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Sunday School

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THE LESSON BACKGROUND. The book of Genesis ends with Jacob and his family coming to live with Joseph in Egypt (see Genesis 46:5-7). The time between Joseph and Moses was at least four hundred years (see Genesis 15:13; Acts 7:6). However, at some point, the Egyptian pharaoh came to see the Hebrews as a threat and enslaved them (see Exodus 1:8-11). By the time of Moses’ birth, the number of Hebrew people had greatly increased. In an effort to diminish the population, the Egyptian pharaoh commanded the Hebrew midwives to kill all baby boys at birth. However, they refused to do this because they feared God (see Exodus 1:15-21). During this difficult time, Moses was born. In an effort to protect him from Pharaoh’s murderous plan (see Exodus 1:22), his parents hid him for three months. When they couldn’t hide him any longer, Moses was placed in a waterproof basket and hidden among the reeds along the Nile River (see Exodus 2:1-4). It was here that little Moses was found by Pharaoh’s daughter and then raised as her adopted son. He enjoyed all the benefits of the palace (see Acts 7:22). Moses could have remained in Pharaoh’s court and possibly even ascended to the throne one day. But all that changed when he witnessed how cruelly his people were being treated and he chose to identify with his own oppressed people (see Hebrews 11:24-25). He even killed an Egyptian who was beating a Hebrew. This incident was made known to Pharaoh, who sought to have Moses killed; so he fled from Egypt and found refuge with the Midianites (see Exodus 2:11-15). In the land of Midian, Moses married the priest’s daughter Zipporah, raised a family, and became a shepherd (see Exodus 2:16-22). Exodus chapter 2 ends with the children of Israel crying out to the LORD because of their bondage, and God heard their cries and remembered His covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (see Exodus 2:23-25). Our lesson comes from Exodus chapter 3.

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