1:8 Now a newA king arose over Egypt,B who did not knowC Joseph.D
9 He said to his people, “Look,E the Israelite peopleF are more numerousG and more powerfulH than we.
10 Come, let us deal shrewdlyI with them, orJ they will increaseK
and, in the event of war,L joinM our enemiesN and fightO against us and escapeP from the land.”
11 Therefore they set taskmastersQ over them to oppressR them with forced labor.S
They builtT supplyU cities,V PithomW and Rameses,X for Pharaoh.Y
12 But the more they were oppressed, the more they multipliedZ and spread,AA so that the Egyptians came to dreadBB, CC the Israelites.
13 The EgyptiansDD became ruthlessEE in imposing tasksFF on the Israelites,
14 and made their lives bitterGG with hardHH serviceII in mortarJJ and brickKK and in every kind of fieldLL labor. They were ruthless in all the tasks that they imposed on them.
15 The king of Egypt said to the HebrewMM midwives,NN one of whom was namedOO ShiphrahPP and the other Puah,QQ
16 “When you act as midwivesRR to the Hebrew women, and see them on the birthstool,SS if it is a boy,TT kill him; but if it is a girl,UU she shall live.”
17 But the midwives fearedVV God;WW they did not doXX as the king of Egypt commanded them, but they let the boysYY live.
18 So the king of Egypt summoned the midwives and said to them, “Why have you doneZZ this, and allowed the boys to live?”
19 The midwives said to Pharaoh, “Because the Hebrew womenAAA are not like the Egyptian women; for they are vigorousBBB and give birthCCC before the midwife comes to them.”
20 So God dealt wellDDD with the midwives; and the people multipliedEEE and became very strong.FFF 21 And because the midwives feared God, he gaveGGG them families.HHH
22 Then Pharaoh commanded all his people, “Every boyIII that is bornJJJ to the Hebrews you shall throwKKK into the Nile,LLL but you shall let every girlMMM live.”
2:1 Now a manNNN from the houseOOO of LeviPPP went and marriedQQQ a Levite woman.RRR
2 The woman conceived and bore a son; and when she saw that he was a fineSSS baby, she hidTTT him three months.UUU
3 When she could hide him no longer she got a papyrusVVV basketWWW for him, and plasteredXXX it with bitumenYYY and pitch;ZZZ she put the childAAAA in it and placed it among the reeds on the bank of the river.
4 His sister stoodBBBB at a distance, to seeCCCC what would happenDDDD to him.
5 The daughter of Pharaoh came down to bathe at the river, while her attendantsEEEE walked besideFFFF the river. She saw the basket among the reeds and sent her maidGGGG to bring it. 6 When she opened it, she saw the child.HHHH He was crying, and she took pityIIII on him. “This must be one of the Hebrews’ children,” she said.
7 Then his sister said to Pharaoh’s daughter, “Shall I go and get you a nurseJJJJ from the Hebrew women to nurse the child for you?”
8 Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Yes.”KKKK
So the girlLLLL went and called the child’s mother.MMMM
9 Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this child and nurse it for me, and I will give you your wages.”NNNN
So the woman took the child and nursedOOOO it. 10 When the child grew up,PPPP she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter, and she took him as her son.QQQQ She named him Moses,RRRR “because,” she said, “I drewSSSS him out of the water.”
Image credit: “Mother of Moses” by Simeon Solomon, approximately 1860.