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Deeds of God Thru Moses:

              If you were to quickly describe who Moses was, you might say that he was a Hebrew slave boy from the tribe of Levi, born in Egypt to Hebrew slaves, maybe around 1540 BC.  The Hebrew's had come to Egypt in the time of Joseph as welcome guests and family of Joseph, the savior of Egypt.  But Joseph died, time passed, and there came to be a Pharoah that didn't know Joseph, and so did not regard Joseph's kindred. 

             

              By unjust Egyptian law slave boys were being born and left out to die at the time when Moses was born.  The rapid growth of the Hebrew population - the sons of Jacob/Israel - within Egypt's borders had become alarming to the Egyptian royalty.  They worried that Hebrews would come to dominate native Egyptians by their sheer numbers.  So their new law said that newborn Hebrew males must be left out to die. 

              When Moses was first born to his parents, Amram and his wife Jochebed, they hid his existence for three months.  But they later felt it necessary to expose him to the elements as required, and praying to God for his deliverance, they complied with the Egyptian law.  Moses was placed in the Nile River in a little floating basket.  His parents prayed to God he would somehow be protected.  His sister followed along the river to see what would become of him.

              The ruling Egyptian family had a palace on the Nile River.  There was a place there where the Egyptian princess Thermuthis went with her maids to swim and bathe.  While bathing she spied the basket.  She sent her maids to rescue it and inside was baby Moses, who is mentioned by sources such as Josephus as being an extraordinarily beautiful baby. She thought of this baby as a gift to her from the Nile gods. 

              She talked to Pharoah, who lacked an heir, it is said.  He allowed her to take the baby and raise it.  The baby was named Moses, and Moses was raised as Egyptian royalty - as a full prince of Egypt, some writers say.  The older sister of Moses, Meriam, who had followed along watching, talked to the Egyptian princess and offered to provide a wetnurse from among the Hebrews.  When the princess approved the plan, Moses's own natural mother, Jochebed, was brought forth anonymously to be the wet nurse.  How's that for God arranging things to work out fine? 

              God heard the cry of His people, now become slaves in Egypt, and he provided Moses, but God even provided that Moses's real mother continue to mother him.  And God provided a way for a small baby to be a slave baby given up for dead one day, and heir to the throne of the area's then most powerful nation the next day.  Can things change quickly when God's moving, or what!?!  Wow!!

              Moses was raised in the full learning of the finest teachers in Egypt.  And he was trained as a military prince as well.  In fact, there is a story in Josephus's writings that the bible does not tell.  Moses was being trained as a young general at the time a certain Ethiopian army invaded Egypt.  No one seemed able to stop this Ethiopian army.  They came down the rich Nile Valley battling and defeating the armies of Egypt as they came.  The situation was becoming very serious for Egypt.

              Meanwhile, Moses had gathered some enemies.  Once the Pharoah had lacked an heir, but no longer.  Moses was a possible heir.  But before Moses came, others had considered the Pharoah's heirless situation and thought that they would by default inherit the throne of Egypt.  But the coming of Moses wrecked that for them.  Now, in this time of military emergency in Egypt, they had the thought:  Hey!  Egypt needs a general to lead them against these Ethiopians.  Why not Moses?  He is popular with the soldiers, and they say he has the potential to be a great general.   So if he leads our army, he might save us from the Ethiopians, which would make us happy.  And he might get killed in the process, which would make us very very happy!  So Moses was chosen by both his friends and his enemies to save Egypt from the Ethiopians.

              He supposedly arrived upon on a strange plan.  At that long ago time of about 1500 BC there was a type of animal - a flying or gliding poisonous serpent - which was very numerous in the desert outside of the Nile River valley.  They were aggressive, and quick to bite men, and so men did not travel that country, but stayed to the wetter river valleys due to the serpents not living there.  But Moses knew that a key reason for these little serpents avoiding the river valley was the presence of Ibis.  These birds, still common today, had no fear of the little serpents, but in fact attacked them fiercely whenever they would find them.  (From what I've been able to uncover these little serpents were about a foot long, about as thick as a man's finger, and had both legs and wings and were poisonous.  Other old writers seem to have written about the same creature, describing it in the same way and as a terrible pest in its day.)

              Moses had his army catch Ibises in great quantity, and clip their wing feathers so they couldn't fly .  They carried them in baskets up into the desert country above the river, then released them and herded them along in front of them with sticks as the army travelled.  The Ibises devoured the serpents so successfully that Moses's soldiers were not afraid to travel up on that high ground above the river valley.

              Using this method, Moses flanked the Ethiopians, and dropped down upon them from ground they had not worried to defend.  The Ethiopians were attacked by surprise, and routed.  Moses began to pursue their beaten army all the way out of Egypt, and eventually into Ethiopia, where they took refuge in their capital city called Saba (afterwards called Meroe).  This city was hard to take in a siege, so Moses spent much time there trying to capture it. 

              Inside the city, a certain princess of the Ethiopians named Tharbis began to look over the wall and watch Moses each day.  She found him irresistably handsome and it occurred to her to offer herself, through her father, as a treaty wife for Moses.  The father liked the idea, and Moses assented to it, marrying her and making a peace treaty with the Ethiopians.  This is a strange story, but there is a mysterious mention in the Bible of Moses having an Ethiopian wife (some translations say Cushite which is thought by most to be the same land.) and it is hard to say where such a wife might have come from.  Maybe this explains it. (Numbers 12:1)

              Moses returned a hero, but soon, killing a task master that he saw mistreating a Hebrew slave, he fell into disfavor and fled Egypt for his life.  He arrived in Midian, and soon gained the favor of a great man among the Midianites - a man named Reuel, or Jethro - and Moses married Jethro's daughter Zipporah.  Then, for about 40 years, beginning when he was about 40, Moses tended sheep with Zipporah for his father-in-law in Midian.  But one day God performed a deed.

              God appeared to Moses as a burning bush on Mt Horeb while Moses was passing by.  The bush burned, but wasn't consumed.  Moses was puzzled.  Approaching close, Moses was told by a voice to go no further and to take off his shoes, for he was on holy ground.  Moses fell quickly down and hid his face.  He was told that it was the Lord, the God of his fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Israel who spoke.  He named Himself as "I Am Who I Am".

              God told Moses He was sending him to lead the Hebrews away from Pharoah and Egypt to the promised land occupied by the Jebusites, Canaanites, Horites, Perrizites, Amorites, and Hivites.  He told Moses to go to the Hebrew elders and tell them that God had sent him.  Moses was worried they wouldn't believe him, but God gave Moses two unnatural signs to prove God had sent him:  First, if he threw down his walking staff it became a serpent, but if he picked it up, it became a staff again.  Secondly, if he stuck his hand in his garment, it became leprous when he brought it out.  But if he pushed it inside his garment again and then brought it out, it was whole and healthy.

              He told Moses to tell the King (Pharoah) to let the Hebrews go for three days to worship God.  But God said Pharoah would have a hard heart and tell them no, and then God would work signs against the nation of Egypt that would be so potent that when the Hebrews did eventually leave, they would be able to ask the Egyptians for gold and silver treasure and clothing as they left, and their former captors would willingly give it to them out of fear.

              Moses protested he was a poor speaker and God should ask someone else.  God became angry and told Moses that he was good enough, but since he protested, He would give Moses's brother Aaron to Moses as his helper, and He said that Aaron was in fact on his way to meet Moses now.  He said Aaron spoke well, and that he could speak for Moses.  But Moses would be looked up to by Aaron almost like God, God told him.

              Moses took Zipporah and his sons and left to go to Egypt to do God's will.   On the way out of Midian, God became angry at Moses and would have killed him the scriptures say because Moses was bringing uncircumcised sons into Egypt, but Zipporah quickly grabbed a sharp rock and cut off their foreskins, at which time God relented.  Probably angry and upset at having to do this, she told Moses that he was a husband of blood to her.  But this proved true in several ways, as one day in the future the Hebrews made a great slaughter of her people, the Midianites, in Phinehas' day when the Midianite women tried to corrupt the young Hebrew men, as Baalam had strategized. 

              After meeting up with Aaron his brother, Moses arrived at Egypt and contacted the Hebrew elders.  They saw and believed his signs, and looked forward to being freed from their slavery in Egypt.  But of course many generations of them had been slaves.  They knew of nothing else. 

              God told Moses to go before Pharoah and ask the people be released for three days worship, and He said Aaron, not Moses, would throw down his (Aaron's) staff, and it would become a snake.  They did this, but Pharoah had two Egyptian sorcerers who knew some magic, and had some dark spiritual powers allowing them to do some certain tricks themselves.  Those two threw down their staffs which became serpents also.  But the difference was, God's serpent fought, killed, and swallowed the serpents of Pharoah's priests and sorcerers.  The serpent then became a staff again when picked up.

 (Quick footnote: Aaron's staff represented the God given Staff of the Law, given to Aaron when he became the first High Priest of Israel. Later writers such as Paul made the case that without the law, there could not have been sin, since everything is allowable where no law exists.  So sin, the serpent, and the law all go hand in hand in a sense.  The serpent is a symbol of sin and venemous poison and death - even a symbol of Satan, right?  So think how interesting it is that God painted this picture: If you throw down the 'law' it becomes sin and death to you.  But if you repent, and 'raise up' the serpent, then that raised up serpent becomes the law, which is life to those who listen, see, and believe, just as Jesus, raised up on the cross, became life to those sinners who believe in Him.  Aaron's serpent could destroy the worlds serpents just as Jesus, made into sin for man, could rid the world of sin.  What a Jesus analogy, huh?  I admit you have to stretch a little, but when you do, it continues to hold a true picture of Jesus)   

              Pharoah was unmoved, and would not allow the Hebrews to leave to worship God.  So began the great plagues of Egypt that are so famous.  But there was method to them that is not always spoken of.  Egypt had adopted a great many false God's, and attributed to them the power and control of things which were actually in the power and control of the one true God, whom Noah, Ham, and Ham's son Misraites (Egypt's founder) had once known of quite fully. 

              God intended to not only free the Hebrews - the sons of Israel - but also re-educate the Egyptians who were suffering a period of great idolatry.  God created all men, and wants all men to be obedient so He can love them as His children.  He set about correcting Egypt's false notions so that they might have a chance and repent of their idolatry.  One by one, God showed them that their false god's were phoney, lame, and powerless to help them.  Each plague showed Yahweh's total dominance over one or more false Egyptian god's supposed area of authority and power.   
©2017 Daniel Curry & 'Deeds of God' Website