Hebrews Chapter 11 Third Continued
Verses 23-29: Moses (see Exodus chapters 1-15; Acts 7:17-36).
Hebrews 11:23 “By faith Moses, when he was born, was hid three months of his parents, because they saw [he was] a proper child; and they were not afraid of the king’s commandment.”
“Proper child”: Meaning “favored,” in this case divinely favored (Acts 7:20; Exodus 2:2). The faith described here is that exercised by Moses’ parents, although it is unclear how much Moses’ parents understood about God’s plan for their child.
We find in the next few Scriptures that the Pharaoh of Egypt had ordered all the boy babies, born of the Hebrews to be killed at birth.
Exodus 1:16 “And he said, When ye do the office of a midwife to the Hebrew women, and see [them] upon the stools; if it [be] a son, then ye shall kill him: but if it [be] a daughter, then she shall live.”
Exodus 1:22 “And Pharaoh charged all his people, saying, Every son that is born ye shall cast into the river, and every daughter ye shall save alive.”
We go into detail of this study in the study in Exodus. I will say here that the midwives were more afraid of God than they were of the Pharaoh and they refused to kill the children. If they were found out or if the parents went against Pharaoh and saved their child’s life; they would be killed.
This does not stop Moses’ mother and father. They hid Moses for as long as they could, and then they come up with a plan to have Pharaoh’s daughter find the child in the Nile River. They feel if this is her adopted child, he will not be killed.
Exodus 2:2 “And the woman conceived, and bare a son: and when she saw him that he [was a] goodly [child], she hid him three months.” This woman who had the child was Jochabed, the wife of Amram. Moses was raised in the palace as a son of the Pharaoh’s daughter, after she had taken him from the Nile.
The Pharaoh’s daughter actually named Moses. “Moses” means drawing out of the water.
Hebrews 11:24 “By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter;”
Moses refused the fame he could have in Egypt if he would have capitalized on his position as the adopted son of Pharaoh’s daughter (Exodus 2:10).
Acts 7:21-24 “And when he was cast out, Pharaoh’s daughter took him up, and nourished him for her own son.” “And Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words and in deeds.” “And when he was full forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his brethren the children of Israel.” “And seeing one [of them] suffer wrong, he defended [him], and avenged him that was oppressed, and smote the Egyptian:”
We find in these Scriptures above and in the ones in Exodus that Moses, like many adopted children in our day, try to find their natural parents. Moses was raised as an Egyptian, but he knew his heritage. He wanted to be one of the Hebrews of whom he was born.
When Moses saw one of the Egyptians persecuting one of his Hebrew brothers, Moses killed the Egyptian. This is when Moses left Egypt and went to the desert where he would later meet God.
Hebrews 11:25 “Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;”
“With the people of God”: Moses would have sinned had he refused to take on the responsibility God gave him regarding Israel, and he had a clear and certain conviction that “God was granting them deliverance through him” (Acts 7:25). Moses repudiated the pleasures of Egypt.
You can plainly see that when given the choice, he chose to be a Hebrew, not an Egyptian.
Hebrews 11:26 “Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward.”
“Reproach of Christ”: Moses suffered reproach for the sake of Christ in the sense that he identified with Messiah’s people in their suffering (verse 25). In addition, Moses identified himself with the Messiah because of his own role as leader and prophet (12:2; Deut. 18:15; Psalms 69:9; 89:51).
Moses knew of the sufferings and glory of the Messiah (John 5:46; Acts 26:22-23; 1 Pet. 1:10-12). Anyone who suffers because of genuine faith in God and for the redemptive gospel suffers for the sake of Christ (13:12-13; 1 Pet. 4:14).
To be an Egyptian, would be to be of this world. Actually, what Moses has done when he turns his back on Egypt, is turn his back on the world to accept God. The Hebrews, even though they were not living the godly life, were still God’s chosen people.
Even the Egyptians knew that the Hebrews were followers of the true God. There are no riches in this world great enough to trade eternal life for.
Jeremiah 9:23-24 “Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise [man] glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty [man] glory in his might, let not the rich [man] glory in his riches:” “But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I [am] the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these [things] I delight, saith the LORD.”
Hebrews 11:27 “By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible.”
“Forsook Egypt”: Moses left Egypt for the first time when he fled for his life after killing the Egyptian slave master (Exodus 2:14-15). That time he did fear Pharaoh’s wrath. On the second occasion, he turned his back on Egypt and all that it represented. This leaving was not for fear of Pharaoh, so it is the One in view here.
“Seeing him”: Moses’ faith was such that he responded to God’s commands as though God were standing visibly before him. This was the basis for his loyalty to God, and it should be a believer’s example for loyalty (2 Cor. 4:16-18).
Moses left Egypt, I believe, in search of God. We know that the Scriptures tell us that Moses fled for fear the Pharaoh would find that he had killed an Egyptian and have Moses killed. Sometimes God allows adverse things to happen, to get us into a place He would have us to be. To fall from being the Pharaoh’s grandson to a fugitive from the law, would really humble a person.
We are told in Scriptures that Moses was the humblest man that ever lived. Moses would go into this desert place to find refuge, but here he would meet God. Moses would be in this desert for 40 years (time of testing). In those 40 years, Moses would become a different man than the man who had lived in the Pharaoh’s house. He would be a humble shepherd.
God appears unto Moses in a burning bush and gives him the job of bringing his people out of Egypt to the Promise Land. Moses is obedient to God, goes back to Egypt and tells the Pharaoh to let God’s people go. After 10 plagues come on Egypt, the Pharaoh will finally consent and let the people go.
Hebrews 11:28 “Through faith he kept the passover, and the sprinkling of blood, lest he that destroyed the firstborn should touch them.”
“Passover” (see Exodus 12).
The tenth plague was death to all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, who did not have the blood of the lamb over the door of the house. Moses told the Hebrews to take the blood of the lamb and put it over and around the entrance of their houses. When death came to each house, the people were spared in the houses where the blood of the lamb had been applied to the door facing.
Death passed over the Hebrew families, protected by the blood of the lamb. This passing over of death would be remembered throughout all generations by the Hebrews as the Passover. All the firstborn of Egypt lost their life, because they were not covered by the blood of the lamb.
Moses believed God. Moses instructed these Hebrews exactly the way that God had told him. The faith of Moses in God is why he did it.
Hebrews 11:29 “By faith they passed through the Red sea as by dry [land]: which the Egyptians assaying to do were drowned.”
“Red sea” (see Exodus chapters 14 and 15). When they first reached the shores of the Red Sea, the people feared for their lives (Exodus 14:11, 21). But upon hearing Moses’ pronouncement of God’s protection (Exodus 14:13-14), they went forward in faith.
After Pharaoh had let the Hebrews go, he changed his mind and followed after them to kill them. He trapped them at the Red sea. It appeared that everyone would die, but God opened the Red sea and the Hebrews crossed over on dry land. The Egyptians followed the Hebrews into the Red sea and the sea drowned the Egyptians.
Exodus 14:13-14 “And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will shew to you today: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen today, ye shall see them again no more for ever.” “The LORD shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.”
Exodus 14:16 “But lift thou up thy rod, and stretch out thine hand over the sea, and divide it: and the children of Israel shall go on dry [ground] through the midst of the sea.”
Exodus 14:21-30 “And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the LORD caused the sea to go [back] by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry [land], and the waters were divided.” “And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon the dry [ground]: and the waters [were] a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left.” “And the Egyptians pursued, and went in after them to the midst of the sea, [even] all Pharaoh’s horses, his chariots, and his horsemen.” “And it came to pass, that in the morning watch the LORD looked unto the host of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and of the cloud, and troubled the host of the Egyptians,” “And took off their chariot wheels, that they drave them heavily: so that the Egyptians said, Let us flee from the face of Israel; for the LORD fighteth for them against the Egyptians.” “And the LORD said unto Moses, Stretch out thine hand over the sea, that the waters may come again upon the Egyptians, upon their chariots, and upon their horsemen.” “And Moses stretched forth his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to his strength when the morning appeared; and the Egyptians fled against it; and the LORD overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea.” “And the waters returned, and covered the chariots, and the horsemen, [and] all the host of Pharaoh that came into the sea after them; there remained not so much as one of them.” “But the children of Israel walked upon dry [land] in the midst of the sea; and the waters [were] a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left.” “Thus the LORD saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians; and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the sea shore.”
This needs no further explanation.
Hebrews Chapter 11 Third Continued Questions
- How long did Moses’ parents hide him?
- What had the king commanded about the boy babies?
- What were the midwives to do when they realized the baby was a boy?
- Did they do it?
- What could have happened to these parents if Pharaoh found out they did not kill the baby?
- Why did Moses’ parents put him in a basket in the Nile river?
- Who were the parents of Moses?
- Who found Moses and claimed him for her own?
- When Moses became grown, who did he refuse to be?
- How old was Moses when he decided to find his Hebrew people?
- What did Moses do when he saw an Egyptian being cruel to a Hebrew?
- When Moses came to the age of choice, what did he decide to do?
- What is Egypt symbolic of?
- What was Moses actually doing when he fled Egypt?
- What happened to Moses that was a great humbling experience?
- Moses would go into this desert place for refuge, but here he would meet___.
- How many years would Moses be in this desert?
- What is this time symbolic of?
- How many plagues did God send on Egypt?
- How did Moses keep the first Passover?
- What was the Passover to remember?
- Why were the Hebrews saved when death came to their door?
- What happened to the first born of Egypt?
- By _____ they passed through the Red sea.
- What happened to the Egyptians when they followed the Hebrews into the Red sea?