3Then they said, “The God of the Hebrews has met with us. Please let us go three days’ journey into the wilderness and sacrifice to Yahweh our God, lest he fall on us with pestilence or with the sword.”
4But the king of Egypt said to them, “Why do you, Moses and Aaron, draw the people away from their work? Get back to your burdens!”
5And Pharaoh said, “Behold, the people of the land are now many, and you make them cease from their burdens.”
6And the same day Pharaoh commanded the taskmasters of the people and their officers, saying,
7“You are to no longer give the people straw to make brick, as before; let them go and gather straw for themselves.
8But the number of the bricks that they made before, you are to require from them; you are not to diminish any of it, for they are idle. Therefore they cry out, saying, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to our God.’
9Let heavier work be laid on the men and let them work at that, and not pay any attention to lying words.”
10The taskmasters of the people went out, and their officers, and they spoke to the people, saying, “This is what Pharaoh says: ‘I will not give you straw.
11Go yourselves, get straw where you can find it, for nothing of your work will be diminished.’”
12So the people were scattered abroad throughout all the land of Egypt to gather stubble for straw.
13The taskmasters were urgent, saying, “Fulfill your work quota daily, as when there was straw!”
14The officers of the children of Israel, whom Pharaoh’s taskmasters had set over them, were beaten, and demanded, “Why haven’t you fulfilled your quota both yesterday and today in making brick, as before?”
15Then the officers of the children of Israel came and cried out to Pharaoh, saying, “Why do you deal this way with your servants?
16No straw is given to your servants, and they tell us, ‘Make brick!’ And behold, your servants are beaten; but the fault is in your own people.”
17But he said, “You are idle! You are idle; therefore you say, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to Yahweh.’
18Go therefore now and work. For no straw will be given to you, yet you must deliver the same number of bricks!”
19The officers of the children of Israel saw that they were in trouble when it was said, “You are not to diminish anything from your daily quota of bricks!”
20They met Moses and Aaron, who stood in the way, as they came out from Pharaoh;
21And they said to them, “May Yahweh look at you and judge, because you have made us a stench to be abhorred in the eyes of Pharaoh and in the eyes of his servants, to put a sword in their hand to kill us.”
22Moses returned to Yahweh, and said, “Lord, why have you brought trouble on this people? Why is it that you have sent me?
23For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has brought trouble on this people, nor have you delivered your people at all.”