Sh’mot (Names)

  • Torah – Exodus 1:1-6:1
  • Haftarah – Isaiah 27:6-28:13; 29:22-23, Jeremiah 1:1-2:3
  • Brit Hadashah – Matthew 22:23-46, Luke 5:12-39, Acts 3:12-15; 5:27-32; 7:17-36; 22:1-22; 24:14-16, Hebrews 11:23-26

The book of Exodus picks up right where the book of Genesis leaves off, by listing the “names” (sh’mot) of the descendants of Jacob who came down to Egypt to dwell in the land of Goshen. Over time Jacob’s family flourished and multiplied so greatly that the new king of Egypt who apparently didn’t remember Joseph (chances are he was not Egyptian so he would not have known of Joseph). This new pharaoh looked at the Israelites as a growing political threat and decided to enslave them. When that didn’t stop their growth he commanded that the midwives to kill all newborn Hebrew boys. When the midwives refused to comply, the pharaoh ordered all the newborn boys to be drowned in the Nile river.

During this time a family from the tribe of Levi had a son and they hid him for three months. When the baby had grown to the point that he could no longer be hid, his mother Yocheved placed him in a basket and sent him floating down the Nile, praying that he may somehow escape death. Miriam, the boy’s sister stayed back to watch what would happen. Shortly after Pharaoh’s daughter found the baby and decided to raise him as her own and called his name Moses meaning “drawn out”. Miriam seeing what happened suggested that her mother (Moses’ real mother) could be the child’s nurse maid for the princess. It’s amazing to see how Yah answers prayer isn’t it?

It is theorized that Pharaoh’s daughter who raised Moses is actually Hatshepsut. Thutmose I (also known as the cruel ruler) would have been her father. His reputation for cruelty could explain the order to kill the male children. Hatshepsut is recorded to have married her brother Thutmose II who dies a few years after ascending the throne. After his death she ruled for a period of time until Thutmose III was old enough to co-reign with her.  Her desire to have Moses reign in his stead caused a deep hatred between the two and explains the death sentence he pronounced upon Moses after he killed the Egyptian. It is this death sentence which led to Moses’ forty year exile into the land of Midian.

After Hatshepsut’s death Thutmose III’s hatred for her led him to erase the record of her rule and even her very existence from Egyptian history. There have been several artifacts unearthed where her likeness and her name has been completely removed or changed to appear as someone else.

Thutmose III died around 1450 BC which is the same time period of Moses’ return, which matches the Biblical account perfectly.

Exodus 4:19 And the LORD said unto Moses in Midian, Go, return into Egypt: for all the men are dead which sought thy life.

His death would have left his son Amenhotep II as the Pharaoh during the time of the Exodus. According to documented history Amenhotep II lost his first born son at a young age right around this same time. Interesting how the Bible is once again proven as a reliable historical document.

Although modern Egyptians vehemently deny that the exodus ever happened, and mainstream archeologist do everything they can to cover up or explain away any evidence that is found supporting it by shifting timelines, and attributing artifacts to other groups of people besides the Hebrews. Nevertheless, we know that the account as recorded in the Torah is true.

The spiritual implications that are laid out for us in the story of the Exodus are many. It shows us how comfort often leads to bondage, and how bondage often leads to persecution. Yet when God’s people cry out to Him, in His mercy He brings deliverance.  If these patterns have any parallels to our lives today, which I believe they do, we have a great deal to learn.

1 Corinthians 10:11-12 Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.

So lets not think that we are above the ancient Israelites simply because we have Bibles, and we have the fulfilment of prophecy to look back on. Having these things places us in a place of greater knowledge and thus responsibility. “For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required“.

So as we enter the Book of Sh’mot, let us prayerfully seek the leading of the Ruak Hakodesh so that we may properly discern and apply these principles to our lives today.


Below are the links to this weeks Torah parashah. Enjoy!

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