Looking back on Exodus, this isn’t quite the story that I remember hearing about, though this is one that is talked about a lot. There are a few movies out there these days that reenact the events, but they seem hollow now. There is more to this book than the plagues and the commandments and even those stories have pieces left out of them. There is so much doubt here. I feel like it builds bad expectations to not admit that even the heroes of the Bible could be mired in doubt. All of them, not just a few.
Nevertheless, we are given this amazing story and should not take it for granted, nor any of its heroes.
- the Hebrew midwives – defied pharaoh by not killing the baby boy’s that were born
- Miriam – Moses’ sister who follows his basket and convinces pharaoh’s daughter to have the boy nursed by a woman she doesn’t know is his own biological mother; she’s also noted later for going out and singing in front of the Israelite’s as they march out of Egypt; her title is specified as a “prophetess”
- Pharaoh’s daughter – defies her father to keep the boy she found in the river that she knew was Hebrew.
- Zipporah – saves Moses’ life by circumcising their son and touching the foreskin to his feet when God is on his way to kill him.
- the women who ministered at the entrance to the tent of meeting – despite that their exact responsibilities have been lost in history, that they had a duty to the tent of meeting makes them notable
- Birth and call of Moses
- 10 plagues of Egypt, including Passover
- Crossing the Red Sea
- Mount Sinai, the Ten Commandments and other laws
- The Golden Calf
- Building everything as the Lord commanded it to be built
Unlike the last chapter, this one doesn’t span a large amount of time. It is the set up and telling of a single part of one man’s life. Sure, it’s a part of the entire Israeli heritage, but it centers on the life of Moses. Everyone that is mentioned by name is only mentioned in relation to Moses.
Remember that in the Bible, “men” doesn’t always limit the group to just the male sex. This is where looking at several translations to glean the actual female representation has helped immensely. Women were not as excluded as it appears on first glance.
They just don’t get nearly enough credit for their contributions. Sure, they weren’t meeting with God on a regular basis or performing the plagues, but that doesn’t mean they stood on the sidelines of the conflict. They were defying pharaoh, ministering, and at least one was a prophetess. Most of the women mentioned by name were saving Moses’ life in one fashion or another.