Sunday, January 14, 2007

Vaera Summary

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Summary of Parshat Vaera

Hashem tells Moshe to inform the Jewish People that He is going to take them out of Egypt; however the Jewish People do not listen. Hashem then commands Moshe to go to Pharaoh and tell him to free the Jewish People. Although Aaron shows Pharaoh a sign by turning a staff into a snake, Pharaoh's magicians copy the sign, emboldening Pharaoh to refuse the request.
Hashem punishes the Egyptians and sends plagues of blood and frogs, but the magicians copy the miracles on a smaller scale, again encouraging Pharaoh not to grant Moshe's request. However, after the plague of lice, even Pharaoh's magicians concede that only the one true G-d could be performing these miracles.
Only the Egyptians suffer during the plagues, not the Jews in Goshen. The plagues continue with wild animals, pestilence, boils and fiery hail. However Pharaoh continues to harden his heart and refuses to let the Jews go despite Moshe's offers to end the plagues if he will let them leave Egypt.

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