Artist's Depiction of Moses
|Title||Jewish Prophet and Leader|
|Residence||Egypt, Dessert of Sinai|
Moses is an important Prophet in the Jewish faith and heritage. Not long after Moses was born Jochebed, Moses' mother, set her son adrift in a basket to protect him from a murderous decree to kill Hebrew children by Pharaoh. The child was soon discovered by Pharaoh's daughter and named Moses. Moses grew up in the palace but he fled after killing an Egyptian. He was soon called by G-d and forced Ten Plagues on Egypt. After the last plague Moses and the Jews were free. Moses got the Ten Commandments. Moses died at the age of 120, and never went into Israel.
Alternative versions of Moses' name: מֹשֶׁה Moshe, Musa, Mošeh, Moishe, משה
He is responsible for:
- Representing G-d in demanding the Pharaoh of Egypt free the Jews from slavery.
- Leading the Jews out of Egypt and in their travels through the desert.
- Getting the Ten Commandments from G-d.
- Saving the Jews from obliveration
- Sending the spies into Israel
Other things Moses is famous for:
- He was called by G-d to free his people
- He was discovered in the Nile as a baby by Pharaoh's daughter and raised a prince of Egypt.
- Not getting to go to the promised land (Cana'an) because he hit the rock.
- Striking a rock instead of speaking to it as told to by G-d. (He was punihsed by G-d as seen before.)
- Having trouble speaking, probably a speech impediment such as stuttering.
- "Never again has there arisen in Isreal a prophet like Moses, whom G-d had known face to face" (Vezos Haberachah, 34:10)
Joseph and his brothers died, and the Pharaoh who he helped died as well. Over time Joseph's deeds were forgotten. A new Pharaoh who had come into power made the Israelites slaves. One day the Pharaoh of Egypt was told a prophecy stating that one day a recently born Jew would rise up and destroy him. A star would proclaim his birth. The Pharaoh then ordered that all male Jewish babies be killed. The midwives however refused to follow this order. So Pharaoh ordered the Israelite babies to be thrown into the Nile to drown. Many babies drowned or were eaten by the Nile crocodiles. All the Israelite families were very upset. If a boy was born it was to be thrown into the Nile and die by Pharaoh's soldiers. If a girl was born it would be spared.
Birth and adoption of Moses - Flight to Midian
A baby boy was born to an Israelite family from the tribe of Levi. His mother Jochebed and older sister, Miriam, put him in a reed basket, and set him adrift on the Nile, The basket floated to Pharaoh's palace thus He was found by the Pharaoh's daughter,Bithiah who was bathing in the Nile when she found the child. She adopted the baby and raised him Egyptian. Bithiah named the baby Moses. This baby grew up a grandson of Pharaoh and brother to the Pharaoh's son. Moses grew up in the court of the Pharaoh. When he was forty he was visiting his people who were at work Moses saw an Egyptian overseer beating an Israelite. Moses got so angry that he killed the Egyptian and buried his body in the sand. Eventually Pharaoh found out and tried to kill Moses. But Moses had fled to the land of Midian. In Midian Moses married Zipporah the daughter of the Midian priest called Jetro. Zipporah gave birth to her first child a son named Gershom because Moses said i am a stranger in a strange land. Later Zipporah gave birth to her second child another son named Eliezer because Moses said G-d has saved me from the wrath of Pharaoh. Moses stayed in Midian for forty years. At the time the old Pharaoh died and Pharaoh's son became king.
Call of Moses and the Ten Plagues
Years later, G-d appeared to him as a burning bush and told him to free the Jews. He returned and used relayed G-d's demands with his brother, Aaron's help, to free the Jews. At first Pharaoh refused. After Ten Plagues, the Pharaoh agreed each time to let the Jews go, but then changed his mind.
After the tenth plague, Which Pharaoh's own child died, the Egyptians begged the Israelites to go. The Jews left the land quickly. They crossed the Red Sea when G-d parted it. As they walked across the sea floor, the Pharaoh's army caught up, chasing them. They outran the army and the sea returned killing the Pharaoh's army. Pharaoh himself, according to a Midrash, lived and became a traveler, telling the tales of G-d.
Moses then led the Hebrews through the dessert and eventually to the border of the promised land. But after sending spies into the land, he was forced to go through the dessert for anlther 40 years. After finally reaching the border, Moses was permitted to see the promised land, but not to enter it. According to most stories this is because of the lack of faith he showed in G-d after Miriam's death when he struck a rock to get water instead of speaking to it as instructed.
- Related Parshoat: Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.
- Exodus (Event)
- Ten Commandments
- Ten Plagues