Then God told Moses to go through the routine with Pharaoh again, only to threaten him with the death of all the livestock this time. But It was all, don’t worry Moses! I won’t kill the Hebrews’ livestock, m’kay?
So Moses went to Pharaoh with the same old song and dance, then all the Egyptians’ livestock died. Pharaoh still didn’t let the Hebrews go, because now someone had to haul off all the dead carcasses, right? Continue reading “Exodus 9: Plagues of Livestock Death and Hail”
At the end of a week, God told Moses to go back to Pharaoh with the same demands, and that when he refused (which God would make sure of) to threaten him with a plague of frogs.
So the brothers went back, Pharaoh refused, and then, between the brothers and the court magicians, Egypt was overran by frogs. I mean there were frogs everywhere–in the chamber-pots, the soup tureens, Pharaoh’s wine cup. You couldn’t step without squishing a frog.
After a few days, Pharaoh had a enough of the frogs, so he called Moses and Aaron to him and was all, I’ll let the Hebrews go on that camping trip if you guys get rid of the frogs for me. Moses said they’d be gone by morning, and lo, in the night all the frogs died. So now there were piles of dead, rotting frogs to go with the rotting fish from the week before. When Moses and Aaron came to Pharaoh to set dates for the trip, Pharaoh was all, what vacation? Y’all need to get out there and start sweeping up dead amphibians. Continue reading “Exodus 8: Plagues of Frogs and Gnats”
God told Moses, Moses, don’t you know that Pharaoh sees you as a god? He thinks of Aaron as your prophet, man, I promise. Really. And I command you to go to Pharaoh and tell him to let the Hebrews go. It won’t work of course. I’ll see to that. I feel like getting my smite on here in Egypt. But go tell Pharaoh anyway so I can start the smiting. Anyways, when Pharaoh wants evidence that you come from God, do the staff trick and see if that don’t blow his mind.
So Moses and Aaron wen to Pharaoh and told him to let the Hebrews go. When Pharaoh looked bored and vaguely annoyed, Aaron was all, hey, check this out! and threw down the magic staff, and it turned into a snake. Pharaoh yawned and waved to his court magicians, who all threw down their staffs, which also turned to snakes. So now there were all these snakes writhing about, but before anyone could try to catch them so they’d turn back into staffs, Aaron’s staff-cum-snake ate the other three. I guess his must have been a king snake or something. Continue reading “Exodus 7: Plague of Water into Blood”
God answered and was all, I’m just getting started, Moses. By the time I’m done Pharaoh will pay you guys to leave. Reassure everyone that this is all part of the plan.
But no one believed Moses because they were all too downtrodden and depressed from slaving all day.
Then God told Moses to go back to Pharaoh and ask again. Moses was all, why? Nobody listens to me. But God was all, DO IT!
Next comes a genealogy which claims that Moses and Aaron the great-grandkids of Levi. Levi had a son named Kohath, who had a son named Amram, who married his aunt (Kohath’s sister), who gave birth to Aaron and Moses. So this version would put the Hebrews in Egypt 80-100 years. Later it will claim to be over 400.
Next day, Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and told him that God demanded that Pharaoh let the Hebrews go three days into the wilderness to perform sacrifices. But Pharaoh was all, who’s this God person and why do I care? They were all, It’s our God and It wants us to go three days into the wilderness to burn animals for it. If we don’t, It will get angry and cause natural disasters or war. Pharaoh was all, I hear you, Moses and Aaron, I really do. But you’ve got to see things from my side. Who’s going to do all the work while the Hebrews are away? Hmm? I mean, really, shouldn’t you be working right now? Continue reading “Exodus 5”
Moses was all, that’s sounds great and all, God, but nobody is going to believe me about any of this. They”ll just ask me what I’ve been smoking and snort. God rolled Its fiery bush eyes and was all, What’s that in your hands there, Moses? Moses was all, this? Um, it’s a staff. And God was all, toss it down and look again. Moses dropped it and, lo it became a serpent. Moses was all, holy shit, a snake! and jumped back ten feet. After God got done laughing, It was all, pick it back up, I dare you. So Moses gingerly reached out and just barely caught hold of the snake’s tail, and lo, it was a staff again. God was all, if anyone doubts you just lay that on them. Moses must have still looked skeptical, because then God was all, And if that don’t work, try this one. Put your hand in your coat. Now take it out. And behold, when Moses did, it was white with leprosy. Moses stood there staring in horror at his newly-diseased hand for like 10 minutes before God was all, now put it back in your coat and take it back out. So Moses did, and behold, it was again healthy. Then God was all, and if they still won’t believe you, take a bucket of water from the Nile and when you pour it out, it will be blood. Continue reading “Exodus 4: The Burning Bush, Part 2”
Now one day, Moses was out keeping his father-in-law’s flocks (whose name is now Jethro instead of Reuel) near Mount Horeb. While Moses was sitting there watching sheep and goats eat, chew cud, swat flies and poop, he noticed that there appeared to be something on fire a little ways off. He went to investigate and realized that it was a bush on fire, but it wasn’t actually burning. More curious than ever, because horror movies hadn’t been invented yet to teach him otherwise, Moses went closer to inspect this strange phenomenon. When God saw that Moses was all eyes, It started calling his name. Moses was all, What? Um, yeah, bush, I’m Moses. Can I touch you? How do you work? But the bush was all, NO! Stay where you are and take off those dirty sandals. Don’t you know who I am? Moses must have looked dumb and confused, because the bush was all, I’m God, dumbass. You know that scary deity in all those stories about your ancestors? Moses was all, oh snap! You’re real!? And dropped to his belly in fear. Continue reading “Exodus 3: The Burning Bush, Part 1”
And lo, a Levite man got his Levite wife pregnant, and she bore a little Levite boy. The mother hid the baby for three months, but when it became clear that the baby’s sex was suspected, she tucked the baby in a waterproof basket and hid it in the reeds near the spot where Pharaoh’s daughter liked to bathe in the Nile, and told her daughter, Miriam, to keep an eye on it.
Of course Pharaoh’s daughter found the basket with the baby, and quickly figured out what was what. Now Pharaoh’s daughter didn’t quite agree with her father’s genocidal policy. When it became apparent she had no intention of committing infanticide, Miriam popped out of the bushes and asked her if she needed a wet nurse. Pharaoh’s daughter decided she would help this desperate Hebrew family and told Miriam yes, likely in full cognizance that Miriam was related to the baby and that the wet nurse would be its mother. So Moses’s mother got to nurse him for the first few years of his life, before she had to hand him over to Pharaoh’s daughter to finish raising. Continue reading “Exodus 2: Moses, the Early Years”
Joseph and his brothers prospered and so did subsequent generations, until Egypt had a large population of sojourning Hebrews.
Eventually a Pharaoh developed a prejudice against the Hebrews. He didn’t really know how they came to sojourn there or that Joseph had been good friends with some previous Pharaoh, only that there were a lot of Hebrew “immigrants.” So Pharaoh made it a policy to make Hebrews second class citizens–more or less slaves forced to do hard labor like construction in an era without power tools or backhoes. Pharaoh hoped that the hard labor would increase the mortality rate and take care of the problem. But Pharaoh’s plan backfired because instead of dying off, the Hebrew population increased–probably because sex was one of the few pleasures in life for slaves in the Bronze Age. Or maybe their population didn’t actually increase, but Egyptian xenophobia and racism magnified the population in the popular imagination. Anyway, Egyptians increasingly oppressed and overworked the Hebrews. Continue reading “Exodus 1”
After Jacob died, Joseph had him embalmed. Then he got permission from Pharaoh to take his father’s body to Canaan to bury. So all the brothers traveled together with a huge entourage of servants and mourners to bury Jacob in the cave Abraham had bought for Sarah’s tomb.
After they all got back to Egypt, Joseph’s brothers started worrying that Joseph would finally seek revenge on them for the whole selling him into slavery incident. But Joseph was all, really guys? Why would I do something now. Honestly, that was the best thing that ever happened to me.
In this version, Joseph lived to see his great-great grandkids and he made them swear that when the Hebrews left Egypt, they’d remember to take his bones with them.
Well, folks, that’s the end of Genesis. We will start Exodus next time!