A powerful Rashi rule describes, not the meaning of individual
words and sentences, but the relationship between consecutive sentences
and paragraphs. Rashi had three basic methods to relate consecutive sentences:
By revealing the connection between consecutive sentences the meaning of the
paragraph as a whole is enhanced.
- cause-effect, enablement,
- unified theme (commonality)
Verses Ex14-01:03 show a cause-effect relationship between
sentences. Here, we have incorporated Rashi's causal connective into the
body of the translation and indicated it with the bracketed type-font insertion.
The underlined phrases emphasize the causal relationship.
And HaShem spoke unto Moses, saying:
Speak unto the children of Israel, that they turn back
and encamp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea,
before the land of the north-god, over against it shall ye encamp by the sea.
And [because of this turning back]
Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel: They are entangled in the land, the wilderness hath shut them in.
Rashi, as indicated by the underlined words, portrays God as
enticing Pharoh into believing that the Egyptian gods (the gods of the
north)were forcing the Jews to turn back. Pharoh then decided that perhaps
the god of the north could defeat the Jewish god. He therefore pursued and
The idea of seducing a criminal into further criminal activity is never
allowed in Jewish law except with a person who himself causes others to sin.
Thus this Rashi heightens Pharoh's evil.