Some Notes:

The English language has no gender-neutral pronouns. So when the words man, he, him, etc are used, they mean "Generic human being" unless the context specifically says otherwise. Only women get words devoted just to them.

Thou, Thee, and Thine are singular pronouns. You and Your are plural in the 16th Century English the King James Bible was translated into. This actually makes the message clearer than our habit of using "you" as both a singular and a plural.

In many scriptures I have changed the King James (English) spelling to American spelling (labour=labor, for example. I understand those in England still spell it with a u). Also, in some scriptures I have changed the "-eth" to a simple "s." Spelling standards weren't set in English until the mid 1800's, well after the translating of the KJV. So I see no problem with making these simple changes that don't affect the meaning of the scripture but make it easier for our modern mouths and ears to deal with.

Exodus 1- Hard Slavery

1 Now these are the names of the children of Israel, which came into Egypt; every man and his household came with Jacob.

Moses begins with a review of the last part of Genesis. He reminds us how the descendants of Israel got into Egypt in the first place; they came down during the great famine- 2298AM (1748BC).

2 Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah,

3 Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin,

4 Dan, and Naphtali, Gad, and Asher.

5 And all the souls that came out of the loins of Jacob were seventy souls: for Joseph was in Egypt already.

When you add up Jacob, His twelve sons and one daughter, and all their children and grandchildren who went to Egypt (including Joseph who arrived some twenty years before everyone else, and Joseph’s two sons who were born there) you get seventy people. This does not count daughters-in-law or servants.

Who was the pharaoh that Joseph dealt with?

There are two candidates for who this pharaoh was, and as a result who Joseph was in Egyptian records.

The first is named Imhotep (called in the records “son of Ptah.” Ptah was the Creator God) under Pharaoh Djoser (which might mean “Joseph’s Pharaoh” though we aren’t really sure since we still have a hard time reading Hieroglyphics).

There are several inscriptions throughout Egypt telling the story of seven years of plenty and seven years of famine under Djoser. Now, since each of these inscriptions were written centuries after they claim the event happened, some of the details are a bit skewed. But they are all remarkably like the biblical account right down to the part where the priesthood was exempted from the tax and the rest of the country was put under the pharaoh’s ownership, all inspired by a dream of pharaoh. Imhotep was born a commoner who rose to power by solving this problem sometime about midway into Djoser’s reign.

The inscription on the base of the statue of Djoser at the Step Pyramid was inscribed with the names of Djoser and of "Imhotep, Chancellor of the King of Lower Egypt, Chief under the King, Administrator of the Great Palace, Hereditary Lord, High Priest of Heliopolis (On), Imhotep the Builder, the Sculptor, the Maker of Stone Vases...".

Joseph and Imhotep both died at 110, and Imhotep’s coffin is empty (Joseph’s bones were carried into Canaan and buried after the Exodus. This isn’t proof in itself since a lot of coffins in Egypt are empty).

Since Joseph married the daughter of the Priest of On, it would be very probable for him to inherit that title.

Psalms 105:16-22 tells us that Joseph taught Pharaoh’s men wisdom and he did live more than 60 years after the great famine, so had a lot of time to learn new things:

16 Moreover he called for a famine upon the land: he brake the whole staff of bread.

17 He sent a man before them, even Joseph, who was sold for a servant:

18 Whose feet they hurt with fetters: he was laid in iron:

19 Until the time that his word came: the word of the LORD tried him.

20 The king sent and loosed him; even the ruler of the people, and let him go free.

21 He made him lord of his house, and ruler of all his substance:

22 To bind his princes at his pleasure; and teach his senators wisdom.

This Imhotep is known as a great physician and wise man in Egyptian writings. It is believed that a number of wisdom writings from Ancient Egypt (similar to Solomon’s) were actually written by this Imhotep (though other authors signed their names to them at later dates). This would make sense since Joseph received his wisdom from the same place Solomon did.

On the other hand, we have records of a different visor later on, Mentuhotep, who also did great things.

He served under Senusret I (Sesostris I) during a time of great peace, building and prosperity, though there are records of a severe drought.

Mentuhotep was given the title of “overseer of all royal works” which does sound a lot like Joseph’s job, especially since it appears he had the same power as the king. The people were commanded to bow before him and there is even a canal in Egypt built at this time that still has the name “Joseph’s Canal.” This is the time trade with Palestine was initiated, too. And we have paintings of semantic immigrants during his famine.

So which visor was Joseph? The timeline for Egypt is being revised as more and more evidence comes to light, but we can’t rely on it yet. I see three possibilities:

1) Abraham lived at the time of Menes and Joseph is Imhotep. This fits the timing between Abraham and Joseph best. Or

2) Menes and Djoser (Imenhotep’s pharaoh) were contemporaries, with Abraham living at the same time (maybe he was Imenhotep? Actually, Ham is a distinct possibility since his brother Shem certainly lived long enough to fill the role, and Ham would have been helping his son rule with the knowledge he brought from before the Flood.) and Joseph was Mentuhotep under Sesostris I. This fits the timing between Joseph and Moses best. Or

3) Djoser and Sesostris I were the same man with two different names (pharaohs tended to have lots of names), making Imenhotep and Mentuhotep the same man. (Their descriptions are remarkably alike.) This would take the biggest rewriting of the timeline and is entirely my own idea born out of the frustration of every article I read having a different opinion and all of the evidence for either option sounding equally plausible. Unfortunately, we have statues of both pharaohs and they don’t look anything alike, but it would solve a lot of problems.

The time between Imhotep’s third dynasty and Mentuhotep’s (and Moses’s)12th still needs a great deal of reworking, deleting redundant kings, returning local governors to their proper place instead of calling them pharaohs, eliminating the 1st intermediate period, (“There was no First Intermediate Period. The dark ages of the first Intermediate Period have been confused with the dark ages of the 2nd Intermediate Period. We are in the dark about them.” – David Down, “Unwrapping the Pharaohs.”) and putting many of the dynasties ruling at the same time instead of one after another. There are many who are working on this right now.

Let’s note that Egypt had chariots in Joseph's time. This means that historians were wrong about the Hyksos introducing them since everyone places the Hyksos after Joseph, no matter which pharaoh was his pharaoh.

6 And Joseph died, and all his brethren, and all that generation.

Time passed and life is fatal. No one gets out of it alive.

7 And the children of Israel were fruitful, and increased abundantly, and multiplied, and waxed exceeding mighty; and the land was filled with them.

God has always equated babies with blessings. He has now blessed the descendants of Israel abundantly.

With the average, pre-birth-control family of seven children per family, those original twelve patriarchs could easily have reached more than 30,000 by the birth of Moses (about four generations). If they had a higher average than normal (as this verse implies) their numbers will be much higher.

8 Now there arose up a new king over Egypt, which knew not Joseph.

God told Abraham that four-hundred years after The Covenant was established with Isaac, his descendants would come back into Canaan’s land. (See Genesis 21:13 or “The Wonders of Bible Chronology” by Phillip Mauro.)

From the time of that promise (about AM2107 or 1939BC) to Jacob going into Egypt was almost two-hundred years (AM2298 or 1748BC). From that time to the death of Joseph was 71 years (Joseph was 30 when he stood before Pharaoh 9 years before Jacob’s coming to Egypt, and died at age 110. So he died about AH2369 or 1677BC).

Math tells us Moses was born about 64 years after Joseph’s death (He was 80 at the time of the Exodus and the Bible says in several places they left Egypt 400 years after the promise was given. So from the promise in 2107 plus 400 years minus 80 years equals Moses being born at 2433 (1613BC).

This “new king” was likely a whole new dynasty; probably the 12th.

9 And he said unto his people, “Look, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we:

10 “Come on, let us deal wisely with them; lest they multiply, and it come to pass, that, when there is a war, they join also unto our enemies, and fight against us, and so leave the land.”

Egypt owns all the land of Canaan and the surrounding regions due to the results of the great famine during Joseph’s time. Though the city-states are self-governing, they are technically under the control of Egypt.

The Philistines were a very war-like people who lived between Canaan and Egypt. They were descendants of Ham (cousins, actually, to the Egyptians). The Pharaoh had reason to be worried because of their incredible war-like nature. They were a definite threat to Egypt’s sovereignty over the region.

Josephus (1st century AD who had access to many historical records that were lost in the burning of the Library of Alexandria.) wrote that the prophet/advisors to the king had seen signs in the stars and elsewhere to warn them that there was a significant man fixing to be born to the Israelites who would conquer Egypt.

Anyway, they are afraid of Israel and also see them as a large work force that can be used for their benefit.

11 Therefore they did set over them taskmasters to afflict them with their burdens. And they built for Pharaoh treasure cities, Pithom and Raamses.

The city of Raameses is mentioned in Genesis 47:11 as one of the cities Joseph placed his family in. The name of the city Raameses is why early scholars placed the events of the Exodus at the time of Rameses II (18th dynasty).

However, that makes it so there is absolutely no other archeological evidence coordinating the Bible with Egyptian history, as well as contradicting later historical information from Assyria.

If you ignore this verse and lay Bible history alongside archeological history, you get a perfect correlation of evidence with Egyptian history being a lot shorter than is commonly believed.

This would place Rameses II as the Pharaoh that sacked Jerusalem in the time of Solomon’s son, Rehoboam. Since Rameses had accounts of him doing just that in the exact order of cities mentioned in the Bible for King Shishack (likely Israel’s name for Rameses, not the one he was known by at home), it is logical to put him there instead of with Moses.

“Rameses” means “child of the sun” and would likely have been a common name in this country of sun worshipers. We do know that this site was occupied long before King Rameses (as in Joseph settled his family there), so the city could not have been named after him, but possibly the other way around.

Or later editors may simply have changed the name so people would know which cities were being discussed (much like my town was originally known as China Town, but biographies written today call it by its modern name, even when referring to its China-Town-period.)

12 But the more they opressed them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were grieved because of the children of Israel.

13 And the Egyptians made the children of Israel to serve without mercy:

14 And they made their lives bitter with hard bondage, in mortar, and in brick, and in all manner of service in the field: all their service, wherein they made them serve, was without mercy.

15 And the king of Egypt spoke to the Hebrew midwives, of which the name of the one was Shiphrah, and the name of the other Puah:

16 And he said, “When ye do the office of a midwife to the Hebrew women, and see them upon the stools; if it be a son, then ye shall kill him: but if it be a daughter, then she shall live.”

Most women have birthed in a vertical position until the 1800's. At that time the French King decided he wanted to watch his mistresses give birth, so they put the woman in the position best for viewing. This was also the most comfortable position for doctors. When the Aristocracy found out, why, everyone had to lay on their backs to birth instead of the “vulgar” squat women had done throughout history. As a result, the Aristocracy of Europe began having trouble birthing babies while the “vulgar” peasants continued to birth with relative ease.

Today nearly every Hollywood production involving birth shows the woman on her back (I even saw one cartoon movie that had a cow on her back!) This is actually a bad position in most cases as gravity can’t help pull the baby out and the human pelvis is long and narrow in this position (as opposed to being short and wide in the squat). Anyway…

A birth stool is a short, moon-shaped stool, often with handles, that simply supports mom in the squat so her legs don’t tire out.

Men not only did not attend births regularly until the 1900's, many cultures believed it to be bad luck to have a man in the room when Baby was born. Attending births was the domain of women (“midwife” means “with women”) until the takeover of doctors and hospitals in the early 1900’s. The only reason they became interested in more than emergency cases then was because of the money involved. Birth was considered too uneventful for male doctors to bother with until then. It was not looked at as a medical emergency, just a normal biological function.

There is a moment after birth when the midwife is cleaning out the nose so baby can breathe, that it would not be difficult to check Baby’s sex and then suffocate him. The parents would never know what happened.

Siphrah and Puah were likely the head midwives, since a population of 30,000 people would need a whole lot more than two women to help them have babies.

17 But the midwives feared God, and did not as the king of Egypt commanded them, but saved the men children alive.

18 And the king of Egypt called for the midwives, and said unto them, “Why have ye done this thing, and have saved the men children alive?”

19 And the midwives said unto Pharaoh, “Because the Hebrew women are not as the Egyptian women; for they are lively, and are delivered before the midwives come in unto them.”

This was possibly only a half lie. As slaves, the Hebrew women would likely have been in better physical condition making them much stronger and birth easier.

However, it really sounds like the midwives made it to most births and are lying to Pharaoh. Though Jesus tells us liars will go to hell, lying to protect the innocent from murder doesn’t make you a habitual liar and is a far different thing than lying to protect or profit yourself.

20 Therefore God dealt well with the midwives: and the people multiplied, and became very mighty.

21 And it came to pass, because the midwives feared God, that He gave them families of their own.

God blessed these women for protecting the babies.

We don’t really know if these women were Jews or Egyptian midwives that attended Hebrew births. They appear to have knowledge of both Egyptian and Hebrew women in birth.

God loves babies and appreciated these women’s care for them. In fact, I don’t know of any other place in the Bible where God gives women "houses," families of their own like this. The houses/families are in the men’s names.

Some Jewish legends say Siphrah was Jocabed, Moses’ mom. We have no way of knowing, but it’s an interesting thought.

You know, these women delivered the deliverer, Moses. They were as much responsible for the Exodus as he was. History doesn’t often celebrate the women in historical situations, but the fact is every time a man does great things, he had a mom who taught him. Of course, every time a man commits great evil, we can be sure he had a mom to teach him, too. Women are every bit as important in this world. They just don’t generally need the public acclaim that men do.

22 And Pharaoh charged all his people, saying, “Every son that is born ye shall throw into the river, and every daughter ye shall save alive.”

Since he can’t get the midwives to do what he wants stealthfully, he will just make an open command.

Kind of a stupid command when you think about it. It would have been better to kill the girls off, since one man can have several wives and make up for the lack of men in one generation. Women can’t do the reverse.