To Workers For Jesus Online Bible Study Table of Contents

About this Bible Study........The King James Version of the Bible is written in a beautiful form of the English language. It can be hard for modern English readers to understand.  In this study, you will find notes and summaries in brown just above the the verses from the Bible. We recommend that you read the notes and summaries first, and then read the verses in their KJV form. 

The book of Exodus was written by Moses.  The word "exodus" means to "go out" or "leave".  This book is about the Israelites leaving Egypt and going back to Canaan. Exodus begins about 350 after Joseph died.  The date that the Israelites leave Egypt is about  1445 B.C. (1, 445 years before Jesus Christ was born).

Exodus 16 - 18

God provides food and water for the Israelites
The Israelites fight the Amalekites.
Jethro gives Moses a good idea about dealing with problems.


Exodus 16

God gives the Israelites food

The Israelites left Elim and arrived in the wilderness (area with no cities or towns) of Sin. This was about 30 days after they left Egypt.
[1] And they took their journey from Elim, and all the congregation of the children of Israel came unto the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after their departing out of the land of Egypt.

The Israelites were complaining about Moses and Aaron. They wanted more food to eat. They said it would have been better to stay in Egypt because they had a lot of food in Egypt.
[2] And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness:
[3] And the children of Israel said unto them, Would to God we had died by the hand of the LORD in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the flesh pots, and when we did eat bread to the full; for ye have brought us forth into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger.


Artist unknown
From the
La Vista Church of Christ web site

The Lord God knew the Israelites were complaining.  He told Moses that He would give the Israelites bread everyday.  The bread would fall down from heaven. The Israelites were supposed to go out and pick up the bread everyday.
[4] Then said the LORD unto Moses, Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a certain rate every day, that I may prove them, whether they will walk in my law, or no.

God said that on the sixth day, they should pick up twice as much bread.

[5] And it shall come to pass, that on the sixth day they shall prepare that which they bring in; and it shall be twice as much as they gather daily.

Moses and Aaron said that when the Israelites saw the bread from heaven, they would remember how the Lord God brought them out of Egypt. They would see the glory of the Lord. That means they would be able to see God working. They would want to worship God. Moses said that God had heard the Israelites complaining.

[6] And Moses and Aaron said unto all the children of Israel, At even, then ye shall know that the LORD hath brought you out from the land of Egypt:
[7] And in the morning, then ye shall see the glory of the LORD; for that he heareth your murmurings against the LORD: and what are we, that ye murmur against us?

God would give them meat to eat in the evening and bread to eat in the morning. Moses said again that God heard the Israelites complaining. Moses told Aaron to bring the Israelites closer.

[8] And Moses said, This shall be, when the LORD shall give you in the evening flesh to eat, and in the morning bread to the full; for that the LORD heareth your murmurings which ye murmur against him: and what are we? your murmurings are not against us, but against the LORD.
[9] And Moses spake unto Aaron, Say unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, Come near before the LORD: for he hath heard your murmurings.

When Aaron was talking to the Israelites, they could see the glory of the Lord God in a cloud.

[10] And it came to pass, as Aaron spake unto the whole congregation of the children of Israel, that they looked toward the wilderness, and, behold, the glory of the LORD appeared in the cloud.

God talked to Moses. He said to tell the Israelites that He heard them complaining.  He said that in the evening they would have meat to eat, and in the morning, they would have bread to eat. They would see that He was the Lord God.
[11] And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
[12] I have heard the murmurings of the children of Israel: speak unto them, saying, At even ye shall eat flesh, and in the morning ye shall be filled with bread; and ye shall know that I am the LORD your God.

In the evening, there were quails (wild birds) to eat. In the morning, there was dew on the ground. When the dew dried, there was special bread on the ground.
[13] And it came to pass, that at even the quails came up, and covered the camp: and in the morning the dew lay round about the host.
[14] And when the dew that lay was gone up, behold, upon the face of the wilderness there lay a small round thing, as small as the hoar frost on the ground.

The special bread was called manna. Moses told the Israelites that God said they should pick it up.  They should measure what they picked up. Each person should have exactly an omer to eat. An omer was a little more than 2 quarts.

[15] And when the children of Israel saw it, they said one to another, It is manna: for they wist not what it was. And Moses said unto them, This is the bread which the LORD hath given you to eat.
[16] This is the thing which the LORD hath commanded, Gather of it every man according to his eating, an omer for every man, according to the number of your persons; take ye every man for them which are in his tents.

Each person was to eat all of his manna for the day. They should not leave any of it. 
[17] And the children of Israel did so, and gathered, some more, some less.
[18] And when they did mete it with an omer, he that gathered much had nothing over, and he that gathered little had no lack; they gathered every man according to his eating.
[19] And Moses said, Let no man leave of it till the morning.

The Israelites did not totally obey Moses. Some of the Israelites did not eat all of their manna. During the night, worms got in the manna, and it smelled bad. Moses was mad at them about this.

[20] Notwithstanding they hearkened not unto Moses; but some of them left of it until the morning, and it bred worms, and stank: and Moses was wroth with them.

Everyone gathered the manna in the morning. After the sun became hot, the manna melted.
[21] And they gathered it every morning, every man according to his eating: and when the sun waxed hot, it melted.

Every sixth day, they gathered 2 omers for each person. On that day, they were supposed to eat 1 omer and keep the 2nd omer for the seventh day, the sabbath. They were supposed to rest on the sabbath.  They were not to work to gather the manna on the sabbath.

[22] And it came to pass, that on the sixth day they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for one man: and all the rulers of the congregation came and told Moses.
[23] And he said unto them, This is that which the LORD hath said, To morrow is the rest of the holy sabbath unto the LORD: bake that which ye will bake to day, and seethe that ye will seethe; and that which remaineth over lay up for you to be kept until the morning.

In this situation, the manna did not have worms and smell bad during the night. That is because this was God's law for the sabbath day.
[24] And they laid it up till the morning, as Moses bade: and it did not stink, neither was there any worm therein.
[25] And Moses said, Eat that to day; for to day is a sabbath unto the LORD: to day ye shall not find it in the field.
[26] Six days ye shall gather it; but on the seventh day, which is the sabbath, in it there shall be none.

Some of the Israelites did not obey. On the sabbath, they were hungry and went out to look for manna on the ground. But there was none.

[27] And it came to pass, that there went out some of the people on the seventh day for to gather, and they found none.

The Lord was not happy about the Israelites who did not obey Him. He said again that they should rest on the sabbath. Then the Israelites obeyed Him.

[28] And the LORD said unto Moses, How long refuse ye to keep my commandments and my laws?
[29] See, for that the LORD hath given you the sabbath, therefore he giveth you on the sixth day the bread of two days; abide ye every man in his place, let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.
[30] So the people rested on the seventh day.

The manna was white, and it tasted like wafers (thin cookies) made with honey.
[31] And the house of Israel called the name thereof Manna: and it was like coriander seed, white; and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey.

The Lord told Moses to keep some manna for the future. People in the future would always be able to see how God gave the Israelites food.

[32] And Moses said, This is the thing which the LORD commandeth, Fill an omer of it to be kept for your generations; that they may see the bread wherewith I have fed you in the wilderness, when I brought you forth from the land of Egypt.
[33] And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a pot, and put an omer full of manna therein, and lay it up before the LORD, to be kept for your generations.

Aaron kept some manna for the future.  The Israelites ate manna for 40 years until they arrived in Canaan.
[34] As the LORD commanded Moses, so Aaron laid it up before the Testimony, to be kept.
[35] And the children of Israel did eat manna forty years, until they came to a land inhabited; they did eat manna, until they came unto the borders of the land of Canaan.
[36] Now an omer is the tenth part of an ephah.

Exodus 17

Moses gets water out of a rock

The Israelites continued to travel toward Canaan. They stopped at Rephidim. There was no water to drink there, and the Israelites started to complain again. 
[1] And all the congregation of the children of Israel journeyed from the wilderness of Sin, after their journeys, according to the commandment of the LORD, and pitched in Rephidim: and there was no water for the people to drink.

The Israelites complained to Moses, and he was getting upset with them. The Israelites said they should have stayed in Egypt because they had water to drink in Egypt.

[2] Wherefore the people did chide with Moses, and said, Give us water that we may drink. And Moses said unto them, Why chide ye with me? wherefore do ye tempt the LORD?
[3] And the people thirsted there for water; and the people murmured against Moses, and said, Wherefore is this that thou hast brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our cattle with thirst?

Moses prayed to God. He was very upset. He told God that the Israelites were ready to stone him (kill him by throwing rocks at him). God told Moses to get some of the elders (leaders) of Israel. God told him to take his rod with him.

[4] And Moses cried unto the LORD, saying, What shall I do unto this people? they be almost ready to stone me.
[5] And the LORD said unto Moses, Go on before the people, and take with thee of the elders of Israel; and thy rod, wherewith thou smotest the river, take in thine hand, and go.

"Moses bringeth water out of the Rock"
Figures de la Bible
Illustrated by Gerard Hoet, and others.
Published by P. de Hondt in The Hague (La Haye). 1728.

Image courtesy Bizzell Bible Collection, University of Oklahoma Libraries.

God told Moses to hit the rock with his rod. When Moses hit the rock, water came out of the rock.
[6] Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel.

Moses named this place Massah and Meribah. The names mean "testing" and "contending". 
[7] And he called the name of the place Massah, and Meribah, because of the chiding of the children of Israel, and because they tempted the LORD, saying, Is the LORD among us, or not?

A battle with the Amalekites

Amalek was Esau's grandson. His descendants were called the Amalekites.  The Amalekites fought with the Israelites at the place called Rephidim.
[8] Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim.

Joshua was a young man who helped Moses.  Moses told Joshua to get some other men and go fight the Amalekites. The Israelites were not good soldiers. They had never been in a war or fight before. But Moses said he would be standing on top of the hill to help.
[9] And Moses said unto Joshua, Choose us out men, and go out, fight with Amalek: to morrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in mine hand.



Joshua did what Moses told him to do.  Moses, Aaron, and another man named Hur went up on top of the hill where they could watch the fight. Moses had his rod in his hand (the same rod that God used to work the miracles in Egypt and in the Red Sea).  When Moses held his hand and the rod up, Israel was winning the fight.  When Moses moved his hand down, the Amalekites were winning the fight.

[10] So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and fought with Amalek: and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill.
[11] And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed.

"Aaron and Hur Help Moses During the Battle with Amalek"
From Treasures of the Bible (Moses)
Henry Davenport Northrop, D.D.
published by International Publishing Company, 1894

From the
La Vista Church of Christ web site

The fight was long, and Moses was getting tired. He was too tired to hold his arms up.  So Aaron and Hur helped him. Aaron held up one of Moses' arms, and Hur held up the other arm.
[12] But Moses' hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun.

Joshua and his army of Israelites defeated the Amalekites. The Lord told Moses to write down in a book about this battle. God said He would destroy the Amalekites.  Moses built an altar to God and named the altar Jehovah-nissi. This name means "The Lord is my banner."

[13] And Joshua discomfited Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.
[14] And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.
[15] And Moses built an altar, and called the name of it Jehovah-nissi:
[16] For he said, Because the LORD hath sworn that the LORD will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.

Exodus 18

Moses' father-in-law, Jethro, gives him some good advice

Jethro was the father of Moses' wife, Zipporah.  Jethro lived in Midian. Jethro heard about how the Lord took the Israelites out of Egypt.
[1] When Jethro, the priest of Midian, Moses' father in law, heard of all that God had done for Moses, and for Israel his people, and that the LORD had brought Israel out of Egypt;

Jethro took Zipporah and Moses' sons to meet him. 

[2] Then Jethro, Moses' father in law, took Zipporah, Moses' wife, after he had sent her back,

Moses' two sons were named Gershom and Eliezer. The name Gershom meant, "I have been a stranger in a strange place" (named when Moses was living in Midian). The name Eliezer meant, "God is my help".

[3] And her two sons; of which the name of the one was Gershom; for he said, I have been an alien in a strange land:
[4] And the name of the other was Eliezer; for the God of my father, said he, was mine help, and delivered me from the sword of Pharaoh:

Jethro, Zipporah, Gershom, and Eliezer met Moses in the wilderness. They were happy to see each other, and they all went into Moses' tent.

[5] And Jethro, Moses' father in law, came with his sons and his wife unto Moses into the wilderness, where he encamped at the mount of God:
[6] And he said unto Moses, I thy father in law Jethro am come unto thee, and thy wife, and her two sons with her.
[7] And Moses went out to meet his father in law, and did obeisance, and kissed him; and they asked each other of their welfare; and they came into the tent.

Moses told Jethro all about how God helped the Israelites leave Egypt. He told him about the miracles that God did. Jethro was happy about all that God had done.
[8] And Moses told his father in law all that the LORD had done unto Pharaoh and to the Egyptians for Israel's sake, and all the travail that had come upon them by the way, and how the LORD delivered them.
[9] And Jethro rejoiced for all the goodness which the LORD had done to Israel, whom he had delivered out of the hand of the Egyptians.

Jethro's people, the Midianites, did not believe in God.  But, Jethro could see that God was real and that He had helped the Israelites. Jethro praised God for what He did.
[10] And Jethro said, Blessed be the LORD, who hath delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of Pharaoh, who hath delivered the people from under the hand of the Egyptians.
[11] Now I know that the LORD is greater than all gods: for in the thing wherein they dealt proudly he was above them.

Jethro made a sacrifice to God to praise Him. Aaron and the elders of Israel came to eat dinner with Moses and Jethro.
[12] And Jethro, Moses' father in law, took a burnt offering and sacrifices for God: and Aaron came, and all the elders of Israel, to eat bread with Moses' father in law before God.

The next morning, Moses sat in front of the people and was the judge. People came there with their problems, and Moses decided who was right and who was wrong. Moses was the judge all day and into the evening.

[13] And it came to pass on the morrow, that Moses sat to judge the people: and the people stood by Moses from the morning unto the evening.

"Jethro and Moses" by J. James Tissot
Biblical Art on the WWW

Jethro watched all of this and asked Moses about it. Moses told him that he had to be the judge and teach people the law.
[14] And when Moses' father in law saw all that he did to the people, he said, What is this thing that thou doest to the people? why sittest thou thyself alone, and all the people stand by thee from morning unto even?
[15] And Moses said unto his father in law, Because the people come unto me to inquire of God:
[16] When they have a matter, they come unto me; and I judge between one and another, and I do make them know the statutes of God, and his laws.

Jethro said that Moses was doing a good thing by being the judge, but it was too much work for him. Jethro said it would make him too tired.
[17] And Moses' father in law said unto him, The thing that thou doest is not good.
[18] Thou wilt surely wear away, both thou, and this people that is with thee: for this thing is too heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone.

Jethro had some advice for Moses. He said that Moses should train other people to help him be the judge.  Moses should teach them the laws so that they could make smart and fair decisions. Each judge could be in charge of smaller groups of people. The judges could judge for the smaller problems. Then Moses could judge the big problems.

[19] Hearken now unto my voice, I will give thee counsel, and God shall be with thee: Be thou for the people to Godward, that thou mayest bring the causes unto God:
[20] And thou shalt teach them ordinances and laws, and shalt shew them the way wherein they must walk, and the work that they must do.
[21] Moreover thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them, to be rulers of thousands, and rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens:
[22] And let them judge the people at all seasons: and it shall be, that every great matter they shall bring unto thee, but every small matter they shall judge: so shall it be easier for thyself, and they shall bear the burden with thee.
[23] If thou shalt do this thing, and God command thee so, then thou shalt be able to endure, and all this people shall also go to their place in peace.

Moses thought this was good advice. He did what Jethro suggested. He chose good men to be judges over groups of people. Some were over groups of thousands, some over groups of hundreds, some over groups of fifties, and some over groups of tens.
[24] So Moses hearkened to the voice of his father in law, and did all that he had said.
[25] And Moses chose able men out of all Israel, and made them heads over the people, rulers of thousands, rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens.

The new plan worked well. The judges took care of the small problems. When there were big problems, they told Moses and he judged them.
[26] And they judged the people at all seasons: the hard causes they brought unto Moses, but every small matter they judged themselves.

Jethro left and went to his home in Midian.
[27] And Moses let his father in law depart; and he went his way into his own land

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