The Second Book of Moses, Called Exodus

Chapter 2

Moses is born and then laid in an ark in the reeds, 1-4. He is found and brought up by Pharaoh's daughter, 5, 6; who employs his mother to nurse him, 7-10. He slays an Egyptian, 11, 12. He reproves a Hebrew, 13, 14. He flees into Midian and marries Zipporah, 15-21. Gershom is born, 22. God respects the Israelites' cry, 23-25.

1 And there went a man of the house of Levi who married a daughter of Levi. 2 And the woman conceived and bore a son. And when she saw him that he was a handsome child, she hid him three months. 3 And when she could no longer hide him, she took for him a basket of bulrushes, daubed it with slime and with pitch, put the child therein, and she laid it in the reeds by the river's brink. 4 And his sister stood afar off to know what would be done to him.

5 And the daughter of Pharaoh came down to wash herself at the river, and her attendants walked along by the river's side. And when she saw the basket among the reeds, she sent her servant to fetch it. 6 And when she had opened it, she saw the child, and behold, the baby wept. And she had compassion on him, and said, "This is one of the Hebrews' children." 7 Then his sister said to Pharaoh's daughter, "Shall I go and call for you a nurse of the Hebrew women so that she may nurse the child for you?" 8 And Pharaoh's daughter said to her, "Go." And the young woman went and called the child's mother. 9 And Pharaoh's daughter said to her, "Take this child away and nurse it for me, and I will give you your wages." And the woman took the child and nursed it. 10 And the child grew, and she brought him to Pharaoh's daughter, and he became her son. And she called his name Moses, saying, "Because I drew him out of the water."

11 And it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown, that he went out to his brothers and looked at their burdens. And he spied an Egyptian smiting a Hebrew, one of his brothers. 12 And he looked this way and that way, and when he saw that there was no man, he slew the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. 13 And when he went out the second day, behold, two men of the Hebrews strove together. And he said to him who did the wrong, "Why do you smite your fellow?" 14 And he said, "Who made you a prince and a judge over us? Do you intend to kill me as you killed the Egyptian?" And Moses feared and said, "Surely this thing is known."

15 Now when Pharaoh heard this thing, he sought to slay Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh and dwelt in the land of Midian. And he sat down by a well.

16 Now the priest of Midian had seven daughters, and they came and drew water and filled the troughs to water their father's flock. 17 And the shepherds came and drove them away, but Moses stood up and helped them and watered their flock. 18 And when they came to Reuel their father, he said, "How is it that you have come so soon today?" 19 And they said, "An Egyptian delivered us from the hand of the shepherds, and also drew enough water for us and watered the flock." 20 And he said to his daughters, "And where is he? Why is it that you have left the man? Call him so that he may eat bread." 21 And Moses was content to dwell with the man. And he gave Zipporah his daughter to Moses. 22 And she bore him a son, and he called his name Gershom, for he said, "I have been a stranger in a strange land."

23 And it came to pass in process of time, that the king of Egypt died, and the children of Israel sighed by reason of the bondage and they cried. And their cry ascended to God, by reason of the bondage. 24 And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. 25 And God looked upon the children of Israel, and God had respect to them.


Matthew Henry Commentary - Exodus, Chapter 2[➚]


[v.3] - "basket" – LXX: "ark."

[v.14] - Quoted in Acts 7:27-28, 35.

[v.15] - Quoted in Acts 7:29.

[v.24] - From John Calvin's Commentary: "As to what is added, that 'God remembered his covenant,' it is the explanation of the cause why he heard their groaning, namely, that he might ratify his gratuitous promise made to Abraham and his descendants. He expressly mentions the three patriarchs, because God lodged his covenant with them, that it might continue firm for perpetual generations. And, indeed, since God is inclined towards us to help us of his own free mercy, so he offers himself, and invites us voluntarily; and therefore confidence in prayer must only be sought for in his promises."