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A rupture is about to ensue with the two strange brothers, when, in a vision, Moses is divinely constituted "Pharaoh's God ", and is commanded to use his newly imparted powers. The episode of Aaron's rod is a prelude to the plagues.Either personally or through Aaron, sometimes after warning Pharaoh or again quite suddenly, Moses causes a series of Divine manifestations described as ten in number in which he humiliates the sun and river gods, afflicts man and beast, and displays such unwonted control over the earth and heavens that even the magicians are forced to recognize in his prodigies "the finger of God ".Sephora saves her "bloody spouse", and appeases God by circumcising a son. The first interview of the brothers with their compatriots is most encouraging, but not so with the despotic sovereign.Asked to allow the Hebrews three days' respite for sacrifices in the wilderness, the angry monarch not only refuses, but he ridicules their God, and then effectually embitters the Hebrews' minds against their new chiefs as well as against himself, by denying them the necessary straw for exorbitant daily exactions in brick making.Pharaoh softens at times but never sufficiently to meet the demands of Moses without restrictions.He treasures too highly the Hebrew labour for his public works. The Hebrews, forewarned by Moses, celebrate the first Pasch or Phase with their loins girt, their shoes on their feet, and staves in their hands, ready for rapid escape.Then God carries out his dreadful threat to pass through the land and kill every first-born of man and beast, thereby executing judgment on all the gods of Egypt. He joins the stricken populace in begging the Hebrews to depart.At the head of 600,000 men, besides women and children, and heavily laden with the spoils of the Egyptians, Moses follows a way through the desert, indicated by an advancing pillar of alternating cloud and fire, and gains the peninsula of Sinai by crossing the Red Sea.
His confidence waxes strong, but he is uncircumcised, and God meets him on the way and fain would kill him.
A bush there flaming unburned attracts him, but a miraculous voice forbids his approach and declares the ground so holy that to approach he must remove his shoes.
The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob designates him to deliver the Hebrews from the Egyptian yoke, and to conduct them into the "land of milk and honey", the region long since promised to the seed of Abraham, the Palestine of later years.
Hebrew liberator, leader, lawgiver, prophet, and historian, lived in the thirteenth and early part of the twelfth century, B. Nowadays the view of Lepsius, tracing the name back to the Egyptian mesh (child), is widely patronized by Egyptologists, but nothing decisive can be established.
Josephus and the Fathers assign the Coptic mo (water) and uses (saved) as the constituent parts of the name.