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Sh'mos 3:15–18 reads:

‏15 וַיֹּאמֶר עוֹד אֱלֹהִים אֶל מֹשֶׁה…. 16 לֵךְ וְאָסַפְתָּ אֶת זִקְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וְאָמַרְתָּ אֲלֵהֶם יהוה אֱלֹהֵי אֲבֹתֵיכֶם נִרְאָה אֵלַי… לֵאמֹר פָּקֹד פָּקַדְתִּי אֶתְכֶם וְאֶת הֶעָשׂוּי לָכֶם בְּמִצְרָיִם. 17 וָאֹמַר אַעֲלֶה אֶתְכֶם מֵעֳנִי מִצְרַיִם אֶל אֶרֶץ הַכְּנַעֲנִי וְהַחִתִּי וְהָאֱמֹרִי וְהַפְּרִזִּי וְהַחִוִּי וְהַיְבוּסִי אֶל אֶרֶץ זָבַת חָלָב וּדְבָשׁ. 18 וְשָׁמְעוּ לְקֹלֶךָ…‏

I'm unsure of how to read this. Specifically, the last part of pasuk 16 is Hashem quoting Moshe quoting Hashem. Is pasuk 17 the same, or is it just Hashem quoting Moshe? That is, do we read the passage as this —

God said further to Moses:

… Go gather the elders of Israel and tell them:

God, the god of your fathers, appeared to me… saying:

I paid attention to you and to what was done to you in Egypt. And I have said [or: say]:

I will raise you from the poverty of Egypt….

And they will heed your voice….

— or as this —

God said further to Moses:

… Go gather the elders of Israel and tell them:

God, the god of your fathers, appeared to me… saying:

I paid attention to you and to what was done to you in Egypt.

And I have said [or: say]:

I will raise you from the poverty of Egypt….

And they will heed your voice….

—?

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I'm getting confused with your second example: Did you not mean >>>> I paid attention to you and to what was done to you in Egypt. And I have said: >>>>> I will raise you from the poverty of Egypt… –  Michoel Jan 16 '13 at 4:19
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I'm not sure how your second presentation of the pasuk makes as much sense as the first, since there you attribute to Moses a line that was instead said by God... Am I misunderstanding something? –  Shimon bM Jan 16 '13 at 4:19
    
Regardless, it would seem like the first example is the correct one because a) It's a new verse. a) Why would Moshe tell the Zekaynim that Hashem said they would listen to him? –  Michoel Jan 16 '13 at 4:21
    
@Michoel re your 1st comment: That's the first version I wrote. Re your 2d comment, (a): I don't understand what you're referring to by "it". Re your 2d comment, (b): Moshe wasn't saying that according to either rendering I offer. That was clearly just Hashem telling Moshe the elders would listen to Moshe. –  msh210 Jan 16 '13 at 14:22
    
@ShimonbM I'm suggesting Hashem was telling Moshe to tell the elders that he (Moshe) planned to take them from Egypt. I agree that the first presentation seems more natural, but I see nothing wrong with the second. –  msh210 Jan 16 '13 at 14:24

1 Answer 1

My take is this:

Narrator: G-d said further to Moses:

G-d said: … Go gather the elders of Israel and tell them:

G-d tells Moses to say: G-d, the god of your fathers, appeared to me… saying:

Moses is told to say G-d said: I paid attention to you and to what was done to you in Egypt. And I (G-d) have said:

Moses is told to say G-d said that "G-d of the past" said: I will raise you from the poverty of Egypt….

G-d said: And they will heed your voice….

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That's the same as my first suggestion. Do you have some reasoning or source, or just the bare agreement with one of my suggestions over the other? –  msh210 Jan 17 '13 at 0:18
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@msh210 My reason is that Moses never promised אַעֲלֶה אֶתְכֶם מֵעֳנִי מִצְרַיִם but G-d did (to Abraham). And certainly if he did, no one knew Moses promised this. The last thing they knew about him, he killed an Egyptian. –  Charles Koppelman Jan 17 '13 at 1:02
    
But וָאֹמַר, although I translated it as "And I have said", can also be used to mean "And I say". (Perhaps I should mention as much in the question.) Anyway, why not edit your reasoning into the answer? –  msh210 Jan 17 '13 at 2:41
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@msh210 or "And I will say". But our tradition makes it very clear that G-d made this promise and that G-d fulfilled the promise. Not Moses. –  Charles Koppelman Jan 17 '13 at 18:17
    
(re your last comment) Moses did take us from Egypt. And this could be statement of what he would do. –  msh210 Jan 17 '13 at 18:43

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