1 THE Lord said to Moses,
2 Sanctify (consecrate, set apart) to Me all the firstborn [males]; whatever is first to open the womb among the Israelites, both of man and of beast, is Mine.
3 And Moses said to the people, [Earnestly] remember this day in which you came out from Egypt, out of the house of bondage and bondmen, for by strength of hand the Lord brought you out from this place; no leavened bread shall be eaten.
4 This day you go forth in the month Abib.
5 And when the Lord brings you into the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Hivites, and Jebusites, which He promised and swore to your fathers to give you, a land flowing with milk and honey [a land of plenty], you shall keep this service in this month.
6 Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread and the seventh day shall be a feast to the Lord.
7 Unleavened bread shall be eaten for seven days; no leavened bread shall be seen with you, neither shall there be leaven in all your territory.
8 You shall explain to your son on that day, This is done because of what the Lord did for me when I came out of Egypt.
9 It shall be as a sign to you upon your hand and as a memorial between your eyes, that the law of the Lord may be in your mouth; for with a strong hand the Lord has brought you out of Egypt.
10 You shall therefore keep this ordinance at this time from year to year.
11 And when the Lord brings you into the land of the Canaanites, as He promised and swore to you and your fathers, and shall give it to you,
12 You shall set apart to the Lord all that first opens the womb. All the firstlings of your livestock that are males shall be the Lord's.
13 Every firstborn of a donkey you shall redeem by [substituting for it] a lamb, or if you will not redeem it, then you shall break its neck; and every firstborn among your sons shall you redeem.
14 And when, in time to come, your son asks you, What does this mean? You shall say to him, By strength of hand the Lord brought us out from Egypt, from the house of bondage and bondmen.
15 For when Pharaoh stubbornly refused to let us go, the Lord slew all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both the firstborn of man and of livestock. Therefore I sacrifice to the Lord all the males that first open the womb; but all the firstborn of my sons I redeem.
16 And it shall be as a reminder upon your hand or as frontlets between your eyes, for by a strong hand the Lord brought us out of Egypt.
17 When Pharaoh let the people go, God led them not by way of the land of the Philistines, although that was nearer; for God said, Lest the people change their purpose when they see war and return to Egypt.
18 But God led the people around by way of the wilderness toward the Red Sea. And the Israelites went up marshaled [in ranks] out of the land of Egypt.
19 And Moses took the bones of Joseph with him, for [Joseph] had strictly sworn the Israelites, saying, Surely God will be with you, and you must carry my bones away from here with you. [Gen. 50:25.]
20 They journeyed from Succoth and encamped at Etham on the edge of the wilderness.
21 The Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead them along the way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night.
22 The pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night did not depart from before the people.