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Why did God let the israelites become slaves?



      

Exodus 1:1 - 22

ESV - 1 These are the names of the sons of Israel who came to Egypt with Jacob, each with his household: 2 Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah.

Clarify Share Report Asked 7 days ago Mini Bernadine Morgan

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Mini Tim Maas Retired Quality Assurance Specialist with the U.S. Army
The descendants of Jacob (numbering only seventy people at the time) originally journeyed to Egypt as a source of food in response to a famine that was occurring in the land of Canaan (Palestine).

The Egyptians initially allowed the Israelites to settle peaceably in Egypt because of the favor in which Joseph (who had preceded the rest of his family to Egypt as a result of his jealous brothers selling him into slavery there) was held by the Egyptian pharaoh. Thus, their initial settlement was an act of mercy on Egypt's part, and an example of God providing for the descendants of Jacob (also known as Israel) during the time of famine, and also allowing them to grow into a great nation under conditions of favor and protection (at least, initially) from the Egyptians. (These events are recounted in Genesis 37-50.)

However, after hundreds of years, the Israelite population in Egypt had grown to such an extent that a later pharaoh regarded them as a threat to his rule. He therefore placed them under conditions of slavery, from which God freed them through the calling of Moses, as related in Exodus 1-14.

Although the responsibility for Israel's enslavement thus rested on Egypt, God allowed it in order to ultimately demonstrate to both the Egyptians and the Israelites His identity and power as the only true God, which provided the basis for the entire nation of Israel (numbering hundreds of thousands of people by that time) worshiping Him from then on as their God, and obeying the Law that He handed down to them through Moses.

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