Moses (Hebrew: מֹשֶׁה, Moshe Mōšéh Moše ; Arabic: موسى Mūsā ) was, according to the Hebrew Bible and the Qur'an, a religious leader, lawgiver and prophet, to whom the authorship of the Torah is traditionally attributed. Also called Moshe Rabbenu in Hebrew (מֹשֶׁה רַבֵּנוּ, Lit. "Moses our Teacher/Rabbi"), he is the most important prophet in Judaism, and is also considered an important prophet in Christianity and Islam, as well as a number of other faiths.
The existence of Moses as well as the veracity of the Exodus story is disputed amongst archaeologists and Egyptologists, with experts in the field of biblical criticism citing logical inconsistencies, new archaeological evidence, historical evidence, and related origin myths in Canaanite culture. Other historians maintain that the biographical details, and Egyptian background, attributed to Moses imply the existence of a historical political and religious leader who was involved in the consolidation of the Hebrew tribes in Canaan towards the end of the Bronze Age.
According to the Book of Exodus, Moses was born in a time when his people, the Children of Israel, were increasing in number and the Egyptian Pharaoh was worried that they might help Egypt's enemies. Moses' Hebrew mother, Jochebed, hid him when the Pharaoh ordered all newborn Hebrew boys to be killed, and the child was adopted as a foundling by the Egyptian royal family. After killing an Egyptian slave-master, Moses fled across the Red Sea to Midian where he encountered the God of Israel in the form of a "burning bush". God sent Moses to request the release of the Israelites. After the Ten Plagues, Moses led the Exodus of the Israelites out of Egypt and across the Red Sea, after which they based themselves at Mount Sinai, where Moses received the Ten Commandments. After 40 years of wandering in the desert, Moses died within sight of the Promised Land.
Rabbinical Judaism calculated a lifespan of Moses corresponding to 1391–1271 BCE; Christian tradition has tended to assume an earlier date.
Famous quotes containing the word moses:
“Youre in a hopped-up, show-off stage. Get off it! Dont be Moses leading your lunatics to the Pulitzer Prize!”
—Samuel Fuller (b. 1911)
“Institutions of higher education in the United States are products of Western society in which masculine values like an orientation toward achievement and objectivity are valued over cooperation, connectedness and subjectivity.”
—Yolanda Moses (b. 1946)
“Go down, Moses
Way down in Egypt land,
Tell ole Pharaoh,
To let my people go.”
—Unknown. Go Down, Moses (l. 14)