Shiphrah & Puah the Midwives Who Feared God
Updated: Jun 16
Word of the Day: Midwife
A woman who assists a woman in childbirth
We live in a culture or society where Christians think we must submit to the government instead of God. The times are not different from those days in Egypt; the government also gave edicts to their people the same as today. The Bible tells us in the book of Exodus that a decree was issued to kill the Hebrew boys as soon as they were born.
In this post, we will learn about two ladies, Shiphrah and Puah, with great courage and conviction, the courage we need nowadays. Courage is something that we have to reinforce in our lives, and it also has to show in our actions. Being Christian does not mean we are weak or have to live in fear; God has already given us victory at Calvary. These two ladies didn't have the Bible to read about the achievements (miracles) God had performed in the past, meaning they lived their lives by faith and not by sight. We do have the Bible and still doubt the wonders and miracles performed by God in the past.
These two ladies were Egyptian midwives Shiphrah's name means "to procreate," and Puah's name means "childbearing." According to Jewish historians, these two ladies were in charge of more than 500 midwives, which is why Pharaoh came directly to them so that they could give orders to the other midwives. Pharaoh wanted to use these ladies to wipe out the entire Jewish nation; Pharaoh was also Satan's tool who wished for the destruction of the woman's seed.
And the king of Egypt spake to the Hebrew midwives, of which the name of the one was Shiphrah, and the name of the other Puah:
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.
Satan tends to forget God's promise of redemption through Christ and loves to use people like Pharaoh to bring destruction; here we see the evidence. Satan knew God's plan, but he also thinks he could outsmart God, and sometimes we need to remind ourselves that God is in control of every situation and not be discouraged by the lies Satan plants in our minds. So, no matter how hard Satan tries to destroy God's plan, there would still be someone who trusts Him, like the two midwives.
And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
We don't know exactly if these midwives had converted to Judaism as they were Egyptians by birth, but the one thing we know is that they feared God. They decided not to obey their government and understood that God came first, and their faith made them make that huge decision. Persecution will come from many different angles, and sometimes it might not feel like persecution because our convictions and love for God will take us to the next step of obeying Him.
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?
Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.
The midwives risked their lives and families to preserve the Jewish nation. We don't know if they lied when they said the Jewish women were not the same as the Egyptian women. What we know for sure is that they helped the Jewish nation from becoming extinct. Remember that everyone has someone above them, meaning a boss, a god, or a law that has to be respected, but in this case, the midwives had it clear and knew whose rules to follow.
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 ere the midwives come in unto them.
20 Therefore God dealt well with the midwives: and the people multiplied, and waxed very mighty.
21 And it came to pass, because the midwives feared God, that he made them houses.
When Pharaoh heard those words from the midwives, he decided to change the plan, and the new plan was to drown all male Jewish babies in the Nile River. As you probably know, God will never run out of miracles, and here is where Baby Moses's story starts, which you can also find on this blog. It is beautiful to read about this story, but first and foremost, God called them by their names, so they are not just the midwives they are: Shiphrah and Puah.
And Pharaoh charged all his people, saying, Every son that is born ye shall cast into the river, and every daughter ye shall save alive.
Conclusion: After learning about Shiphrah & Puah I was deeply encouraged by their testimony, their yesterday's decision and obedience still impacting today's lives. I encourage you not to fear men but fear God, and remember that He is always in control.