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    Chapter 15—Moses

    When this cruel decree was in full force, Moses was born. His mother hid him as long as she could with any safety, and then prepared a little vessel of bulrushes, making it secure with pitch, that no water might enter the little ark, and placed it at the edge of the water, while his sister should be lingering around the water with apparent indifference. She was anxiously watching to see what would become of her little brother. Angels were also watching that no harm should come to the helpless infant, which had been placed there by an affectionate mother, and committed to the care of God by her earnest prayers mingled with tears. And these angels directed the footsteps of Pharaoh's daughter to the river, near the very spot where lay the innocent little stranger. Her attention was attracted to the little strange vessel, and she sent one of her waiting-maids to fetch it to her. And when she had removed the cover of this singularly-constructed little vessel, she saw a lovely babe, “and behold, the babe wept; and she had compassion on him.” She knew that a tender Hebrew mother had taken this singular means to preserve the life of her much-loved babe, and she decided at once that it should be her son. The sister of Moses immediately came forward and inquired, “Shall I go, and call to thee a nurse of the Hebrew women, that she may nurse the child for thee? And Pharaoh's daughter said to her, Go.”1SP 162.2

    Joyfully sped the sister to her mother, and related to her the happy news, and conducted her with all haste to Pharaoh's daughter, where the child was committed to the mother to nurse, and she was liberally paid for the bringing up of her own son. Thankfully did this mother enter upon her now safe and happy task. She believed that God had preserved his life. Faithfully did she improve the precious opportunity of educating her son in reference to a life of usefulness. She was more particular in his instruction than in that of her other children; for she felt confident that he was preserved for some great work. By her faithful teachings she instilled into his young mind the fear of God, and love for truthfulness and justice. She did not rest here in her efforts, but earnestly prayed to God for her son that he might be preserved from every corrupting influence. She taught him to bow and pray to God, the living God, for he alone could hear him and help him in any emergency. She sought to impress his mind with the sinfulness of idolatry. She knew that he was to be soon separated from her influence, and given up to his adopted royal mother, to be surrounded with influences calculated to make him disbelieve in the existence of the Maker of the heavens and of the earth.1SP 163.1

    The instructions he received from his parents were such as to fortify his mind, and shield him from being lifted up and corrupted with sin, and becoming proud amid the splendor and extravagance of court life. He had a clear mind, and an understanding heart, and never lost the pious impressions he received in his youth. His mother kept him as long as she could, but was obliged to separate from him when he was about twelve years old, and he then became the son of Pharaoh's daughter.1SP 164.1

    Here Satan was defeated. By moving Pharaoh to destroy the male children, he thought to turn aside the purposes of God, and destroy the one whom God would raise up to deliver his people. But that very decree, appointing the Hebrew children to death, was the means God overruled to place Moses in the royal family, where he had advantages to become a learned man, and eminently qualified to lead his people from Egypt. Pharaoh expected to exalt his adopted grandson to the throne. He educated him to stand at the head of the armies of Egypt, and lead them to battle. Moses was a great favorite with Pharaoh's host, and was honored because he conducted warfare with superior skill and wisdom. “And Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words and in deeds.” The Egyptians regarded Moses as a remarkable character.1SP 164.2

    Angels instructed Moses that God had chosen him to deliver the children of Israel. The rulers among the children of Israel were also taught by angels that the time for their deliverance was nigh, and that Moses was the man whom God would use to accomplish this work. Moses thought that the children of Israel would be delivered by warfare, and that he would stand at the head of the Hebrew host, to conduct the warfare against the Egyptian armies, and deliver his brethren from the yoke of oppression. Having this in view, Moses guarded his affections, that they might not be strongly placed upon his adopted mother, or upon Pharaoh, lest it should be more difficult for him to remain free to do the will of God.1SP 165.1

    The splendor and pride displayed at the Egyptian court, and the flattery he received, could not make him forget his despised brethren in slavery. He would not be induced, even with the promise of wearing the crown of Egypt, to identify himself with the Egyptians, and engage with them in their idolatrous worship. He would not forsake his oppressed brethren, who he knew were God's chosen people. The king was interested in Moses, and he commanded that he should be instructed in the worship of the Egyptians. This work was committed to the priests, who officiated in the idolatrous feasts observed by the people in honor of their idol gods. But they could not, by any threats or promises of rewards, prevail upon Moses to engage with them in their heathenish ceremonies. He was threatened with the loss of the crown, and that he should be disowned by Pharaoh's daughter, unless he renounced his Hebrew faith. But he would not renounce his faith. He was firm to render homage to no object save God, the maker of the heavens and of the earth, to whom alone reverence and honor are due. He even reasoned with the priests and idolatrous worshipers upon their superstitious ceremonial worship of senseless objects. They could not answer him. His firmness in this respect was tolerated, because he was the king's adopted grandson, and was a universal favorite with the most influential in the kingdom.1SP 165.2

    The Lord preserved Moses from being injured by the corrupting influences around him. The principles of truth, received in his youth from God-fearing parents, were never forgotten by him. And when he most needed to be shielded from the corrupting influences attending a life at court, then the lessons of his youth bore fruit. The fear of God was before him. And so strong was his love for his brethren, and so great was his respect for the Hebrew faith, that he would not conceal his parentage for the honor of being an heir of the royal family.1SP 166.1

    When Moses was forty years old, “he went out unto his brethren, and looked on their burdens; and he spied an Egyptian smiting a Hebrew, one of his brethren. And he looked this way and that way, and when he saw that there was no man, he slew the Egyptian, and hid him in the sand. And when he went out the second day, behold, two men of the Hebrews strove together; and he said to him that did the wrong, Wherefore smitest thou thy fellow? And he said, Who made thee a prince and a judge over us? Intendest thou to kill me as thou killedst the Egyptian? And Moses feared, and said, Surely this thing is known. Now when Pharaoh heard this thing, he sought to slay Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh, and dwelt in the land of Midian.”1SP 166.2

    The matter of Moses’ killing the Egyptian was made known to the Egyptians by the envious Hebrew whom Moses reproved. And when it reached Pharaoh, it was greatly exaggerated. And the Egyptians told Pharaoh that Moses designed to make war with the Egyptians, and to overcome them, and rule himself as king. Pharaoh was exceedingly angry. He thought that this conduct of Moses meant much, and that there was no safety for his kingdom while he lived. He commanded that Moses should be slain. But he was not ignorant of Pharaoh's design, and he secretly left Egypt. The Lord directed his course, and he found a home with Jethro, a man that worshiped God. He was a shepherd, also priest of Midian. His daughters tended his flocks. But Jethro's flocks were soon placed under the care of Moses, who married Jethro's daughter, and remained in Midian forty years.1SP 167.1

    Moses was too fast in slaying the Egyptian. He supposed that the people of Israel understood that God's special providence had raised him up to deliver them. But God did not design to deliver the children of Israel by warfare, as Moses thought; but by his own mighty power, that the glory might be ascribed to him alone.1SP 167.2

    God overruled the act of Moses in slaying the Egyptian to bring about his purpose. He had in his providence brought Moses into the royal family of Egypt, where he had received a thorough education; and yet he was not prepared for God to intrust to him the great work he had raised him up to accomplish. Moses could not immediately leave the king's court, and the indulgences granted him as the king's grandson, to perform the special work of God. He must have time to obtain an experience, and be educated in the school of adversity and poverty. His father-in-law feared God, and was especially honored of all the people around him for his far-seeing judgment. His influence with Moses was great.1SP 168.1

    While Moses was living in retirement, the Lord sent his angels to especially instruct him in regard to the future. Here he learned more fully the great lesson of self-control and humility. He kept the flocks of Jethro; and while he was performing his humble duties as a shepherd, God was preparing him to become a spiritual shepherd of his sheep, even of his people Israel. He had been fully qualified as a general, to stand at the head of armies; and now the Lord would have him learn the duties, and perform the offices, of a faithful shepherd of his people, to tenderly care for his erring, straying sheep. As Moses led the flock to the desert, and came to the mountain of God, even to Horeb, “the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a flame of fire, out of the midst of a bush. And he looked, and behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed. And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burned. And when the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I. And he said, Draw not nigh hither. Put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, and God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God. And the Lord said, I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their task-masters; for I know their sorrows; and I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites. Now therefore, behold, the cry of the children of Israel is come unto me; and I have also seen the oppression wherewith the Egyptians oppress them. Come now, therefore, and I will send thee unto Pharaoh, that thou mayest bring forth my people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt.”1SP 168.2

    The time had fully come when God would have Moses exchange the shepherd's staff for the rod of God, which he would make powerful in accomplishing signs and wonders, in delivering his people from oppression, and in preserving them when pursued by their enemies. “And Moses said unto God, Who am I, that I should go unto Pharaoh, and that I should bring forth the children of Israel out of Egypt? And he said, Certainly I will be with thee; and this shall be a token unto thee, that I have sent thee: When thou hast brought forth the people out of Egypt, ye shall serve God upon this mountain. And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you, and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them? And God said unto Moses, I Am That I Am. And he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you. And God said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you. This is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations.”1SP 169.1

    Moses did not expect that this was the manner in which the Lord would use him to deliver Israel from Egypt. He thought that it would be by warfare. And when the Lord made known to him that he must stand before Pharaoh, and in his name demand him to let Israel go, he shrank from the task.1SP 170.1

    The Pharaoh before whom he was to appear, was not the one who had decreed that he should be put to death. That king was dead, and another had taken the reins of government. Nearly all the Egyptian kings were called by the name of Pharaoh. Moses would have preferred to stand at the head of the children of Israel as their general, and make war with the Egyptians. But this was not God's plan. He would be magnified before his people, and teach not only them, but the Egyptians, that there is a living God, who has power to save, and to destroy. Moses was commanded first to assemble the elders of Israel, the most noble and righteous among them, who had long grieved because of their bondage, and say unto them, “The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, appeared unto me, saying, I have surely visited you, and seen that which is done to you in Egypt; and I have said, I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt, unto the land of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, unto a land flowing with milk and honey. And they shall hearken to thy voice; and thou shalt come, thou and the elders of Israel, unto the king of Egypt, and ye shall say unto him, The Lord God of the Hebrews hath met with us; and now let us go, we beseech thee, three days’ journey into the wilderness, that we may sacrifice to the Lord our God.”1SP 170.2

    The Lord also assured Moses that Pharaoh would not let Israel go. Yet his courage should not fail; for he would make this the occasion of manifesting his signs and wonders before the Egyptians, and before his people. “And I am sure that the king of Egypt will not let you go, no, not by a mighty hand. And I will stretch out my hand, and smite Egypt with all my wonders which I will do in the midst thereof; and after that he will let you go.”1SP 171.1

    The powerful works of God, which he wrought before the Egyptians for the deliverance of the Hebrews, would give them favor in the sight of the Egyptians, that when they should leave Egypt they should not go empty-handed; “but every woman shall borrow of her neighbor, and of her that sojourneth in her house, jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment; and ye shall put them upon your sons, and upon your daughters, and ye shall spoil the Egyptians.”1SP 171.2

    The Egyptians had made slaves of the children of Israel, when they were not slaves, and the Egyptians were not entitled to their labor. They had only allowed the children of Israel a sustenance, and had enriched themselves with the labor which they had extorted from them. They had oppressed them, and bound them down under heavy burdens, until God interposed in their behalf. And as they were to go from their oppressors, they would need for their long journey that which they could exchange for bread, and use as their circumstances should require. Therefore, God directed them to borrow of their neighbors, and of the stranger that sojourned with them; that is, the Egyptian that had been appointed over them to see that they performed a certain amount of labor each day. Although they might borrow quite an amount, it would be but a small recompense for the hard labor they had performed, which had enriched the Egyptians.1SP 172.1

    Moses plead with the Lord, and said, “But behold, they will not believe me, nor hearken unto my voice; for they will say, The Lord hath not appeared unto thee.” The Lord then assured him by the miracle of the rod's becoming a serpent, and the hand's turning leprous, that by such signs and wonderful works would he cause the Egyptians and Pharaoh to fear, so that they would not dare to harm him. By these signs he assured Moses that he would convince the king and his people that a greater than himself was manifesting his power before them. And yet, after they should perform many miracles before Pharaoh in the sight of the people, they would not let Israel go. Moses wished to be excused from the laborious task. He plead a lack of ready speech as an excuse; that is, he had been so long from the Egyptians, that he had not as clear knowledge and ready use of their language as when he was among them.1SP 172.2

    The Lord reproved Moses for his fearfulness, as though the God who chose him to perform his great work was unable to qualify him for it, or as though God had made a mistake in his selection of the man: “And the Lord said unto him, Who hath made man's mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? Have not I, the Lord?” What an appeal! What a rebuke to the distrustful!1SP 173.1

    “Now, therefore, go, and I will be with thy mouth, and teach thee what thou shalt say. And he said, O my Lord, send, I pray thee, by the hand of him whom thou wilt send.” He entreated the Lord to select a more proper person. The backwardness of Moses at first proceeded from humility, a modest diffidence. But after God promised to remove his difficulties, and be with his mouth, and teach him what to say, and to give him success finally, in his mission, then for him to still manifest reluctance was displeasing to God. His unwillingness to execute the mission God had preserved his life to fill, and had qualified him to perform, after the assurance that God would be with him, showed unbelief and criminal despondency, and distrust of God himself. The Lord rebuked him for this distrust. The deliverance of Israel out of Egypt, in the manner God proposed to do the work, looked hopeless to him of the mission's ever being successful.1SP 173.2

    Moses excelled in wisdom in conducting affairs. Aaron, Moses’ elder brother, had been in daily use of the language of the Egyptians, and understood it perfectly. He was eloquent.1SP 174.1

    “And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Moses; and he said, Is not Aaron the Levite thy brother? I know that he can speak well. And also, behold, he cometh forth to meet thee; and when he seeth thee, he will be glad in his heart. And thou shalt speak unto him, and put words in his mouth: and I will be with thy mouth, and with his mouth, and will teach you what ye shall do. And he shall be thy spokesman unto the people: and he shall be, even he shall be to thee instead of a mouth, and thou shalt be to him instead of God. And thou shalt take this rod in thine hand, wherewith thou shalt do signs.”1SP 174.2

    Moses consented to perform the mission. He first visited his father-in-law, and obtained his consent for himself and his family to return into Egypt. He did not dare to tell Jethro his message to Pharaoh, lest he should be unwilling to let his wife and children accompany him on such a dangerous mission. The Lord strengthened him, and removed his fears by saying to him, “Return into Egypt; for all the men are dead which sought thy life.”1SP 174.3

    “And the Lord said unto Moses, When thou goest to return into Egypt, see that thou do all those wonders before Pharaoh, which I have put in thine hand; but I will harden his heart, that he shall not let the people go.” That is, the display of almighty power before Pharaoh, being rejected by him, would make him harder and more firm in his rebellion. His hardness of heart would increase by a continual resistance of the power of God. But he would overrule the hardness of Pharaoh's heart, so that his refusing to let Israel go, would magnify his name before the Egyptians, and before his people also.1SP 174.4

    The Lord directed Moses to say unto Pharaoh, “Thus saith the Lord, Israel is my son, even my first-born. And I say unto thee, Let my son go, that he may serve me. And if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy first-born.” The Lord called Israel his first-born because he had singled them out from all the people to be the depositaries of his law, the obedience of which would preserve them pure amidst idolatrous nations. He conferred upon them special privileges, such as were generally conferred upon the first-born son.1SP 175.1

    As Moses journeyed to Egypt, the angel of the Lord met him, and assumed a threatening posture, as though he would slay him. He was fearful of his life. He had yielded to the refusal of his wife to have their son circumcised, and, in compliance with her wishes, had neglected to obey God. His wife, fearful that her husband might be slain, overcame her feelings of undue affection for her son, and performed the act herself. After this, the angel let Moses go. In his mission to Pharaoh, he was to be placed in a perilous position, where his life would be exposed to the will of the king, if God did not by his power, through the presence of his angels, preserve him. While Moses was living in neglect of one of God's positive commands, his life would not be secure; for God's angels could not protect him while in disobedience. Therefore the angel met him in the way, and threatened his life. He did not explain to Moses why he assumed that threatening aspect. Moses knew that there was a cause. He was going to Egypt according to God's express command, therefore the journey was right. He at once remembered that he had not obeyed God in performing the ordinance of circumcision upon his youngest son, and had yielded to his wife's entreaties to postpone the ceremony. After he had obeyed the command of God, he was free to go before Pharaoh, and there was nothing in the way to hinder the ministration of angels in connection with his work.1SP 175.2

    In the time of trouble, just previous to the coming of Christ, the lives of the righteous will be preserved through the ministration of holy angels. Those who come up to that trying time neglecting to obey God's commands, will have no security of their lives. Angels cannot protect them from the wrath of their enemies while they are living in neglect of any known duty, or express command of Jehovah.1SP 176.1

    The Lord had informed Moses that Aaron, his brother three years older than himself, would come forth to meet him, and when he should see him, would be glad. They had been separated for many years. Angels of God had instructed Moses in regard to the work he should perform. Angels were also sent to teach Aaron to go forth and meet Moses, for the Lord had chosen him to be with Moses; and when he should meet his brother, to listen to his words; for God had given Moses words to speak to him in regard to the part he should act in connection with the deliverance of Israel. “And the Lord said to Aaron, Go into the wilderness to meet Moses. And he went, and met him in the mount of God, and kissed him. And Moses told Aaron all the words of the Lord who had sent him, and all the signs which he had commanded him. And Moses and Aaron went and gathered together all the elders of the children of Israel. And Aaron spake all the words which the Lord had spoken unto Moses, and did the signs in the sight of the people. And the people believed. And when they heard that the Lord had visited the children of Israel, and that he had looked upon their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshiped.”1SP 176.2

    The Hebrews expected to be delivered from their bondage without any particular trial of their faith, or suffering on their part. They were many of them ready to leave Egypt, but not all. The habits of some had become so much like the Egyptians that they preferred to remain with them. “And afterward Moses and Aaron went in, and told Pharaoh, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness. And Pharaoh said, Who is the Lord, that I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I know not the Lord, neither will I let Israel go. And they said, The God of the Hebrews hath met with us: let us go, we pray thee, three days’ journey into the desert, and sacrifice unto the Lord our God; lest he fall upon us with pestilence, or with the sword.” The request of Moses and Aaron was very modest. They asked to go only three days’ journey. But Pharaoh haughtily refused this, and professed to be entirely ignorant of the God of Israel. But the Lord purposed to let Pharaoh know that his voice is to be obeyed; that he is above all, and will compel proud rulers to bow to his authority. “And the king of Egypt said unto them, Wherefore do ye, Moses and Aaron, let the people from their works? Get you unto your burdens. And Pharaoh said, Behold, the people of the land now are many, and ye make them rest from their burdens. And Pharaoh commanded the same day the taskmasters of the people, and their officers, saying, Ye shall no more give the people straw to make brick, as heretofore; let them go and gather straw for themselves. And the tale of the bricks, which they did make heretofore, ye shall lay upon them; ye shall not diminish aught thereof; for they be idle; therefore they cry, saying, Let us go and sacrifice to our God.”1SP 177.1

    Pharaoh's heart was becoming more unfeeling toward the children of Israel. He greatly increased their labor. The taskmasters placed over the Hebrews were Egyptians. They had officers under them who had the oversight of the work, and directed the people. These officers were Hebrews, and they were responsible for the work of the people under them. And when the unjust requirement was given them, to make them gather for their brick the scattered straw and stubble found in the fields, the people could not perform their usual amount of labor. “So the people were scattered abroad throughout all the land of Egypt, to gather stubble instead of straw. And the taskmasters hasted them, saying, Fulfill your works, your daily tasks, as when there was straw. And the officers of the children of Israel, which Pharaoh's taskmasters had set over them, were beaten, and demanded, Wherefore have ye not fulfilled your task in making brick both yesterday and today, as heretofore?”1SP 178.1

    Because the full amount of labor was not accomplished, the Egyptian taskmasters called the officers to account, and cruelly punished them because they did not compel the people to perform their usual amount of labor. These officers thought that their oppression came from their taskmasters, and not from the king himself. Therefore they went with their case to the king, and told him their grievances, and the cruel treatment of their taskmasters. Pharaoh's heart was hardened against their distress, and he derided them, and mocked at all their complaints. He was filled with hatred against them.1SP 179.1

    “Then the officers of the children of Israel came and cried unto Pharaoh, saying, Wherefore dealest thou thus with thy servants? There is no straw given unto thy servants, and they say to us, Make brick; and, behold, thy servants are beaten; but the fault is in thine own people. But he said, Ye are idle, ye are idle; therefore ye say, Let us go and do sacrifice to the Lord. Go, therefore, now, and work; for there shall no straw be given you, yet shall ye deliver the tale of bricks. And the officers of the children of Israel did see that they were in evil case, after it was said, Ye shall not minish aught from your bricks of your daily task. And they met Moses and Aaron, who stood in the way, as they came forth from Pharaoh; and they said unto them, The Lord look upon you, and judge; because ye have made our savor to be abhorred in the eyes of Pharaoh, and in the eyes of his servants, to put a sword in their hand to slay us. And Moses returned unto the Lord, and said, Lord, wherefore hast thou so evil entreated this people? Why is it that thou hast sent me? For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in thy name, he hath done evil to this people; neither hast thou delivered thy people at all.”1SP 179.2

    As the children of Israel charged all their suffering upon Moses, he was greatly distressed, and felt almost like murmuring because the Lord delayed to deliver his people. They were not yet prepared to be delivered. They had but little faith, and were unwilling to patiently suffer and perseveringly endure their afflictions, until God should work for them a glorious deliverance.1SP 180.1

    “Then the Lord said unto Moses, Now shalt thou see what I will do to Pharaoh; for with a strong hand shall he let them go, and with a strong hand shall he drive them out of his land. And God spake unto Moses, and said unto him, I am the Lord; and I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty; but by my name Jehovah was I not known to them. And I have also established my covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage, wherein they were strangers. And I have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel, whom the Egyptians keep in bondage; and I have remembered my covenant.”1SP 180.2

    Many years had the children of Israel been in servitude to the Egyptians. Only a few families went down into Egypt, but they had become a large multitude. And being surrounded with idolatry, many of them had lost the knowledge of the true God, and had forgotten his law. And they united with the Egyptians in their worship of the sun, moon, and stars, also of beasts and images, the work of men's hands. Everything around the children of Israel was calculated to make them forget the living God. Yet there were those among the Hebrews who preserved the knowledge of the true God, the maker of the heavens and of the earth. They were grieved to see their children daily witnessing, and even engaging in, the abominations of the idolatrous people around them, and bowing down to Egyptian deities, made of wood and stone, and offering sacrifice to these senseless objects. The faithful were grieved, and in their distress they cried unto the Lord for deliverance from the Egyptian yoke; that he would bring them out of Egypt, where they might be rid of idolatry, and the corrupting influences which surrounded them.1SP 180.3

    But many of the Hebrews were content to remain in bondage rather than to go to a new country and meet with the difficulties attending such a journey. Therefore the Lord did not deliver them by the first display of his signs and wonders before Pharaoh. He overruled events to more fully develop the tyrannical spirit of Pharaoh, and that he might manifest his great power to the Egyptians, and also before his people to make them anxious to leave Egypt, and choose the service of God. The task of Moses would have been much easier had not many of the Hebrews become corrupted, and been unwilling to leave Egypt.1SP 181.1

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