Israel's Exodus and the Red sea?
UNDERSTANDING THE CONTEXT OF EXODUS 12 TO 15:22
We first need to remember that in the original HEBREW Old
Testament, there were no punctuation; no sentencing, phrases,
commeres, periods etc. This is shown in the studies on "How we
got the Bible" on this Website.
Obviously in Exodus 12:2, God and Moses knew which month was
meant, and so it was handed down through Israel's history.
It was in the 10th day of this first month they were to
select a lamb (v.3) and a lamb for a household. If the household
was too little then a neighbor's house could be added (v.4).
The lamb was kept until the 14th day of this month and in
the evening it was killed (v.6).
In THAT night it was to be roasted with fire, eaten with
herbs and unleavened bread. None of it was to remain until the
It was the Lord's Passover. He would pass through the land
that night, and all the first born of man and beast were to die.
Israelites could be saved by being under the blood (vv.7,11-13).
I have proved in many other studies that all this was done
at the BEGINNING of the 14th day, and on, during THAT night of
the 14th day.
STILL TALKING about this night and this 14th day, is verse
14. That event was to be a FEAST until the Lord.
The CONTEXT IS THE 14TH DAY OF THE FIRST MONTH FROM VERSE 6
** Now, in verse 15 we have the start of another thought and
another FEAST! This explanation goes until 20. It is information
concerning the SEVEN day Feast of Unleavened Bread.**
We know that the Feast of the PASSOVER and the Feast of
Unleavened Bread are TWO FESTIVALS from Leviticus 23:4-8.
The PASSOVER Feast is ONE DAY - the 14th day; and the Feast
of UNLEAVENED BREAD is from the 15 to the 21st day of the same
Now, back to Exodus 12 and we pick it up in verse 21. Moses
gives instructions on what to do with the blood of the lamb. They
will be saved by being under the blood of the lamb. They are to
tell the next generations what is meant by this Passover service.
They are to tell them it is the Lord's PASSOVER, who PASSED over
the houses of Israel in Egypt, when He smote the Egyptians. The
children of Israel did as Moses instructed (verses 21-28).
At MIDNIGHT of the 14th the Lord smote the land of Egypt
(v.29). Pharaoh rose up in that night, called for Moses, and told
him to get his people out of the land, and go serve their God.
Israel started to do so in the very morning of that 14th day, and
morning can be very early at that season in Egypt (verse 22).
Moses in recounting all this and writing it down,
INTERJECTS, with verses 34-41, to give us some quick thoughts on
Israel spoiling the Egyptians and leaving Rameses. We know from
Numbers 33:3 that they left Rameses on the 15th day of the month.
Moses also interjects with telling us a mixed multitude also went
out from Rameses with the Israelites (v.38). Moses also adds
another interjection - there was no time be bake LEAVENED bread,
there was just too much going on in a matter of two days, from
the 14th to the 15th, to bother about having leavened bread,
un-leavened would be quite sufficient!
Moses' thought in the last part of verse 41, brings HIM and
US, back to the 14th, the NIGHT they were free from Egyptians
bondage. The moment Pharaoh said, "Get out of here" - they were
brought out of Egypt. Obviously, they had not moved out of the
land mark, "city limits" shall be say, of Egypt. They did not
leave Rameses until the next day, the 15th. But, really they were
free from Egypt the NIGHT of the 14th!
Notice the next verse AFTER verse 42, verse 43 brings is to
the PASSOVER once more, down to verse 49.
The whole CONTEXT is the Passover EXCEPT for verses 15-20
and 34-40. They are INSET verses. Many writers of the books of
the Bible used "inset" verses, the apostle Paul was one who used
inset verses quite often in his writings. It is a common tool
used by story tellers or technical prose in Theology and the
Exodus 12:50, Israel DID what Moses had just instructed in
the context of the first month and the Passover. That self-same
day the Lord brought the children of Israel out of the land of
Egypt by their armies - verse 51.
Again, they did not get over the broader line of the land of
Egypt in ONE DAY!
The CONTEXT is the PASSOVER day. When God passed over the
land of Egypt at midnight of the 14th day, and Pharaoh told them
to "get out" - the Israelites were in effect "brought out of the
land of Egypt" - verse 51.
That is the only way verse 51 can be understood.
The CONTEXT of chapter 12, in the MAIN, if you want to argue
otherwise ... well, we can just add up the verses that are about
the 14th day and verses that are not. The verses concerning the
14th day OUT-NUMBER BY FAR, the verses not specifically to do
with the 14th day, in chapter 12.
The CONTEXT of chapter 12, is the NIGHT of the 14th day in
the main. And in that NIGHT, the Lord brought them out from
Egyptian bondage, they were set FREE that NIGHT! No wonder Moses
wrote in verse 42, that that NIGHT was a night to be MUCH
Sure they left Rameses on the 15th day, the day after the
Passover day, but the EMPHASIS given in chapter 12 is the
PASSOVER NIGHT. You put yourself in the Israelite's shoes. You
have been in bondage for generations, you've been slaves, worked
like a dog as they say, under the heel of those who hold you as
captive, THEN in ONE NIGHT you are SET FREE. You are told YOU ARE
FREE TO GO, AND SERVE YOUR GOD! No wonder Moses said THAT NIGHT
was a night to be OBSERVED, WITH A PASSOVER FEAST MEAL. Yes, sure
the 15th day was wonderful also, you are leaving Rameses, and
literally moving to start your way out of the very land of Egypt.
BUT the NIGHT of the 14th WOULD BE SPECIAL TO YOU. It was the
literal hours that God marched through Egypt on behalf of Israel,
to SET THEM FREE!
This is WHY we find what we find in Deuteronomy 16:1-2.
Israel was to REMEMBER the night of the PASSOVER - the night of
the 14th - Passover night, for it was the time, the day, the
hours, that God BROUGHT ISRAEL OUT OF BONDAGE FROM THE EGYPTIANS!
And that "brought thee forth out of Egypt" was AT NIGHT! It was
the PASSOVER NIGHT!
No wonder Moses wrote what he wrote in Deuteronomy 16:1-3.
Now, back to Exodus 13. God says to Moses the FIRSTBORN are
to be sanctified, both of man and beast. Of course they are, we
are STILL talking about the PASSOVER NIGHT, and the firstborn
that God killed of the Egyptians to FREE Israel that night of the
So verse one of chapter 13 is still within the CONTEXT of
the Passover night. The very connection of "firstborn" to God, is
because of what God did to the Egyptians on Passover night.
So, once more, it is no wonder Moses went on to say in verse
3, "...REMEMBER THIS DAY, in which you came out from Egypt ... no
leavened bread to be eaten (with the Passover, see chap. 12:8).
this day came you out in the month of Abib."
That is the end of a chapter, the end of the instructions
and teaching on the Passover Night observance. Remember the
Hebrew has no chapters in the original manuscripts.
Verse 5 STARTS another instruction and thoughts. When Israel
was to enter the Promised land and settle down so to speak in a
general way of life under God, they were NOT TO FORGET TO KEEP
THIS SERVICE (the following - that Moses was about to explain
again to them) - SEVEN DAYS OF UNLEAVENED BREAD.
When their children asked about that Festival - its historic
setting - they were to tell them it was the time when God brought
them out of bondage from Egypt, with unleavened bread. And so it
became a law of God to observe this 7 day festival.
Yes it took Israel MORE than just ONE day to leave the
actual physical land of Egypt, but it was done, it was completed,
hence a seven day festival shows a full completion. The number 7
is used by God in the Bible to denote "completion" as in the
seven days of Genesis 1 and 2.
The two Sabbath days of UB feast, the first and the seventh
day of the feast, could be a DOUBLE EMPHASIS on the perfect and
fully complete SAVING from bondage. Of ALL the Festivals of God,
what could be MORE IMPORTANT than Passover and the Festival of
Unleavened Bread. It pictures the SIN FORGIVING SACRIFICE of the
Lamb of God, and the NEW LIFE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS in God. Everything
is FOUNDED upon these TWO GREATEST FESTIVALS. Very perfect and
complete SALVATION for mankind is pictured in these two FIRST
festivals of God.
Exodus 13:5-10 is ANOTHER chapter, with other thoughts and
instructions, and is SEPARATE from verses 1-4. Another chapter so
to speak, starts in 13:11 and ends with verse 16. It is to do
with the law of the "firstborn."
Then another chapter, we could say, starts with verse 17 and
ends with verse 22.
We have to be very careful when reading Scripture, as the
apostle Paul said, "a workman that needeth not be ashamed,
RIGHTLY DIVIDING the Word of God."
We need to see the CONTEXT, and watch for "insets" within a
context, and remember chapters, verses, sentences, periods, etc.
were ADDED by men, many CENTURIES AFTER the original written
Hebrew and Greek manuscripts that we call "the Bible" today.
CROSSING RED SEA ON 7TH DAY OF UB (unleavened bread) FEAST?
Exodus 12:16,17 is given to try and connect the 7th day of
the UB feast with crossing the Red sea and coming out of the
boundary line of Egypt. It is put that this would give weight to
having a Sabbath day at the end of this 7 day feast, and it is
added the night they crossed would be the night of this last day
of UB, and further it would be THAT night (of the 7th day of UB
feast) that is the "night to be observed" (verse 42).
The word "day" in the Hebrew (strong's concordance #3117)
CAN MEAN a time period MORE than one single day of 24 hours. You
can also read what the "Theological Word Book of the Old
Testament" has to say on this word.
As the context of verses 16,17, is talking about the WHOLE
feast of unleavened bread (see also verse 15 and 19), then the
phrase "in the selfsame day have I brought your armies out" COULD
be understood as "in the self same (time, period) have I brought
your armies out."
And as we know they did not leave the very literal land of
Egypt, in one single day, as they only moved from Rameses on the
15th day (Numbers 33:3), then this section gives no contradiction
in what we have already stated, and it also cannot be
dogmatically used (verses 16,17) to prove it was the 7th day of
UB feast when they went through the Red sea.
Just trying to connect the phrase "in the seventh day" of
verse 16, with the phrase "in the self same day have I brought
your armies out of the land of Egypt" of verse 17, and having it
as some "proof text" to say Israel passed through the Red sea on
the 7th day of the Feast of UB, is, when there is NOTHING else to
support this theory in any of the books of Moses, VERY SUSPECT
to creating a false doctrine. Then adding verse 42 to clinch a
home run, for teaching the "night to be observed" is the night of
the 7th day of the UB feast, is also making the Bible say
something it just does not say.
We notice in these chapters studied, that Moses was quite
free to use, as he did, the numbers 14 and 15, the numbers or
words "first day" and "seventh day" - then he could well easily
have stated SOMEWHERE in Exodus 12 and through to 16; Numbers 33;
and Deuteronomy 16; a phrase something like; "It was the 7th day
of the UB feast that Israel crossed the Red sea, and God
destroyed the Egyptian army in the sea." In Exodus 14 and verses
21-31; Moses could easily have included (in this night time
passage of Israel through the Red sea) words such as, "The
children of Israel went into the midst of the sea on the night of
the 7th day of the unleavened bread festival....." (verse 22).
SOMEWHERE Moses surely could have PLAINLY told us that
Israel crossed the Red sea on the night of the 7th day of the
Unleavened Bread feast, and that THAT night was the "night to be
In order to try and get it to be so, Exodus 12:42, has to be
taken OUT OF CONTEXT, with many verses BEFORE and AFTER IT. The
verses before and after verse 42 is CONCERNING THE PASSOVER, the
NIGHT God passed over Egypt, and the night Pharaoh told them to
"be on their way" - "get out of here." The time when the
firstborn were killed of men and beast, hence chapter 13:1 God
sanctifies the firstborn in Israel.
Yes, Moses could have used the number 7 quite easily in all
these passages, and with all that is told to us about the Exodus
of Israel from Egypt, Moses could have told us the Red sea
crossing was on the last day of the Unleavened Bread feast. BUT
HE WROTE NO SUCH WORDS!!
I maintain the Feast of Unleavened Bread is to memorialize
the moving from Rameses on the 15th and whatever number of days
it took to get out of the physical land of Egypt. The number 7
represents COMPLETION. Israel did complete their moving out of
Egypt, the exact number of days it took is really not that
important, it was completed is the main part to remember, hence 7
days for UB feast pictures FULL complete DELIVERY - PERFECT
DELIVERY from BONDAGE and SIN!
We have seen in other studies that from Exodus 12 and the
14th day to Exodus 16:1 and the 15th day of the second month was
ONE WHOLE MONTH plus ONE day! And in all that retelling of events
by Moses, not one single word is clearly given to us about
crossing the Red sea on the 7th day of the UB feast.
Numbers 33 cannot be used to teach us that Israel crossed
the Red sea on the 7th day of the UB feast, because SUCH WORDS
cannot be found there to tell us that. If we take each PLACE they
pitched their tents, was for ONE night only, then as you read
down to verse 8, and add the nights and days up, THEY WENT
THROUGH the Red sea, BEFORE the 7th day of the UB feast! There is
no way around it, IF you take each place for just one nights
So even in this somewhat chronology of Moses as he related
Israel's moves along to the passing through the Red sea and
beyond, Moses did not mention ONE WORD about passing through the
Red sea on the night of the 7th day of the UB feast.
Deuteronomy 16:1, or any part of that chapter does not
mention ONE WORD of Israel passing through the Red sea on the 7th
day of the UB feast. And further the very first words of this
chapter 16, TIES "night" with "passover."
How more clear can it get? NIGHT is tied with PASSOVER, the
very night when God passed over the land on the night of the
14th, the night Pharaoh told Israel they were FREE to move out of
the land and serve their God.
Night and Passover go hand in hand. The "night to be
observed" is PASSOVER NIGHT! It is not tied to the 7th day of the
WHAT ABOUT EZEKIEL 45:21?
I'm not sure why this verses is quoted by some, as part of
the proof that Israel went through the Red sea on the night of
the 7th day of the UB feast.
But I have no problem with this verse. All we need to do is
remember that the original Hebrew had no punctuation, or
So, knowing what Leviticus 23 and other passages in the
books of Moses have to say about Passover and the Unleavened
Bread Feasts, we read Ezekiel 45:21 as this:
"In the first month, in the fourteenth day of the month, you
shall have the Passover. A Feast of seven days - unleavened bread
shall be eaten ....."
The TWO Spring Festivals are here talked about. One is the
Passover feast on the 14th day. The other is the "seven days"
Feast of Unleavened Bread, which went from the 15th day to the
Notice where the "period" is put and a new sentence begun in
the above. My sentences end and start WHERE they should, as the
two Spring Festivals are being talked about.
THREE DAYS INTO THE WILDERNESS AND NUMBERS 33
Have you noticed and possibly wondered about Exodus 8:25-28?
It is about going "THREE DAYS JOURNEY INTO THE WILDERNESS, and
sacrifice to the Lord our God."
In verse 25, Pharaoh wanted the Israelites to "sacrifice to
your God in THE LAND." Moses said NO WAY! It needed to be three
days journey into the wilderness.
Who was to go and serve God in the three days journey into
the wilderness? The answer is in 10:8,9. And notice Moses knew
they had to go to "hold a feast" unto God.
The flocks and cattle needed to go with them as we see from
This "three days journey into the wilderness" is often
simply read and forgotten about, as we get into the horrific
DAILY CHRONOLOGY OF NUMBERS 33
If I want to tell people of my basic journey from point A to
point B, for example, going from Dallas to Houston, and where I
lodged along the way, I may say this: "I moved from Dallas and
lodged at San Antonio. I moved from San Antonio and came to
The NATURAL understanding is basic logic of language, I
moved from Dallas on one day, came to San Antonio and lodged
over-night, and moved from there to Houston after that over-night
stay in San Antonio.
If we use the SAME NATURAL logic in Numbers 33. Notice how
it goes. Israel moved from Rameses on the 15th and lodged at
Succoth for the night. On the 16th they moved from Succoth and
pitch at Etham. On the 17th they moved from Etham and lodged at
Migdol. During that night, of the start of the 18th day, they
moved from the area of Migdol/Pihahiroth and PASSED THROUGH THE
SEA, into the wilderness. They were ENTERING THE WILDERNESS on
the DAY-LIGHT part of the 18th day.
Notice it in verse 8! They then WENT THREE DAYS JOURNEY IN
THE WILDERNESS of Etham and LODGED or Pitched their tents.
ADD 3 TO 18 AND YOU HAVE THE 21ST DAY!!
Moses SAYS NO MORE about this "mysterious three days journey
into the wilderness to serve God, to have a Feast, to sacrifice"
(chapters 8:27-29 and 10:9). But the natural logic of language,
as we commonly would relate our journey along the way from point
A to point B .... well in Numbers 33 it ADDS UP to being THREE
DAYS INTO THE WILDERNESS from leaving Rameses on the 15th and by
the 21st, the LAST HOLY DAY of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the
Israelites are indeed HOLDING A FEAST, on the 21st of the month,
the 7th day of the UB feast, THREE DAYS INTO THE WILDERNESS!!
Being so, as it would LOGICALLY read, then the Israelites
DID *NOT* GO THROUGH THE RED SEA ON THE LAST DAY OF THE UB FEAST!
On the last day of the UB Feast THEY WERE THREE DAYS INTO THE
The SAME chronology to the going through the Red sea is
given in Exodus 12 to 15:22.
They leave Rameses and go to Succoth (12:37). They pick up
from Succoth on the 16th day and go to Etham. The day of the 17th
they travel to Pihahiroth/Migdol and camp by the sea (13:20;
14:1- 2). The next NIGHT, the start of the 18th day of the month,
they pass through the Red sea by night (14:3-31), in the morning
watch, as the morning appeared (of the 18th day of the month) the
army of Egypt is killed in the midst of the sea.
Israel REJOICE AND SING (chapter 15) Miriam and the women
DANCE and sing (verses 20-21).
Moses BROUGHT ISRAEL FROM THE RED SEA ON THE 18TH DAY OF THE
MONTH, INTO THE WILDERNESS OF SHUR. AND THEN WENT THREE DAYS IN
THE WILDERNESS! (verse 22).
Moses does not relate the specifics, but does relate this
THREE DAYS JOURNEY INTO THE WILDERNESS.
Obviously by putting Exodus 10:9 and 8:25-29 - WITH what we
have just been reading. Israel DID HAVE SACRIFICE (they did take
their flocks and herds with them) AND A FEAST, THREE DAYS JOURNEY
INTO THE WILDERNESS, AFTER THEY WENT THROUGH THE RED SEA!
THREE DAYS JOURNEY INTO THE WILDERNESS BROUGHT THEM TO
OBSERVE THE FESTIVAL HOLY DAY OF THE FEAST OF UNLEAVENED BREAD,
THE 7TH DAY OF THAT FEAST IN THE WILDERNESS OF SHUR!
Hence Israel DID NOT PASS through the Red sea on the 21st
day of the month, or the 7th day of the Feast of Unleavened
The INTERNAL logical evidence of Moses's writing of the
Exodus, shows the "night to be much observed" is not the night of
the 7th day of the Feast of UB, or the night when Israel went
through the Red sea, but it IS THE NIGHT OF THE PASSOVER!
And truly that night was the GREATEST physical night in
human history, for it PORTRAYED the VERY LAMB OF GOD, THE SON OF
GOD, GIVING HIS VERY LIFE, HIS SHED BLOOD, for the sins of YOU
AND ME, AND ALL HUMAN KIND.
GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD THAT HE GAVE HIS ONLY BEGOTTEN SON,
THAT WHOEVER BELIEVES ON HIM, SHOULD NOT PERISH, BUT SHOULD HAVE
EVERLASTING LIFE (John 3:16).
Written and Entered on this Website December 2007