Exodus 2:25
And God looked on the children of Israel, and God had respect to them.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
2:23-25 The Israelites' bondage in Egypt continued, though the murdering of their infants did not continue. Sometimes the Lord suffers the rod of the wicked to lie very long and very heavy on the lot of the righteous. At last they began to think of God under their troubles. It is a sign that the Lord is coming towards us with deliverance, when he inclines and enables us to cry to him for it. God heard their groaning; he made it to appear that he took notice of their complaints. He remembered his covenant, of which he is ever mindful. He considered this, and not any merit of theirs. He looked upon the children of Israel. Moses looked upon them, and pitied them; but now God looked upon them, and helped them. He had respect unto them. His eyes are now fixed upon Israel, to show himself in their behalf. God is ever thus, a very present help in trouble. Take courage then, ye who, conscious of guilt and thraldom, are looking to Him for deliverance. God in Christ Jesus is also looking upon you. A call of love is joined with a promise of the Redeemer. Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest, Mt 11:28.Remembered - This means that God was moved by their prayers to give effect to the covenant, of which an essential condition was the faith and contrition involved in the act of supplication. The whole history of Israel is foreshadowed in these words: God heard, remembered, looked upon, and knew them. It evidently indicates the beginning of a crisis marked by a personal intervention of God. 23. the king of Egypt died: and the children of Israel sighed by reason of the bondage—The language seems to imply that the Israelites had experienced a partial relaxation, probably through the influence of Moses' royal patroness; but in the reign of her father's successor the persecution was renewed with increased severity. Heb. Knew them, so as to pity and help them; as words of knowledge are oft used, as Psalm 1:6 31:7. He who seemed to have rejected them, now owned them for his people, and came for their rescue. And God looked upon the children of Israel,.... With an eye of pity and compassion, and saw all the hardships they laboured under, and all the injuries that were done unto them:

and God had respect unto them; had a favourable regard to them; or "knew" (b) not only them, the Israelites, and loved them, and approved of them, and owned them as his own, all which words of knowledge sometimes signify; but he knew their sorrows and sufferings, and took notice of what was done to them secretly; see Exodus 3:7.

(b) "et eognovit", Pagninus, Montanus, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator.

And God looked upon the children of Israel, and God had {i} respect unto them.

(i) He judges their causes or acknowledged them as his own.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
25. saw] viz. with attention and sympathy.

took knowledge of them] lit. knew (them), i.e. noticed, regarded them: ‘know,’ as Genesis 18:21 (RV.), Amos 3:2, Psalm 1:6; Psalm 37:18 al.

Here Moses secured for himself a hospitable reception from a priest of Midian, and a home at his house, by doing as Jacob had formerly done (Genesis 29:10), viz., helping his daughters to water their father's sheep, and protecting them against the other shepherds. - On the form יושׁען for יושׁען vid., Genesis 19:19; and for the masculine suffixes to יגרשׁוּם and צאנם, Genesis 31:9. תּדלנה for תּדלינה, as in Job 5:12, cf. Ewald, 198a. - The flock of this priest consisted of nothing but צאן, i.e., sheep and goats (vid., Exodus 3:1). Even now there are no oxen reared upon the peninsula of Sinai, as there is not sufficient pasturage or water to be found. For the same reason there are no horses kept there, but only camels and asses (cf. Seetzen, R. iii. 100; Wellsted, R. in Arab. ii. p. 66). In Exodus 2:18 the priest is called Reguel, in Exodus 3:1 Jethro. This title, "the priest of Midian," shows that he was the spiritual head of the branch of the Midianites located there, but hardly that he was the prince or temporal head as well, like Melchizedek, as the Targumists have indicated by רבא, and as Artapanus and the poet Ezekiel distinctly affirm. The other shepherds would hardly have treated the daughters of the Emir in the manner described in Exodus 2:17. The name רעוּאל (Reguel, friend of God) indicates that this priest served the old Semitic God El (אל). This Reguel, who gave his daughter Zipporah to Moses, was unquestionably the same person as Jethro (יתרו) the חתן of Moses and priest of Midian (Exodus 3:1). Now, as Reguel's son Chobab is called Moses' חתן in Numbers 10:29 (cf. Judges 4:11), the Targumists and others supposed Reguel to be the grandfather of Zipporah, in which case אב would mean the grandfather in Exodus 2:18, and בּת the granddaughter in Exodus 2:21. This hypothesis would undoubtedly be admissible, if it were probable on other grounds. But as a comparison of Numbers 10:29 with Exodus 18 does not necessarily prove that Chobab and Jethro were the same persons, whilst Exodus 18:27 seems to lead to the very opposite conclusion, and התן, like the Greek γαμβρός, may be used for both father-in-law and brother-in-law, it would probably be more correct to regard Chobab as Moses' brother-in-law, Reguel as the proper name of his father-in-law, and Jethro, for which Jether (praestantia) is substituted in Exodus 4:18, as either a title, or the surname which showed the rank of Reguel in his tribe, like the Arabic Imam, i.e., praepositus, spec. sacrorum antistes. Ranke's opinion, that Jethro and Chobab were both of them sons of Reguel and brothers-in-law of Moses, is obviously untenable, if only on the ground that according to the analogy of Numbers 10:29 the epithet "son of Reguel" would not be omitted in Exodus 3:1.
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