The Premises of the Exodus


The story of the Exodus represents one of the most dramatic and rich in meaning parts of the Bible as it narrates the enslavement and liberation of God's people on the background of numerous miracles performed by God Himself and His chosen as well. This section also makes reference to the journey to the Promised Land and to a set of moral laws that has had a long-lasting effect upon modern society.

For Christians in general the story of the Exodus is a proof of God's greatness, but for Jewish people it is a tale of primary importance because it shows how God kept His promise to look after the chosen people.

In order to establish a comprehensive background for this part, one has to go back to the book of Genesis, to the characters of Abraham and his wife, Sarah. They had a son Isaac who grew and started his family as well. His wife Rebekkah gave birth to two boys, Jacob and Esau. They were very competitive but Jacob finally succeeded in becoming the family patriarch. One can find how he did it by reading chapters 25 to 27 from Genesis, but these details are not relevant to our subject. Up to this point, nothing seems to be out of the ordinary. Jacob was special in God's eyes and he actually wrestled with God, or possibly an angel, all night long. At the end of this exhausting confrontation, Jacob won and God changed his name to Israel, which means "struggles with God".

Later on, Jacob had 12 sons out of whom he favored in particular the youngest one, called Joseph. His brothers, out of envy, sold him as a slave and told their father he was eaten by animals. Joseph ended in Egypt and was bought by a wealthy official. Thanks to his wisdom and good looks, Joseph earned his master trust and entered in favor with him. Nevertheless, after turning down the advances of the official's wife, he was accused of trying to rape her, which sent him to jail. But his staying there did not last too long due to his ability to interpret dreams and predict the future. He deciphered the Pharaoh's nightmares and also helped the Egyptian ruler to prepare for a future extreme drought, which brought Joseph the reward of being assigned as one the highest officials in Egypt.

After a period, Joseph's predictions came true and a dry spell hit Palestine, which determined his brothers and their family to travel to Egypt to stock up on food. After several encounters between Joseph and his clueless brothers, the former revealed his identity and they all rejoiced the reunion. The whole family immigrated to Egypt and lived happily a period. But a next article will reveal what interfered and changed everything around.