The Book of Exodus comprises a story that continues from Genesis. While Genesis was the beginning of all things and Israel, Exodus is the outworking of God’s promise to Abraham—namely the promise to bless all nations through his descendants. In Exodus, Moses, the books author, is born and leads the Israelites out of Egypt. There is much more to the story.
Jacob’s sons, the sons of Israel, settle in Egypt and become a prosperous nation within Egypt. Despite all the he did for Egypt, Joseph is forgotten, and a Pharaoh comes to power who did not know the good things he did for the land. Many terrible and unjust crimes have been perpetrated because of fear, and this Pharaoh fears the alien nation growing within his borders. So, he enslaves the Hebrew nation. It will not be the last time in human history that a people group is enslaved and forced to work in labor camps or under taskmasters for the profit of someone else. The new Pharaoh fears an uprising such that he even decrees live-birth abortions of all the male infants who are born. When the Hebrew midwives do not obey his decree, he instructs Egyptians, all his people, to snatch baby Hebrew males and throw them into the Nile River. The girls are to be kept alive for Egypt’s labor force.
In Moses’s generation and following, therefore, there are many women and few men in Israel. The Hebrew people are oppressed beyond what I can imagine. A holocaust of newborn children are being murdered. It’s not only Egyptian soldiers, bur ever person in Egypt, who has been commanded to murder Hebrew children by feeding them to the Crocodiles in the Nile. Egypt was a place of hope for Israel’s children. It has become a place of darkness, oppression, and injustice.