Moses had an Egyptian name

Exodus Bible Background

Old Testament: Exo 2.10

To read the Bible in a year, read Exodus 1–3 on January 22, In the year of our Lord Christ 2020

By Don Ruhl

What was the name of Moses before he was named Moses? Undoubtedly his parents gave him a name, but the Bible never reveals it. However, because of Pharaoh’s decree that all male babies had to be destroyed, the parents of Moses did not kill him nor allow him to be killed, but his mother made a basket for him and put the 3-month old baby on the waters of the Nile, hoping that someone would rescue the baby boy.

Ironically, it was Pharaoh’s daughter who went to the river to bathe and spotted the basket with the baby boy in it. She rescued the baby, and the boy’s older sister saw this and suggested that one of the Hebrew women could nurse the baby. The princess agreed. The Bible says further:

And the child grew, and she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter, and he became her son. So she called his name Moses, saying, “Because I drew him out of the water.”

– Exodus 2.10

Notice that it was Pharaoh’s daughter who named the baby, so that Moses is an Egyptian name, meaning “drawn out.” How ironic that Moses had an Egyptian name and that he would lead the children of Israel out of Egypt through the waters of the Red Sea.

Truly, the Lord does amazing things right before our eyes.

Questions:

  • What amazes you about the Moses story?
  • What amazes you about the Lord?

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