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July 1

Exodus 1, 15 – 17

Something to read

The King of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other Puah, ‘When you act as midwives to the Hebrew women, and see them on the birth stool, if it is a boy, kill him; but if it is a girl, she shall live.’ But the midwives feared God; they did not do as the King of Egypt commanded them, but they let the boys live.
New Revised Standard Version

Something to think about

Here in the earliest part of the Bible story is one of the greatest acts of civil disobedience that the world has ever seen. Here is the nursing profession at its best. So often the Lectionary ignores the bravery of these midwives.

When is it right to disobey an order? After the Second World War, the Nuremberg War Trials established that 'I was only following orders' was not a defence in law. The UN International Criminal Court now tries national and military leaders for crimes against humanity.

Dare we be like these midwives?

Something to do

Think about recent world events and the people willing to risk their lives to change the structures of the countries in which they live. How would we react if we were faced with similar challenges? Pray for those who did not live to see the changes made in those countries, and for those who are still risking their lives campaigning for changes to their homeland.

Something to pray

Let us pray for continued strength in word and deed, so that if we face a time of testing, we can do so with God's love, help and blessing.

And through our prayers we offer our support to those facing the weapons of oppressive regimes, the activists brave enough to speak for the many, as well as those living in fear of arrest and punishment, and the masses too afraid to say what they truly feel.

Today’s contributors are the Rev Michael Jackson, a retired URC minister, and his son Andy Jackson, Digital Content Manager for Christian Aid


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