The second book in the Bible is called Exodus. In order to understand the book of Exodus, it is important to understand the life of Joseph.

REVIEW:  The Life of Joseph Lesson 5

  •  When Joseph was sold as a slave by his brothers, to what country was he taken?  Genesis 37:28
  • Eventually, Joseph interpreted a dream for Pharaoh. As a result, what did Pharaoh do?  Genesis 41:38-40
  • Joseph’s brothers came to buy food because of the great famine. When Joseph revealed himself to his brothers, what did he tell them to say to their father?
    Genesis 45:4-11

Between Exodus 1:5 and Exodus 1:7, 400 years have passed and a new Pharoah rules Egypt who did not know Joseph. Joseph’s family has grown from 70 to more than 1 million people. They are no longer guests of Pharoah, but are his slaves.

In the book of Exodus, we meet a very important man named Moses.

Bible Reading: Exodus 1-3:15

Fill in the blanks with these words: slaves | name | died | increased | burning

After Joseph, his brothers and all that generation __________, the next generation greatly __________ in number and the new Pharoah made them _________.

One day, Moses saw a __________ bush. God spoke to Moses from this bush and told him to go to Egypt and lead the people out. Moses asked God an important question: “What is your __________?” This is what God said to Moses: “I AM WHO I AM.”

Discussion

Every culture has different ways of giving names. Traditionally in the United States a woman legally changes her maiden name to her husband’s family name. Children also take the family name of their father. The given name is considered the first name and the family name (aka surname) is the last name. Most people also have a middle name.

Bible names, such as Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Rebecca, Sarah or Abigail are common in America. Family names of the first European immigrants were often based on their occupation, for example “baker” or “smith”.  Another common source of names has been from the home country of immigrants and has richly diversified names found in America.

In the Bible, names and their meanings were very important.

  1. If someone asked you, “what is your name?”, what would you say?
  2. What does your name mean?
  3. Read Exodus 3:14. God said, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: I AM has sent me to you.” What do you understand about the meaning of those words? What was God saying?

New Testament Reading: John 8:58

In the book of John, Jesus is talking with the Jewish religious leaders. They were discussing Abraham, the father of the Jewish faith, who lived 2,000 years before these events.

Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, before Abraham was, I AM!” (John 8:58).

After Jesus made this statement, the Bible says, “At this, they [the Jewish religious leaders] picked up stones to stone Him, but Jesus hid Himself, slipping away from the temple grounds.”

Why do you think the Jewish leaders were so angry about what Jesus was saying that they wanted to kill him? What was Jesus saying?

Word List

  • EXODUS means to depart or to leave (as in the word “exit”). It is an exciting book that tells the miraculous return of the Israelites (the children of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob) to their homeland and how the people of Israel or Jews established the worship of one God.
  • aka – abbreviation for “also known as”
  • smith – the most common family name in most of the English-speaking world. From an English surname meaning “metal worker, blacksmith”, derived from Old English smitan “to smite, to hit”
  • Israelites – descendants of Abraham, Isaac & Jacob aka “Israel”
  • Jewish faith – belief in one God
  • bondage – to be a servant by force
  • New Testament – the second part of the Holy Bible that records the life and teachings of Jesus, his early followers and what it means to live a Christian life 
  • “I AM.” “I AM” is very significant. God was saying He is always present – in the past, present and the future. God is with you in the now. God was telling Moses that He has existed since before time began. He has no beginning and no end and that He never changes.

For further reading: 

What does it mean when a person adds the words “in Jesus’ name” at the end of their prayer?  “What praying in Jesus’ name means”