Exodus 1:21
Parallel Verses
New International Version
And because the midwives feared God, he gave them families of their own.

King James Bible
And it came to pass, because the midwives feared God, that he made them houses.

Darby Bible Translation
And it came to pass, because the midwives feared God, that he made them houses.

World English Bible
It happened, because the midwives feared God, that he gave them families.

Young's Literal Translation
and it cometh to pass, because the midwives have feared God, that He maketh for them households;

Exodus 1:21 Parallel
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

He made them houses - Dr. Shuckford thinks that there is something wrong both in the punctuation and translation of this place, and reads the passage thus, adding the 21st to the 20th verse: "And they multiplied and waxed mighty; and this happened (ויהי vayehi) because the midwives feared God; and he (Pharaoh) made (להם lahem, masc.). them (the Israelites) houses; and commanded all his people, saying, Every son that is born, etc." The doctor supposes that previously to this time the Israelites had no fixed dwellings, but lived in tents, and therefore had a better opportunity of concealing their children; but now Pharaoh built them houses, and obliged them to dwell in them, and caused the Egyptians to watch over them, that all the male children might be destroyed, which could not have been easily effected had the Israelites continued to live in their usual scattered manner in tents. That the houses in question were not made for the midwives, but for the Israelites in general, the Hebrew text seems pretty plainly to indicate, for the pronoun להם lahem, to them, is the masculine gender; had the midwives been meant, the feminine pronoun להן lahen would have been used. Others contend that by making them houses, not only the midwives are intended, but also that the words mark an increase of their families, and that the objection taken from the masculine pronoun is of no weight, because these pronouns are often interchanged; see 1 Kings 22:17, where להם lahem is written, and in the parallel place, 2 Chronicles 18:16, להן lahen is used. So בהם bahem, in 1 Chronicles 10:7, is written בהן bahen, 1 Samuel 31:7, and in several other places. There is no doubt that God did bless the midwives, his approbation of their conduct is strictly marked; and there can be no doubt of his prospering the Israelites, for it is particularly said that the people multiplied and waxed very mighty. But the words most probably refer to the Israelites, whose houses or families were built up by an extraordinary in crease of children, notwithstanding the cruel policy of the Egyptian king. Vain is the counsel of man when opposed to the determinations of God! All the means used for the destruction of this people became in his hand instruments of their prosperity and increase. How true is the saying, If God be for us, who can be against us?

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

made them.

1 Samuel 2:35 And I will raise me up a faithful priest, that shall do according to that which is in my heart and in my mind...

1 Samuel 25:28 I pray you, forgive the trespass of your handmaid: for the LORD will certainly make my lord a sure house...

2 Samuel 7:11-13,27-29 And as since the time that I commanded judges to be over my people Israel, and have caused you to rest from all your enemies...

1 Kings 2:24 Now therefore, as the LORD lives, which has established me, and set me on the throne of David my father, and who has made me an house...

1 Kings 11:38 And it shall be, if you will listen to all that I command you, and will walk in my ways, and do that is right in my sight...

Psalm 37:3 Trust in the LORD, and do good; so shall you dwell in the land, and truly you shall be fed.

Psalm 127:1,3 Except the LORD build the house, they labor in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman wakes but in vain...

Proverbs 24:3 Through wisdom is an house built; and by understanding it is established:

Ecclesiastes 8:12 Though a sinner do evil an hundred times, and his days be prolonged, yet surely I know that it shall be well with them that fear God...

Jeremiah 35:2 Go to the house of the Rechabites, and speak to them, and bring them into the house of the LORD, into one of the chambers...

Four Shaping Centuries
'Now these are the names of the children of Israel, which came into Egypt: every man and his household came with Jacob. 2. Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah, 3. Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin, 4. Dan and Naphtali, Gad and Asher. 5. And all the souls that came out of the loins of Jacob were seventy souls: for Joseph was in Egypt already. 6. And Joseph died, and all his brethren, and all that generation. 7, And the children of Israel were fruitful, and increased abundantly, and multiplied, and waxed
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

But, as for that which is Written, that God did Good to the Hebrew...
32. But, as for that which is written, that God did good to the Hebrew midwives, and to Rahab the harlot of Jericho, [2444] this was not because they lied, but because they were merciful to God's people. That therefore which was rewarded in them was, not their deceit, but their benevolence; benignity of mind, not iniquity of lying. [2445] For, as it would not be marvellous and absurd if God on account of good works after done by them should be willing to forgive some evil works at another time before
St. Augustine—Against Lying

Cross References
Exodus 1:17
The midwives, however, feared God and did not do what the king of Egypt had told them to do; they let the boys live.

1 Samuel 2:35
I will raise up for myself a faithful priest, who will do according to what is in my heart and mind. I will firmly establish his priestly house, and they will minister before my anointed one always.

2 Samuel 7:11
and have done ever since the time I appointed leaders over my people Israel. I will also give you rest from all your enemies. "'The LORD declares to you that the LORD himself will establish a house for you:

2 Samuel 7:27
"LORD Almighty, God of Israel, you have revealed this to your servant, saying, 'I will build a house for you.' So your servant has found courage to pray this prayer to you.

1 Kings 2:24
And now, as surely as the LORD lives--he who has established me securely on the throne of my father David and has founded a dynasty for me as he promised--Adonijah shall be put to death today!"

1 Kings 11:38
If you do whatever I command you and walk in obedience to me and do what is right in my eyes by obeying my decrees and commands, as David my servant did, I will be with you. I will build you a dynasty as enduring as the one I built for David and will give Israel to you.

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