Moses was put in the river by his mother. He was born to a Hebrew woman and an Egyptian prince, but his mother hid him from his father so that he would not be killed. She put him in a basket and sent him down the Nile River.
The issue of why so many people have come to accept what must be a false interpretation of the Bible is an intriguing one. Despite my shock at the events, I had to accept the possibility that the churchgoers here—at least the ones who had given their approval—lacked even the most basic understanding of the Bible.
False teaching is a major obstacle to a good relationship with God, and that may seem harsh. The church has become infected with false doctrine that distorts and flat-out rejects God’s Word. The snake’s first recorded statements from Satan to Eve are:
Satan sows the seeds of uncertainty and mistrust in Eve’s mind with these statements. His follow-up comments, however, were what exposed her to the heresy that led her to doubt and misinterpret God’s will.
Open enmity toward God’s Word has taken numerous forms throughout history. The question this raises, however, is how. A clue is provided in Jude’s letter:
There are those among you whose destinies were written in stone eons ago. To quote Jude, “they are ungodly people, who change the grace of our God into an occasion for immorality, and who put Jesus Christ to open shame” (Jude 1:4).
Due of financial constraints, evildoers were able to infiltrate the church and spread their heretical beliefs. To protect themselves from the dangers of false teaching, God’s people need a strategy that combines persistent, in-depth study of the Bible.
Exodus 2:3 Parallel Verses
Exodus 2:3, NIV: But when she could hide him no longer, she got a papyrus basket for him and coated it with tar and pitch. Then she placed the child in it and put it among the reeds along the bank of the Nile.
Exodus 2:3, ESV: When she could hide him no longer, she took for him a basket made of bulrushes and daubed it with bitumen and pitch. She put the child in it and placed it among the reeds by the river bank.
Exodus 2:3, KJV: And when she could not longer hide him, she took for him an ark of bulrushes, and daubed it with slime and with pitch, and put the child therein; and she laid it in the flags by the river’s brink.
Exodus 2:3, NASB: But when she could no longer hide him, she got him a papyrus basket and covered it with tar and pitch. Then she put the child in it and set it among the reeds by the bank of the Nile.
Exodus 2:3, NLT: But when she could no longer hide him, she got a basket made of papyrus reeds and waterproofed it with tar and pitch. She put the baby in the basket and laid it among the reeds along the bank of the Nile River.
Exodus 2:3, CSB: But when she could no longer hide him, she got a papyrus basket for him and coated it with asphalt and pitch. She placed the child in it and set it among the reeds by the bank of the Nile.
Moses Found In The River Verse
What does Exodus 2:3 mean?
When Moses was three months old (Exodus 2:2), he had grown to the point where hiding him completely from the Egyptians was impossible (Exodus 1:22). Rather than risk her entire family being caught and punished for hiding her newborn son, Moses’ mother hatches a plot. She will, in a poetic sense, obey Pharaoh’s command to “cast into the Nile” her Hebrew boy. At the same time, this ruse will give hope for her son’s survival. She makes a basket from bulrushes or papyrus reeds and coats it with pitch so it will float. This construction includes some similarities to Noah’s ark, which included pitch that would allow it to float on the water.
The last part of the verse reveals the mother placing Moses in the basket and placing the basket “among the reeds by the river bank.” Unlike many movie portrayals of this event, the basket was strategically placed in the reeds where Egyptian women would pass. The baby was not allowed to drift downstream, at least not according to Scripture. There is no indication Moses floated any length down the Nile River, nor that he was abandoned to an uncertain fate. His mother clearly hoped a woman would come by and care for him—the fact that Moses’ sister is waiting and prepared with the right words is no coincidence (Exodus 2:7–8).
Exodus 2:1–10 describes the birth and early life of Moses. His mother defies the order to kill Hebrew boys and hides her son. Once he becomes too old to conceal, she places him in a basket on the Nile. Apparently, this was a deliberate attempt to have Moses adopted, as Moses’ older sister is stationed nearby, watching. Pharaoh’s daughter finds the baby, and winds up hiring Moses’ own mother to be his wet nurse. Once weaned, Moses is sent back to the Egyptian princess, gaining the benefits of a royal education and upbringing.
Amid an order from Pharaoh to murder newborn Hebrew boys, Moses’ mother places him in a basket along the side of the river, staging her daughter there to observe. The Egyptian king’s daughter sees the baby and has pity. Thanks to the presence of Moses’ sister, the princess winds up paying Moses’ own mother to wean him. After this, he is raised in the home of Egypt’s royal family. As an adult, Moses unsuccessfully attempts to hide his murder of an abusive Egyptian and flees to Midian as an exile. As Moses builds a family abroad, Israel cries out to God for rescue from the brutality of Egyptian slavery.