Why say to the children of Israel, I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rid you out of their bondage, and I will redeem you with a stretched out arm, and with great judgments:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)I will redeem you.—The idea of God purchasing, or redeeming, Israel is here brought forward for the first time. Later on we learn that the redemption was accomplished in a twofold way—(1) by the long series of wonders, culminating in the tenth plague, whereby they were taken out of Pharaoh’s hand, and ceased to be his slaves, becoming instead the servants of God; and (2) by being led through the Red Sea, and thus delivered, one and all, from impending death, and so purchased anew. (See Exodus 15:13-16.) The delivery from Pharaoh typified our deliverance from the power of Satan; the bringing forth from Egypt our deliverance from the power of sin.
With a stretched out arm.—See the comment on Exodus 3:20.
Witn great judgments. – That the “wonders” to be performed would also be “judgments” is here first declared plainly, though previously hinted at (Exodus 3:20; Exodus 4:23). In Genesis God had said that he would “judge” the nation which should afflict Israel (Genesis 15:14), but not that he would do so miraculously.
but by my name, &c.—rather, interrogatively, by My name Jehovah was I not known to them? Am not I, the Almighty God, who pledged My honor for the fulfilment of the covenant, also the self-existent God who lives to accomplish it? Rest assured, therefore, that I shall bring it to pass. This passage has occasioned much discussion; and it has been thought by many to intimate that as the name Jehovah was not known to the patriarchs, at least in the full bearing or practical experience of it, the honor of the disclosure was reserved to Moses, who was the first sent with a message in the name of Jehovah, and enabled to attest it by a series of public miracles.With a stretched-out arm, i.e. my almighty power. A metaphor from a man that stretcheth out his arm, and puts forth all his strength to give the greater blow.
With great judgments, i.e. punishments justly inflicted upon them, as the word judging and judgments is oft used, as Genesis 15:14 2 Chronicles 20:12 Proverbs 19:29.
and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians; which lay heavy on them, and made them sigh and groan:
and I will rid you out of their bondage; in which they were kept, and by which their lives were made bitter:
and I will redeem you with a stretched out arm; with an arm stretched out from heaven to earth, as Aben Ezra expresses it; even by the exertion of his almighty power, openly and manifestly displayed in the lighting down of his arm upon the enemies of his people, and in delivering them out of their hands:Wherefore say unto the children of Israel, I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rid you out of their bondage, and I will redeem you with a stretched out arm, and with great judgments:
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)6. the burdens] Exodus 1:11, Exodus 2:11, Exodus 5:4-5.
rid] an archaism for deliver (A.S. hreddan, to snatch away; Germ. retten, to deliver). So in AV. Genesis 37:22, Psalm 82:4 (RV. in both deliver); Psalm 144:7; Psalm 144:11 (RV. rescue); and in PBV. of the Psalms, Psalm 18:49; Psalm 71:1.
bondage] Exodus 2:23; rendered ‘service’ in Exodus 1:14 (twice).
redeem] The proper sense of the Heb. gâ’al is to resume a claim or right which has lapsed, to reclaim, re-vindicate: it is thus used Leviticus 25:25 ff. of the ‘redemption’ of a house or field, after it has been sold (cf. Jeremiah 32:7-8), and in the expression, the ‘avenger (gô’çl) of blood,’ properly the one who vindicates the rights of a murdered man: it is also often used metaphorically of deliverance from oppression, trouble, death, &c., as here, Exodus 15:13, Genesis 48:16, Hosea 13:14, Psalm 103:4, and especially in II Isaiah, of Yahweh’s reclaiming His people from exile in Babylon, Isaiah 41:14; Isaiah 43:1, &c. On the syn. pâdâh, see on Exodus 13:13.
a stretched out arm] not again till Deuteronomy 4:34. Six times in Dt. (usually with ‘a mighty hand’), and sometimes also besides. Cf. the verb in Exodus 7:5; also Isaiah 5:25; Isaiah 9:12; Isaiah 9:17; Isaiah 9:21; Isaiah 10:4; Isaiah 14:26-27.
judgements] Not the usual word. Exodus 6:6; Exodus 7:4; Exodus 12:12, Numbers 33:4 in P; 10 times in Ez. (e.g. Exodus 5:10; Exodus 5:15); and twice besides.Verse 6. - Say unto the children of Israel. God felt for the disappointment which the people had suffered in finding no alleviation of their toils, but the reverse, after their hopes had been raised high by the words of Moses (Exodus 4:31). He therefore sent them an inspiriting and gracious message. "They should be rid of their bondage; they should be brought out; they should be redeemed and delivered by his mighty arm and miraculous intervention. He, Jehovah, had said it." Faith would lay hold on this assurance and cling to it, even though God still delayed his coming, and did not precipitate matters. A stretched-out arm. Arms are stretched out by men to help and save. An outstretched arm in the Egyptian writing meant "action." The phrase, elsewhere so common, is here used for the first time. (Compare, however, Exodus 3:20.) It was significant of active, energetic help. Great judgments. These had been previously hinted at (Exodus 3:20 and Exodus 4:22) but had not been previously called "judgments." Compare Genesis 15:14: "Also that nation whom they serve will I judge." The plagues of Egypt were not merely "wonders," but punishments inflicted on a proud and cruel nation by a Judge. Exodus 5:22) to Jehovah with the question, "Why hast Thou done evil to this people," - increased their oppression by my mission to Pharaoh, and yet not delivered them? "These are not words of contumacy or indignation, but of inquiry and prayer" (Aug. quaest. 14). The question and complaint proceeded from faith, which flies to God when it cannot understand the dealings of God, to point out to Him how incomprehensible are His ways, to appeal to Him to help in the time of need, and to remove what seems opposed to His nature and His will.
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