I guess it all depends on whom you ask.
Did Pharaoh send the Jews out of Egypt?
Did he chase them out?
Or, did God take them out?
We find each of the three in the verses of the previous parsha, which ends with God taking us out of Egypt.
In fact, the closing verses imply that God took us out because Pharaoh refused to send us out. What really happened?
Our portion, Beshalach, begins with Pharaoh sending Israel from Egypt. “Shelach” means to send. It doesn’t only mean to send, but as in Shaliach, a messenger, it means to send on a mission.
God did not want Pharaoh to chase us out, “Gareish yigaresh etchem” – He wanted Pharaoh to send us toward something – toward God.
It was the original transition from one ruler to another. Pharaoh had to acknowledge that Israel belonged with God.
No wonder, when Pharaoh considered that Israel had escaped from Egypt – “Ki varach Ha’am” – they had run away from him – not run to God, he changed his mind.
Watch as Israel is forced to run into the Hands of God – The same Yad Hachazaka – Mighty Hands that struck Egypt – were now waiting – wide open – for Israel to run into their embrace.
And, there’s more…
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