2:1-10: The origin of a friend of God, who later meets him in the Transfiguration to talk with him about the imminent crucifixion and resurrection.
2:3: Moses is put in the Nile like all the other babies who were killed. His story is the same, but his fate is different. His capacity to relate to or identify with his people starts in his infancy. So does his set-apartness.
2:4: The first time we meet the Prophet Miriam, she’s standing (active), at a distance (not in the center of the activity, not in control), to find out (watching — the prophets were called seers; this whole story could’ve gone really badly: she could have watched her baby brother get devoured by a croc). What is she there to do? To inform her family of what she sees, and to intercede (connects Moses back to his mom).
What’s Moses’ mom doing at this time? I imagine she’s weeping, praying, pleading for his safety, begging God to give him back. This story illustrates the power of prayer — she gets what she asked for.
2:10: Look at how Moses’ mom trusts God! To relinquish her child back to Pharaoh’s daughter after spending another 3? years with him! She must have loved him so much more by then. Think of the trauma to Moses, his siblings, and his parents. But then to see the fruit of this sacrifice 80 years down the road. I would have taken my baby and run and hid. How did his mom do this? I want to be a woman with that kind of faith.
2:11: Moses is adopted, but he till identifies himself as a Hebrew. Our identity is more than what we know with our conscious mind.
2:12: In his own power, Moses frees one man from one Egyptian. But in God’s power, he will free an entire nation from an entire nation.
2:13: The reaction of the Israelites doesn’t change much even when Moses comes back after his time in Midian. They are reluctantly freed captives. Our hearts are inclined the same way when we’re being freed from the control of other gods in our lives. A huge part of us resists the freedom.
2:14: You must be under authority to have authority. Moses IS a judge over them, but not yet appointed by God. And clearly also not appointed by Pharaoh at this point in time.
Here we see that Moses is a shepherd whose heart is for his people. But the people must be afflicted to a point that they cry out to God (2:23), and then GOD acts, not Moses. We can jump God’s timing, too. Moses had that heart for a reason, but he had to learn God’s timing (as well as how to be humble and gentle).
The one who was saved must have spread the news of what Moses did. And he probably didn’t do it in a positive way, given the other Hebrews’ reaction in this verse. We, too, can have coals heaped on our heads when we try to help others/come to their defense. Likewise, we can be like the Hebrews here and be guilty of rejecting the help and good-hearted aide of others.
2:15: This is the 2nd time Pharaoh tries to kill Moses. Pharaoh was a grandfather to Moses. Moses is abandoned, forsaken, and threatened. How hard it must have been for him to trust others, including God! Up until now, we see a strong presence of women in Moses’ life (his mom, his other mom, his sister), but not a lot of positive male influences. The first strong man on scene is Jethro, his soon-to-be father-in-law (thank God for in-laws!).
Moses sits by a well. Like in Ps. 23 — God is restoring his soul.
2:16-17: Stronger (male) shepherds routinely bully weaker (female) shepherds for provision of the sheep. Moses helps the weaker ones. Here we see his Leader/Champion/Advocate orientation again (he can’t help but be who God made him to be). And his story here parallels that of Elijah fleeing to the mountain of God: after fleeing, he is reminded of his TRUE identity — not Hebrew or Egyptian, but a leader created by God to deliver people.
Here we also see an age-old truth — shepherds (pastors) can bully one another in the name of their sheep (congregations). Almost like the bullying was more important to the shepherds than the sheep were. Ouch. And perhaps worse yet, male shepherds (men in ministry) can bully (routinely, even) female shepherds (women in ministry).
2:18: Jethro knew of the bullying (the girls were routinely late because of it), but he did nothing about it. WHY NOT?
2:19: Moses is identified as an Egyptian (inaccurate in its incompleteness). Moses delivered the girls and provided for them (part of his real identity).
2:20: Hospitality is golden! An appropriate measure of gratitude for the deliverance and provision of Moses is to invite him to stay and eat with them. In the balance scales of our society, this doesn’t seem to measure up as an appropriate thank you for such a significant act. But in God’s eyes, hospitality is a huge Jesus/love/generous thing.
2:22: Moses is an alien. It’s not your ethnicity or nationality that defines you. It’s how God made you. Moses is a leader/champion/advocate.
2:23-25: Moses jumped the gun back in Egypt. But God will send him to do it again – to deliver his people. In the meantime, the Hebrews cried out to God. God is faithful. God cares. God answers.