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An Ark on the NileBeginning of the Book of Exodus$
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Keith Bodner

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198784074

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198784074.001.0001

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Old Promise, New King

Old Promise, New King

(p.40) 2 Old Promise, New King
An Ark on the Nile

Keith Bodner

Oxford University Press

The opening sequence of Exodus 1 enumerates the prolific growth of the people of Israel in the land of Egypt, in accordance with God’s promise to Abraham that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars in the evening sky. Yet this promise is threatened with the emergence of a new king—given no name or any details of his provenance—whose insidious speech shortly results in the enslavement of the Israelites. Despite the new king’s efforts to curb the Israelite growth, they continue to increase, but so does the new king’s hostility, and the burdens of the Israelites increase.

Keywords:   promise to Abraham, anonymity in characters, prolific growth, enslavement, taskmasters

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