Exodus 1:1-6:1


The generation of Joseph dies along with the Pharaoh that new him.  The Israelites continued to prosper and multiply and soon their numbers were greater than the Egyptians.  The Pharaoh was afraid that if there was a conflict, the Egyptians would lose so he sought to gain control over the Israelites.  He increased their taxes and their work, but they still were great.

Pharaoh enslaved their midwives Shifrah and Puah and ordered them to kill any boy child born to the Israelites.  The midwifes couldn’t do so.  When the Pharaoh discovered that male babies were thriving, he asked them why and they told him Israelite women were strong and had a knowledge of childbirth and gave birth to the boys before the midwives could help them.

Pharaoh ordered that all male babies be cast into the Nile.

A daughter of Levi, Yocheved, had a son and made a basket with mud and pith.  She sent him into the river while his sister, Miriam, watched.  The baby boy floated to Pharaoh’s daughter, and she had compassion for him.  She decided to raise him as her own child.

As an adult, Moses sees the suffering the Israelites endure.  After he witnessed an Egyptian man beating a Hebrew man, Moses struck the Egyptian and killed him.  The next day when he saw two Hebrew men fighting, he admonished them, and they revealed to him that they saw him kill the Egyptian man.

Moses flees to Midian.  He saves Jethro’s daughter, marries her, and becomes a shepherd.

When Moses sees a bush burning but not being consumed, he goes near and hears the voice of G-d.  G-d tells Moses that he hears the cries and plight of the Israelites, and he wants Moses to ask Pharaoh to let the Israelites go.  Moses uses his brother Aaron as his speaker and together they go to the elders to tell them that it is their time to be redeemed.  The people believe Moses and Aaron, but Pharaoh will not budge and makes Israel suffer more.

Moses questions as to why G-d has done evil to his people.  G-d promises that they will be redeemed.