in his wickedness, and left without hope to lament his folly.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 21. - Swarms of flies is an unfortunate translation of a single substantive in the singular number, accompanied by the article. A mixture, etc., is nearly as bad. The writer must mean some one definite species of animal, which he called "the arob." On the probable identification of the animal, see the Introductory paragraph to this Chapter. And also the ground. The 'arob, like the frogs, was to plague them both inside their houses and outside, but especially inside.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Else, if thou wilt not let my people go,.... But remainest obstinate and inflexible:

behold, I will send swarms of flies upon thee; the word used is generally thought to signify a "mixture", and is interpreted by many a mixture of various creatures; the Targum of Jonathan paraphrases it a mixture of wild beasts, and so Josephus (k) understands it of all sorts of beasts, of many forms, and such as were never seen before; according to Jarchi, all sorts of evil beasts are meant, as serpents and scorpions, mixed together; and so Aben Ezra says it signifies evil beasts mixed together, as lions, wolves, bears, and leopards; but it is not likely the houses should be filled with these, or the ground covered with them, as after related: and besides, they would soon have destroyed, all the inhabitants of the land, since as it follows they are said to be upon them; rather a mixture of insects is intended; the Septuagint; version renders it the "dog fly", and so Philo the Jew (l); which, as Pliny (m) says, is very troublesome, to dogs especially, about their ears, and this version Bochart (n) approves of:

and upon thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thy houses; they should be sent unto and settle first on his own person, and also on his ministers and courtiers, and upon all his subjects in general, and get into their houses, and be very troublesome guests there:

and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of the swarms of flies, and also the ground whereon they are; their number would be so very great.

(k) Antiqu. l. 2. c. 14. sect. 3.((l) De Vita Mosis, l. 1. p. 622. (m) Nat. Hist. l. 11. c. 34. (n) Hierozoic. par. 2. l. 4. c. 15. col. 555.



Exodus 8:21 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Fourth Plague: Flies
20Now the LORD said to Moses, "Rise early in the morning and present yourself before Pharaoh, as he comes out to the water, and say to him, 'Thus says the LORD, "Let My people go, that they may serve Me. 21"For if you do not let My people go, behold, I will send swarms of insects on you and on your servants and on your people and into your houses; and the houses of the Egyptians will be full of swarms of insects, and also the ground on which they dwell. 22"But on that day I will set apart the land of Goshen, where My people are living, so that no swarms of insects will be there, in order that you may know that I, the LORD, am in the midst of the land.…
Cross References
Exodus 8:20
Then the LORD said to Moses, "Get up early in the morning and confront Pharaoh as he goes to the river and say to him, 'This is what the LORD says: Let my people go, so that they may worship me.

Exodus 8:22
"'But on that day I will deal differently with the land of Goshen, where my people live; no swarms of flies will be there, so that you will know that I, the LORD, am in this land.

Exodus 8:24
And the LORD did this. Dense swarms of flies poured into Pharaoh's palace and into the houses of his officials; throughout Egypt the land was ruined by the flies.

Exodus 10:6
They will fill your houses and those of all your officials and all the Egyptians--something neither your parents nor your ancestors have ever seen from the day they settled in this land till now.'" Then Moses turned and left Pharaoh.

Psalm 105:31
He spoke, and there came swarms of flies, and gnats throughout their country.
Treasury of Scripture

Else, if you will not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies on you, and on your servants, and on your people, and into your houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground where on they are.

swarms. or a mixture of noisome beasts. The word arov is rendered the dog-fly, by the LXX (who are followed by the learned Bochart,) which must have been particularly hateful to the Egyptians, because they held dogs in the highest veneration, under which form they worshipped Anubis.

Psalm 78:45 He sent divers sorts of flies among them, which devoured them; and …

Psalm 105:31 He spoke, and there came divers sorts of flies, and lice in all their coasts.

Isaiah 7:18 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the LORD shall hiss for …

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