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Two Faithful Women
by Gail Slawson
Exodus 1:17 “But the midwives feared God.”
A few years ago I embarked on a two year journey to read through the Bible again. Traveling from Genesis into Exodus, two names suddenly appeared on the printed page—two names recorded nowhere else in the Bible, two obscure names, two names of women. How important are these two women who have their names written in God’s Word?
Further study reveals Shiphrah and Puah were midwives, women who assisted in the birth of the babies of the Hebrew women. Most likely they were older women and the representatives of their profession. During their time in Egypt, the Children of Israel grew greatly in number and strength and Pharaoh felt threatened and became fearful. In an attempt to curtail their growth he ordered the midwives to kill all Hebrew boys at birth. Instead of being the ones who were looked up to for their skill and were trusted to take great care in seeing that the lives of these babies were preserved, they were suddenly thrust into the position of being executioners, deceitful and untrustworthy. But these two women who “feared God,” refused to obey such a law. They reverenced God and obeyed Him rather than man (Exodus 1:17). “They obviously understood that children were a gift from God and that murder was wrong.” (John MacArthur) Like the apostles in Acts 5:29 who said, “We must obey God rather than men,” these midwives had the courage to stand alone and do what was right.
Shiphrah and Puah were ordinary women who devoutly did their humble job, and yet they were used of God to preserve and save a nation that the King of Egypt desired to suppress. Do you have a desire to serve God? Whatever role God has given you to perform in this life, do it faithfully and obediently with love and care and God will bless. In fact, as we read on in the story, we see where it says that God looked favorably on the midwives. Exodus 1:20 says, “Therefore, God dealt well with the midwives,” and verse 21 says, “Because the midwives feared God, He established households for them.” God built them up into families, blessed their children, and prospered them in what they did.
What a wonderful example these two midwives are to us to be obedient. God’s Word tells us in Ecclesiastes 9:10:
“Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might…”
Again God’s Word says,
“Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.” Colossians 3:17
Enjoy your work, finding pleasure in it as you honor God and are used for His purpose.
Gail is a 68 year old wife, mother and grandmother. She attended church all her life, but never saw herself as a lost sinner in need of a Savior until she was 28 years old. She has praised Him ever since. Gail’s daily prayer is: “But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Galatians 6:14) Follow Gail’s blog, BibleEncouragement.org.