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Holman Bible Dictionary

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Additional Resources
• Easton's Bible Dictionary
• International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
Hebrew - midwife, give birth the midwife, labor the midwife

Woman who assists in the delivery of a child (Exodus 1:15-21). The duties of the midwife likely included cutting the umbilical cord, washing and salting the babe, and wrapping the child in cloths (Ezekiel 16:4). The civil disobedience of the Hebrew midwives Siphrah and Puah confounded Pharaoh's plan to exterminate male Hebrews for a time (Exodus 1:15-21). Their faithfulness was rewarded with families of their own (Exodus 1:21), suggesting that childless women frequently served as midwives. The women of Ruth 4:14-17 and 1 Samuel 4:20 were likely serving as midwives.

Copyright Statement
These dictionary topics are from the Holman Bible Dictionary, published by Broadman & Holman, 1991. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman.

Bibliography Information
Butler, Trent C. Editor.. "Entry for 'MIDWIFE'". "Holman Bible Dictionary".
<>. 1991.


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