- Moshe and Aaron approach Pharaoh and request that he free the Jewish people:
- Moshe and Aaron then approached Pharaoh and told him “So has said the G-d of the Jews, let My people go so they can celebrate for Me in the desert.” Pharaoh replied “Who is this Hashem that I shall listen to His voice to send the Jewish people? I do not know this G-d and I will not send them.” They again persisted “The G-d of the Hebrews came to us, so let us please go for a three-day journey to the desert to offer him sacrifices there, lest He strike us with plague or the sword.” Pharaoh replied to them “Why is Moshe and Aaron disturbing the people from their work. Go mind your own business. The people of the land are many and you want to have them cease working!”
- Pharaoh increases the conditions of slavery:
- No more straw but same work quota: After Moshe’s failed request Pharaoh instructed the taskmasters and police to stop giving the people straw to make bricks and rather they will go themselves and gather the straw. “However, the quota of bricks that must be made daily will remain the same. They are being lazy and lax and that is why they are screaming to leave and slaughter for their G-d. Make them work harder and do not pay attention to words of falsity.”
- The Jewish people are told the news: The taskmasters and police told the Jewish people of Pharaoh’s new work conditions and that they would need to gather their own straw, although the work quota would remain the same.
- The Jewish police are beaten: The Jewish people scattered throughout Egypt to gather straw and the taskmasters would press them to finish the daily quota, as before. The police officers who were appointed by the taskmasters to supervise the work were beaten, as the Jewish people had not met the quota.
- The Jewish police confront Pharaoh: The Jewish police cried before Pharaoh asking why he is doing this to his servants. “You are not giving us straw and you demand we still follow the daily quota and as a result we are being beaten. This is a sin upon your people. Pharaoh replied “You are being lazy, that is why you are requesting to leave to sacrifice to your G-d. Now, go back to work and straw will not be given to you, although the work quota will remain the same.” The Jewish police had to unfortunately relay the news back to the Jewish people that the quota will remain the same, and they had to see them in their suffering.
- The Jewish police confront Moshe and Aaron:
- The Jewish police met Moshe and Aaron who were coming towards them as they left their audience with Pharaoh and they said to them “Let Hashem look upon you and judge what you caused, as you have destroyed our standing in the face of Pharaoh and his servants, and you have now given them the sword to kill us.”
Moshe confronts Hashem:
- Moshe returned to Hashem saying “My master, why have you caused evil to befall this nation, why did you send me. Since I have come to Pharaoh to speak in Your name, not only have You not saved them, but he has harmed the people. Hashem replied to Moshe “Now you will see what I will do to Pharaoh, as with a mighty hand I will send them out of his land.”