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Exodus 1

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The People of Israel Suffer
1-5 # Gn 46.8-27. When Jacob went to Egypt, his son Joseph was already there. So Jacob took his eleven other sons and their families. They were: Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Zebulun, Benjamin, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, and Asher. Altogether, Jacob had 70 children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren#1.1-5 70 children … great-grandchildren: See Genesis 46.8-27. who went with him.
6After Joseph, his brothers, and everyone else in that generation had died, 7#Ac 7.17. the people of Israel became so numerous that the whole region of Goshen was full of them.
8 # Ac 7.18. Many years later a new king came to power. He did not know what Joseph had done for Egypt, 9and he told the Egyptians:
There are too many of those Israelites in our country, and they are becoming more powerful than we are. 10#3 Macc 3.24; Ac 7.19. If we don't outsmart them, their families will keep growing larger. And if our country goes to war, they could easily fight on the side of our enemies and escape from Egypt.
11The Egyptians put slave bosses in charge of the people of Israel and tried to wear them down with hard work. Those bosses forced them to build the cities of Pithom and Rameses,#1.11 Pithom and Rameses: This is the only mention of Pithom in the Bible; its exact location is unknown, though it was probably in the northern Delta of Egypt. Rameses is the famous Delta city that was the home of Rameses II; its exact location is also unknown. where the king#1.11 the king: The Hebrew text has “Pharaoh,” a Hebrew word sometimes used for the title of the king of Egypt. could store his supplies. 12But even though the Israelites were mistreated, their families grew larger, and they took over more land. Because of this, the Egyptians feared them worse than before 13and made them work so hard 14that their lives were miserable. The Egyptians were cruel to the people of Israel and forced them to make bricks and to mix mortar and to work in the fields.
15Finally, the king called in Shiphrah and Puah, the two women who helped the Hebrew#1.15 Hebrew: An earlier term for “Israelite.” mothers when they gave birth. 16He told them, “If a Hebrew woman gives birth to a girl, let the child live. If the baby is a boy, kill him!”
17But the two women were faithful to God and did not kill the boys, even though the king had told them to. 18The king called them in again and asked, “Why are you letting those baby boys live?”
19They answered, “Hebrew women have their babies much quicker than Egyptian women. By the time we arrive, their babies are already born.” 20-21God was good to the two women because they truly respected him, and he blessed them with children of their own.
The Hebrews kept increasing 22#Ac 7.19. until finally, the king gave a command to everyone in the nation, “As soon as a Hebrew boy is born, throw him into the Nile River! But you can let the girls live.”
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1Now these are the names of the sons of Israel, who came into Egypt (every man and his household came with Jacob): 2Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah, 3Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin, 4Dan and Naphtali, Gad and Asher. 5All the souls who came out of Jacob’s body were seventy souls, and Joseph was in Egypt already. 6Joseph died, as did all his brothers, and all that generation. 7The children of Israel were fruitful, and increased abundantly, and multiplied, and grew exceedingly mighty; and the land was filled with them.
8Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who didn’t know Joseph. 9He said to his people, “Behold,#1:9 “Behold”, from “הִנֵּה”, means look at, take notice, observe, see, or gaze at. It is often used as an interjection. the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we. 10Come, let’s deal wisely with them, lest they multiply, and it happen that when any war breaks out, they also join themselves to our enemies and fight against us, and escape out of the land.” 11Therefore they set taskmasters over them to afflict them with their burdens. They built storage cities for Pharaoh: Pithom and Raamses. 12But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and the more they spread out. They started to dread the children of Israel. 13The Egyptians ruthlessly made the children of Israel serve, 14and they made their lives bitter with hard service in mortar and in brick, and in all kinds of service in the field, all their service, in which they ruthlessly made them serve.
15The king of Egypt spoke to the Hebrew midwives, of whom the name of the one was Shiphrah, and the name of the other Puah, 16and he said, “When you perform the duty of a midwife to the Hebrew women, and see them on the birth stool, if it is a son, then you shall kill him; but if it is a daughter, then she shall live.” 17But the midwives feared God,#1:17 The Hebrew word rendered “God” is “אֱלֹהִ֑ים” (Elohim). and didn’t do what the king of Egypt commanded them, but saved the baby boys alive. 18The king of Egypt called for the midwives, and said to them, “Why have you done this thing and saved the boys alive?”
19The midwives said to Pharaoh, “Because the Hebrew women aren’t like the Egyptian women; for they are vigourous and give birth before the midwife comes to them.”
20God dealt well with the midwives, and the people multiplied, and grew very mighty. 21Because the midwives feared God, he gave them families. 22Pharaoh commanded all his people, saying, “You shall cast every son who is born into the river, and every daughter you shall save alive.”