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Exodus, The Book of

RELATED: Aaron, Moses, Mount Sinai, Passover, Ten Commandments, Wandering
READ: American Standard Version, King James Version, New American Standard Bible
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Easton's Bible Dictionary

Exodus is the name given in the LXX. to the second book of the Pentateuch (q.v.). It means "departure" or "outgoing." This name was adopted in the Latin translation, and thence passed into other languages. The Hebrews called it by the first words, according to their custom, Ve-eleh shemoth (i.e., "and these are the names").

It contains,

(1) An account of the increase and growth of the Israelites in Egypt (Exodus ch. 1)

(2) Preparations for their departure out of Egypt ( Exodus 2 - 12:36 ).

(3) Their journeyings from Egypt to Sinai ( Exodus 12:37 - 19:2 ).

(4) The giving of the law and the establishment of the institutions by which the organization of the people was completed, the theocracy, "a kingdom of priest and an holy nation" ( Exodus 19:3 - ch. 40 ).

The time comprised in this book, from the death of Joseph to the erection of the tabernacle in the wilderness, is about one hundred and forty-five years, on the supposition that the four hundred and thirty years ( Exodus 12:40 ) are to be computed from the time of the promises made to Abraham ( Galatians 3:17 ).

The authorship of this book, as well as of that of the other books of the Pentateuch, is to be ascribed to Moses. The unanimous voice of tradition and all internal evidences abundantly support this opinion.


Hitchcock's Dictionary of Bible Names

(no entry)


Smith's Bible Dictionary

(that is, going out [of Egypt])

The second book of the law or Pentateuch. Its author was Moses. It was written probably during the forty-years wanderings in the wilderness, between B.C. 1491 and 1451. It may be divided into two principal parts: Historical, chs. ( Exodus 1:1 - 18 ; 27:1 ) ... and Legislative, chs. ( Exodus 19:40 ; 38:1 )

The first part contains an account of the following particulars: the great increase of Jacobs posterity in the land of Egypt, and their oppression under a new dynasty, which occupied the throne after the death of Joseph; the birth, education, flight and return of Moses; the ineffectual attempts to prevail upon Pharaoh to let the Israelites go; the successive signs and wonders, ending in the death of the first-born, by means of which the deliverance of Israel from the land of bondage is at length accomplished, and the institution of the Passover; finally the departure out of Egypt and the arrival of the Israelites at Mount Sinai.

This part gives a sketch of the early history of Israel as a nation; and the history has three clearly-marked stages. First we see a nation enslaved; next a nation redeemed; lastly a nation set apart, and through the blending of its religious and political life consecrated to the service of God.


International Standard Bible Encyclopedia



1. Name:

The second book of the Pentateuch bears in the Septuagint the name of Exodos, in the Vulgate (Jerome's Latin Bible, 390-405 AD.) accordingly Exodus, on the basis of the chief contents of the first half, dealing with the departure of the children of Israel out of Egypt. The Jews named the book after the first words: we-'elleh shemoth ("and these are the names"), or sometimes after the first noun shemoth ("names") a designation already known to Origen in the form of Oualesmoth.

2. Contents in General:

In seven parts, after the Introduction (Exodus 1:1-7), which furnishes the connection of the contents with Genesis, the book treats of

(1) the sufferings of Israel in Egypt, for which mere human help is insufficient (Exodus 1:8-7:7), while Divine help through human mediatorship is promised;

(2) the power of Yahweh, which, after a preparatory miracle, is glorified through the ten plagues inflicted on Pharaoh and which thus forces the exodus (Exodus 7:8-13:16);

(3) the love of Yahweh for Israel, which exhibits itself in a most brilliant manner, in the guidance of the Israelites to Mt. Sinai, even when the people murmur (Exodus 13:17-18:27);

(4) making the Covenant at Mt. Sinai together with the revelation of the Ten Words (Exodus 20:1) and of the legal ordinances (Exodus 21:1) as the condition of making the Covenant (Exodus 19:1-24:18);

(5) the directions for the building of the Tabernacle, in which Yahweh is to dwell in the midst of His people (Exodus 24:18-31:18);

(6) the renewal of the Covenant on the basis of new demands after Israel's great apostasy in the worship of the Golden Calf, which seemed for the time being to make doubtful the realization of the promises mentioned in (5) above (Exodus 32:1-35:3);

(7) the building and erection of the Tabernacle of Revelation (or Tent of Meeting) and its dedication by the entrance of Yahweh (Exodus 35:4-40:38).

As clearly as these seven parts are separated from one another, so clearly again are they most closely connected and constitute a certain progressive whole.

In the case of the last four, the separation is almost self-evident. The first three as separate parts are justified by the ten plagues standing between them, which naturally belong together and cause a division between that which precedes and that which follows. Thus in the first part we already find predicted the hardening of the heart of Pharaoh, the miracles of Yahweh and the demonstrations of His power down to the slaying of the firstborn, found in the 2nd part (compare Exodus 2:23-7:7).

In part 3, the infatuation of Pharaoh and the demonstration of the power of Yahweh are further unfolded in the narrative of the catastrophe in the Red Sea (Exodus 14:4,17). Further the directions given with reference to the Tabernacle (Exodus 25:31 taken from P) presuppose the Decalogue (from E); compare eg. Exodus 25:16,21; 31:18; as again the 6th section (Exodus 32) presupposes the 5th part, which had promised the continuous presence of God (compare Exodus 32:34 J; 33:3,5,7 JE; 33:12,14-17 J; 34:9 J, with 25:8; 29:45 f P; compare also the forty days in 34:28 J with those in 24:18 P) as in 34:1,28 J and 34:11-27 J refers back to the 4th part, namely, 20:1 E; 21:1 E; 24:7 JE (Decalogue; Books of the Covenant; Making the Covenant). In the same way the last section presupposes the third, since the cloud in Exodus 40:34 P is regarded as something well known (compare 13:21 f JE; 14:19 E and J, 14:24 J) . The entire contents of the Book of Exodus are summarized in an excellent way in the word of God to Israel spoken through Moses concerning the making of the covenant: Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles' wings, and brought you unto myself.

Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be mine own possession from among all peoples: for all the earth is mine: and ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation (Exodus 19:4-6). Here reference is made to the powerful deeds of God done to the Egyptians, to His deeds of lovingkindness done to Israel in the history of how He led them to Sinai, to the selection of Israel, and to the conditions attached to the making of the covenant, to God's love, which condescended to meet the people, and to His holiness, which demands the observance of His commandments; but there is also pointed out here the punishment for their transgression. The whole book is built on one word in the preface to the ten commandments: I am Yahweh thy God, who brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage (Exodus 20:2 E; compare 29:45 f P).

3. Connection with the Other Books of the Pentateuch:

The events which are described in the Book of Exodus show a certain contrast to those in Genesis. In the first eleven chapters of this latter book we have the history of mankind; then beginning with 11:27, a history of families, those of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. In Exodus we have following this the beginning of the history of the chosen people. Then there is also a long period of time intervening between the two books. If Israel was 430 years in Egypt (compare 12:40 f P; also Genesis 15:13 J; see III, 4 below), and if the oppression began during the long reign of the predecessors of the Pharaoh, during whose reign Israel left the country (Exodus 2:23; 1:8), then, too, several centuries must have elapsed between the real beginning of the book (x 1:8), and the conclusion of Genesis. Notwithstanding these differences, there yet exists the closest connection between the two books. Exodus 1:1-7 connects the history of the people as found in Exodus with the family history of Genesis, by narrating how the seventy descendants of Jacob that had migrated to Egypt (compare Exodus 1:5; Genesis 46:27) had come to be the people of Israel, and that God, who offers Himself as a liberator to Moses and the people, is also the God of those fathers, of whom Genesis spoke (compare Exodus 3:6 JE; 3:13 E; 3:15 f R; 4:5 J; 6:3 P). Indeed, His covenant with the fathers and His promises to them are the reasons why He at all cares for Israel (Exodus 2:24 JE), and when Moses intercedes for the sinful people, his most effective motive over against God is found in the promises made to the patriarchs (Exodus 32:13 JE).

As is the case with Genesis, Exodus stands in the closest connection also with the succeeding books of the Pentateuch. Israel is certainly not to remain at Sinai, but is to come into the promised land (3:17 JE; 6:8 P; 23:20 JE; 32:34 J; 33:1 JE; 33:12 J; 34:9 J and D; compare also the many ordinances of the Books of the Covenant, 21:1 E; 34:11 D and J). In this way the narratives of the following books, which begin again in Numbers 10:11 P and JE with the story of the departure from Sinai, continue the history in Exodus. But the legislation in Leviticus also is a necessary continuation and supplement of the Book of Exodus, and is prepared for and pointed to in the latter. The erection of the burnt-offering altar (27:1; 38:1), as well as the mention made of the different kinds of sacrifices, such as the burnt sacrifices and the sin offering (29:18,14) and of the heave offering (29:28), point to the promulgation of a law of sacrifices such as we find in Leviticus 1-7. The directions given in regard to the consecration of the priests (Exodus 29) are carried out in Leviticus 8 f. The indefinite commands of Exodus 30:10 in reference to the atonement on the horn of the incense altar once every year renders necessary the special ritual of the Day of Atonement in Leviticus 16 as its supplement. The more complete enlargement in reference to the shewbread mentioned in Exodus 25:30 is found in Leviticus 24:5-9; and even the repetitions in references to the candlesticks (Exodus 25:31; Leviticus 24:1-4; Numbers 8:1-4), as also the tamidh ("continuous") sacrifices (compare Numbers 28:3-8 with Exodus 29:38-42), point to a certain connection between Exodus and the following books. How close the connection between Deuteronomy and Exodus is, both in regard to the historical narratives and also to their legal portions (compare the Decalogue and the Books of the Covenant), can only be mentioned at this place.

4. Significance of These Events for Israel:

When we remember the importance which the exodus out of Egypt and the making of the covenant had for the people of Israel, and that these events signalized the birth of the chosen people and the establishment of theocracy, then we shall understand why the echo of the events recorded in Exodus is found throughout later literature, namely, in the historical books, in the preaching of the prophets and in the Psalms, as the greatest events in the history of the people, and at the same time as the promising type of future and greater deliverances. But as in the beginning of the family history the importance of this family for the whole earth is clearly announced (Genesis 12:1-3), the same is the case here too at the beginning of the history of the nation, perhaps already in the expression "kingdom of priests" (Exodus 19:6), since the idea of a priesthood includes that of the transmission of salvation to others; and certainly in the conception `first-born son of Yahweh' (Exodus 4:22), since this presupposes other nations as children born later.

The passages quoted above are already links connecting this book with Christianity, in the ideas of a general priesthood, of election and of sonship of God. We here make mention of a few specially significant features from among the mass of such relationships to Christianity.

5. Connecting Links for Christianity:

How great a significance the Decalogue, in which the law is not so intimately connected with what is specifically Jewish and national, as eg. in the injunctions of the Priest Codex, according to the interpretation of Christ in Matthew 5, has attained in the history of mankind! But in Matthew 5:17 Jesus has vindicated for the law in all its parts an everlasting authority and significance and has emphasized the eternal kernel, which accordingly is to be assigned to each of these legal behests; while Paul, on the other hand, especially in Romans, Galatians and Colossians, emphasizes the transitory character of the law, and discusses in detail the relation of the Mosaic period to that of the patriarchs and of the works of the law to faith, while in 2 Corinthians 3 he lauds the glory of the service in the spirit over that of the letter (compare Exodus 34)--an idea which in reference to the individual legal institutions is also carried out in the Ep. to the Hebrews. Compare on this subject also the articles \LEVITICUS\ and \DAY OF ATONEMENT\. Then too the Passover lamb was a type of Jesus Christ (compare eg. 1 Corinthians 5:7; John 19:36; 1 Peter 1:19). In Exodus 12 the Passover rite and the establishment of the covenant (24:3-8) arc found most closely connected also with the Lord's Supper and the establishment of the New Covenant.

In the permanent dwelling of God in the midst of His people in the pillar of fire and in the Tabernacle there is typified His dwelling among mankind in Christ Jesus (John 1:14) and also the indwelling of the Holy Ghost in the Christian congregation (1 Peter 2:5; Ephesians 4:12) and in the individual Christian (1 Corinthians 3:16; 6:19; 2 Corinthians 6:16; John 14:23). The Apocalypse particularly is rich in thought suggested by the exodus out of Egypt. Unique thoughts in reference to the Old Testament are found in the conceptions that the law was given through angels (Acts 7:53; Galatians 3:19; Hebrews 2:2); further that the rock mentioned in Exodus 17:6 followed, and was Christ (1 Corinthians 10:4); and that in Hebrews 9:4 the real connection of the altar of incense with the Holy of Holies appears as changed into a local connection (Exodus 40:26,27), while the idea found in Hebrews 9:4 that the manna was originally in the Ark of the Covenant, is perhaps not altogether excluded by Exodus 16:33; and the number 430 years, found in Galatians 3:17, probably agrees with Exodus 12:40,41, in so far as the whole of the patriarchal period could be regarded as a unit (compare on the reading of the Septuagint in Exodus 12:40,41, III, 4 below).


In the following section (a) serves for the understanding of the Biblical text; (b) is devoted to the discussion and criticism of the separation into sources.

1. In General:

(a) The conviction must have been awakened already by the general account of the contents given in I, 2 above, that in the Book of Exodus we are dealing with a rounded-off structure, since in seven mutually separated yet intimately connected sections, one uniform fundamental thought is progressively carried through. This conviction will only be confirmed when the details of these sections are studied, the sections being themselves again organically connected by one leading thought. Since, in addition, the Book of Genesis is clearly divided into ten parts by the ten toledhoth ("generations") (compare also the division made by typical numbers in articles \LEVITICUS\ and \DAY OF ATONEMENT\), thus too the number seven, as itself dividing the Book of Exodus into seven parts, is probably not accidental; and this all the less, as in the subordinate parts too, a division is to be found according to typical numbers, this in many cases appearing as a matter of course, and in other cases traced without difficulty, and sometimes lying on the surface (compare 10 plagues, 10 commandments). Yet in all of the following investigations, as is the case in the articles \GENESIS\, \LEVITICUS\ and \DAY OF ATONEMENT\, the demonstration of the fundamental thought must be the main thing for us. The division according to typical numbers is to be regarded merely as an additional confirmation of the literary unity of the book. We refer here first of all to a number of cases, where certain numbers independently of the separate chief parts combine the Biblical text into a unity. In Numbers 14:22 R, Yahweh states that Israel had now tempted Him and been disobedient to Him ten times: compare Exodus 14:11 JE(?) (Red Sea); 15:23 f JE (Marah); 16:2 , 3 P ; 16:20 JE ; 16:27 , 28 R (Manna); 17:1 JE (Massah and Meribah); 32:1 JE (Golden Calf); Numbers 11:1 JE (Tuberah); 11:4 JE (Graves of Lust); 14:2 P and JE (Spies). Most of these cases are accordingly reported in the Book of Exodus, but in such manner that in this particular a clearly marked progress can be noticed, as Yahweh does not begin to punish until Exodus 32; but from here on He does so with constantly increasing severity, while down to Exodus 32 grace alone prevails, and in this particular, previous to Exodus 32, there is found nothing but a warning (16:27). Ten times it is further stated of Pharaoh, in a great variety of forms of expression, that he hardened his own heart (7:13 P ; 7:14 JE ; 7:22 P ; 8:15 P ; 8:32 JE ; 9:7 , 34,35 JE; 13:15 D); ten times the hardening is ascribed to God (4:21 JE ; 7:3 P ; 9:12 P ; 10:1 R ; 10:20 JE ; 10:27 E ; 11:10 R; 14:4 , 8 P ; 17 P ?). Here already we must note that within the narrative of the miracles and the plagues at first there is mention made only of the hardening by Pharaoh himself (7:13 P ; 7:14 JE ; 7:22 P ; 8:11 ; 8:15 P ; 8:28 JE ; 9:7 JE , i.e. seven times) before a single word is said that God begins the hardening; and this latter kind of hardening thereupon alone concludes the whole tragedy (14:4,8 P; 17 P?). Ten months cover the time from the arrival at Sinai (19:1 P) to the erection of the sacred dwelling-place of God (40:17 P). Since, further, exactly three months of this time are employed in 19:10 , 16 JE ; 24:3 JE ; 24:16 P (ten days); 24:18 P (40 days); 34:28 J (40 days), there remain for the building of the tabernacle exactly seven months.

(b) What has been said does anything but speak in favor of the customary division of Exodus into different sources. It is generally accepted that the three sources found in Genesis are also to be found in this book; in addition to which a fourth source is found in Exodus 13:3-16, of a Deuteronomistic character. It is true and is acknowledged that the advocates of this hypothesis have more difficulties to overcome in Exodus than in Genesis, in which latter book too, however, there are insufficient grounds for accepting this view, as is shown in the article GENESIS. Beginning with Exodus 6 the chief marks of such a separation of sources falls away as far as P and J are concerned, namely, the different uses of the names of God, Elohim and Yahweh. For, according to the protagonists of the documentary theory, P also makes use of the name Yahweh from this chapter on; E, too, does the same from Exodus 3:13 on, only that, for a reason not understood, occasionally the word Elohim is still used by this source later on, e.g. 13:17; 18:1. But as a number of passages using the name Elohim are unhesitatingly ascribed by the critics to J, this difference in the use of the name of God utterly fails to establish a difference of sources. To this is to be added, that J and E are at this place closely interwoven; that, while the attempt is constantly being made to separate these two sources, no generally accepted results have been reached and many openly acknowledge the impossibility of such a separation, or admit that it can be effected only to a very limited extent. Peculiarities which are regarded as characteristic of the different sources, such as the sin of Aaron in J, the staff of Moses in E, Sinai in J and the Priestly Code (P), Horeb in E, the dwelling of the Israelites in Goshen in J, but according to E their living in the midst of the Egyptians, and others, come to nought in view of the uniform text in the passages considered. This has been proved most clearly, e.g. by Eerdmans in his Alttestamentliche Studien, III ("Das Buck Exodus") in regard to many of these passages. Narratives of a similar character, like the two stories in which Moses is described as striking the rock to produce water (Exodus 17:1; Numbers 20:1), are not duplicates, but are different events. Compare the different localities in Exodus 17:7 and Numbers 20:1, as also the improbability that Israel would without cause in the first passage have put into permanent form the story of its shame, and then in the latter there would have been an uncertainty as to the importance of this locality for the career of Moses; and finally, we must notice the distinction expressly made by the additional statement, "waters of Meribah of Kadesh in the wilderness of Zin," in Numbers 27:12 - 14; Deuteronomy 32:51 (compare Ezekiel 47:19 ; 48:28). Then, too, these occurrences, if we accept the division into J and E at this place, are not reduced to a single event, since both sources would share in both narratives. The same condition of affairs is found in Exodus 16 in so far as JE comes into consideration, and in Exodus 18 in comparison with Numbers 11. In the case of Numbers 11 there is express reference made to a former narrative by the word "again" and in the second case all the details in their differences point to different occurrences. Concerning other so-called duplicates in Ex, see later in this article. But the acceptance of P in contradistinction to the text of JE does also not lead to tangible results, notwithstanding that there exists a general agreement with regard to the portions credited to P. Not taking into consideration certain that are peculiar, the following sections are attributed to this source: Exodus 1:1 - 7 ,13 - 15 ; 2:23 ; 25 ; 6:2 - 7:13 ; 6:28 - 30 ; Exodus 7:19 , 20 , 21 , 22 ; 8:1-3,11-15; 9:8-12; 12:1-20,28,37,40-50; 13:1-2,20; Exodus 14:1 - 4 , 8 - 10 , 15 - 18 , 21 , 22 - 23 , 19 ; 16:1 - 3 , 1 - 14 , 15 - 18 , 21 - 26 , 31 - 32 , 34 ,35 ; Exodus 17:1 ; 19:1 , 2 ; 24:15 - 31:17 ; 34:29 - 40:38. It is claimed that in the Book of Genesis these sources constitute the backbone of the whole work; but this is not claimed for Ex. The sections ascribed to P constitute in this place, too, anything but an unbroken story. In both language and substance they are, to a certain extent, most closely connected with the parts ascribed to JE, and in part they are indispensable for the connection whence they have been taken (compare for details below). It is absolutely impossible to separate on purely philological grounds in the purely narrative portions in Exodus the portions belonging to P. That genealogies like Exodus 6:14, or chronological notices like 12:40 , 41 , 51 ; 16:1 ; 19:1 , or directions for the cults like Exodus 12 ; 25 have their own peculiar forms, is justified by self-evident reasons; but this does not justify the acceptance of separate authors. It is the result of the peculiar matter found in each case. We must yet note that the passages attributed to P would in part contain views which could not be harmonized with theological ideas ascribed to this source, which are said to include an extreme transcendental conception of God; thus in 16:10 the majesty of Yahweh suddenly appears to the congregation, and in 40:34 this majesty takes possession of the newly erected dwelling. In 8:19 mention is made of the finger of God, and in 7:1 Moses is to be as God to Pharaoh. In Exodus 12:12 the existence of the Egyptian gods is presupposed and the heathen sorcerers are able to act in competition with Moses and Aaron for a while; 7:11 , 12 , 22 ; 8:3. P also describes the Passover, which on account of the handling of the blood in 12:7 cannot be regarded in any other light than as a sacrifice in the house, and in Numbers 9:7,13, this act is expressly called a qorban Yahweh (`sacrifice of Yahweh'). Compare also the commands in Exodus 12:10 , 43 , 18. But more than anything else, what has been said under (a) above goes to show that all these sources have been united in a way that characterizes the work of a systematic writer, and declares against any view that would maintain that these sources have been mechanically placed side by side and interwoven into each other. What has here been outlined for the whole book in general must now be applied to the different parts in particular.

2. In the Separate Pericopes:

(1) Exodus 1:8 - 7:7:

(a) Everything that is narrated in this section, which in so worthy a manner introduces the whole book, is written from a standpoint of the Egyptian oppression, from which human help could give no deliverance, but from which the mighty power of Yahweh, working through human agency, offered this deliverance. It is a situation which demands faith (4:31). This section naturally falls into ten pericopes, of which in each instance two are still more closely connected. Numbers 1 and 2 (1:8- 14,15-22), namely, the oppression through forced labor and the threat to take the life of the newly born males of the Israelites; and in contrast to this, the Divine blessing in the increase of the people in general and of the midwives in particular; numbers 3 and 4 (Exodus 2:1-10,11-22), namely, the birth and youth of Moses stand in contrast. The child seems to be doomed, but God provides for its deliverance. Moses, when grown to manhood, tries to render vigorous assistance to his people through his own strength, but he is compelled to flee into a far-off country. Numbers 5 and 6 (Exodus 2:23-4:17; 4:18-31) report the fact that also in the reign of a new Pharaoh the oppression does not cease, and that this causes God to interfere, which in Exodus 2:23-25 is expressed in strong terms and repeatedly, and this again leads to the revelation in the burning bush (3:1). And at the same time the narrative shows how little self-confidence Moses still had (three signs, a heavy tongue, direct refusal). The sixth pericope and also the beginning of the last four, describe, from an external viewpoint, the return of Moses to Midian, and his journey from there to Egypt. Here, too, mention is made of the troubles caused by Pharaoh, which God must remove through His power. This deliverance is not at all deserved by Israel, since not even any son in a family had up to this time been circumcised. On the other hand, everything here is what can be expected. Those who sought the life of Moses had died; the meeting with Aaron at the Mount of the Lord; in Egypt the faith of the people. In an effective way the conclusion (4:31) returns to the point where the two companion narratives (2:24 f) begin. After this point, constituting the center and the chief point in the introductory section, numbers 7 and 8 (Exodus 5:1-6:1; 6:2-12), everything seems to have become doubtful. Pharaoh refuses to receive Moses and Aaron; the oppression increases; dissatisfaction in Israel appears; Moses despairs; even the new revelations of God, with fair emphasis on fidelity to the Covenant which is to unfold Yahweh's name in full, are not able to overcome the lack of courage on the part of the people and of Moses. Numbers 9 and 10, introduced by Exodus 6:13 (6:14-27 and 6:28-7:7), show that after Moses and Aaron have already been mentioned together in 4:14,27; 5:1, and after it has become clear how little they are able of themselves to accomplish anything, they are now here, as it were, for the first time, before the curtain is raised, introduced as those who in the following drama are to be the mediators of God's will (compare the concluding verses of both pericopes, 6:27; 7:7), and they receive directions for their common mission, just at that moment when, humanly speaking, everything is as unfavorable as possible.

(b) The unity of thought here demonstrated is in this case too the protecting wall against the flood-tide of the documentary theory. For this theory involves many difficulties. In Exodus 1:13 f there would be an account of the oppression by the Priestly Code (P), but the motive for this can be found only in the preceding verses, which are ascribed to JE; 2:24 speaks of the Covenant of God With Isaac, concerning which P is said to have reported nothing in the Book of Gen, as in the latter book a reference to this matter is found only in Genesis 26:2-5 R; 26:24 J. In Exodus 6:2 Moses and Aaron are mentioned; but as the text of P reads we know absolutely nothing from this source as to who these men are. According to 7:1 Aaron is to be the speaker for Moses before Pharaoh. But according to P neither Moses nor Aaron speaks a single word. The omissions that are found by critics in documents J and E--which, if they are separated, have lines of demarcation claimed for the separation that are very unsettled--we here pass over in silence.

On the critical theory, the narratives of the Priestly Code (P), in the Book of Ex, as also in Gen, would have discarded many of the stereotyped formulas characteristic of this source (compare Exodus 2:23; 6:2; 7:1), and in both form and contents would be made very similar to the rest of the text Exodus 1:9,10,12 JE; 1:20 E; 7:1 P; and to a great extent expressions similar to these are here found and in part refer to these. The same must be said concerning 3:7 JE in its relation to 2:23 P; 6:6 (sibhloth) P in its relation to 1:11 JE; 2:11 E; 5:4,5 JE (in contrast 1:13,14; 2:23). JE, in 4:9 for "dry land," makes use of the term ha-yabbashah, which in Genesis 1:9 f and Exodus 14:16 is ascribed to the Priestly Code (P), and a different expression is used for this thought by J in Genesis 7:22. In reference to Exodus 7:1 P compare 4:14 E (?). In reference to the hardening of Pharaoh, which is found in all the sources (7:3 P), see above under 1a; in reference to the miracles, and their purpose of making Yahweh known to the Egyptians (7:3-5 P) see the following paragraph. The four generations mentioned in 7:14 P find their parallel in Genesis 15:16 J (compare 46:8); and the sons of Aaron mentioned in Exodus 6:23 the Priestly Code (P), Nadab and Abihu, are mentioned also in the text of 24:1,9, ascribed to JE although, except in Leviticus 10 the Priestly Code (P), their names are not found elsewhere in the Pentateuch. In reference to the repetitions, it must be said that Exodus 1:13 P is either the continuation (in so far as the Israelites instead of being compulsory laborers became slaves), or is a concluding summary, such as is found frequently. The new revelation of God in Exodus 6 the Priestly Code (P), according to chapter 3 JE, finds its psychological and historical motive in the account of the failure described in 5:1 JE, and in the discouragement of the Israelites and of Moses resulting therefrom. In the same way the renewed mention by Moses of his difficulties of speech (6:12 P; compare with 4:10 J and E (?)) is very characteristic of human ways, and this again necessitates the twice repeated consideration of this matter by God (6:30 R; 4:10 J and E (?); concerning the names of God, see GENESIS; GOD, NAMES OF).

One difficulty, which is also not made clear by the proposed division of sources, is found in the name of the father-in-law of Moses; since according to Exodus 2:18 J, this name is Reuel, and according to 3:1; 18:1 JE, it is Jethro (4:18 E in the form "Jether"); in Numbers 10:29 JE is called Hobab and a son of Reuel (the King James Version "Raguel") for all of these passages are ascribed to J or E. It is probable that the name Jethro is a title ("Excellency"); and as for the rest, in Numbers 10:29 chothen probably does not mean father-in-law but brother-in-law (Judges 1:16; 4:11); or in Exodus 2:18 we find father and in 2:21 daughter in the place of grandfather and granddaughter; otherwise we should be compelled to accept different traditions, by which view, however, the Mosaic authorship of Exodus would be made impossible (compare IV, below).

(2) Exodus 7:8 - 13:16:

(a) This section is separated as a matter of course from the rest by the typical number of ten plagues. It is introduced by the transformation of the rod into a serpent in the presence of Pharaoh (7:8-13). To explain the fact that there were ten plagues on the ground of the accidental combination of sources, is from the very outset a precarious undertaking. To this must be added the following reasons that indicate a literary editing of the material. All of the plagues are introduced by the same formula (7:12 JE; 8:1 J; 8:12 P; 8:16 JE; 8:20 JE; 9:1 JE; 9:8 P; 9:13 JE; 10:1,12 JE; 10:21 E; 11:1 E), and in connection with each plague the hardening of the heart of Pharaoh is mentioned (compare (1a) above); compare 7:22 P; 8:11 J; 8:15 P; 8:28 JE; 9:7 JE; 9:12 P; 9:34 JE; 9:35 JE; 10:1 R; 10:20 JE; 10:27 E; 11:10 R; 13:15 D. As is the case in the first section, we find here too in each instance two plagues more closely connected, namely, numbers 1 and 2 already externally united by the double address of Yahweh (compare 7:14 JE; 7:19 P and 7:26 J; 8:1 P), but also by the methods of punishment that are related to each other (water changed to blood and frogs); and, finally, by the extension of the plague (the Nile and beyond the river). In 3 and 4 we have to deal with insects (stinging flies and dung flies); in 5 and 6 with a kind of pest (pest among cattle, and boils); 7 and 8 are again formally joined by the repeated command of Yahweh to Moses in 9:13,12 JE and 10:1,12 JE, as also by the fullness of the account the two show and their similarity, in both also use being made of the staff (9:23 f JE; 10:13 f JE), in the repetition of the emphasis put on the remarkable character of the plague (9:18,24; 10:6,14 JE). By both plagues vegetation is destroyed; and in the plague of locusts special reference is made also to the hail (compare 10:5,12,15). In the case of 9 and 10, the darkness constitutes a connecting link (compare 10:21 E; 11:4 J; 12:12 P; 12:30,31 JE). By the side of the occasional rhythm formed of two members there is also one formed of three members (after the manner of a triole in a measure of two beats). In the case of each group of three plagues, two are announced beforehand (thus 1 JEP and 2 JP; 4 JE and 5 JE; 7 JE and 8 JE; 10 EJ over against 3 the Priestly Code (P), 6 P and 9 E); the first of each group of three plagues, as 1, 4 and 7, is to be announced by Moses on the following morning to Pharaoh (7:15; 8:20; 9:13 JE). Also in regard to the impression caused by the plagues a distinct progress can be noticed, in this too, that the Egyptian sorcerers are active only down to the third plague. Naturally, too, over against these facts, further peculiarities can be pointed out in the separate plagues, e.g. the fact that Goshen, or rather that Israel, is spared in the 4th, 5th, 7th through 10th plagues (8:22; 9:6,26 JE; 10:23 E; 11:7 J); and in the mention made of the intercession in the 2nd, 4th, 7th, 8th (8:8 J; 8:12; 9:28,33; 10:17 f JE) without thereby destroying the artistic construction of the whole that has been described above, or that in each such case of individuality of presenting the matter there is to be found a reason for claiming a separate source.

(b) In the same way, too, it is not a permissible conclusion, that in the first miracle and in the first three plagues mention is made of the fact that Aaron performed this miracle with his staff (Exodus 7:8,19; 8:5-20 P). At any rate, in the parts ascribed to the Priestly Code (P), no absolute uniformity is to be found, since plagues 1 to 3 are commanded to Moses, while the 6th is commanded to Moses and Aaron (Exodus 7:19; 8:1,20 over against Exodus 9:8); and since, further, in the 6th plague (Exodus 9:8) it is Moses, and in the 10th (Exodus 12:12) it is God Himself who really carries out the command, and not Aaron, as was the case in the introductory miracles and in the first three plagues. Further, according to JE (Exodus 4:30), it appears that the presupposition is that we are to consider all of the addresses and actions in general as taking place through Aaron, even in those cases where this is not especially mentioned.

Only the 1st plague (Exodus 7:14) furnishes an apparent reason for the acceptance of two sources. In this case mention is made at times of the waters of the Nile only, and then of all other waters being changed into blood; and a separation from this point of view at least could be carried through. But this possibility disappears at once in the case of the 2nd plague (frogs), where the passage Exodus 8:1-3, ascribed to the Priestly Code (P), which verses contain the consummation of the plague announced in 7:26-29 J (Hebrew), is altogether necessary for this connection; as otherwise the impression made upon Pharaoh by this plague, which is not mentioned in P at all, would be a torso. The similarity in the construction of the 2nd and the 1st plague, however (compare under (a) above), and the same difference in the mention made of the Nile and of the other waters in the 2nd plague, make it possible and even advisable in the case of the first plague, too, to discard the hypothesis of a difference in sources, because in the 2nd plague this difference cannot be carried out. Then, too, there would be other omissions found in P. According to the customary separation of sources, P would not contain the fulfillment of the threatened tenth plague announced in 12:12 at all. In the same way the statement in 12:28 refers to the carrying out of a command, the announcement of which to Israel in 12:21 would be found in another source. Further in 12:37a we would have the Priestly Code (P), as when the parts belonging to P have been eliminated, the other sources too would contain omissions in 12:21, mostly JE; 12:37b E; 13:3 D. In the same way the announcement of a large number of miracles (7:3 P; 11:9 R) is too comprehensive, if these verses refer only to the narratives found in P. In addition, there is a remarkable similarity found in all of the narratives of P with those parts which are ascribed to JE; compare the first miracle in 7:8 with 4:2 J; 4:17 E. In the Priestly Code (P), too, as is the case with JE, it is stated that the purpose of the miracle is, that Pharaoh, or the Egyptians, or Israel, are to recognize that Yahweh is God and the Lord of the earth, or something to this effect (7:5 P; 7:17 JE; 8:10 R; 8:22; 9:14,29,30 JE; 10:2 R; 11:7 J; compare from the next section, 14:4 P; 14:18 the Priestly Code (P), which at the same time is also the fundamental thought that forms the connecting link of the whole section). The position of Exodus 11:1-3 E between 10:28,29 E and 11:8 J constitutes a difficulty, because in the last-mentioned passages Moses is represented as standing continuously before Pharaoh. The announcement made by Yahweh to Moses, that one more plague is to come, and that the Israelites should borrow articles of value from the Egyptians, must in reality have been made before, but for good reasons it is mentioned for the first time at this place, in order to explain the confident utterance of Moses, that he would not again appear before Pharaoh (10:29). But the fact that according to 12:31 JE Pharaoh does in reality once more cause Moses and Aaron to be called, can readily be explained on the ground of the events that happened in the meantime.

The structure of Exodus 12 f contains nothing that could not have been written by one and the same author. Only Moses naturally did not at once communicate (12:21) to the leading men of Israel the command given in 12:15 concerning the unleavened bread, which command had been given for later generations; and not until 13:3 is this command mentioned in connection with the order given to the people in the meantime concerning the firstborn (13:1 f) . The further fact, that the story of the exodus reaches a preliminary conclusion in 12:42 before the details of the Passover (verses 3) have been given, is in itself justifiable. As far as contents are concerned, everything in chapters 12, namely, the exodus, the festival of unleavened bread, the firstborn, and orders pertaining thereto, that the month of the exodus is to be regarded as the first month, etc., are closely connected with the Passover and the 10th plague. Because the latter had to be described more fully than the other plagues, we find already in 11:9,10, after the announcement of this plague and its results, a comprehensive notice concerning all the miracles through which Yahweh demonstrated how He, amid great manifestations of power (7:4 P) and with a mighty hand (6:1 JE), has led His people forth.

(3) Exodus 13:17 - 18:27:

(a) This section finds its connecting thought in the emphasis placed on the love of Yahweh, on His readiness to help, and His long-suffering in the leading of His at times murmuring people on the road to and as far as Sinai. This section covers two months. What is narrated, beginning with Exodus 16:1, transpires even within a single two weeks (compare Exodus 19:1). Number 1 (Exodus 13:17-22), describes the journey to Etham (out of love God does not lead the people the direct way, since He fears that they will become unfaithful in the event of a battle; Joseph's bones are taken along, since God now really is taking care of His people (compare Genesis 50:24,26); Yahweh's friendly presence is shown in the pillar of fire). Number 2 (Exodus 14:1-31) contains the passage through the Red Sea (Yahweh the helper; compare Exodus 14:10,15,13,14,30,21,24,26,31, notwithstanding the murmuring of Israel, 14:11 f). Number 3 (Exodus 15:1) contains the thanksgiving hymn of Moses for Yahweh's help, with which fact each one of the four strophes begins (Exodus 15:1,6,11,16 b). Number 4 (Exodus 15:20) contains Miriam's responsorium. Number 5 (Exodus 15:22-27) treats of Marah and Elim (Yahweh proves Himself to be Israel's helper and physician (Exodus 15:25) notwithstanding the murmuring of Israel (Exodus 15:24)). Number 6 introduces the last five pericopes, with a designation of the time (Exodus 16:1-36), and describes the miraculous feeding with manna and quails. (The murmuring is particularly emphasized in Exodus 16:2,7-9,12. Israel also gathers more than they have been directed to do (Exodus 16:16); reserves some for the following day (Exodus 16:19); collects some on the Sabbath (Exodus 16:27); Yahweh, who in Exodus 16:6-12 alone is mentioned in rapid succession no fewer than ten times, at first does not even utter a word of reproach, and when the Sabbath has been violated He does nothing more than reprove.) Number 7 (Exodus 17:1-7) reports the help of Yahweh (Exodus 17:4) at the Waters of Contention (Strife). He even appears on the rock (Exodus 17:6), notwithstanding the murmuring (Exodus 17:2-4,7). Number 8 (Exodus 17:8-16) describes the victory over the Amalekites, which furnished the occasion for the erection of the memorial altar, called `Yahweh-my- Banner.' Possibly in this connection Joshua ("Yahweh helps") was changed from Hosea (Numbers 13:16). Compare Hengstenberg, Authenthic. des Pentateuches, II, 395 f. Number 9 (Exodus 18:1-12) shows in a constantly changing variety of expressions that emphasis is laid on the impression which the deeds of God in connection with Israel make on Jethro, the father-in-law of Moses, while he was visiting the latter (Exodus 18:1,8-12). Effective in this connection is also the mention made of the symbolical names of the sons of Moses (Gershom, "I have been a sojourner in a foreign land"; and Eliezer, "The God of my father was my help, and delivered me from the sword of Pharaoh" (Exodus 18:3)). Further, the name Mount of God (Exodus 18:5; compare Exodus 18:12) probably is a reminder of the fulfillment of Exodus 3:12. Number 10 (Exodus 18:13-17) shows how God helps Moses (compare Exodus 18:19) through the advice of Jethro to appoint judges. In this part, too, Exodus 13:17-18:27, we have ten sections, which can easily be arranged in groups of two and two. Thus numbers 1 and 2 are connected by their analogous beginnings (13:17,18 RE; 14:1,2 P) and by the cloud of fire (13:21 f JE; 14:19,24 J); numbers 3 and 4 by the responsive hymn; numbers 5 and 6, which already by the feeling of hunger and thirst are connected in thought, by their reference to the ordinances of Yahweh (15:25 D; 16:4 JE ?; 16:28 R); numbers 7 and 8 by the use made of Moses' staff (17:5,9 JE); numbers 9 and 10 by Jethro's person, and the close connection of their contents in point of time (18:13). Further, the Biblical text of this place is clearly presupposed in the list of stations, expressly stated to have been prepared at the command of Moses (Numbers 33). This list, as is acknowledged on all sides, has the characteristics of P; and it takes into consideration not only the portions ascribed to this source, but also the text of JE. Compare Numbers 33:9 (Marah and Elim) with Exodus 15:22-27, and Numbers 33:14 (lack of water in Rephidim) with Exodus 17:1.

(b) Over against the analysis into different sources the following data in detail can also be advanced. In P the last demonstration of the power of Yahweh over Pharaoh would be indeed endangered in Exodus 14:4,15,21a, but afterward would not be related. In Exodus 16:1 we cannot find in the Priestly Code (P), unless we bring in also 15:27 from JE, how Israel came to be in Elim. On the other hand, in 16:4 (JE?) the promise of bread from heaven is groundless without the preceding verses, which are attributed to P; and without 17:1 the Priestly Code (P), we do not know to what the word "there" in 17:3 belonging to JE refers, and how in 17:8 JE the Israelites had come to Rephidim. How entirely data taken from the language utterly fail here in establishing the separation of sources we see from the fact that in Exodus the distribution of the different portions and verses between P and E becomes a matter of doubt, and also in Exodus 16 a harmony of view has not been gained as to whether only the Priestly Code (P), or in addition also J, E or JE have contributed to the text. The hymn found in Exodus 15:1, which certainly is an old composition, presupposes passages which are assigned to different sources, and in this way speaks for the unity of the text. Compare 15:2 with 14:30 J; 14:13 JE (?); 15:3 with 14:14 JE (?); 14:25 J; 14:4a with 14:9 P; 14:4b with 14:7 JE; 14:8 with 14:22 EP; 14:29 P; with 14:9. On the other hand, Exodus 14:19 a and b cannot be utilized in favor of a division of sources E and J; but rather the analogous structure of this passage presupposes the same author, and there is only indicated what elsewhere is always a presupposition, namely, that God Himself has taken His abode somewhere in the cloud of fire (13:21,22 JE; 14:24 J; compare 40:34 P) Just as little are the two commands found in 14:16 to be divided between P and E and J, one stating what Moses does, and the other what Yahweh does, since both rather belong together (compare 9:22 f with 9:33; 10:13). At first glance 16:6 does not appear to be in its proper place, as Moses and Aaron in 16:6,7 have already told Israel what only in 16:9 is revealed through the appearance of Yahweh and His injunction to Moses. But these very verses are in harmony with the character of the whole section (compare under a above), since it is here stated that under all circumstances Israel is to be convinced of this, that Yahweh has proven Himself to be Yahweh, and has heard their murmuring. In addition, the appearance of Yahweh in 16:10 is clearly announced by 16:7. Accordingly, 16:9 serve only to confirm and strengthen what is found in 16:6. The fact that not until in 18:2 JE Jethro brings the wife and the sons of Moses, while the latter himself according to 4:20 J had taken them along when he joined Israel, finds a satisfactory explanation in 18:2b. He sent them back doubtless because of the conduct of Zipporah on the occasion of the circumcision of her son (4:25 J). The fact that Jethro comes to Moses at the Mount of God (18:5 JE), while the latter does not arrive at Mt. Sinai until 19:1 according to P and J, is no contradiction; for by the Mount of God is meant the whole chain of Horeb, which Moses has already reached according to 17:6 JE; but Mt. Sinai is a single mountain. The special legal ordinances and decisions mentioned in 18:20 JE before the giving of the law (19 E and JE) are in perfect harmony with 15:25 D; 16:4 JE (?); 16:28 R.

(4) Exodus 19:1 - 24:18a:

(a) This fourth section contains the conclusion of the covenant at Mt. Sinai (compare 19:5 R at beginning; 24:7,8 JE toward the end). The contents cover a period of ten days (compare 19:10,11,16; 24:3,1 JE; 24:16 P). The text of this section can again be divided into ten pericopes. After the introduction (19:1-8), which contains a cardinal feature of Exodus (compare under I, 2 above), numbers 1 and 2 (19:9-19,20-25) report the preparation for the conclusion of the Covenant. Number 2 in Exodus 19:23 refers expressly to number 1, but is distinguished from number 1 through the new addition in 19:20 after 19:18, as also through the express amplified application of the ordinances referring to purifications and the restriction of the prohibition to the priests (compare 19:22,21,24 with 19:10,12). Numbers 3 and 4 (Exodus 20:1-17,18-26) contain the Decalogue and the directions for the cults, together with a description of the impression made by the revelation of the law. Numbers 5 and 6 (Exodus 21:1-23:13 expressly circumscribed by a subscription, Exodus 23:14-19) contain legal ordinances and further directions for the cults. Numbers 3-6 accordingly contain the laws or the conditions of the Covenant. Now follow in numbers 7 and 8 the promises of the Covenant (Exodus 23:20-26,27-33), which in verses 20 and 27, 23 and 28 and 24 and 32 f correspond to each other. Numbers 9 and 10 (Exodus 24:3-8,9-18 a, combined more closely by Exodus 24:1,2) describe the conclusion of the Covenant and the Covenant congregation in different stages. Further, typical numbers at this place also appear in the laws, numbers 3-6. Number 4 (Exodus 20:18) contains five directions (Exodus 20:23,24,25,26); number 6 (Exodus 23:14-19) is divided into 2 X 5 ordinances (compare the anaphoristic addition in Exodus 23:14 and 17), namely, verses Exodus 23:14,15 a,15b,16a,16b-17,18a,18b,19a,19b. Number 3 (Exodus 20:1, the Decalogue) contains, according to Exodus 34:28; Deuteronomy 4:13; 10:4, "ten words" margin, according to the two tables doubtless divided into two groups of five each, no matter how in detail we may divide and number them. In the same way number 5 (21:1-23:13) falls into ten sections, separate in form and contents, yet belonging together; and these again are divided into 2 X 5 groups, as will appear presently. Taken altogether then we have in numbers 3-6 (Exodus 20:1-23:19) 17 X 5 legal ordinances or groups of laws. While in the historical sections the divisions into 5 X 2 pericopes was made, we here find three times the division into 2 X 5, although here too the beginning of the last five pericopes in the second and third sections is particularly noticeable (compare Exodus 9:8 and Exodus 16:1), and in the same way a new division can be made at Exodus 4:18. Number 5 (Exodus 21:1-23:13) is, however, divided as follows: I and II (Exodus 21:2-6,7-11) ordinances for the protection of slaves; III and IV (Exodus 21:12-17,18-27) protection of life, or liberty, of the dignity of parents, and hygienic laws; V (Exodus 21:28-22:3) harm to animals; VI (Exodus 22:4-16) to property; VII (Exodus 22:17-26) against witchcraft, against imitating the Canaanites, and lack of mercy; VIII (Exodus 22:27-30) the relation to God; IX and X (Exodus 23:1-5,6-12) ethical and humane law practice. I through IV accordingly contain laws pertaining to persons; V and VI those referring to things; VII through X, those referring to religion, morality, and administration of justice. But the chief line of demarcation is to be made after V; for I through V contain each four ordinances, VI through X each seven, which in the original text in almost each case are in their language separated from each other by particular conjunctions or by the construction. Only in VI (Exodus 22:4-16) one command seems to be lacking; for only Exodus 22:4,5,6,9-12,13,15 f are distinguished by the "ki" in the beginning; but the seventh ordinance is found in 22:8. Here too, in each case, II and I, two and two as a rule are more closely connected, after the manner of the division in the first three sections, 1:8-7:7; 7:8-13:16; 13:17-18:27; at least this is the case in I and II, III and IV through VII and VIII, IX and X.

(b) In this section, too, Exodus 19:1-24:18 a, there is no real occasion for a division into sources. It is claimed that P is found only in 19:1,2a; 24:15-18; but 19:1,2a is indispensable for 19:2b on account of the word "there"; and before 24:15 there is an omission, if the preceding verses are to be ascribed to a different source. The duplicates 19:8,9; 19:18,20 are best explained by the assumption of a new beginning in 19:9 at 19:20 (compare above); 24:1,2, which at the same time introduces 24:9, is placed before 24:3, because in point of time it belongs here. According to the original text, the translation at this place must read: "To Moses he spoke," in contrast to the ordinances which, in 21:1, are addressed to the congregation of Israel. Certainly 24:3-8 is purposely formulated to show in almost the same words that 24:3 reports the Violation and 24:4 the writing of the decision to obey on the part of Israel (24:3b and 24:7b). It is not perfectly clear to the reader where Moses was during the promulgation of the Decalogue, whether upon the mountain or at the foot of the mountain (compare 19:24; 20:18; but also Deuteronomy 5:5). In view of the importance of the matter itself and the vividness of the narrative and the continual change in the place where Moses abode, it is psychologically easily understood that the clearness of the account has suffered somewhat.

(5) Exodus 24:18b through 31:18:

(a) During the forty days which Moses tarries with God on the mountain, and at the conclusion of which he receives the two tables of the law (31:18), God converses with him seven times (25:1; 30:11,17,22,34; 31:1,12). Number 1 (25:1-30:10) contains directions in reference to the building of the Tabernacle, and laws for the priests serving in it. Numbers 2-6 bring a number of directions supplementing number 1, namely, number 2 (Exodus 30:11-16), individual tax; number 3 (Exodus 30:17-21), copper washing vessels; number 4 (Exodus 30:22-33), oil for anointing; number 5 (Exodus 30:34-38), incense; number 6 (Exodus 31:1-11), the calling of Bezalel and Aholiab to be the master builders; additionally and in conclusion, number 7 (Exodus 31:12-17), the Sabbath command. It is probably not accidental that the Sabbath idea is touched upon 7 times, namely, in addition to the present passage, also in (a) Exodus 16:5 JE (?); 16:23-29 P and R; (b) 20:8-11 E; (c) 23:10-12 E; (d) 24:16 P; (e) 34:21 J; (f) 35:1-3 the Priestly Code (P), and that as is the case in this present passage, other passages too, such as 24:16 P; 35:1-3 P conclude a main section, and 22:10-22 a subordinate section, with this reference.

The first more complete pericope itself in Exodus (25:1-30:10) is, however, divided into 12 pieces (we cannot at this place enter into details in reference to the typical numbers found so often in the measurements of the Tabernacle, but can refer only to the cubical form of the Holy of Holies on the basis of 10 cubits), namely,

(1) contributions for the sanctuary (25:1 - 9);

(2) the holy ark (25:10 - 22);

(3) table of shewbread (25:23 - 30);

(4) golden candlesticks (25:31 - 40);

(5) tabernacle (26:1 - 37) in which at the same time the articles mentioned from 2 to 4 are placed (compare 26:33);

(6) altar for burnt sacrifices (27:1 - 8);

(7) court (27:9 - 19) in which this altar stood (compare 40:29 , 33);

(8) oil for the lights (27:20 , 21);

(9) sacred garments for the priests (28:1 - 43);

(10) consecration of priests (29:1 - 37);

(11) the burnt sacrifices (29:38 - 46);

(12) incense altar (30:1 - 10).

The five articles included in 8 to 12 are combined into a contrast to the five in 1 to 7 by their express reference to the priests (compare in addition to 9 and 10 also 27:21; 29:44; 30:7,10). With the incense altar, which was of great importance, and of equal importance with the great altar on the Day of Atonement (30:10), this section closes (compare (b)).

Thus it will under all circumstances be better to search for an explanation for putting oil in the place of the candlesticks and of the incense altar, which at first seems surprising, than in the case of every difficulty to appeal to a redactor's working without system or order. However, the entire portion Exodus 24:18 b through 31:18 finds its explanation in the promise of 25:8 that Yahweh will dwell in the midst of Israel (compare 29:45 f). He is enthroned on the ark, in which the accusing law as the expression of the Divine will is deposited (for this reason called ha-`edhuth; 25:16,21; 26:33,14), but above the atonement lid, the kapporeth, at which on the Day of Atonement, the atonement ceremony is carried out (compare 25:17-22; Leviticus 16); see DAY OF ATONEMENT.

(b) This whole section, with the exception of Exodus 31:18 E (?) is ascribed to the Priestly Code (P), although at this place, though without good reasons, different strata are distinguished. In regard to the contradiction claimed to exist in the different persons to be anointed (high priest, or all the priests; compare 29:7 over against 28:41; 29:21), see LEVITICUS. Also the duplicates of the tamidh sacrifice and of the candlesticks (compare I, 3, above) are not at all the decisive factor in proof of a difference of sources within the parts treating of the priests, providing it can be shown that each passage stands where it belongs. With regard to the candlesticks, see LEVITICUS. In addition compare passages like Matthew 10:39 and 16:25; 10:22 and 24,13; 6:14 and 18:35; 5:29 f and 18:8; 19:30 and 20:16. But as far as attributing certain passages to P in general is concerned, it is self-evident that ordinances referring to the cults make use of technical terms pertaining to the cults, without this fact justifying any conclusion as to a particular author or group of authors. On the other hand, it could not at all be understood how P could so often call the Decalogue ha-`edhuth, without having contained this all-important law itself (compare Exodus 25:16,21; 26:33; 34:29; 38:21, etc.). On the other hand, as is well known, the fourth commandment (Exodus 20:8-11) expressly refers back to Genesis 2:2,3, that is, to P; also Exodus 23:15 to 12:20.

(6) Exodus 32:1 - 35:3:

(a) God's promise to dwell in the midst of Israel, the turning-point in the fifth section, seems to have become a matter of doubt, through the apostasy of Israel, but is nevertheless realized in consequence of the intercession of Moses and of the grace of God, which, next to His primitive holiness, is emphasized very strongly. This entire sixth section is to be understood from this standpoint. As was the case in the preceding section, the forty days are prominent in this too (compare 34:28 J with 24:18 P). We can divide the contents here also into ten pericopes. Number 1 (32:1-14) reports that Yahweh tells Moses of the idolatry with the golden calf, that He is determined to destroy Israel, but is influenced to change this determination by the intercession of Moses. Number 2 (32:15-29) describes the wrath of Moses and the punishment through him. He breaks the tablets into pieces, grinds the golden calf into powder, reproves Aaron, dissolves through the Levites the curse which had for this reason impended over them since Genesis 49:5-7 and causes this to be changed into a blessing: three thousand killed. Number 3 (32:30-35) reports that Yahweh at the petition of Moses will send some of His angels, but later on will punish the people for their sins. Number 4 (33:1-6) reports that Yahweh Himself no longer accompanies His people, which, on the one hand, is an act of grace, since the presence of God would even harm the people, but on the other hand is a punishment, and is felt as such by Israel. Number 5 (33:7-11) declares that God meets Moses only outside of the camp in a tent, but communes with him face to face. Number 6 introduces the last six pericopes in a natural way, since God's grace is appearing in constantly increasing glory (33:12-33). Here we have the petition of Moses to Yahweh that He in person should accompany him and show him His glory (Yahweh's grace is made especially prominent in 33:12,13,16,17,19). Number 7 (34:1-10) describes the preparation for the new conclusion of the covenant; Yahweh appears to Moses as the gracious, merciful, long-suffering kind, and faithful God, so that Moses again appeals to His grace. Number 8 (34:11-28) describes the new establishment of the covenant on the basis of the renewal of the Divine and grandiose promises of ordinances pertaining to religion and cults, and the ten words. Number 9 (34:29-35) describes how, in consequence of his close communion with God, Moses' face shines. Number 10 (35:1-3) contains the Sabbath command (see (5a)). Numbers 9 and 10 give expression to the renewed covenant relationship. If we again in the larger group 1 to 8 take two and two together we find that each of these four groups contains a petition of Moses: Exodus 32:11; 33:30-32; 33:12; 38:8,9. The entire section brings out equally prominently the love and the holiness of God, and does this in such a way that both characteristics find their expression in each group of two of these ten numbers. The progress beyond the third section (leading Israel to Sinai) is noticeable, since the murmuring is in each case followed only by an expression of the love of God; but equally this present section stands in contrast to Numbers 11, where, on the occasion of the continuous murmuring of Israel the love of God is not indeed ignored, but it must take a place in the background as compared with His punitive holiness, which is particularly apparent in the story of the return of the spies in Numbers 14:11. Here is at once seen the great similarity with the present section of Numbers 14:12,15,16,17 and with Exodus 32:10,12; 34:6, but at the same time the great difference caused by a divergency of the events (compare Numbers 14:21). In contrast to this, Exodus 32:34 refers back to Numbers 14, and Exodus 32:35 is a proleptic judgment based on this experience.

(b) It is incomprehensible how critics have found in the renewal of the covenant caused by the apostasy of Israel and in the conditions of this renewal, namely, in the Books of the Covenant and in the Decalogue, duplicates, which are distributed between E and J (Exodus 20:1; 21; 24:8-34:1,28; 34:11-26; 34:27). But in Exodus 34:11-26 there is no sign of the number ten being used in connection with the ordinances referring to the religion and the cults. Goethe's attempt to find at this place the original Decalogue, which effort is constantly being repeated, is accordingly without any foundation, even in the use of the number ten. In 34:28 b, according to 34:1 and tradition (compare Deuteronomy 10:2,4; also Exodus 24:12; 31:18), Yahweh is to be regarded as the subject. Again Exodus 33:4 and 5 are not duplicates. In 33:4 the people are described as having laid aside their ornaments a single time as a sign of repentance; according to 33:5,6 the people permanently dispense with these, a state of mind which makes it possible for God again to show His mercy. It is an arbitrary assumption that these ornaments were used in the construction of the Tabernacle, the building of which had been announced beforehand in Exodus 25, so that in front of 33:7 a parallel account to 35 P taken from JE would have been omitted. In 33:7 according to the text the author has in mind a tent already in existence, which up to this time had been standing within the camp and now had to be taken without, because Yahweh for the present can no longer dwell in the midst of the people (32:34; 33:3,1), until Moses, through his intercession, again makes this possible (33:15-17; 34:9,10). And the promised tabernacle takes the place of the provisional tent (Exodus 35), which, as is done by the Septuagint, is probably to be preferred to Moses' own tent. In the Priestly Code (P), to whom 34:29 is attributed, such a provisional arrangement is presupposed in 34:35, since already at this place, and before the building of the tabernacle in Exodus 35, mention is made of the fact that Moses entered for the purpose of receiving the revelation of God. This accordingly presupposes what is reported in 33:7. Even without the facts mentioned and for other reasons, too, an omission must be accepted before 34:29; for 34:29 speaks of the tables of the Law, concerning the origin of which P has reported nothing; and in 34:32 concerning the commandments which Moses received on Mr. Sinai and had imparted to the people, which, however, do not refer to the directions that were given in Exodus 25, since these, according to 35:4, are yet to be expressly communicated to the people.

(7) Exodus 35:4 - 40:38:

(a) The construction of the Tabernacle. This section is divided into four pericopes, each with four subdivisions (compare Structure of Leviticus 16 in \DAY OF ATONEMENT\). The same principle of division is found also in the history of Abraham and in Deuteronomy 12-26.

Number I (Exodus 35:4-36:7) describes the preparation for the construction:

(1) Exodus 35:4-19 appeals for contributions for this purpose;

(2) 35:20-29, contributions;

(3) 35:30-36:1, characterization of the builders;

(4) 36:2-7, delivering the contributions to the builders.

Numbers II and III (Exodus 36:8-38:31; 39:1-31) report the construction of the Tabernacle and the preparation of the priests garments (compare Exodus 39:32,1);

Number II:

(1) Exodus 36:8-38, dwelling-place;

(2) 37:1-38:9, utensils;

(3) 38:10-20, court;

(4) 38:24-31, cost of 38:1-3;

Number III

(1) 39:2-7, shoulder garment;

(2) 39:8-21, pocket;

(3) 39:22-26, outer garment;

(4) 39:27-31, summary account concerning coats, miter, bonnets, breeches, girdle, diadem.

Number IV (39:32-40:38) reports the completion:

(1) 39:32-43, consecration of these objects;

(2) 40:1-15, command to erect;

(3) 40:16-33, carrying out this command;

(4) 40:34-38, entrance of the glory of Yahweh.

In this way the dwelling of Yahweh, which had been promised in 25:8 the Priestly Code (P), and in Ex 32-34 JE had been uncertain, has become a reality. The whole section is closely connected with Ex 25-31, yet is independent in character. The full details found in both groups are completely justified by the importance of the object. It is self- evident that at this place, too, the language of the cults is demanded by the object itself.

(b) The attempts to distribute this section among different authors are a total failure in view of the unity of the structure, which is independent also over against Ex 25-31. Since the numbers given in 38:26 agree entirely with the numbers gathered later in Numbers 2:32, it is evident that for the latter the lists for the contributions were used, which in itself is very probable because it was practical. In case this section is ascribed to P it is inexplicable how the writer can in Exodus 40:34 speak of the pillar of fire as of something well known, since this has not yet been mentioned in the parts ascribed to the Priestly Code (P), but has been in 13:21 f JE; 14:19,24 J.


1. General Consideration:

The fact that extra-Israelitish and especially Egyptian sources that can lay claim to historical value have reported nothing authentic concerning the exodus of Israel need not surprise us when we remember how meager these documents are and how one-sided Egyptian history writing is. Whether the expulsion of the lepers and the unclean, who before this had desolated the country and acquired supremacy over it as reported by Manetho and other historians, is an Egyptian version of the exodus of Israel, cannot be investigated at this place, but is to the highest degree improbable. If Israel was oppressed by the Egyptians for a long period, then surely the latter would not have invented the fable of a supremacy on the part of Israel; and, on the other hand, it would be incomprehensible that the Israelites should have changed an era of prosperity in their history into a period of servitude. Over against this the remembrance of the exodus out of Egypt not only is re-echoed through the entire literature of Israel (compare I, 4, above), but the very existence of the people of God forces us imperatively to accept some satisfactory ground for its origin, such as is found in the story of the exodus and only here. In addition, the Book compare Exodus shows a good acquaintance with the localities and the conditions of Egypt, as also of the desert. It is indeed true that we are still in doubt on a number of local details. But other statements in the book have in such a surprising manner been confirmed by discoveries and geographical researches, that we can have the greatest confidence in regard to the other difficulties: compare eg. Naville's The Store-city of Pithom (Exodus 1:11). In general, the opening chapters of Ex, especially the narratives of the different plagues, contain so much Egyptian coloring, that this could scarcely have resulted from a mere theoretical study of Egypt, especially since in the narrative everything makes the impression of resulting from recent experience. The fact that Israel from its very origin received ordinances in regard to religion, morality, law and cults, is explained from the very conditions surrounding this origin and is indispensable for the explanation of the later development of the nation. None of the later books or times claim to offer anything essentially new in this respect; even the prophets appear only as reformers; they know of the election of Israel, and, on the other hand, everywhere presuppose as something self-evident the knowledge of a righteous, well-pleasing relation with God and chide the violation of this relation as apostasy. Ethical monotheism as the normal religion of Israel is reflected in the same way in all the sources of Israel's history, as has been proven in my work ("Die Entwicklung der alttestamentlichen Gottesidee in vorexilischer Zeit," in the May, 1903, issue of Beitrage zur Forderung christlicher Theologie). And the idea that an oriental people, especially if they came out of Egypt, should have had no religious cult, is in itself unthinkable. If all of these norms, also the direction for the cults in the Books of Covenant, of the Priestly Code, or D, at least in the kernel, do not go back to the Mosaic times, then we have to deal with an insoluble problem (compare my work, Are the Critics Right?).

2. The Miraculous Character:

The Book of Exodus is as a matter of fact from its first to its last page filled with miraculous stories; but in this characteristic these contents agree perfectly with the whole history of redemption. In this immediate and harmonious activity of God, for the purpose of establishing a chosen people, all these miracles find their purpose and explanation, and this again is only in harmony with other periods of sacred history. The reason is self-explanatory when these miracles are found grouped at the turning-points in this history, as is the case also in the critical age of Elijah and Elisha, and in the experiences and achievements of "Jonah," so significant for the universality of the Biblical religion. Above all is this true in the ministry of Jesus Christ; and also again in His return to judgment. And in the same way, too, we find this at the beginning of Israel as a nation (see my article in Murray's Dictionary). Compare in this respect the rapid numerical growth of the nation, the miracles, the plagues, in the presence of Pharaoh, the passage through the Red Sea, the miraculous preservation of the people in the desert, the many appearances of God to Moses, to the people, to the elders, the protection afforded by the cloud, the providential direction of the people of Israel and of the Egyptians, and of individual persons (Moses and Pharaoh). The fact that the author himself knows that Israel without the special care and protection of God could not have survived in the desert is in complete harmony with his knowledge of the geographical situation already mentioned.

3. The Legislative Portions:

If any part of the laws in Exodus is to be accepted as Mosaic, it is the Decalogue. It is true that the ten commandments are found in two recensions (Exodus 20; Deuteronomy 5). The original form is naturally found in Exodus 20. Only Moses could regard himself as inwardly so independent of the Decalogue as it had been written by God, that he did not consider himself bound in Deuteronomy 5 by its exact wording. The legal ordinances in Exodus 21:1 have found an analogy already in Code of Hammurabi, more than 500 years older although moving in a lower sphere. As Israel had lived in Goshen, and according to Genesis 26:12 Isaac had even been engaged in agriculture, and Israel could not remain in the desert but was to settle down in permanent abodes again, the fact of the existence of this law of Israel, which in a religious and ethical sense rises infinitely above the Code of Hammurabi, is in itself easily understood. And again since the sacred ark of the covenant plays an important role also in the other sources of the Pentateuch (Numbers 10:33; 14:44; Deuteronomy 10:1-8; 31:9,25) and in the history of Israel (compare Joshua 3; 6:6-8; 8:33; Judges 20:27; 1 Samuel 6:2; 2 Samuel 15:24; 1 Kings 3:15; 6:19; 8:1-9), then a suitable tent, such as is announced in Exodus 25, and was erected according to Exodus 35, was an actual necessity.

As the Paschal sacrifice, according to Exodus 12:3; 12:43 P; 12:21 JE (?) was to be killed in the houses, and this on the 14th of Nisan in the evening (12:6), and as P directs that a festival assembly shall be held on the next day at the sanctuary (compare Leviticus 23:6; Numbers 28:17), these are conditions which can be understood only in case Israel is regarded as being in the wilderness. For this reason Deuteronomy 16:5 changes this direction, so that from now on the Passover is no longer to be celebrated in the houses but at the central sanctuary. In the same way the direction Exodus 22:29, which ordered that the firstborn of animals should be given to Yahweh already on the 8th day, could be carried out only during the wanderings in the desert, and is for this reason changed by Deuteronomy 14:23; 15:19 to meet the conditions of the people definitely settled after this wandering. Compare my work, Are the Critics Right? 188-89, 194- 95.

4. Chronology:

As is well known, the average critic handles the Biblical chronology in a very arbitrary manner and is not afraid of changing the chronology of events by hundreds of years. If we leave out of consideration some details that often cause great difficulties, we still have a reliable starting-point in the statements found in 1 Kings 6:1 and Exodus 12:40 f. According to the first passage, the time that elapsed between the exodus of the Israelites and the building of the temple in the 4th year of Solomon was 480 years; and according to the second passage, the time of the stay in Egypt was 430 years. A material change in the first-mentioned figures is not permitted by the facts in the Book of Judges, even if some particular data there mentioned are contemporaneous; and to reduce the 430 years of the stay in Egypt, as might be done after the Septuagint, which includes also the stay of the patriarchs in Canaan in this period, or to reduce the whole period from the entrance into Egypt to the building of the temple, is contrary to the synchronism of Hammurabi and Abraham (Genesis 14). The first-mentioned could not have lived later than 2100 BC. The 430 years in Exodus 12:40,41 P are also, independently of this passage, expressly supported by the earlier prediction of an oppression of Israel for 400 years from the time of Abraham (Genesis 15:13 J); and the 480 years of 1 Kings 6:1 are confirmed by Judges 11:26, according to which, at the time of the suppression by the Amorites and of Jephthah as judge, already 30 years must have elapsed since the east Jordan country had been occupied by the Israelites. According to this the exodus must have taken place not long after 1500 BC. And in perfect agreement with this supposition would be the condition of affairs in Palestine as we know them from the Tell el-Amarna Letters dating about 1450-1400 BC, according to which the different Canaanitish cities had been attacked by the Chabiri in the most threatening manner, as this is reported too in the Book of Joshua. As is well known linguistically, too, the identification of the Chabiri with the Hebrews is unobjectionable. Finally, on the well- known Menepthah stele of the 13th century BC, Israel is mentioned in connection with Canaan, Ashkelon, Gezer, Y-nu`m (= Janoah, Joshua 16:6,7?), and accordingly is already regarded as settled in Canaan. A date supported in such different ways makes it impossible for me to find in Rameses II the Pharaoh of the oppression, and in Menepthah the Pharaoh of the exodus (both between 1300 and 1200 BC). A conclusive proof that the name and the original building of the city Rameses (Exodus 1:11; 12:37; Numbers 33:3,5) necessarily leads back to Rameses II can, at least at the present time, not yet be given (compare on this point also, Kohler, Lehrbuch der biblischen Geschichte des Alten Testamentes, I, 238).

5. Unjustifiable Attacks:

All these attacks on the historical character of this book which originate only in the denial of the possibility of miracles, the Christian theologian can and must ignore. Such attacks do not stand on the ground of history but of dogma. Let us accordingly examine other objections. Thus, it is claimed that the number of men in Israel, which in Exodus 12:37 is said to have been 600,000, is too high, because not only the desert but Goshen also would not have been able to support two million people, and Israel had been too short a time in Egypt to grow into so populous a nation. Yet Israel, beginning with the time of the oppression, which, according to 2:23; 18 continued many years and hence began before the highest number in population had been reached, had claims for support from the Egyptian corn (grain) granaries; and the 430 years in 12:40 certainly cannot be reduced, as has been shown under (4) above. To this must be added that in Exodus 1:7,9, 12,20 f the rapid numerical growth of Israel is represented as the result of a Divine blessing. Then, too, in the company of Jacob and his descendants, doubtless servants, male and female, came down to Egypt (compare the 318 servants of Abraham alone in Genesis 14). The figures in Exodus 12:37 P are further confirmed by Numbers 11:21 (according to critics from JE) and by the results of the two enumerations, Numbers 1 f (2:31; compare Exodus 38:26 (603, 550)) and Numbers 26:51 (601, 730). The attacks made also on the existence of the Tabernacle must be rejected as groundless. According to the Wellhauscn school the Tabernacle is only a copy of the temple of Solomon dated back into the Mosaic times; and the fact that there is only one central seat of the cults is regarded as a demand first made by the Deuteronomistic legislation in the 7th century. Against this latter claim militates not only the impossibility of placing De at this time (compare my work Are the Critics Right? 1-55), but also the legislation of the Book of the Covenant, which, in Exodus 23:17,19; 34:23,14,26 presupposes a sanctuary, and which even in the passages incorrectly analyzed by Wellhausen, Exodus 20:24 (compare again, Are the Critics Right ? 19, 48, 161, 189) speaks only of a single altar (compare also Exodus 21:14) and not of several existing at the same time. (The matter mentioned here is the building of an altar, according to a theophany, for temporary use.) Against the critical view we can quote the prophetic utterances of Amos, who condemns the cult in the Northern Kingdom (5:4 f), but teaches that God speaks out of Zion (1:2; compare probably also, 9:1); those of Isaiah (1:12; 2:2; 4:5; 6; 8:18; 18:7; 30:29; 33:20; 14:32; 28:16); also the facts of history (compare especially the central sanctuary in Shiloh, 1 Samuel 1-4; Judges 21:19, which is placed on the same level with Zion in Jeremiah 7:12; 26:6; Psalms 78:60-72). To this must be added such statements as 2 Samuel 7:6; Joshua 18:1; 1 Kings 3:4; 8:4; 1 Chronicles 16:39,40; 2 Chronicles 1:3. All these facts are not overthrown by certain exceptions to the rule (compare LEVITICUS). But the whole view leads to conclusions that in themselves cannot possibly be accepted. What a foolish fancy that would have been, which would have pictured the Tabernacle in the most insignificant details as to materials, amounts, numbers, colors, objects, which in Numbers 4 has determined with exact precision who was to carry the separate parts of the tent, while eg. for the service of the Tabernacle, so important for later times, only very general directions are given in Numbers 18:2,4,6; 8:22. This complete picture would be entirely without a purpose and meaningless, since it would have no connection whatever with the tendency ascribed to it by the critics, but rather, in part, would contradict it. Compare my book, Are the Critics Right? 72, 87.

That particularly in the post-exilic period it would have been impossible to center the Day of Atonement on the covering of the ark of the covenant, since the restoration of this ark was not expected according to Jeremiah 3:16, has already been emphasized in \DAY OF ATONEMENT\. If God had really determined to give to His people a pledge of the constant presence of His grace, then there can be absolutely no reason for doubting the erection of the Tabernacle, since the necessary artistic ability and the possession of the materials needed for the structure are sufficiently given in the text (compare also Exodus 25:9,40; 26:30; 27:8-31:2; 35:30 through 12:35; 3:21,22; 11:2; Genesis 15:14; Exodus 33:4). The examination of the separate passages in Ex, such as the relation of 20:24 (see above) to Deuteronomy, or the ordinances concerning the Passover and the firstborn (Exodus 12), and other laws in the different codices, goes beyond the purpose of this article (compare however under 3 above, at the close).


1. Connection with Moses:

As the Book of Exodus is only a part of a large work (compare I, 3 above), the question as to authorship cannot be definitely decided at this place, but we must in substance restrict ourselves to those data which we find in the book itself. In several parts it is expressly claimed that Moses wrote them. He sang the hymn found in Exodus 15, after the passage of the Red Sea, and it breathes the enthusiasm of what the author has himself experienced. Exodus 15:13 do not speak against the unity of the hymn, but rather for it, since the perfects here found as prophetic perfects only give expression to the certainty that the Israelites will take possession of the land of promise. In the course of history the nations often acted quite differently from what is here stated and often antagonized Israel (compare Numbers 14:39-45; 20:18; 21:4,21-35; 22:6; Joshua 6-12; also Exodus 13:17). In Exodus 15:13,17 not only Zion is meant, but all Canaan; compare Leviticus 25:23; Numbers 35:34; Jeremiah 2:7; for har, "mountain," compare Deuteronomy 1:7,20 ("hill- country"); 3:25; Psalms 78:54,55. According to Exodus 17:14 Moses writes in a book the promise of Yahweh to destroy Amalek from the face of the earth. It is absolutely impossible that only this statement should have been written without any connecting thought and without at least a full description of the situation as given in Exodus 17:8. And as 17:14 linguistically at least can mean merely `to write a sheet,' as Numbers 5:23, it yet appears in the light of the connection of a comparison with related passages, such as Joshua 24:26; 1 Samuel 10:25, much more natural to think of a book in this connection, in which already similar events had been recorded or could at any time be recorded.

The Ten Words (Exodus 20:1) were written down by God Himself and then handed over to Moses; compare Exodus 24:12; 31:18; 34:1,28 (Deuteronomy 10:2,4). The laws and judicial ordinances beginning with Exodus 21, according to 24:4, were also written down by Moses himself, and the same is true of the ordinances in 34:11, according to 34:27. The proof that formerly had to be furnished, to the effect that the knowledge of the art of writing in the days of Moses was not an anachronism, need not trouble us now, since both in Egypt and Babylon much older written documents have been discovered. But already from the passages quoted we could conclude nothing else than that Moses understood how to make use of different forms of literature--the poetical, the historical and the legal--unless the different statements to this effect by decisive reasons could be shown to be incorrect. In Numbers 33, in the catalogue of stations, there is a portion ascribed to Moses that bears the express characteristics of the Priestly Code; and, finally Deuteronomy, with its hortatory, pastoral style, claims him as its author. Already in Exodus 17:14 there were reasons to believe that Moses had written not only this statement which is there expressly attributed to him. Thus it becomes a possibility, that in general only in the case of particularly important passages the fact that Moses penned these also was to be made prominent, if it can be shown as probable that he in reality wrote more, as we find in parallel cases in the writings of the prophets (compare Isaiah 8:1; 30:8; Jeremiah 30:2; Ezekiel 43:11; Habakkuk 2:2). In addition, we notice in this connection that in the catalogue of stations mentioned above and ascribed to Moses (Numbers 33), the close relation of which to the portions attributed to P is certain, not only this part, but also the other words from JE in the present Bible text from Exodus 12-19 (see above) are regarded as self-evident as Mosaic (as is the case also later with the corresponding historical part), and this is an important witness in favor of the Mosaic authorship of the historical parts. But Exodus 25:31; 35-40 also claim, at least so far as contents are concerned, to be the product of the Mosaic period. The entire portable sanctuary is built with a view to he wanderings in the desert. Aaron and his sons are as yet the only representatives of the priesthood (27:21; 28:4,12,41-43; 29:4, etc.). In view of the relationship which Numbers 33 shows with the Priestly Code (P), it is clear, if we accept the genuineness of this part, a matter that is in the highest degree probable, that this style was current in Moses' time, and that he had the mastery of it, even if other hands, too, have contributed to the final literary forms of these laws. In favor of the Mosaic authorship of the whole Book of Exodus we find a weighty reason in the unity and the literary construction of the work as shown above. This indeed does not preclude the use and adaptation of other sources of historical or legal statements, either from the author's own hands or from others, if such a view should perhaps be suggested or made imperative by the presence of many hard constructions, unconnected transitions, unexpected repetitions, etc. But even on the presupposition of the Mosaic authorship, a difference in style in the different kinds of matters discussed is not impossible, just as little as this is the case with peculiarities of language, since these could arise particularly in the course of vivid narration of the story (compare the anacolouths in Paul's writings). But still more a reason for accepting the Mosaic authorship of Exodus is found in the grand and deep conception and reproduction of all the events recorded, which presupposes a congenial prophetic personality; and finally, too, the natural and strong probability that Moses did not leave his people without such a Magna Charta for the future. This Mosaic authorship becomes almost a certainty, in case the Book of Deuteronomy is genuine, even if only in its essential parts. For Deuteronomy at every step presupposes not only P (compare Are the Critics Right? 171), but also the history and the Books of the Covenant (Exodus 21; 34:11) as recorded in Exodus.

2. Examination of Objections:

Against the Mosaic authorship of Exodus the use of the third person should no longer be urged, since Caesar and Xenophon also wrote their works in the third person, and the use of this provision is eminently adapted to the purpose and significance of Exodus for all future times. In Isaiah 20:1 Ezekiel 24:24, we have analogies of this in prophetic literature. The statement (Exodus 11:3) that Moses was so highly regarded by the Egyptians is entirely unobjectionable in the connection in which it is found. That the book was not written for the self-glorification of Moses appears clearly in 4:10-16; 6:12. In itself it is possible that some individual passages point to a later date, without thereby overthrowing the Mosaic authorship of the whole (compare also under (1)). In this case we are probably dealing with supplementary material. Exodus 16:35 declares that Israel received manna down to the time when the people came to the borders of Canaan. Whether it was given to them after this time, too, cannot be decided on the basis of this passage (compare however Joshua 5:12). If the entire Book of Exodus was composed by Moses, then Exodus 16:35 would be a proof that at least the final editing of the book had been undertaken only a short time before his death. This is suggested also by 16:34b, since at the time when the manna was first given the ark of the covenant did not yet exist; and the statement in 32:35 takes into consideration the later development as found in Numbers 13 f. In the same way Exodus 16:36 could be a later explanation, but is not necessarily so, if the `omer was not a fixed measure, of which nothing further is known, and which probably was not to be found in every Israelite household, but a customary measure, the average content of which is given in 16:36. If we take Exodus alone there is nothing that compels us to go later than the Mosaic period (concerning the father-in-law of Moses, see under II, 2, 1 (1:8-7:7) at the close). The question as to whether there are contradictions or differences between the different legal ordinances in Exodus and in later books cannot be investigated at this place, nor the question whether the connection of Exodus with other books in any way modifies the conclusion reached under (1).


Books that in some way cover the ground discussed in the article: Against the separation into different sources: Eerdmans, Alttestamentliche Studien, III ("Das Buch Exodus"); Orr, Problem of the Old Testament; Moller, Wider den Bann der Quellenscheidung. In favor of the construction of Exodus 21: Merx, Die Bucher Moses und Josua ("Religionsgeschichtliche Volksbucher," II, Series, number 3). For Exodus 21 in its relation to the Code of Hammurabi: A. Jeremias, Das Alte Testament im Lichte des alten Orients; J. Jeremias, Moses und Hammurabi (with fuller literature); Histories of Israel by Kittel, Konig, Oettli, Kohler, Klostermann, Hengstenberg; Commentaries of Ryssel, Lange, Keil, Strack; Introductions to the Old Testament by Strack, Baudissin, Driver, Sellin. Against the Wellhausen hypothesis: Moller, Are the Critics Right? (with fuller literature); Orr (see above). Against the evolutionary theory: Orr (see above); Moller, Die Entwicklung der alttestamentlichen Gottesidee in vorexilischer Zeit (with fuller literature). Representatives of other schools: The Introductions of Kuenen and Cornill; the Commentaries of Holzinger and Baentsch; the Histories of Israel by Wellhausen and Stade.



aaron, ark of the covenant, bible commentary, bible history, bible reference, bible study, book of exodus, burning bush, define, egypt, feast of unleavened bread, frogs, israelites, moses, mount sinai, old testament, parting of the sea, passover, pentateuch, pharaoh, plague, ten commandments, water from rock, water turned to blood



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