5 occurrences in 5 dictionaries

Reference: Exodus


Going out, the name of the second book of Moses and of the Bible; so called because it narrates the departure of the Israelites from Egypt. It comprises a period of about one hundred and forty-five years, from the death of Joseph to the erection of the tabernacle in the desert. The various topics of the book may be thus presented: (1.) The oppression of the Israelites, under the change of dynasty which sprung up after the death of Joseph: "There arose up another king, who knew not Joseph," Ex 1:8. The reference many believe is to the invasion of Egypt by the Hyksos, who are spoken of in secular history as having invaded Egypt probably about this period, and who held it in subjection for many years. The are termed shepherd-kings, and represented as coming from the east. (2.) The youth, education, patriotism, and flight of Moses, Ex 2-6. (3.) The commission of Moses, the perversity of Pharaoh, and the infliction of the ten plagues in succession, Ex 7-11. (4.) The institution of the Passover, the sudden departure of the Israelites, the passage of the Red Sea, and the thanksgiving of Moses and the people on the opposite shore, after the destruction of Pharaoh and his host, Ex 12-15. (5.) The narration of various miracles wrought in behalf of the people during their journeyings towards Sinai, Ex 15-17. (6.) The promulgation of the law on mount Sinai. This includes the preparation of the people by Moses, and the promulgation, first of the moral law, then of the judicial law, and subsequently of the ceremonial law, including the instructions for the erection of the tabernacle and the completion of that house of God, Ex 19-40.

The scope of the book is not only to preserve the memorial of the departure of the Israelites from Egypt, but to present to view the church of God in her afflictions and triumphs; to point out the providential care of God over her, and the judgments inflicted on her enemies. It clearly shows the accomplishment of the divine promises and prophecies delivered to Abraham: that his posterity would be numerous, Ge 15:5; 17:4-6; 46:27; Nu 1:1-3,46; and that they should be afflicted in a land not their own, whence they should depart in the fourth generation with great substance,

Ge 15:13-16; Ex 12:40-41. Their exodus in many particulars well illustrates the state of Christ's church in the wilderness of this world, until her arrival in the heavenly Canaan. See 1Co 10; Heb 1-13. The book of Exodus brings before us many and singular types of Christ: Moses, De 18:15; Aaron, Heb 4:14-16; the paschal lamb, Ex 12:46; Joh 19:36; 1Co 5:7-8; the manna, Ex 1-40; 16:15; 1Co 10:3; the rock in Horeb, Ex 17:6; 1Co 10:4; the mercy seat, Ex 37:6; Ro 3:25; Heb 4:16; the tabernacle, Ex 40, "The Word tabernacled among us," Joh 1:14.

This departure from Egypt, and the subsequent wanderings of the children of Israel in the desert, form one of the great epochs in their history. They were constantly led by Jehovah, and the whole series of events is a constant succession of miracles. From their breaking up at Rameses, to their arrival on the confines of the promised land, there was an interval of forty years, during which one whole generation passed away, and the whole Mosaic law was given, and sanctioned by the thunders and lightnings of Sinai. There is no portion of history extant which so displays the interposition of an overruling Providence in the affairs both of nations and of individuals, as that which recounts these wanderings of Israel.

The four hundred and thirty years referred to in Ex 12:40, date, according to the received chronology, from the time when the promise was made to Abraham, Ge 15:13. From the arrival of Jacob in Egypt to the exodus of his posterity, was about two hundred and thirty years. The threescore and fifteen souls had now become 600,000, besides children. They took with them great numbers of cattle, and much Egyptian spoil. It was only by the mighty hand of God that their deliverance was effected; and there seems to have been a special vindication of his glory in the fact that the Nile, the flies, the frogs, fishes, cattle, etc., which were made the means or the subjects of the plagues of Egypt, were there regarded with idolatrous veneration.

After the tenth and decisive plague had been sent, the Israelites were dismissed from Egypt in haste. They are supposed to have been assembled at Rameses, or Heroopolis, in the land of Goshen, about thirty-five miles northwest of Suez, on the ancient canal, which united the Nile with the Red Sea. They set off on the fifteenth day of the first month, the day after the Passover, that is, about the middle of April. Their course was southeast as far as Etham; but then, instead of keeping on directly to Sinai, they turned to the south, Ex 14:2, on the west side of the Red Sea, which they reached three days after starting, probably near Suez. Here, by means of a strong east wind, God miraculously divided the waters of the sea in such a way that the Israelites passed over the bed of it on dry ground; while the Egyptians, who attempted to follow them, were drowned by the returning waters. The arm of the sea at Suez is now only three or four miles wide, and at low water may be forded. It is known to have been formerly wider and deeper; but the drifting sands of ages have greatly filled and altered. The miracle here wrought was an amazing one, and revealed the hand of God more signally than any of the ten plagues had done. According to the Bible, God caused a "strong east wind" to blow; the deep waters were sundered, and "gathered together;" "the floods stood upright as a heap;" "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." These effects continued all night till the morning watch, and without obstructing the progress of the Hebrews; whereas in the morning the pursuing Egyptians were covered by the sea, and "sank like lead in the mighty waters." These were wonders towards the effecting of which any wind must have been as insufficient as Naaman's mere washing in Jordan would have been to the healing of his leprosy. It should here be stated also, that some geographers think this miracle took place below Mount Atakah, ten or twelve miles south of Suez, where the sea is about twelve miles wide. This opinion is liable to several objections, though it cannot be proved to be false. At this late day the precise locality may be undiscoverable, like the point of a soul's transition from the bondage of Satan into the kingdom of God; but in both cases the work is of God, and the glory of it is his alone.

Having offered thanksgiving to God for their wonderful deliverance, the Israelites advanced along the eastern shore of the Red Sea and through the valleys and desert to Mount Sinai. This part of their route may be readily traced, and Marah, Elim, and the desert of Sin have been with much probability identified. They arrived at Mount Sinai in the third month, or June, probably about the middle of it, having been two months on their journey. Here the law was given, and here they abode during all the transactions recorded in Ex 21:1-Nu 9:23, that is, until the twentieth day of the second month (May) in the following year, a period of about eleven months.

Breaking up at this time from Sinai, they marched northwards through the desert of Paran, or perhaps along the eastern arm of the Red Sea and north through El-Arabah, to Kadesh-barnea, near the southeast border of Canaan. Rephidim near Mount Sinai, and Taberah, Kibroth-hattaaveh, and Hazerorh, on their journey north, were the scenes of incidents, which may be found, described under their several heads. From Kadesh-barnea, spies were sent out to view the promised land, and brought back an evil report, probably in August of the same year. The people murmured, and were directed by Jehovah to turn back and wander in the desert, until the carcasses of that generation should all fall in the wilderness, Nu 14:25. This they did, wandering from one station to another in the great desert of Paran, lying south of Palestine, and also in the great sandy valley called El-Ghor and chiefly El-Arab

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the great deliverance wrought for the children of Isreal when they were brought out of the land of Egypt with "a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm" (Ex 12:51; De 26:8; Ps 114; 136), about B.C. 1490, and four hundred and eighty years (1Ki 6:1) before the building of Solomon's temple.

The time of their sojourning in Egypt was, according to Ex 12:40, the space of four hundred and thirty years. In the LXX., the words are, "The sojourning of the children of Israel which they sojourned in Egypt and in the land of Canaan was four hundred and thirty years;" and the Samaritan version reads, "The sojourning of the children of Israel and of their fathers which they sojourned in the land of Canaan and in the land of Egypt was four hundred and thirty years." In Ge 15:13-16, the period is prophetically given (in round numbers) as four hundred years. This passage is quoted by Stephen in his defence before the council (Ac 7:6).

The chronology of the "sojourning" is variously estimated. Those who adopt the longer term reckon thus:

| Years


| From the descent of Jacob into Egypt to the

| death of Joseph 71


| From the death of Joseph to the birth of

| Moses 278


| From the birth of Moses to his flight into

| Midian 40


| From the flight of Moses to his return into

| Egypt 40


| From the return of Moses to the Exodus 1


| 430

Others contend for the shorter period of two hundred and fifteen years, holding that the period of four hundred and thirty years comprehends the years from the entrance of Abraham into Canaan (see LXX. and Samaritan) to the descent of Jacob into Egypt. They reckon thus:

| Years


| From Abraham's arrival in Canaan to Isaac's

| birth 25


| From Isaac's birth to that of his twin sons

| Esau and Jacob 60


| From Jacob's birth to the going down into

| Egypt 130


| (215)


| From Jacob's going down into Egypt to the

| death of Joseph 71


| From death of Joseph to the birth of Moses 64


| From birth of Moses to the Exodus 80


| In all... 430

Illustration: Journeying of the Israelites from Egypt to Canaan

During the forty years of Moses' sojourn in the land of Midian, the Hebrews in Egypt were being gradually prepared for the great national crisis which was approaching. The plagues that successively fell upon the land loosened the bonds by which Pharaoh held them in slavery, and at length he was eager that they should depart. But the Hebrews must now also be ready to go. They were poor; for generations they had laboured for the Egyptians without wages. They asked gifts from their neighbours around them (Ex 12:35), and these were readily bestowed. And then, as the first step towards their independent national organization, they observed the feast of the Passover, which was now instituted as a perpetual memorial. The blood of the paschal lamb was duly sprinkled on the door-posts and lintels of all their houses, and they were all within, waiting the next movement in the working out of God's plan. At length the last stroke fell on the land of Egypt. "It came to pass, that at midnight Jehovah smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt." Pharaoh rose up in the night, and called for Moses and Aaron by night, and said, "Rise up, and get you forth from among my people, both ye and the children of Israel; and go, serve Jehovah, as ye have said. Also take your flocks and your herds, as ye have said, and be gone; and bless me also." Thus was Pharaoh (q.v.) completely humbled and broken down. These words he spoke to Moses and Aaron "seem to gleam through the tears of the humbled king, as he lamented his son snatched from him by so sudden a death, and tremble with a sense of the helplessness which his proud soul at last felt when the avenging hand of God had visited even his palace."

The terror-stricken Egyptians now urged the instant departure of the Hebrews. In the midst of the Passover feast, before the dawn of the 15th day of the month Abib (our April nearly), which was to be to them henceforth the beginning of the year, as it was the commencement of a new epoch in their history, every family, with all that appertained to it, was ready for the march, which instantly began under the leadership of the heads of tribes with their various sub-divisions. They moved onward, increasing as they went forward from all the districts of Goshen, over the whole of which they were scattered, to the common centre. Three or four days perhaps elapsed before the whole body of the people were assembled at Rameses, and ready to set out under their leader Moses (Ex 12:37; Nu 33:3). This city was at that time the residence of the Egyptian court, and here the interviews between Moses and Pharaoh had taken place.

From Rameses they journeyed to Succoth (Ex 12:37), identified with Tel-el-Maskhuta, about 12 miles west of Ismailia. (See Pithom.) Their third station was Etham (q.v.), Ex 13:20, "in the edge of the wilderness," and was probably a little to the west of the modern town of Ismailia, on the Suez Canal. Here they were commanded "to turn and encamp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea", i.e., to change their route from east to due south. The Lord now assumed the direction of their march in the pillar of cloud by day and of fire by night. They were then led along the west shore of the Red Sea till they came to an extensive camping-ground "before Pi-hahiroth," about 40 miles from Etham. This distance from Etham may have taken three days to traverse, for the number of camping-places by no means indicates the number of days spent on the journey: e.g., it took fully a month to travel from Rameses to the wilderness of Sin (Ex 16:1), yet reference is made to only six camping-places during all that time. The exact spot of their encampment before they crossed the Red Sea cannot be determined. It was probably somewhere near the present site of Suez.

Under the direction of God the children of Israel went "forward" from the camp "before Pi-hahiroth," and the sea opened a pathway for them, so that they crossed to the farther shore in safety. The Egyptian host pursued after them, and, attempting to follow through the sea, were overwhelmed in its returning waters, and thus the whole military force of the Egyptians perished. They "sank as lead in the mighty waters" (Ex 15:1-9; comp. Ps 77:16-19).

Having reached the eastern shore of the sea, perhaps a little way to the north of 'Ayun Musa ("the springs of Moses"), there they encamped and rested probably for a day. Here Miriam and the other women sang the triumphal song recorded in Ex 15:1-21.

From 'Ayun Musa they went on for three days through a part of the barren "wilderness of Shur" (22), called also the "wilderness of Etham" (Nu 33:8; comp. Ex 13:20), without finding water. On the last of these days they came to Marah (q.v.), where the "bitter" water was by a miracle made drinkable.

Their next camping-place was Elim (q.v.), where were twelve springs of water and a grove of "threescore and ten" palm trees (Ex 15:27).

After a time the children of Israel "took their journey from Elim," and encamped by the Red Sea (Nu 33:10), and thence removed to the "wilderness of Sin" (to be distinguished from the wilderness of Zin, Ex 20:1), where they again encamped. Here, probably the modern el-Markha, the supply of bread they had brought with them out of Egypt failed. They began to "murmur" for want of bread. God "heard their murmurings" and gave them quails and manna, "bread from heaven" (Ex 16:4-36). Moses directed that an om

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The book relates the history of Israel from the death of Joseph to the erection of the Tabernacle in the second year of the Exodus. In its present form, however, it is a harmony of three separate accounts.

1. The narrative of Priestly Narrative. which can be most surely distinguished, is given first.

Beginning with a list of the sons of Israel (Ex 1:1-5), it briefly relates the oppression (Ex 1:7,13 f., Ex 2:23-25), and describes the call of Moses, which takes place in Egypt, the revelation of the name Jahweh, and the appointment of Aaron (Ex 6:1 to Ex 7:13). The plagues (Ex 7:10,20 a, Ex 7:21 b, Ex 7:22; 8:5-7,15-19; 9:8-12; 11:9 f.), which are wrought by Aaron, forma trial of strength with Pharaoh's magicians. The last plague introduces directions for the Passover, the feast of unleavened bread, the sanctification of the firstborn; and the annual Passover (Ex 12:1-20,28,40-51; 13:1 f.). Hence emphasis is laid, not on the blood-sprinkling, but on the eating, which was the perpetual feature.

The route to the Red Sea (which gives occasion to a statement about the length of the sojourn. Ex 12:40 f.) is represented as deliberately chosen in order that Israel and Egypt may witness Jahweh's power over Pharaoh (Ex 12:37; 13:20; 14:1-4). When Moses stretches out his hand, the waters are miraculously divided and restored (Ex 14:8 f, Ex 14:15 a, Ex 14:16-18,21-22 f., Ex 14:26-27 a, Ex 14:28 a, Ex 15:19).

Between the Red Sea and Sinai the names of some halting places are given (Ex 16:1-3; 17:1 a, Ex 19:2 a). Ch. 16 is also largely (Ex 16:6-13 a, Ex 16:16-24,31-36) from Priestly Narrative. But the mention of the Tabernacle in Ex 16:34 proves the story to belong to a later date than the stay at Sinai, since the Tabernacle was not in existence before Sinai. Probably the narrative has been brought into its present position by the editor.

On the arrival at Sinai, Jahweh's glory appears in a fiery cloud on the mountain. As no priests have been consecrated, and the people must not draw near, Moses ascends alone to receive the tables of the testimony (Ex 24:15-18 a) written by Jahweh on both sides. He remains (probably for 40 days) to receive plans for a sanctuary, with Jahweh's promise to meet with Israel (in the Tent of Meeting) and to dwell with Israel (in the Tabernacle) (Ex 25:1 to Ex 31:18 a, Ex 32:15). He returns (Ex 34:29-35), deposits the testimony in an ark he has caused to be prepared, and constructs the Tabernacle (Ex 34:35). The differing order in the plans as ordered and as executed, and the condition of the text in the Septuagint, prove that these sections underwent alterations before reaching their present form.

This account was evidently written for men who were otherwise acquainted with the leading facts of the history. It is dominated by two leading interests: (1) to insist in its own way that everything which makes Israel a nation is due to Jahweh, so that the religion and the history are interwoven; (2) to give a history of the origins, especially of the ecclesiastical institutions, of Israel.

2. The narrative of Jewish Encyclopedia.

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(that is, going out [of Egypt]), the second book of the law or Pentateuch. Its author was Moses. It was written probably during the forty-years wanderings int he wilderness, between B.C. 1491 and 1451. It may be divided into two principal parts:

1. Historical, chs.

Ex 1:1-18; 27:1

... and

2. Legislative, chs.

Ex 19:25; 38:1

1. The first part contains an account of the following particulars: the great increase of Jacob's posterity in the land of Egypt, and their oppression under a new dynasty, which occupied the throne after the death of Joseph; the birth, education, flight and return of Moses; the ineffectual attempts to prevail upon Pharaoh to let the Israelites go; the successive signs and wonders, ending in the death of the first-born, by means of which the deliverance of Israel from the land of bondage is at length accomplished, and the institution of the Passover; finally the departure out of Egypt and the arrival of the Israelites at Mount Sinai.

2. This part gives a sketch of the early history of Israel as a nation; and the history has three clearly-marked stages. First we see a nation enslaved; next a nation redeemed; lastly a nation set apart, and through the blending of its religious and political life consecrated to the service of God.

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EXODUS, from ??, out, and ????, a way, the name of the second book of Moses, and is so called in the Greek version because it relates to the departure of the Israelites out of Egypt. It comprehends the history of about a hundred and forty-five years; and the principal events contained in it are, the bondage of the Israelites in Egypt, and their miraculous deliverance by the hand of Moses; their entrance into the wilderness of Sinai; the promulgation of the law, and the building of the tabernacle. See PENTATEUCH.