Yahweh then said to Moses, 'Go to Pharaoh, for I have made him and his officials stubborn, to display these signs of mine among them;
so that you can tell your sons and your grandsons how I made fools of the Egyptians and what signs I performed among them, so that you would know that I am Yahweh.'
Moses and Aaron then went to Pharaoh and said to him, 'Yahweh, God of the Hebrews, says this, "How much longer will you refuse to submit to me? Let my people go and worship me.
Or, if you refuse to let my people go, tomorrow I shall send locusts into your country.
They will cover the surface of the soil so that the soil cannot be seen. They will devour the remainder of what has escaped, of what you have been left after the hail; they will devour all your trees growing in the fields;
they will fill your houses, all your officials' houses and all the Egyptians' houses -- something your ancestors and your ancestors' ancestors have never seen from the day they first appeared on earth until now." ' Then he turned on his heel and left Pharaoh's presence.
At which, Pharaoh's officials said to him, 'How much longer are we to be tricked by this fellow? Let the people go and worship Yahweh their God. Do you not finally realise that Egypt is on the brink of ruin?'
So Moses and Aaron were brought back to Pharaoh who said to them, 'Go and worship Yahweh your God. But who are to go?'
Moses replied, 'We shall take our young men and our old men, we shall take our sons and daughters, our flocks and our herds, since we are going to hold a feast in Yahweh's honour.'
Pharaoh said, 'So I must let you go with your wives and children! May Yahweh preserve you! Plainly, you are up to no good!
Oh no! You men may go and worship Yahweh, since that was your original request.' With that, they were driven from Pharaoh's presence.
Yahweh then said to Moses, 'Stretch out your hand over Egypt for the locusts. Let them invade Egypt and devour whatever is growing in the country, whatever the hail has left!'
Moses stretched his staff over Egypt, and over the country Yahweh sent an east wind which blew all that day and night. By morning, the east wind had brought the locusts.
The locusts invaded the whole of Egypt and settled all over Egypt, in great swarms; never had there been so many locusts before, nor would there be again.
They covered the surface of the ground till the land was devastated. They devoured whatever was growing in the fields and all the fruit on the trees that the hail had left. No green was left on tree or plant in the fields anywhere in Egypt.
Pharaoh sent urgently for Moses and Aaron and said, 'I have sinned against Yahweh your God and against you.
Now forgive my sin, I implore you, just this once, and entreat Yahweh your God to turn this deadly thing away from me.'
When Moses left Pharaoh's presence he prayed to Yahweh,
and Yahweh changed the wind into a west wind, very strong, which carried the locusts away and swept them into the Sea of Reeds. There was not one locust left in the whole of Egypt.
But Yahweh made Pharaoh stubborn, and he did not let the Israelites go.
Yahweh then said to Moses, 'Stretch out your hand towards heaven, and let darkness, darkness so thick that it can be felt, cover Egypt.'
So Moses stretched out his hand towards heaven, and for three days there was thick darkness over the whole of Egypt.
No one could see anyone else or move about for three days, but all the Israelites did have light where they were living.
Pharaoh summoned Moses and said, 'Go and worship Yahweh, but your flocks and herds are to stay here. Your wives and children can go with you too.'
Moses said, 'But now you must give us sacrifices and burnt offerings to offer to Yahweh our God.
And our livestock will go with us too; not a hoof will be left behind; for we may need animals from these to worship Yahweh our God; for until we get there we ourselves cannot tell how we are to worship Yahweh.'
But Yahweh made Pharaoh stubborn, and he refused to let them go.
Pharaoh said to Moses, 'Out of my sight! Be sure you never see my face again, for the next time you see my face you die!'
Moses then said, 'You yourself have said it. I shall never see your face again.'