hebrew
1)

Why does the Torah write "u'Pharaoh Hikriv" (brought near) and not 'Karav' (approached)?

1.

Rashi: Having promised his troops that he would fight at their head, he had to force himself (to bring himself, as it were) to fulfill his word.

2.

Seforno: He moved his troops with their chariots forward.

3.

Targum Yonasan, Da'as Zekenim (2) #1: As soon as Pharaoh set his eyes on Ba'al Tzefon, he offered sacrifices before it. 1

4.

Da'as Zekenim (2) #2: He caused Yisrael to repent (and come close to Hashem).

5.

Hadar Zekenim (2): He brought himself close to the idolatry of Ba'al Tzefon.


1

See also Ba'al ha'Turim.

2)

Why does the Torah write "Mitzrayim Nose'a", in the singular?

1.

Rashi #1: Because the Egyptians chased after them 'with one heart, as one man'.

2.

Rashi #2: It refers to Uza, the angel of Egypt, who had descended from heaven to assist his nation. 1

3.

Hadar Zekenim: This was the elder Mitzrayim, the son of Cham. However, it is astounding that he lived so long! (Mitzrayim was born before Kena'an, who was already a nation (Bereishis 12:6) before Yitzchak was born, 400 years before Keri'as Yam Suf. It is reasonable that Mitzrayim was born shortly after the flood, almost 800 years before Keri'as Yam Suf!


1

Hadar Zekenim: Uza complained that the decree of 400 years was not completed. Hashem made a judgment with him, and refuted his claims. The judges threw him down.

3)

What are the connotations of "Va'yitz'aku"?

1.

Rashi, Ramban #1, Seforno (Pasuk 15) and Targum Yonasan: They seized the trade of their fathers - they prayed. 1

2.

Ramban #2 (citing Targum Onkelos): They complained to Hashem 2 for taking them out of Egypt, before turning on Moshe.

3.

Ramban #3 (citing the Mechilta): Initially, they prayed to Hashem for Pharaoh to withdraw. However, when he saw that he continued to approach them, the Yeitzer-ha'Ra they turned on Moshe.


1

Like Avraham, Yitzchak and Ya'akov (See Bereishis 19:27, 28:11, 24:63 [Rashi]). With the sea in front of them, the Egyptians behind them and the wild animals of the desert at the side, the Midrash compares them to a dove that tries to escape from the clutches of a vulture by entering into a crack in the rocks, only to be confronted by a hissing snake. That is when Hashem said to Yisrael "Show Me how you look) (your deeds) - to whom you turn when you are in trouble! (Rashi in Shir ha'Shirim, 2:14).

2

We find the same Lashon above in Shemos (5:15) and in Nechemyah 5:1 (Ramban).

4)

How can we reconcile this Pasuk with the following Pasuk, where they complained to Hashem in a derogatory way?

1.

Ramban and Targum Yonasan: There were two groups 1 in Yisrael - The Tzadikim 2 among them prayed to Hashem, and it was the Resha'im who failed to acknowledge the miracle that they were experiencing, who grumbled and spoke harshly to Moshe. 3


1

Refer also to 14:13:1:1*.

2

See Ramban, who explains why the Torah uses the term "Tzadikim" here twice.

3

As the Pasuk writes in Tehilim, 106:7 (Ramban).

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