Soon after Pharaoh let the Israelites leave Egypt, he regretted his decision and ordered his army to bring them back. His soldiers caught up with the Israelites by the banks of the Sea of Reeds. The frightened Israelites were trapped between the raging sea and the Egyptian chariots and troops. Naturally, they turn to their leader, Moses. The Midrash tells that Moses stands paralyzed in prayer.

Nachshon of Aminadav, a daring Israelite, steps out into the sea with faith that G-d will part the waters. When the water almost covers Nachshon, G-d's great hand and outstretched arm part the waters. The Israelites pass through the waters, which then rush back covering the pursuing Egyptian army and their horses and chariots. Nachshon, who is the forebear of King David, teaches us that we are commanded not to wait for G-d to act but to act in the faith that G-d will support us.

Once the Israelites safely crossed the sea, Miriam led the women in a joyful dance. All the women are now invited to join in the celebration as we sing Miriam's Song.


And the women dancing with their timbrels
Followed Miriam as she sang her song.
Sing a song to the One whom we've exalted.
Miriam and the women danced and danced the whole night long.

And Miriam was a weaver of unique variety.
The tapestry she wove was one which sang our history.
With every strand and every thread she crafted her delight.
A woman touched with spirit, she dances toward the light.


When Miriam stood upon the shores and gazed across the sea
The wonder of this miracle she soon came to believe.
Whoever thought the sea would part with an outstretched hand
And we would pass to freedom and march to the promised land.


And Miriam the prophet took her timbrel in her hand
And all the women followed her just as she had planned.
And Miriam raised her voice in song
She sang with praise and might.
We've just lived through a miracle
We're going to dance tonight.


haggadah Section: -- Cup #2 & Dayenu
Source: Bob Frankle