Fathers in the Bible: Moses, Father to the Israelite’s

Moses had two sons during his years of exile.  He married Zipporah, the daughter of Reuel or Jethro.  While there they had two sons:

Gershom—meaning a sojourner there

Eliezer—meaning help of my God

“After Moses had sent away his wife Zipporah, his father-in-law Jethro received her 3 and her two sons. One son was named Gershom,[a] for Moses said, “I have become a foreigner in a foreign land”; 4 and the other was named Eliezer, for he said, “My father’s God was my helper; he saved me from the sword of Pharaoh.”  {Exodus 18:2}

We discover in Exodus 18, Moses sent his wife and children away to his father-in-law.  This appears to be during the time he appeared before Pharoah and the Israelites crossed over the Red Sea.

“Moses told his father-in-law about everything the Lord had done to Pharaoh and the Egyptians for Israel’s sake and about all the hardships they had met along the way and how the Lord had saved them.”  {Exodus 18: 8}

People appeared before Moses to resolve their issues

However, Moses was a leader.  He served as a father figure to the Israelites, leading them out of slavery, approaching the Lord on their behalf, receiving the Ten Commandments, leading them in the wilderness and preparing them to enter the promised land.

Time after time, we read about the Israelites rebelling or questioning the Lord and Moses approaching the Lord on their behalf, often pleading for mercy.

Joshua and Caleb were two of Moses spies and warriors

Some scriptures reminding us of this are:

“All the Israelites did just what the Lord had commanded Moses and Aaron.”  {Exodus 12:50}

“And when the Israelites saw the mighty hand of the Lord displayed against the Egyptians, the people feared the Lord and put their trust in him and in Moses his servant.”  {Exodus 14:31}

“The next day Moses took his seat to serve as judge for the people, and they stood around him from morning till evening.”   {Exodus 18:13}

“Moses answered him, “Because the people come to me to seek God’s will. “   {Exodus 18:15}

“he commanded the Israelites to bring their offerings to the Lord”   {Leviticus 7:38}

“So Moses announced to the Israelites the appointed festivals of the Lord.”   {Leviticus 23:44}

“So Moses counted all the firstborn of the Israelites, as the Lord commanded him.”  {Numbers 3:42}

“The Israelites did so; they sent them outside the camp. They did just as the Lord had instructed Moses.”   {Numbers 5:4}

“From the Israelites’ half, Moses selected one out of every fifty people and animals, as the Lord commanded him, and gave them to the Levites, who were responsible for the care of the Lord’s tabernacle.”  {Numbers 31:47}

“Moses commanded the Israelites: “Assign this land by lot as an inheritance. The Lord has ordered that it be given to the nine and a half tribes.”  {Numbers 34:13}

“So Moses wrote down this song that day and taught it to the Israelites.”  {Deuteronomy 31:22}

Moses became a father to the Israelites, as well as their leader.

“His greatest honor, however, was the privilege of being known as “the friend of God.” What holy intimacy existed between God and this prophet so supernaturally guided and aided in his life and labors! “ {Matthew Henry Commentary}

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