An Infestation of Israelites
In the previous book, the sons of Israel (aka Jacob) went to Egypt. 2 Their names were Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, 3 Issachar, Zebulun, Benjamin, 4 Dan, Naphtali, Gad, and Asher. 5 Their brother Joseph was already in Egypt, having been sold to the Ishmaelites (who transformed into Midianites) by his brothers a few decades earlier.
6 Many generations later, after Joseph and his brothers had died, 7 their descendants, the Israelites, had bred like rabbits, and Egypt was swarming with them. 8 The Pharaoh of the time worried that the Israelites, with their superior numbers, might join forces with their enemies and overthrow the Egyptians.
9 Pharaoh declared, ‘Look at all the Israelites. We’ve got to do something to stop them breeding so much!’
‘Maybe they have too much time on their hands,’ replied his advisor. ‘I mean, there’s nothing much to do around here.’
10 ‘That’s it!’ cried Pharaoh. ‘If we put the buggers to work, they’ll be too busy to breed!’
11 So, Pharaoh hired some slave drivers and forced the Israelites to build some cities to store his treasure: Pithom and Raamses. 12 However, this did nothing to stop the Israelites from breeding, in fact, all the hard work seemed to make them extra horny. 13 So, the Egyptians worked them even harder, and the slave drivers grew crueller. 14 But the harder they worked, the more rampant they became.
15 Pharaoh was growing increasingly anxious. He had to do something to stem the growth of these foreigners. 16 So, he turned to the Hebrew (aka Israelite) midwives Shiprah and Puah, and told them, ‘Whenever an Israelite gives birth, if the baby is a girl, the mother can keep her; but if it’s a boy, shove him back in.’
17 The midwives, who were quite knowledgeable on such matters, knew that there was no way they could stick babies back up their mother’s vadges, so they ignored Pharaoh’s command.
18 Pharaoh became angry, and he sent for the midwives. He asked them, ‘Why haven’t you been shoving boys back into their mother’s chuffs?’
19 The midwives replied, ‘We tried, but they won’t go back in! It’s like trying to insert greased melon into an eel’s anus!’
Pharaoh threw up his dinner.
20 God, who overheard the conversation, thought the midwives’ comment was the funniest thing he’d ever heard, so he decided to impregnate both of them. Everyone found this really strange, because they were both in their 80s and no man would touch them. 21 For this reason, the midwives feared God.
22 So, Pharaoh decided that if the boys couldn’t be returned to sender, he’d have them all drowned in the River Nile.