Read Exodus 1:8-2:10
8 Then, a new king, who knew nothing about Joseph, came to power in Egypt. 9He said to his people, “These Israelites are so numerous and strong that they are a threat to us. 10In case of war they might join our enemies in order to fight against us, and might escape fromb the country. We must find some way to keep them from becoming even more numerous.” 11So the Egyptians put slave-drivers over them to crush their spirits with hard labour. The Israelites built the cities of Pithom and Rameses to serve as supply centres for the king. 12But the more the Egyptians oppressed the Israelites, the more they increased in number and the further they spread through the land. The Egyptians came to fear the Israelites 13–14and made their lives miserable by forcing them into cruel slavery. They made them work on their building projects and in their fields, and they had no mercy on them.
15 Then the king of Egypt spoke to Shiphrah and Puah, the two midwives who helped the Hebrew women. 16“When you help the Hebrew women give birth,” he said to them, “kill the baby if it is a boy; but if it is a girl, let it live.” 17But the midwives feared God and so did not obey the king; instead, they let the boys live. 18So the king sent for the midwives and asked them, “Why are you doing this? Why are you letting the boys live?”
19 They answered, “The Hebrew women are not like Egyptian women; they give birth easily, and their babies are born before either of us gets there.” 20–21Because the midwives feared God, he was good to them and gave them families of their own. And the Israelites continued to increase and become strong. 22Finally the king issued a command to all his people: “Take every newborn Hebrew boy and throw him into the Nile, but let all the girls live.”
The Birth of Moses
2 During this time a man from the tribe of Levi married a woman of his own tribe, 2and she bore him a son. When she saw what a fine baby he was, she hid him for three months. 3But when she could not hide him any longer, she took a basket made of reeds and covered it with tar to make it watertight. She put the baby in it and then placed it in the tall grass at the edge of the river. 4The baby’s sister stood some distance away to see what would happen to him. 5The king’s daughter came down to the river to bathe, while her servants walked along the bank. Suddenly she noticed the basket in the tall grass and sent a slave woman to get it. 6The princess opened it and saw a baby boy. He was crying, and she felt sorry for him. “This is one of the Hebrew babies,” she said.
7 Then his sister asked her, “Shall I go and call a Hebrew woman to act as a wet nurse?”
8 “Please do,” she answered. So the girl went and brought the baby’s own mother. 9The princess told the woman, “Take this baby and nurse him for me, and I will pay you.” So she took the baby and nursed him. 10Later, when the child was old enough, she took him to the king’s daughter, who adopted him as her own son. She said to herself, “I pulled him out of the water, and so I name him Moses.”c
The story of Israel is one of struggle and then redemption. So - even as a new King comes into power and oppresses the people God begins unfolding a plan to rescue them. This story will take a whole generation to unfold.
Lord, thank you for the beautiful ways in which you rescue us and bring your Kingdom. Thank you for faithful people like the Jewish midwives who chose to obey you rather than the powerful Pharaoh. Help us through simple obedience to work for your Kingdom.
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