OUT OF THE BULRUSHES

The Second Book of Moses, Called Exodus

The Birth of Moses:

1 And there went a man of the house of Levi, and took to wife a daughter of Levi.

2 And the woman conceived, and bare a son: and when she saw him that he was a goodly child, she hid him three months. Acts 7.20 Heb. 11.23

3 And when she could not longer hide him, she took for him an ark of bulrushes, and daubed it with slime and with pitch, and put the child therein; and she laid it in the flags by the river's brink.

4 And his sister stood afar off, to wit what would be done to him.

5 And the daughter of Pharaoh came down to wash herself at the river; and her maidens walked along by the river's side: and when she saw the ark among the flags, she sent her maid to fetch it.

6 And when she had opened it, she saw the child: and, behold, the babe wept. And she had compassion on him, and said, This is one of the Hebrews' children.

7 Then said his sister to Pharaoh's daughter, Shall I go and call to thee a nurse of the Hebrew women, that she may nurse the child for thee?

8 And Pharaoh's daughter said to her, Go. And the maid went and called the child's mother.

9 And Pharaoh's daughter said unto her, Take this child away, and nurse it for me, and I will give thee thy wages. And the woman took the child, and nursed it.

10 And the child grew, and she brought him unto Pharaoh's daughter, and he became her son. Acts 7.21 And she called his name Moses: 1 and she said, Because I drew him out of the water.

"And the woman conceived and bare a son: and when she saw him, that he was a goodly child; she hid him three monthes. And when she could no longer hide him, she took for him an ark of bulrushes, and daubed it with pitch, and put the baby therein; and she laid it in the flags by the rivers brink. And his sister stood afar off, to see what would be done with him. (Exodus 2:1-3)

From Exodus 1, we learn that while Pharoah at this time, was urging the extermination of the Israelites, God was preparing for their emancipation. Exodus 2:1 begins with a description of the father of Moses, who was Amram. The name Amram means "the kinsman is exalted," and this was truly a "prophetic name," for this man, who was a direct descendant of Levi. The custom of the "Kinsman Redeemer (GOEL ADAM) is an ancient one in Israel. Under Old Testament law, a near relative could redeem a poor relative from slavery, by paying the required debt. The kinsman could also redeem the relatives "sold" property, by paying what the individual owed. Read the book of Ruth. Who was he kinsman here and what service did he perform as kinsman redeemer?

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In addition, under Old Testament law, the GOEL would also enact justice in the case of murder. Amram had also married a daughter of what tribe, whose name was Jochebed?

Jochebed, we're told in Exodus 2, was a "daughter i.e. "a descendant" of Levi." The woman Jochebed bore to Amram a son. She saw he was a what, according to verse 2?

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The Hebrew text KI TOB HU signifies that he was not only perfect and well formed, but a beautiful baby. Every child is beautiful in his or her own way. And God touched the heart of Jochebed, instilling in her the spiritual fortitude that she would need, to "preserve alive" Israel's future deliverer.

From Hebrews 11:23, what does the writer of Hebrews state, showing us the character and committment of Moses parents to their child?

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Write out the verse found in Jeremish 49:11.

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Amram's wife hid their newly born infant for three monthes, or until this solution was no longer safe nor feasible.

Hebrews 11:23, describes this as an act of what type?

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This was not Jochebed's first child, for we read of Aaron who was born before the king passed the decree that all male children should be killed. How much older was Moses brother Aaron, than he was, according to Exodus 7:7?

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Miriam was old enough to look out for Moses, from Exodus 2:4,7. Approximately how old was Miriam when he was born?

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And when she (Jochebed) could hide him no longer, she made for him an ark of bulrushes. (TEBETH GOME) The fabrication of this small boat was lovingly and carefully done.

Bulrushes are fast growing papyrus reeds, which grew along the bank of the Nile River and in Egypt's delta lakes and backwaters. Papyrus reeds have a triangular stalk about the thinkness of a finger, and grow to about ten feet in height, with the top of the stalk being crowned with a tuft resembling hair. Bound bundles of papyrus reeds were woven to build ships that plied the great river of Egypt.

The pith was used for food, with the peeling of the plant being utilized in the making of sails, mattresses, mats, and sandles. And strips of papyrus were pounded flat and glued together to serve as writing materials.

Describe the fabrication of the "little ark" which Jochebed, Moses mother made for him, from Exodus 2:3.

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When the little "ark" was finished, Jochebed, put her child in it. We've already been told that he was approximately 3 monthes old at this time, that she carried this basket with the baby in it, down to the River Nile and laid it in the flags at the rivers brink.

There was wisdom in laying the basket in the flags, for in thrusting it into the river, the current could carry it away, and there would be less control over it. One of the large crocodiles which inhabited the river could surface under it and upset the little boat. Jochebed chose the site by the leading of God.

The name of Moses sister, whom Jochebed left her baby boy in the care of; was Miriam. What is the Hebrew meaning of this name?

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In verse 5, Pharoah's daughter came to the Nile to bathe, or "wash herself." One historian calls the princess Thermuthis. The Hebrew term RACHATS signifies "religious ablutions" of various kinds. It was the custom among Egyptians in anceint times, to plunge ones self into the river when the Nile began to rise, as the Egyptians believed that these waters had powers to impart fruitfulness and to prolong life. Egyptians also had "religious" washings or ablutions.

From verse 5, the princess and her "maidens,(NAAROTHEYHA) walked along the riverside. And when she saw the little ark, she sent her maids to fetch it. And when she opened it, the baby wept. And she had compassion on him. What did the princess immediately remark to her maids, concerning Moses

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Apparently, the exposure of the infant to the elements, led her to believe this.

Then Moses sister appeared and what did she say to Pharoah's daughter?

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With the words "Take this child away, and nurse it for me;" the king's daughter gave the baby to it's mother who was unknown to her at the time. The Princess believed that she was hiring a nurse to care for her newly adopted son. So Jochebed took the child and cared for it. (verse 10)

And the child grew, and she brought him to Pharoah's daughter; and he became her son. And she called his name "Moses," (Hebrew MOSHE) for she said: "I drew him out of the water."

There is no record of a name given Moses at birth by his Hebrew birth-parents. Though they probably would have named him during that first three monthes of his life. Traditionally Hebrew children were named for one of their ancestors.

Did they choose not to name this child that Egyptian law said they could never keep? Likely not! It is entirely possible that even before conception, Amram and his wife Jochebed discussed how to hide their newborn in the event that she conceived, and what they should do when they could no longer keep him a secret. The actions of both mother and daughter with regard to dealing with the princess, seem well planned out, through faith in God.

For some reason in the plans and purposes of God, Moses retained the name given him by his adoptive mother, an Egyptian princess, the very daughter of the man whose edict had hung as a death sentence of "infanticide" over the land in which the children of Israel dwelled.

Was this the name his Hebrew birth parents called him, after his brief voyage in a small chest made from Papyrus bark, and prior to returning him to the Egyptian princess? Israel is the culture that spit if they had to take the name of "Samaria" into their mouth.

Was an aversion to his very name, one of the miriad of painful things God's future deliver of Israel named Moses, encountered among his Hebrew brethren, and had to learn to deal with? Was Moshe the name that God Himself put it into the heart of the Egyptian princess, to name her newly adopted son? She had the authority to name her son after one of Egypt's many god's if she had wanted, and yet she chose a Hebrew name. What sympathies did this foreign princess hold in her heart for the Jewish people? We may never know. But God calls him Moses (Moshe) in His word. That's good enough for me.

From this time on, his education as "the son of Pharoah's daughter," commenced. The writer of Acts 7:22-23, who was Jewish; tells us about the length of time this education in Egypt continued. How long was this period of Moses life?

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