The Lord reaffirms His promises to set the Israelites free and give them the land of Canaan. The Israelites do not believe these promises of the Lord given through Moses. The Lord commands Moses to go before Pharaoh again and tell him to let the Israelites go free. Moses doubts that Pharaoh will listen.
4 And I have also established my covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage, wherein they were strangers.
5 And I have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel, whom the Egyptians keep in bondage; and I have remembered my covenant.
6 Wherefore say unto the children of Israel, I am the Lord, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rid you out of their bondage, and I will redeem you with a stretched out arm, and with great judgments:
7 And I will take you to me for a people, and I will be to you a God: and ye shall know that I am the Lord your God, which bringeth you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians.
8 And I will bring you in unto the land, concerning the which I did swear to give it to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob; and I will give it you for an heritage: I am the Lord.
9 And Moses spake so unto the children of Israel: but they hearkened not unto Moses for anguish of spirit, and for cruel bondage.
10 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
11 Go in, speak unto Pharaoh king of Egypt, that he let the children of Israel go out of his land.
12 And Moses spake before the Lord, saying, Behold, the children of Israel have not hearkened unto me; how then shall Pharaoh hear me, who am of uncircumcised lips?
Elder Mark E. Petersen wrote:
“There was purpose in all [the Lord] did, and as He permitted Pharaoh to resist, He also was teaching the monarch that the God of Israel was mightier than the gods of Egypt. This lesson was not alone for the Egyptians, either, for the Israelites themselves had to learn that great fact, inasmuch as many of them had become worshipers of the Egyptian deities.
“The Lord was under covenant to bring His people out, and He would keep his word. . . .
“Between the complaints of the people and the resistance of the king, Moses had a difficult time. The Lord was now ready to perform miracles, however, to harass the Egyptians into submission. Some were defiantly duplicated by the magicians. But then the plagues came. The Nile was turned to blood. The fish died. There was an invasion of frogs. Pharaoh prayed for deliverance from them. The plague of lice followed, making Pharaoh more bitter and stubborn.
“The flies and murrain were next, but although the Egyptians suffered, the Israelites in the land of Goshen were free from it all. Next came the boils, which affected even the magicians, regardless of their magic.
“Hail and locusts now afflicted Egypt, but none were found in Goshen. At last the king began to relent. But it wasn’t enough, so darkness came upon the land except in Goshen, where there was light. Pharaoh weakened a little more, but even yet he refused to free the slaves.”
(Moses: Man of Miracles , 61–62.)