“Sisters, can we all be seated now? I am very excited to tell you our news. Please, be seated. Puah and I want to encourage you.” Shiphrah, the head of the midwives’ guild, spoke loudly over the voices of chattering women.
“Thank you. Puah will now tell you about our meeting with Pharaoh.”
“Thank you, Shiphrah. Your prayers truly carried us safely, sisters. God gave us the words to speak. He asked us why we had not obeyed his orders to kill all the male babies as they were born. We informed him that Hebrew women are different from Egyptians and that many times the babies have already been born when we arrive. There was fear and frustration in his eyes as he grumbled in anger and dismissed us. God spared us and blessed our households.” Puah bowed her head and sat down.
“What will Pharaoh do now?” a concerned voice asked.
“We have heard he has commanded his soldiers to drown all our male babies in the Nile river. If this is true, we must remain strong. Our job, as always, is to help the women give birth to children and encourage the whole family to pray and seek God. We should not fear death or Pharaoh. Our sons are with our Father in heaven and we will see them again.” Shiphrah always urged everyone to seek God, no matter how hard things seemed.
“Is there any hope for our deliverance?” questioned a sister near the back of the room.
“Oh, yes. Of course there is hope! That’s the other news we have to share,” replied Shiphrah. “I delivered a baby boy to a couple from the tribe of Levi three months ago. Her baby was so perfectly beautiful. I remember him well. She had him hidden for the past three months, but her fear finally became too great, and she decided she had to do something. Preparing an ark for him, she laid him in a basket and left him in the reeds along the bank of the river. Her daughter stayed behind to watch what would happen. A princess came to the river to bathe and saw the baby in the water. Her maidens brought him to her and as she examined him, he began to cry out. She realized he was a Hebrew baby, but showed compassion for him. At that moment his sister came out and offered to find a nurse for him from the Hebrew women. Sisters, God is truly working among us. The mother of the child was allowed to nurse and care for him till he is old enough to go to the palace! She even receives a wage for caring for her own child. The princess named the baby ‘Moses’ because she drew him out of the water.” She laughed and clasped her hands together.
“Yes, Moses means ‘He who draws out’. Moses! Yes. Could he be the one that will draw us out of slavery? Will God use this Moses some day to deliver us? There must be something special about him,” Puah proclaimed, as she stood to her feet, with Shiphrah.
“Yes!” cried the voices of other midwives. “Let him be the one!”
Shiphrah added, “He will be educated in Pharaoh’s house. He will know their ways. Pharaoh has no sons. He could be an heir to the throne! There is hope, sisters. There is hope.”
“Let’s go tell others,” declared many of the ladies.
“Oh, no! We must not! Give hope to our people. Care for them and pray. But, we must promise not to talk of this or he could be in danger. God will deliver us. He has promised. Seek His face, sisters.”
All agreed to pray and not to spread their theories of what God might do through Moses. With renewed hope, they returned to their work and encouraged their brethren to continue to seek God for deliverance from Egypt and Pharaoh’s hand.
* Based on Exodus 1:8 - 2:10, The names Shiphrah and Puah are mentioned in Exodus 1:15.