1. There was a man descended from Levi who had taken a woman of Levi as his wife.
2. She conceived and gave birth to a son and, seeing what a fine child he was, she kept him hidden for three months.
3. When she could hide him no longer, she got a papyrus basket for him; coating it with bitumen and pitch, she put the child inside and laid it among the reeds at the River's edge.
4. His sister took up position some distance away to see what would happen to him.
5. Now Pharaoh's daughter went down to bathe in the river, while her maids walked along the riverside. Among the reeds she noticed the basket, and she sent her maid to fetch it.
6. She opened it and saw the child: the baby was crying. Feeling sorry for it, she said, 'This is one of the little Hebrews.'
7. The child's sister then said to Pharaoh's daughter, 'Shall I go and find you a nurse among the Hebrew women to nurse the child for you?'
8. 'Yes,' said Pharaoh's daughter, and the girl went and called the child's own mother.
9. Pharaoh's daughter said to her, 'Take this child away and nurse it for me. I shall pay you myself for doing so.' So the woman took the child away and nursed it.
10. When the child grew up, she brought him to Pharaoh's daughter who treated him like a son; she named him Moses 'because', she said, 'I drew him out of the water.'
11. It happened one day, when Moses was grown up, that he went to see his kinsmen. While he was watching their forced labour he also saw an Egyptian striking a Hebrew, one of his kinsmen.
12. Looking this way and that and seeing no one in sight, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand.
13. On the following day he came back, and there were two Hebrews, fighting. He said to the man who was in the wrong, 'What do you mean by hitting your kinsman?'
14. 'And who appointed you', the man retorted, 'to be prince over us and judge? Do you intend to kill me as you killed the Egyptian?' Moses was frightened. 'Clearly that business has come to light,' he thought.
15. When Pharaoh heard of the matter, he tried to put Moses to death, but Moses fled from Pharaoh. He went into Midianite territory and sat down beside a well.
16. Now there was a priest of Midian with seven daughters. They used to come to draw water and fill the troughs to water their father's flock.
17. Some shepherds came and drove them away, but Moses sprang to their help and watered their flock.
18. When they returned to their father Reuel, he said to them, 'Why are you back so early today?'
19. 'An Egyptian protected us from the shepherds,' they said, 'and he even drew water for us and watered the flock.'
20. 'And where is he?' he asked his daughters. 'Why did you leave the man there? Ask him to eat with us.'
21. Moses agreed to stay on there with the man, who gave him his daughter Zipporah in marriage.
22. She gave birth to a son, whom he named Gershom 'because', he said, 'I am an alien in a foreign land.'
23. During this long period the king of Egypt died. The Israelites, groaning in their slavery, cried out for help and from the depths of their slavery their cry came up to God.
24. God heard their groaning; God remembered his covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
25. God saw the Israelites and took note.