We encounter the great conundrum of Pharaoh’s hardened heart. In this week’s Torah portion, Bo, Pharaoh hardened his own heart during the first few plagues. But in the last few plagues, it is G-d who hardened the despot’s heart.
The book of Exodus begins, “And these are the names of the Children of Israel who came to Egypt with Jacob” (Exodus1,1). A list of the eleven sons who lived in Canaan with Jacob ensues, plus Joseph, who was waiting for them in Egypt.