Moses: leader, law-giver, legend
from the Books of Exodus, Numbers and Deuteronomy
saved from the Nile Exodus 2:1-10
1 Now a man from the house
of Levi went and took to wife a daughter of Levi.
2 The woman conceived
and bore a son; and when she saw that he was a goodly child, she hid him
3 And when she could hide him no longer she took for him a
basket made of bulrushes, and daubed it with bitumen and pitch; and she
put the child in it and placed it among the reeds at the river's brink.
And his sister stood at a distance, to know what would be done to him.
Now the daughter of Pharaoh came down to bathe at the river, and her
maidens walked beside the river; she saw the basket among the reeds and
sent her maid to fetch it.
6 When she opened it she saw the child; and lo,
the babe was crying. She took pity on him and said, "This is one of
the Hebrews' children."
7 Then his sister said to Pharaoh's daughter,
"Shall I go and call you a nurse from the Hebrew women to nurse the
child for you?"
8 And Pharaoh's daughter said to her, "Go."
So the girl went and called the child's mother.
9 And Pharaoh's daughter
said to her, "Take this child away, and nurse him for me, and I will
give you your wages." So the woman took the child and nursed him.
And the child grew, and she brought him to Pharaoh's daughter, and he
became her son; and she named him Moses, for she said, "Because I
drew him out of the water."
Burning Bush Exodus 3:1-15
1 Now Moses was keeping
the flock of his father-in-law, Jethro, the priest of Mid'ian; and he led
his flock to the west side of the wilderness, and came to Horeb, the
mountain of God.
2 And the angel of the
Lord appeared to him in a flame of
fire out of the midst of a bush; and he looked, and lo, the bush was
burning, yet it was not consumed.
3 And Moses said, "I will turn
aside and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt."
the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called to him out of the
bush, "Moses, Moses!" And he said, "Here am I."
he said, "Do not come near; put off your shoes from your feet, for
the place on which you are standing is holy ground."
6 And he said,
"I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac,
and the God of Jacob." And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to
look at God.
7 Then the Lord said, "I have seen the affliction of my
people who are in Egypt, and have heard their cry because of their
taskmasters; I know their sufferings,
8 and I have come down to deliver
them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that
land to a good and broad land, a land flowing with milk and honey, to the
place of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Per'izzites, the
Hivites, and the Jeb'usites.
9 And now, behold, the cry of the people of
Israel has come to me, and I have seen the oppression with which the
Egyptians oppress them.
10 Come, I will send you to Pharaoh that you may
bring forth my people, the sons of Israel, out of Egypt."
Moses said to God, "Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and bring
the sons of Israel out of Egypt?"
12 He said, "But I will be
with you; and this shall be the sign for you, that I have sent you: when
you have brought forth the people out of Egypt, you shall serve God upon
13 Then Moses said to God, "If I come to the
people of Israel and say to them, 'The God of your fathers has sent me to
you,' and they ask me, 'What is his name?' what shall I say to them?"
14 God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM." And he said, "Say
this to the people of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you.'"
15 God also
said to Moses, "Say this to the people of Israel, 'The Lord, the God
of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of
Jacob, has sent me to you': this is my name for ever, and thus I am to be
remembered throughout all generations.
10th plague: death of the firstborn
29 At midnight the LORD
smote all the first-born in the land of Egypt, from the first-born of
Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the first-born of the captive who was in
the dungeon, and all the first-born of the cattle.
30 And Pharaoh rose up
in the night, he, and all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there
was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where one was not
31 And he summoned Moses and Aaron by night, and said, "Rise
up, go forth from among my people, both you and the people of Israel; and
go, serve the Lord, as you have said.
32 Take your flocks and your herds,
as you have said, and be gone; and bless me also!"
Death of the
Pharaoh's First-born, Lawrence Alma-Tadema
the Red Sea - Exodus 14:21-25
21 Then Moses stretched
out his hand over the sea; and the Lord drove the sea back by a strong
east wind all night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were
God's Eye View of the Parting of the Red Sea
22 And the people of Israel went into the midst of the sea on dry
ground, the waters being a wall to them on their right hand and on their
23 The Egyptians pursued, and went in after them into the midst of
the sea, all Pharaoh's horses, his chariots, and his horsemen.
24 And in
the morning watch the Lord in the pillar of fire and of cloud looked down
upon the host of the Egyptians, and discomfited the host of the Egyptians,
25 clogging their chariot wheels so that they drove heavily; and the
Egyptians said, "Let us flee from before Israel; for the Lord fights
for them against the Egyptians."
1 And God spoke all these
2 "I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the
land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
3 "You shall have no
other gods before me.
4 "You shall not make for yourself a graven
image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in
the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth;
Medieval manuscript showing Moses and the Burning Bush
5 you shall
not bow down to them or serve them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous
God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third
and the fourth generation of those who hate me,
6 but showing steadfast
love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.
"You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain; for the
Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.
"Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
9 Six days you shall
labor, and do all your work;
10 but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God; in it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your
daughter, your manservant, or your maidservant, or your cattle, or the
sojourner who is within your gates;
11 for in six days the Lord made
heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh
day; therefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day and hallowed it.
"Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the
land which the Lord your God gives you.
13 "You shall not kill.
"You shall not commit adultery.
15 "You shall not steal.
"You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
shall not covet your neighbor's house; you shall not covet your neighbor's
wife, or his manservant, or his maidservant, or his ox, or his ass, or
anything that is your neighbor's."
1 When the people saw that
Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people gathered
themselves together to Aaron, and said to him, "Up, make us gods, who
shall go before us; as for this Moses, the man who brought us up out of
the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him."
Is this a
modern version of the Golden Calf?
Aaron said to them, "Take off the rings of gold which are in the ears
of your wives, your sons, and your daughters, and bring them to me."
3 So all the people took off the rings of gold which were in their ears,
and brought them to Aaron.
4 And he received the gold at their hand, and
fashioned it with a graving tool, and made a molten calf; and they said,
"These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of
5 When Aaron saw this, he built an altar before it; and Aaron
made proclamation and said, "Tomorrow shall be a feast to the Lord."
6 And they rose up early on the morrow, and offered burnt
offerings and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and
drink, and rose up to play.
7 And the Lord said to Moses, "Go down;
for your people, whom you brought up out of the land of Egypt, have
8 they have turned aside quickly out of the way
which I commanded them; they have made for themselves a molten calf, and
have worshiped it and sacrificed to it, and said, 'These are your gods, O
Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!'