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Zman Yetzias Mitzrayim

On Seder night we say that matzah is a symbol of fast redemption. But in fact redemption was at chatzos but yetziah actually was in the morning. If so they should have had enough time for bread baking? What was happening from Chatzos until the morning?

A number of answers have been offered to answer this question:

1) The Ibn Ezra פרק יב פסוק לא explains that at Chatzos, Moshe Rabeinu was told by Paroh to leave Mitzrayim. From there Moshe and Aharon went to inform Bnei Yisrael. But it took time for them to reach Goshen where Bnei Yisrael were. By the time they reached them and were informed it was already morning and they were rushed to leave.

2) Perhaps they didn’t know until close to morning that they were going to the midbar and not דרך ארץ פלישתים in which case they assumed they would not need provisions as they were going directly into Eretz Yisrael.

3) The custom was to prepare bread for the morning meal, close to morning time. Not knowing they would be rushed they waited for the regular time to prepare. In the morning they were rushed out by the Mitzriim.

4) According to the Arizal שאר הפסוקים פרשת בא, they in fact left Mitzrayim at night, right after Makas Bechoros. The description of them leaving by day is because on the night of Yetzias Mitzrayim לילה כיום תאיר, the night lit up with daylight.

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