Exodus 14:12
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
Didn't we say to you in Egypt, 'Leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians'? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!"

New Living Translation
Didn't we tell you this would happen while we were still in Egypt? We said, 'Leave us alone! Let us be slaves to the Egyptians. It's better to be a slave in Egypt than a corpse in the wilderness!'"

English Standard Version
Is not this what we said to you in Egypt: ‘Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.”

Berean Study Bible
Did we not say to you in Egypt, ‘Leave us alone so that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.”

New American Standard Bible
"Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, 'Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians '? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness."

King James Bible
Is not this the word that we did tell thee in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.

Christian Standard Bible
Isn't this what we told you in Egypt: Leave us alone so that we may serve the Egyptians? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness."

Contemporary English Version
While we were there, didn't we tell you to leave us alone? We'd rather be slaves in Egypt than die in this desert!"

Good News Translation
Didn't we tell you before we left that this would happen? We told you to leave us alone and let us go on being slaves of the Egyptians. It would be better to be slaves there than to die here in the desert."

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Isn't this what we told you in Egypt: Leave us alone so that we may serve the Egyptians? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness."

International Standard Version
Is this not what we told you in Egypt, when we said, 'Leave us alone!' and 'Let us serve the Egyptians!'? Indeed, it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!"

NET Bible
Isn't this what we told you in Egypt, 'Leave us alone so that we can serve the Egyptians, because it is better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!'"

New Heart English Bible
Isn't this the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, 'Leave us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians?' For it were better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness."

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Didn't we tell you in Egypt, 'Leave us alone! Let us go on serving the Egyptians'? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!"

JPS Tanakh 1917
Is not this the word that we spoke unto thee in Egypt, saying: Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it were better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.'

New American Standard 1977
“Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, ‘Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.”

Jubilee Bible 2000
Is this not what we told thee in Egypt, saying, Let us alone that we may serve the Egyptians? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than that we should die in the wilderness.

King James 2000 Bible
Is not this the word that we did tell you in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.

American King James Version
Is not this the word that we did tell you in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.

American Standard Version
Is not this the word that we spake unto thee in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it were better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Is not this the word that we spoke to thee in Egypt, saying: Depart from us that we may serve the Egyptians? for it was much better to serve them, than to die in the wilderness.

Darby Bible Translation
Is not this what we told thee in Egypt, when we said, Let us alone, and we will serve the Egyptians? For [it had been] better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.

English Revised Version
Is not this the word that we spake unto thee in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it were better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.

Webster's Bible Translation
Is not this the word that we told thee in Egypt, Saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.

World English Bible
Isn't this the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, 'Leave us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians?' For it were better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness."

Young's Literal Translation
Is not this the word which we spake unto thee in Egypt, saying, Cease from us, and we serve the Egyptians; for better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in a wilderness?'
Study Bible
Pharaoh Pursues the Israelites
11They said to Moses, “Was it because there are no graves in Egypt that you brought us into the wilderness to die? What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt? 12Did we not say to you in Egypt, ‘Leave us alone so that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.” 13But Moses told the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the LORD’s salvation, which He will accomplish for you today; for the Egyptians you see today, you will never see again.…
Cross References
Exodus 6:9
Moses relayed this message to the Israelites, but on account of their broken spirit and cruel bondage, they did not listen to him.

Exodus 13:17
When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them along the road through the land of the Philistines, though it was shorter. For God said, "If the people face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt."

Psalm 106:7
Our fathers in Egypt did not grasp Your wonders or remember Your abundant kindness; but they rebelled by the sea, there at the Red Sea.

Treasury of Scripture

Is not this the word that we did tell you in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.

is not this

Exodus 5:21 And they said to them, The LORD look on you, and judge; because you …

Exodus 3:9 Now therefore, behold, the cry of the children of Israel is come to me…

let us alone

Hosea 4:17 Ephraim is joined to idols: let him alone.

Mark 1:24 Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with you, you Jesus of Nazareth? …

Mark 5:7,17,18 And cried with a loud voice, and said, What have I to do with you, …

for it had

Jonah 4:3,8 Therefore now, O LORD, take, I beseech you, my life from me; for …







(12) Is not this the word that we did tell thee . . .?--At one time they had refused to listen to Moses (Exodus 6:9) but in the main they had acquiesced in his proceedings, and allowed him to act in their name. The reproach was therefore unjust and undeserved; but it is in human nature to make such reproaches in times of danger and difficulty.

Verse 12. - Is not this the word that we did tell thee? The reference was probably to that time of depression, after their burdens had been increased, and before the series of miracles began, when the Israelites had addressed reproaches to Moses and Aaron (Exodus 5:21), and refused to listen to words of encouragement (Exodus 6:9). It was not true that they had uniformly held the same language, and desired Moses and Aaron to cease their efforts. It had been better for us to serve the Egyptians than that we should die. The spirit to prefer death to slavery, where they are the only alternatives, is not a common one; and we must not be surprised that a people which had grown up in servitude and had no traditions of national independence did not rise to the heroic height attained under other circumstances by Greeks, by Switzers. and by Poles. It would have been most extraordinary had they done so. Is not this the word that we did tell thee in Egypt,.... The thing they suggested to him, and talked with him about while they were in the land of Egypt, before they came out of it, particularly after their service and bondage were made more severe and cruel upon Moses and Aaron's demanding their dismission, see Exodus 5:21,

saying, let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? peaceably and quietly, as we have been used to do, since there is no likelihood of being freed, and since we are more evilly treated than before:

for it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness: of such mean spirits were they, and had so poor a notion of, and taste for liberty, and so ungrateful were they to their deliverer. 14:10-14 There was no way open to Israel but upward, and thence their deliverance came. We may be in the way of duty, following God, and hastening toward heaven, yet may be troubled on every side. Some cried out unto the Lord; their fear led them to pray, and that was well. God brings us into straits, that he may bring us to our knees. Others cried out against Moses; fear set them murmuring as if God were not still able to work miracles. They quarrel with Moses for bringing them out of Egypt; and so were angry with God for the greatest kindness ever done them; thus gross are the absurdities of unbelief. Moses says, Fear ye not. It is always our duty and interest, when we cannot get out of troubles, yet to get above our fears; let them quicken our prayers and endeavours, but not silence our faith and hope. Stand still, think not to save yourselves either by fighting or flying; wait God's orders, and observe them. Compose yourselves, by confidence in God, into peaceful thoughts of the great salvation God is about to work for you. If God brings his people into straits, he will find a way to bring them out.
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