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Bible Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
Exodus 4

 

 

Introduction
1Moses's rod is turned into a serpent.
6His hand is leprous.
10He is loath to be sent.
13Aaron is appointed to assist him.
18Moses departs from Jethro.
21God's message to Pharaoh.
24Zipporah circumcises her son.
27Aaron is sent to meet Moses.
29The people believe them.

Verse 1
And Moses answered and said, But, behold, they will not believe me, nor hearken unto my voice: for they will say, The LORD hath not appeared unto thee.
31; 2:14; 3:18; Jeremiah 1:6; Ezekiel 3:14; Acts 7:25

Verse 2
And the LORD said unto him, What is that in thine hand? And he said, A rod.
a rod
17,20; Genesis 30:37; Leviticus 27:32; Psalms 110:2; Isaiah 11:4; Micah 7:14

Verse 3
And he said, Cast it on the ground. And he cast it on the ground, and it became a serpent; and Moses fled from before it.
it became
17; 7:10-15; Amos 5:19

Verse 4
And the LORD said unto Moses, Put forth thine hand, and take it by the tail. And he put forth his hand, and caught it, and it became a rod in his hand:
put forth
Genesis 22:1,2; Psalms 91:13; Mark 16:18; Luke 10:19; Acts 28:3-6
And he put
John 2:5

Verse 5
That they may believe that the LORD God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath appeared unto thee.
That they
1; 3:18; 4:31; 19:9; 2 Chronicles 20:20; Isaiah 7:9; John 5:36; 11:15,42; 20:27,31
the Lord
3:15; Genesis 12:7; 17:1; 18:1; 26:2; 48:3; Jeremiah 31:3; Acts 7:2

Verse 6
And the LORD said furthermore unto him, Put now thine hand into thy bosom. And he put his hand into his bosom: and when he took it out, behold, his hand was leprous as snow.
leprous as snow
Numbers 12:10; 2 Kings 5:27

Verse 7
And he said, Put thine hand into thy bosom again. And he put his hand into his bosom again; and plucked it out of his bosom, and, behold, it was turned again as his other flesh.
it was turned
Numbers 12:13,14; Deuteronomy 32:39; 2 Kings 5:14; Matthew 8:3

Verse 8
And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe thee, neither hearken to the voice of the first sign, that they will believe the voice of the latter sign.
if they
30,31; Isaiah 28:10; John 12:37
that they
Deuteronomy 32:39; 2 Kings 5:7; Job 5:18

Verse 9
And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe also these two signs, neither hearken unto thy voice, that thou shalt take of the water of the river, and pour it upon the dry land: and the water which thou takest out of the river shall become blood upon the dry land.
the water
7:19
shall become
Heb. shall be, and shall be. blood.
1:22; 7:19-25; Matthew 7:2

Verse 10
And Moses said unto the LORD, O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant: but I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue.
eloquent
Heb. a man of words.
1; Job 12:2; 1 Corinthians 2:1-4; 2 Corinthians 10:10; 11:6
heretofore
Heb since yesterday, nor since the third day. slow of speech.
6:12; Jeremiah 1:6; Acts 7:22

Verse 11
And the LORD said unto him, Who hath made man's mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? have not I the LORD?
Genesis 18:14; Psalms 51:15; 94:9; 146:8; Isaiah 6:7; 35:5,6; 42:7; Jeremiah 1:6,9; Ezekiel 3:26,27; 33:22; Amos 3:6

Verse 12
Now therefore go, and I will be with thy mouth, and teach thee what thou shalt say.
Psalms 25:4,5; 32:9; 143:10; Isaiah 49:2; 50:4; Jeremiah 1:9; Matthew 10:19,20; Mark 13:11; Luke 11:1; 12:11,12; 21:14,15; John 14:26; Ephesians 6:19

Verse 13
And he said, O my Lord, send, I pray thee, by the hand of him whom thou wilt send.
send
1; 23:20; Genesis 24:7; 48:16; Judges 2:1; 1 Kings 19:4; Jeremiah 1:6; 20:9; Ezekiel 3:14,15; Jonah 1:3,6; Matthew 13:41; John 6:29
wilt send
or, shouldest.

Verse 14
And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Moses, and he said, Is not Aaron the Levite thy brother? I know that he can speak well. And also, behold, he cometh forth to meet thee: and when he seeth thee, he will be glad in his heart.
anger
2 Samuel 6:7; 1 Kings 11:9; 1 Chronicles 21:7; Luke 9:59,60; Acts 15:28; Philippians 2:21
cometh
17; 1 Samuel 10:1-7; Mark 14:13-15; 2 Corinthians 2:13; 7:6,7; 1 Thessalonians 3:6,7

Verse 15
And thou shalt speak unto him, and put words in his mouth: and I will be with thy mouth, and with his mouth, and will teach you what ye shall do.
and put
7:1,2; 2 Samuel 14:3; Isaiah 51:16; 59:21
and I
Numbers 22:38; 23:5,12,16; Deuteronomy 18:18; Isaiah 51:16; Jeremiah 1:9; Matthew 28:20; Luke 21:15; 1 Corinthians 11:23; 15:1
will teach
Deuteronomy 5:31

Verse 16
And he shall be thy spokesman unto the people: and he shall be, even he shall be to thee instead of a mouth, and thou shalt be to him instead of God.
7:1,2; 18:19; Psalms 82:6; John 10:34,35

Verse 17
And thou shalt take this rod in thine hand, wherewith thou shalt do signs.
2; 7:9,19; 1 Corinthians 1:27

Verse 18
And Moses went and returned to Jethro his father in law, and said unto him, Let me go, I pray thee, and return unto my brethren which are in Egypt, and see whether they be yet alive. And Jethro said to Moses, Go in peace.
Jethro
Heb. Jether.
3:1
Let me go
1 Timothy 6:1
and see
Genesis 45:3; Acts 15:36
Go in peace
1 Samuel 1:17; Luke 7:50; Acts 16:36; In the LXX. and Coptic, the following addition is made to this verse: [Meta de tas Lemeras tas pollas ekeinas eteleutésen ho basileus Aigyptou] "After these many days, the king of Egypt died." This was probably an ancient side-note, which crept into the text, as it appeared to throw light on the next verse.

Verse 19
And the LORD said unto Moses in Midian, Go, return into Egypt: for all the men are dead which sought thy life.
Midian
A country in Arabia Petræa, on the eastern coast of the Red Sea, near Mount Sinai. This place is still called by the Arabs the Land of Midian, or of Jethro. Abulfeda, speaking of Midian, says, "Madyan is a city, in ruins, on the shore of the Red Sea, on the opposite side to Tabuc, from which it is distant about six days' journey. At Midian may be seen the famous well at which Moses watered the flocks of Shoâib, (Jethro.) This city was the capital of the tribe of Midian in the days of the Israelites."
for all
2:15,23; Matthew 2:20

Verse 20
And Moses took his wife and his sons, and set them upon an ass, and he returned to the land of Egypt: and Moses took the rod of God in his hand.
the rod of God
2,17; 17:9; Numbers 20:8,9

Verse 21
And the LORD said unto Moses, When thou goest to return into Egypt, see that thou do all those wonders before Pharaoh, which I have put in thine hand: but I will harden his heart, that he shall not let the people go.
wonders
3:20
I will harden
7:3,13; 9:12,35; 10:1,20; 14:8; Genesis 6:3; Deuteronomy 2:30-33,36; Joshua 11:20; 1 Kings 22:22; Psalms 105:25; Isaiah 6:10; 63:17; John 12:40; Romans 1:28; 9:18; Romans 11:8-10; 2 Corinthians 2:16; 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12; 1 Peter 2:8

Verse 22
And thou shalt say unto Pharaoh, Thus saith the LORD, Israel is my son, even my firstborn:
Israel
19:5,6; Deuteronomy 14:1; Jeremiah 31:9; Hosea 11:1; Romans 9:4; 2 Corinthians 6:18; Hebrews 12:23; James 1:18

Verse 23
And I say unto thee, Let my son go, that he may serve me: and if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy firstborn.
11:5; 12:29; Psalms 78:51; 105:36; 135:8

Verse 24
And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the LORD met him, and sought to kill him.
the inn
Genesis 42:27; The account in this and the two following verses, although rather obscure, seems to imply, that on their way to the land of Egypt, an angel appeared to Moses, and sought to kill his son, on account of his father's non-observance of the Lord's positive command to Abraham, that every man child of the Jewish nation, or born in his house in servitude, should be circumcised on the eighth day; and the Zipporah, at the command of Moses, immediately fulfilled the injunction, and thus averted the wrath of God, denounced against the disobedient: "The uncircumcised man child, whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from his people."; Genesis 17:14
the Lord
3:18; Numbers 22:22,23; 1 Chronicles 21:16; Hosea 13:8
sought
Genesis 17:14; Leviticus 10:3; 1 Kings 13:24

Verse 25
Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me.
a sharp stone
or, knife.
Joshua 5:2,3
cast it
Heb made it touch. a bloody.
2 Samuel 16:7

Verse 27
And the LORD said to Aaron, Go into the wilderness to meet Moses. And he went, and met him in the mount of God, and kissed him.
Go into
14-16; Ecclesiastes 4:9; Acts 10:5,6,20
the mount
3:1; 19:3; 20:18; 24:15-17; 1 Kings 19:8
kissed him
Genesis 29:11

Verse 28
And Moses told Aaron all the words of the LORD who had sent him, and all the signs which he had commanded him.
told Aaron
8,9,15,16; Jonah 3:2; Matthew 21:29
and all

Verse 29
And Moses and Aaron went and gathered together all the elders of the children of Israel:
3:16; 24:1,11

Verse 30
And Aaron spake all the words which the LORD had spoken unto Moses, and did the signs in the sight of the people.
And Aaron
did the

Verse 31
And the people believed: and when they heard that the LORD had visited the children of Israel, and that he had looked upon their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshipped.
believed
8,9; 3:18; Psalms 106:12,13; Luke 8:13
visited
3:16; Luke 1:68
looked
2:25; 3:7
bowed
12:27; Genesis 17:3; 24:26; 1 Chronicles 29:20; 2 Chronicles 20:18

 


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Bibliography Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Exodus 4:4". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/exodus-4.html.

Lectionary Calendar
Wednesday, October 16th, 2019
the Week of Proper 23 / Ordinary 28
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