Today’s new surah, “The Story,” derives its name from the “story” of Moses that is retold here.  A few days ago we had some stories about Moses and Solomon that were not included in the Bible, but today with just a few new details this is the same story of Moses we know from the Bible.

Moses is born, a Hebrew baby boy in Egypt where Hebrew baby boys are “slaughtered” (28:4).  In order to save him, his mother places Moses in the river where he is rescued by the murderous Pharaoh’s own daughter who adopts Moses as her own son.  Nonetheless, God worked it out that Moses was reunited to his mother as his “wet nurse” (28:12-13).

When Moses has reached adulthood, he inadvertently killed a man as Moses tried to separate two men who were fighting.  This becomes well-known, and when Moses tries to break up another fight and one of the man fears that Moses will kill him too, Moses flees to the region of Midian.

In Midian, Moses is given great hospitality from a “father” (28:23), even to the point of being given one of the man’s daughters as a wife.  One day, while traveling in the area, Moses happened upon the burning bush where he meets God, “the Lord of the Worlds” (28:30).  Moses is sent back to Egypt by this God with a staff that turns into a snake and a hand that can become leprous and then be healed. Pharaoh, though, only “behaved arrogantly” refusing to respond to Moses’ message.  Thus, he and his army were thrown in the sea (28:39-40).

Today’s passage ends with this summary of Moses’ life:

We have Moses the Scripture to provide insight, guidance, and mercy for people, so that they might take heed.  (28:43)

It seems Moses will serve as a model for the work Muhammad is being called to, as described in the rest of the surah.