Exodus 1-2 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)
I. Introduction: The Oppression of the Israelites in Egypt
Jacob’s Descendants in Egypt. 1 These are the names of the sons of Israel[a] who, accompanied by their households, entered into Egypt with Jacob: 2 [b]Reuben, Simeon, Levi and Judah; 3 Issachar, Zebulun and Benjamin; 4 Dan and Naphtali; Gad and Asher. 5 The total number of Jacob’s direct descendants[c] was seventy. Joseph was already in Egypt.
6 Now Joseph and all his brothers and that whole generation died. 7 But the Israelites were fruitful and prolific. They multiplied and became so very numerous that the land was filled with them.[d]
The Oppression. 8 Then a new king, who knew nothing of Joseph,[e] rose to power in Egypt. 9 He said to his people, “See! The Israelite people have multiplied and become more numerous than we are! 10 Come, let us deal shrewdly with them to stop their increase;[f] otherwise, in time of war they too may join our enemies to fight against us, and so leave the land.”
11 Accordingly, they set supervisors over the Israelites to oppress them with forced labor. Thus they had to build for Pharaoh[g] the garrison cities of Pithom and Raamses. 12 Yet the more they were oppressed, the more they multiplied and spread, so that the Egyptians began to loathe the Israelites. 13 So the Egyptians reduced the Israelites to cruel slavery, 14 making life bitter for them with hard labor, at mortar[h] and brick and all kinds of field work—cruelly oppressed in all their labor.
Command to the Midwives. 15 The king of Egypt told the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was called Shiphrah and the other Puah, 16 “When you act as midwives for the Hebrew women, look on the birthstool:[i] if it is a boy, kill him; but if it is a girl, she may live.” 17 The midwives, however, feared God; they did not do as the king of Egypt had ordered them, but let the boys live. 18 So the king of Egypt summoned the midwives and asked them, “Why have you done this, allowing the boys to live?” 19 The midwives answered Pharaoh, “The Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women. They are robust and give birth before the midwife arrives.” 20 Therefore God dealt well with the midwives; and the people multiplied and grew very numerous. 21 And because the midwives feared God, God built up families for them. 22 Pharaoh then commanded all his people, “Throw into the Nile every boy that is born, but you may let all the girls live.”
Birth and Adoption of Moses. 1 Now a man[j] of the house of Levi married a Levite woman, 2 and the woman conceived and bore a son. Seeing what a fine child he was, she hid him for three months. 3 But when she could no longer hide him, she took a papyrus basket,[k] daubed it with bitumen and pitch, and putting the child in it, placed it among the reeds on the bank of the Nile. 4 His sister stationed herself at a distance to find out what would happen to him.
5 Then Pharaoh’s daughter came down to bathe at the Nile, while her attendants walked along the bank of the Nile. Noticing the basket among the reeds, she sent her handmaid to fetch it. 6 On opening it, she looked, and there was a baby boy crying! She was moved with pity for him and said, “It is one of the Hebrews’ children.” 7 Then his sister asked Pharaoh’s daughter, “Shall I go and summon a Hebrew woman to nurse the child for you?” 8 Pharaoh’s daughter answered her, “Go.” So the young woman went and called the child’s own mother. 9 Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this child and nurse him for me, and I will pay your wages.”[l] So the woman took the child and nursed him. 10 When the child grew,[m] she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter, and he became her son. She named him Moses; for she said, “I drew him out of the water.”
Moses’ Flight to Midian. 11 On one occasion, after Moses had grown up,[n] when he had gone out to his kinsmen and witnessed their forced labor, he saw an Egyptian striking a Hebrew, one of his own kinsmen. 12 Looking about and seeing no one, he struck down the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. 13 The next day he went out again, and now two Hebrews were fighting! So he asked the culprit, “Why are you striking your companion?” 14 But he replied, “Who has appointed you ruler and judge over us? Are you thinking of killing me as you killed the Egyptian?” Then Moses became afraid and thought, “The affair must certainly be known.” 15 When Pharaoh heard of the affair, he sought to kill Moses. But Moses fled from Pharaoh and went to the land of Midian.[o] There he sat down by a well.
16 Now the priest of Midian had seven daughters, and they came to draw water and fill the troughs to water their father’s flock. 17 But shepherds came and drove them away. So Moses rose up in their defense and watered their flock. 18 When they returned to their father Reuel,[p] he said to them, “How is it you have returned so soon today?” 19 They answered, “An Egyptian[q] delivered us from the shepherds. He even drew water for us and watered the flock!” 20 “Where is he?” he asked his daughters. “Why did you leave the man there? Invite him to have something to eat.” 21 Moses agreed to stay with him, and the man gave Moses his daughter Zipporah in marriage. 22 She conceived and bore a son, whom he named Gershom;[r] for he said, “I am a stranger residing in a foreign land.”
II. The Call and Commission of Moses
The Burning Bush. 23 A long time passed, during which the king of Egypt died. The Israelites groaned under their bondage and cried out, and from their bondage their cry for help went up to God. 24 God heard their moaning and God was mindful of his covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. 25 God saw the Israelites, and God knew….[s]