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The Catholic Study Bible A special version of the New American Bible, with a wealth of background information useful to Catholics.

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Commentary on Exodus

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1, 1 :

Sons of Israel: here literally the first generation sons of Jacob. Cf v 5 . However, beginning with Ex 1, 7 the same Hebrew phrase refers to the more remote descendants of Jacob; hence, from there on, it is ordinarily rendered as “the Israelites.” Households: the family in its fullest sense, including wives, children and servants.

1, 2 :

The sons of Jacob are listed here according to the respective mothers. Cf Gn 29, 31; 30, 30; 35, 16–26 .

1, 5 :

Direct descendants: literally, persons coming from the loins of Jacob; hence, wives and servants are here excluded. Cf Gn 46, 26 .

1, 8 :

Who knew nothing of Joseph: this king ignored the services that Joseph had rendered to Egypt.

1, 11 :

Pharaoh: not a personal name, but a title common to all the kings of Egypt.

1, 14 :

Mortar: either the wet clay with which the bricks were made, as in Na 3, 14 , or the cement used between the bricks in building, as in Gn 11, 3 .

1, 16 :

And see them giving birth: the Hebrew text is uncertain.

1, 22 :

The river: the Nile, which was “the” river for the Egyptians.

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