Fruitful Women: Gentleness in the Story of Moses
What do the following have in common?
- Pharoah’s daughter
Read on to learn how today’s fruit of the spirit, gentleness, relates to the topics outlined above.
According to Baker’s Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology, gentleness is defined as “sensitivity of disposition and kindness of behavior founded on strength and prompted by love.”
The woman who comes to mind when thinking about this definition along with the fruit of the spirit, gentleness, is Pharoah’s daughter. This is particularly evident when she opened the ark in which Moses’ mother Jochebed lovingly placed him. The scripture says Pharoah’s daughter had compassion on Moses even though she recognized him as one of the Hebrew children.
This happened at a period of time when Pharoah ordered the midwives to kill the Hebrew women's sons and let their daughters live.
According to God’s plan, Moses survived this ordeal. Scripture says that when Moses’ mother, Jochebed, could no longer hide him, she placed him in an ark in the river. The climax of the story peaks when Miriam, Moses’ sister, watches from afar to see if Moses will be OK. When Pharoah’s daughter finds Moses, Miriam asks her if she wishes her to get a Hebrew woman to nurse him.
Pharoah’s daughter likes the idea, and Miriam, of course, recruits Jochebed. Faithful Jochebed nurses her biological son Moses, and as he grew, she brought him back to Pharoah’s daughter who adopted Moses as her son.
Back to the definition of gentleness: “sensitivity of disposition and kindness of behavior founded on strength and prompted by love.” Miriam, in looking out for the welfare of her baby brother, definitely displays gentleness. Pharoah’s daughter truly exhibits gentleness because scripture says she showed compassion on Moses when her eyes laid upon him. She was not biased because he was a Hebrew. She saw a beautiful baby and showed sensitivity and strength, as scripture explicitly uses the word, compassion in describing her feelings.
When Jochebed returns Moses to Pharoah’s daughter, scripture says Moses became Pharoah’s daughter’s son. This is a beautiful story of adoption.
Jochebed made some tough decisions. She wanted to give her son a life filled with opportunity. I love how the Lord gave her the ability to nurse him as an infant; however, her initial decision to place Moses in the ark in the river took an enormous amount of emotional strength in trying to spare his life.
During the month of November, we celebrate National Adoption Awareness month. We must remember that spiritually we are adopted as outlined in Ephesians 1:5-7: “Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved. In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.”
Just as Pharoah’s daughter did not show any bias toward Moses, the Lord gives us grace through His redeeming blood. So, as we become more aware of adoption throughout the month of November, let's reflect upon the gentleness of Miriam, Pharoah’s daughter, and Jochebed. There are many children in need of the same love and gentleness today. Volunteering our resources, such as time, money, or things that these children may need, can all portray the fruit of the spirit, gentleness. When we think about it, we are all adopted in some way.
Dare to Share Verse of the Day
Psalm 30:4-5 - Sing unto the Lord, O ye saints of his, and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness. For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.
This article has undergone ministry review and approval.