According to the Bible in the book of Exodus, Moses was the son of Amram and Jochebed and had an elder brother who was called Aaron. Prophet Moses is the one who led the Israelites from Egypt at the time that they were slaves. Moses was born at a time that all the male children were being drowned into the Nile as was commanded by Pharaoh. Exodus 1:15-16 “The king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives whose names were Shiphrah and Puah. “ When you help the Hebrew woman in childbirth and observe them on the delivery stool, if it is a boy, kill him; if it is a girl let her live” His mother hid him for three months “and when she could hide him no longer she got a papyrus basket for him and coated it with tar and pitch and set him on the Nile banks”. Exodus 2:3-4. He was later discovered by the daughter of Pharaoh who was taking a bathe and was adopted by her Exodus 2:5-6. This is where the name Moses came, Exodus 2:10 “When the child grew older, she took him to Pharaoh’s daughter and he became her son. She named him Moses saying “I drew him from the water”. The sister to Moses followed the boat when she saw where the boat had landed; she asked the daughter to pharaoh if she could hire a Hebrew to look after the baby.
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Jochebed was the one that was hired and the baby grew and was the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. When Moses was an adult, he went to overlook how the slaves were faring on in the land of Egypt. This is when he saw an Egyptian beating his fellow Hebrew and killed him Exodus 2:11 “ He saw an Egyptian beating one of his own people”. He later hid his body in the sand so that he would not be discovered by the Egyptians. Exodus 2:13 “The following day he went out and saw two Hebrews quarreling” and separated them; Hebrew who had wronged the other provoked Exodus 2:14 “Are you thinking of killing me as you killed the Egyptian?” It was soon that he discovered the secret was known to everyone and that he was likely to be killed by the king. (Exodus 2:15)
He then decided to escape and he went to Sinai Peninsula of where he settled with Jethro who was a high priest. He married the daughter of Jethro whose name was Zipporah, Exodus 2:21” Moses agreed to stay with the man who gave his daughter Zipporah to Moses to marry”. In Exodus 3:1-3 Moses took his flock to Mount Horeb for the purpose of grazing and this is where he saw a burning bush that was not being consumed. God spoke to him and revealed who he was to Moses Exodus 3:4-21, “When the Lord saw that he had gone to look, God called him form within the bush “Moses! Moses!” This is the place that Moses was received his prophet hood and priesthood from God. God then commissioned Moses to return back to Egypt and rescue His people from the bondage of slavery. He told him that he had heard the cries of his people and he wanted him to go deliver them and bring them to the Promised Land. There were some transformations that took place during the time that God was speaking to Moses. One, according to Exodus 3:2-5 “Moses threw the rod on the ground and it became a snake” The second one was that he was made to have leprosy and was healed.
The last one was that he was told to pour water on the land and was changed into blood. This was to tell Moses that God was with him throughout the process of delivering the Israelites and not to have any doubts of who he was as he was the God of Israel. Moses then left for Egypt but was almost killed by God because God wanted all his children to be circumcised and his son was not. Circumcision was important as it was the right of passage according to the Hebrews. God chose the helper of Moses to be his brother Aaron. The Israelites were left to go after Pharaoh saw the ten plagues. The pharaoh that Moses left during the time of his escape was not the Pharaoh that they found when they came to deliver the Israelites. According to historic sources the Pharaoh that Moses left was the one of oppression and was called Ramesses II. The story of the Exodus was catastrophic for Egyptians as they lost slaves, their first born males were killed during the Passover, were attacked by diseases and there was famine in the land.
On the first meeting with Pharaoh, Moses and Aaron told him that God wanted him to free the Israelites so that they would celebrate a feast that was to be in the wilderness, Exodus 5:1 “ This is what the Lord says let my people go, so that they may hold a festival to me in the desert”. Pharaoh refused saying that he did not know the God that they served. This is when Moses and Aaron put their rods down and they turned into snakes, Exodus7:8-13 “Take your rod and throw it down before the Pharaoh and it will become a snake”. The Egyptian magicians also did the same through their magic secrets, Exodus 7:11 and this made the king not to believe in the God of Moses and Aaron. Another opportunity rose and this time Moses took the Pharaoh into the riverbanks of the Nile and turned the river into blood, Exodus 7:14-22. Since the Egyptian magicians could also do the same, Pharaoh did not believe in the God of Moses and Aaron, Exodus 7:22 “But the Egyptian magicians did the same things by their secret arts and Pharaoh’s heart became hardened”.
The other meeting with Pharaoh led to the introduction of the frogs and this was also done by the magicians of the Pharaoh. These frogs annoyed the Pharaoh and he promised them that he would let the Israelites go for the feast in the wilderness, Exodus 8:1-15. The following day, all the frogs died and there was a bad stench and mess left behind and this made the Pharaoh angry and decided not to free the Israelites. The pharaoh eventually agreed to free the Israelites after the ten plagues. The third plague was infestations of lice, flies and gnats, Exodus 8:-30. The forth was wild beasts and they attacked the Egyptians, Exodus 9:1-8, the fifth was diseases that attacked the animals of the Egyptians. The sixth attacked human beings inform of boils Exodus 9:8-10 “Take handfuls of soot from a furnace and have Moses toss it into the air in the presence of Pharaoh. It will become dust over the whole land of Egypt, and festering boils will breakout on men and animals throughout the land”. Seven was thunder and fiery hails that attacked Egypt, Exodus 13-33. Eighth was Locust that attacked the plant that the Egyptians had, Exodus 10:1-18. Ninth was total darkness and the tenth was the Passover and all the first born males of the Egyptians died, Exodus 11:1-10, “About midnight I will go throughout Egypt. Every firstborn son in Egypt will die”.
After the ten plagues the king allowed the Israelites to go and Moses started to lead the people into the land of Canaan. They moved slowly and they were forced to camp for three times before they were finally out of Egypt. Pharaoh could not believe that he had freed them and so he and his soldiers followed them to make them come back and become slaves as they were. The Israelites reached the Red Sea and they were afraid that the Egyptian soldiers who were behind them would reach them and force them to go back. God commanded Moses put his rod on the waters and then the Red Sea was divided into two, Exodus 14:21, “and all night God drove the sea back, with a strong east wind and turned into dry land”. The Israelites passed on land and when the Egyptian soldiers tried to follow them God closed the waters and they all died from drowning.
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Moses led the people into the wilderness and when they reached at a place called Marah, the water that they were taking was bitter and this caused them to start murmuring at Moses, Exodus 15:22-27, “So they grumbled against Moses saying, what are we to drink?” This is when God commanded Moses to cast a tree in the water and it became sweet, Exodus 15:25, “The Lord showed Moses a piece of wood. He threw it into the water and it became sweet”. Along the journey, people began to run on low supplies of food and this caused them to start murmuring at Moses and Aaron and they said that they would have preferred to die in Egypt. Manna fell from the sky in the morning and then quail fell in the evening for the situation to be taken care of, Exodus 16:6-13. They continued with the journey and when they camped in Rephidim, there was water shortage and complains started again.
The Israelites said that God had brought them from Egypt to kill them, their animals and families.. The Israelites were also attacked by the Amalekites and they responded by Joshua being commanded to led the men of the Israelites into the battle. Moses stood on top of the hill with the rod that was the Lord’s. The rod was the one that helped the Israelites to emerge successful because as Moses held the rod up, the Israelites continued to conquer their enemies. If Moses did not do this the enemies of the Israelites would have easily defeated them and taken over them. This caused Moses to get tired and he was helped by Aaron and Hur.
Moses was paid visit by his father in law and he also brought the family of Moses. Moses then told Jethro how God had rescued the Israelites from the bondage and he offered sacrifices to God. The following day Jethro saw how Moses was judging the people from morning to evening and suggested to him that he should appoint other judges to do the work on his behalf. The Israelites then reached Sinai and they made camps around the mountain. This is the place that Moses received the Ten Commandments from God. He left the people and went to the top of the mountain and took several other leaders with him. Before leaving the people he told the people that they would ask questions to Aaron and Hur. (Exodus 18)
When Moses was with God, the Israelites asked Aaron to make them gods that they could worship in form of idols, Exodus 32:1,”Come make us gods who will go before us”. They had golden earrings that they had acquired from the Egyptians before they left. When Moses saw this, he destroyed the calf and persuaded God not to revenge but forgive the people of Israel. Moses met Joshua when he arrived from seeing God. He then asked the people who were on the Lord’s side to pass through the gate mentioning those that had become idolaters. There were also some laws that were given to the Israelites and this was to be their guide.
When they came to camp at Kadesh, they were still complaining and this made Moses to strike a stone twice for water to come forth. The Israelites did not directly enter the Promised Land because they would have easily been attacked by the Canaanites. This forced them to take another route that was long and they would have to pass through Edom, Moab, as well as Ammon, Numbers 13:21. When they started their journey, they complained about the manna and were bitten by the snakes. This made Moses to make a brass serpent and put it on a pole for the people who had been bitten by the snakes to look at so that they would not die, Numbers 21:4-9,”Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live”.
They continued with the journey until they reached Moab where they were attacked by Amorites who were led by king Sihon, Numbers 21:10-35. The Israelites emerged successful and they were the people who dominated the territories of the Amorites. They also wanted to expand and acquire the fertile places in the region and that meant going to war with other tribes that inhabited those areas. The Israelites experienced more wars and they emerged victorious because God helped them. Those who lived around them feared them because they knew that their territories would be next. King Balak was one of them and to avoid defeat he sent his elders to say that he would serve God only through dreams. God commanded Balaam to follow the priests but he did not go and thus sent out servants to go instead.
The ass that Balaam was riding saw the angel and refused to move, Numbers 22:21-39. This is when Balaam treated it unfairly and the angel made it to speak. Balaam repented and then proceeded with the journey. The Israelites were a strong and fertile nation because they were blessed by God; increased in number and they slowly continued to gain strength as time passed by. They also formed armies that would help them in the wars with their enemies. This made them to live in harmony with the rest of their neighbors and that God blessed them and they became prosperous.
After helping the Israelites to fight the battles and conquer their enemies, Moses had accomplished his mission with the Israelites. Moses had been told by God that he would not enter the Promised Land and that he needed someone to succeed him, Deuteronomy 31:1-13, “The Lord has told me, “You shall not cross the Jordan”. He was also aware that he would die on the shores of the river on the eastern side. Knowing his death, he gathered the Israelites and told them that he would die. He also reminded them of the features that they had and the laws that were there to govern them. He died when he was one hundred and twenty years and God buried him in a place where it is not known. Moses is said to be an instrument of the people the nation that God created. He is also said to be a prophet who was humble than anyone who lived before. He was also criticized by his siblings about the decisions he made and this angered him. He is also said to be a great man of God since he was the only man that saw God with his own eyes. (Deuteronomy 34)
- “The Holy Bible” King James Version
- “The Holy Koran”