Have each student choose one or two of the family trees depicting the relationship between Yitro, Moshe, Zipporah, Chovav, and Reuel (see the Flowchart for Yitro's Names) and explain how the commentator arrived at this conclusion.1 Which verses support the approach? Which verses are more difficult? How does the commentator deal with the difficulties? What assumptions is the commentator making along the way?
Have each student choose one of the commentators who discuss the issue of the Chronology of Chapter 18, and make a timeline showing when the exegete thinks each of the events of the chapter occurred in relationship to the giving of the Decalogue and building of the Tabernacle:
- Yitro's hearing about the Exodus in 18:1.
- Yitro's arrival and reunion with Moshe in 18:2-11.
- Yitro's sacrifices in 18:12.
- Yitro's observation of Moshe judging the people and his advice in 18:13-23.
- Moshe's implementation of Yitro's advice in 18:24-26.
- Yitro's departure in 18:27.
For the chosen opinion:
- Explain what is motivating this approach.
- List some of the pros and cons of the position.
- Point out at least one interesting ramification of this reading.
These are some samples.
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