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The Apocryphal Old Testament Collection of the most important non-canonical Old Testament books designed for general use.

Chapter XLIX

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Text Commentary

1Remember the commandment which the Lord gave you concerning the Passover, that you should celebrate it in its season on the fourteenth of the first month, that you should slaughter the lamb 1 Lit. ‘it’. before the evening, and that it should be eaten at night on the evening of the fifteenth after sunset. 2For on this night (the beginning of the festival and the beginning of the rejoicing) you were eating the Passover in Egypt, when all the powers of Mastema had been let loose to kill all the first-born in the land of Egypt, from the first-born of Pharaoh to the first-born of the captive maid-servant at the mill and to the cattle.

3And this is the sign that the Lord gave them – they should not enter any house with intent to kill, on the door-posts of which they saw the blood of a yearling lamb, but should pass it by, so that all those in the house might be preserved because the sign of the blood was on its door-posts. 4And the powers of the Lord did everything just as the Lord commanded them, and they passed over all the Israelites, and the plague did not touch them and destroyed not so much as a single man or beast or dog among them. 5But among the Egyptians 2 Lit. ‘in Egypt’. the plague struck savagely, and there was not a house in Egypt without its dead and weeping and lamentation. 6And meanwhile all Israel was eating the flesh of the paschal lamb, and drinking the wine, and singing praises, and blessing and giving thanks to the Lord God of their fathers, all ready to escape from the yoke of Egypt and the shackles of their slavery. 3 Lit. ‘the evil bondage’.

7And remember this day all the days of your life and observe it regularly, once a year, on its appointed day, in accordance with all its regulations; 4 Lit. ‘law’. and do not change its date, either from one day to another, or from one month to another. 8For it is a rule for all time, and it is written on the heavenly tablets concerning all Israelites, that they should observe it every year on its appointed day, once a year, in every generation; and there is no time limit, for it is decreed for ever. 9And whoever is not unclean and fails to come and observe it on its proper day, and to bring an acceptable offering in the Lord's presence, and to eat and drink in the Lord's presence, on the day it is celebrated, that man, if he is clean and near at hand, shall be rooted up: inasmuch as he has not offered the Lord's offering at the proper time, he must accept responsibility for his sin. 5 Lit. ‘that man will bear his sin’.

10Let the Israelites come and celebrate the Passover 6 Or ‘offer the paschal lamb’: lit. ‘do the Passover’. at the time appointed, on the fourteenth day of the first month at dusk, 7 Eth. lit. ‘between the evenings’ (as in the Heb. at Exod. xii. 6 ): Lat. lit. ‘at eventide’ (as in the Gk. at Exod. xii. 6 ). from the third part of the day to the third part of the night (for two parts of the day are given to the light and a third part to the evening). 11This is what the Lord commanded you – that you should celebrate it 8 Lit. ‘do it’. at dusk. 7 Eth. lit. ‘between the evenings’ (as in the Heb. at Exod. xii. 6 ): Lat. lit. ‘at eventide’ (as in the Gk. at Exod. xii. 6 ). 12And the lamb 1 Lit. ‘it’. should not be slaughtered at any time during the daylight, but only towards the evening; and it should be eaten between the time when evening comes and the third part of the night, and if afterwards 9 Lit. ‘from the third part of the night’. any of its flesh is left over, it must be burnt in the fire.

13And it shall not be boiled in water, nor shall it be eaten raw, but roast on the fire: it must be eaten 10 Eth. obscure: Lat. ‘you shall eat it’. with care: 11 So both Eth. and Lat. here, understanding the Gk. μετὰ σπουδη̂ς at Exod. xii. 11 in this sense. At verse 23 below, however, Eth. (Lat. is not extant) takes the sense ‘in haste’, which is clearly preferable in both places in the light of the underlying Heb. b e hippazon (cp. also Deut. xvi. 3 ). its head with its entrails and its feet shall be roasted on the fire; and no bone of it shall be broken (for of Israelites no bone shall be crushed 12 So Eth.: Lat. ‘and there shall be no tribulation among Israelites in that day’. ). 14That is why the Lord commanded Israelites to celebrate the Passover 6 Or ‘offer the paschal lamb’: lit. ‘do the Passover’. at the time appointed, and not to break any of the lamb's bones; 13 Lit. ‘break any bone of it’. for it is a festal day, and a day he has commanded, and there can be no changing it from day to day, and from month to month, but only on its proper day 14 Eth. ‘on the day of its festival’: Lat. ‘at its own time’. must it be celebrated. 15 Or ‘offered’. 15And command the Israelites to celebrate the Passover 6 Or ‘offer the paschal lamb’: lit. ‘do the Passover’. generation after generation, every year, once a year at the time appointed; and it will serve as a reminder, acceptable to the Lord, and no plague shall come upon them to harm them or destroy them in any year in which they celebrate the Passover 6 Or ‘offer the paschal lamb’: lit. ‘do the Passover’. at the proper time and in every way in accordance with what he has commanded.

16And the lamb 1 Lit. ‘it’. shall not be eaten outside the Lord's sanctuary, but within its precincts; 16 Eth. ‘within view of the Lord's sanctuary’: Lat. ‘alongside the Lord's tabernacle’. and the whole community of Israel shall offer it 17 Or ‘celebrate the Passover’: lit. ‘do it’. at the time appointed. 17And every one who comes then shall eat it 18 Eth. ‘And every man who has come on its day shall eat it’: Lat. is difficult and presumably corrupt (‘et omnis homo quicumque praetermiserit in visitatione manducare illud’). in the sanctuary of your 19 So Eth.: Lat. ‘our’. God in the Lord's presence, from twenty years old and upwards; for so it is written and decreed that they should eat it in the Lord's sanctuary.

18And when the Israelites come into the land they are to occupy, the land of Canaan, and set up the Lord's tabernacle in one of their tribes, till the Lord's sanctuary is built in the land, they shall come and celebrate the Passover 6 Or ‘offer the paschal lamb’: lit. ‘do the Passover’. in the Lord's tabernacle and slaughter the lamb 1 Lit. ‘it’. in the Lord's presence from year to year. 19And when the house is built in the Lord's name in the land of their heritage, they shall go there and slaughter the paschal lamb in the evening, at sunset, at the third part of the day. 20And they shall offer its blood at the base of the altar, and they shall place its fat on the fire that is on the altar, and they shall eat its flesh roast on the fire in the court of the house which has been hallowed in the Lord's name. 21And they may not celebrate the Passover 6 Or ‘offer the paschal lamb’: lit. ‘do the Passover’. in their cities, nor in any other place, but only within the precincts of the Lord's tabernacle, or within the precincts of his house where his name dwells; and they shall not go astray from the Lord.

22And as for you, Moses, command the Israelites to keep the rules of the Passover, as you yourself have received them: draw their attention to them 20 So one Eth. MS and Lat.: the other Eth. MSS differ but give the general sense ‘you shall perform it’. every year on the day appointed and during the Feast of unleavened bread; 21 This seems the sense required, though neither Eth. nor Lat. are completely intelligible by themselves. and command them to eat unleavened bread for seven days, and to keep the feast and make an offering every day during those seven days of joy in the Lord's presence on the altar of your God. 23For you celebrated this feast in haste when you set out from Egypt, till you entered the wilderness of Shur, and it was only on the sea-shore that you completed it.

Notes:

1 Lit. ‘it’.

2 Lit. ‘in Egypt’.

3 Lit. ‘the evil bondage’.

4 Lit. ‘law’.

5 Lit. ‘that man will bear his sin’.

6 Or ‘offer the paschal lamb’: lit. ‘do the Passover’.

7 Eth. lit. ‘between the evenings’ (as in the Heb. at Exod. xii. 6 ): Lat. lit. ‘at eventide’ (as in the Gk. at Exod. xii. 6 ).

8 Lit. ‘do it’.

9 Lit. ‘from the third part of the night’.

10 Eth. obscure: Lat. ‘you shall eat it’.

11 So both Eth. and Lat. here, understanding the Gk. μετὰ σπουδη̂ς at Exod. xii. 11 in this sense. At verse 23 below, however, Eth. (Lat. is not extant) takes the sense ‘in haste’, which is clearly preferable in both places in the light of the underlying Heb. b e hippazon (cp. also Deut. xvi. 3 ).

12 So Eth.: Lat. ‘and there shall be no tribulation among Israelites in that day’.

13 Lit. ‘break any bone of it’.

14 Eth. ‘on the day of its festival’: Lat. ‘at its own time’.

15 Or ‘offered’.

16 Eth. ‘within view of the Lord's sanctuary’: Lat. ‘alongside the Lord's tabernacle’.

17 Or ‘celebrate the Passover’: lit. ‘do it’.

18 Eth. ‘And every man who has come on its day shall eat it’: Lat. is difficult and presumably corrupt (‘et omnis homo quicumque praetermiserit in visitatione manducare illud’).

19 So Eth.: Lat. ‘our’.

20 So one Eth. MS and Lat.: the other Eth. MSS differ but give the general sense ‘you shall perform it’.

21 This seems the sense required, though neither Eth. nor Lat. are completely intelligible by themselves.

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