Moses and the Angels

Moses and the Angels

by Ileene Sobel, Mark H. Podwal
     
 

Moses. Teacher, lawgiver, rescuer of his people. According to ancient sources, it was the angels - God's winged messengers - who protected Moses throughout his 120 years. The Angel Gabriel compelled the infant Moses to cry out to Pharaoh's daughter from his hiding place among the reeds. The Angel Michael appeared to Moses in the burning bush, allowing him to hear the… See more details below

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Overview

Moses. Teacher, lawgiver, rescuer of his people. According to ancient sources, it was the angels - God's winged messengers - who protected Moses throughout his 120 years. The Angel Gabriel compelled the infant Moses to cry out to Pharaoh's daughter from his hiding place among the reeds. The Angel Michael appeared to Moses in the burning bush, allowing him to hear the voice of God for the first time. The Angel of the Wilderness led Moses and his people safely through the desert. And thousands of angels from the Seven Heavens accompanied Moses down the mountain to bring the Ten Commandments to the Children of Israel. Moses and the Angels is a powerful story, simply and movingly told, with paintings that evoke its mystery and grace.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Rarely has the story of Moses been presented with such grace and economy as in this striking book. As the title indicates, in her retelling of Moses' life, Sobel, a book editor who has won numerous prizes including the PEN/Roger Klein Award, emphasizes the Jewish prophet's many encounters or intersections with angels, good and evil. The first angel to manifest is the Angel of Dreams, who shows Pharaoh an image that foretells Moses' birth; the last is the Angel Semalion, who announces Moses' death, causing the angels in heaven to weep "as never before." In between, Sobel conjures a full celestial host--including, perhaps most memorably, the Angel of Death, "with a serpent's head and thousands of eyes"--that lends this account the potent air of a "legend," as Wiesel says in his introduction, that is "magical, thus mystical, evolving on the other side of reality." Sobel's prose, strong and direct, is perfectly balanced by the numerous, beautiful and evocative paintings by Podwal (The Book of Tens, etc.). Their light yet bold images in supple colors--luminous gold, azure blue, pomegranate--give great lift to the storytelling. The result is a book that evokes ancient truth while displaying considerable charm. Of appeal to both adults and children, this volume is highly recommended to those interested in seeing a familiar story with fresh eyes. A welcome alternative to the many spin-offs of the current Dreamworks film Prince of Egypt, the book deserves a wide readership. (Mar.)
School Library Journal
Gr 2-4-In this embellished story of Moses, legions of angels and archangels are by his side from his birth, which is lit by both the sun and moon, through his entry into heaven, lifted up by Michael, Gabriel, and Zagzagel. Each well-known phase of his life-his rescue by Pharaoh's daughter, his escape from Egypt after killing a cruel overseer, his marriage to Zipporah, the burning bush, the plagues, the parting of the Red Sea, the wandering in the wilderness, and the receipt of the Ten Commandments-is enriched by fabulous details of angel activity and accompanied by additional miracles in the best tradition of storytelling about holy people. Written in a sprightly style and illustrated in a simple, flat technique with imaginative, eerie, brightly colored pictures of a purple pharaoh, peach-colored scorpions in the desert, an evil-looking golden calf, a bright blue Balaam's ass, etc., this is an entertaining and unusual addition to standard versions of Moses's life.-Patricia Pearl Dole, formerly at First Presbyterian School, Martinsville, VA Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
In a collection that shows religion brushed with mystery, Sobel retells the stories of Moses, who is always surrounded by angels, his life washed in magic, miracles, and exaggerations. Derived, according to an introduction by Elie Wiesel, from biblical commentaries, the tales cover familiar ground (Moses's adoption by the pharaoh's daughter, the plagues, the freeing of Israel, and the years in the desert) and more fantastic realms, with tours through the seven heavens, visions of the future, and battles among the angels, who guide and protect Moses at every stage of his life. By turns serious and delightfully eccentric, these unusual renderings of the old stories are matched by Podwal's iconic, vibrant paintings. It's an entertaining volume, surely destined for applications beyond the obvious religious ones. (Folklore. 8-12) .

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780385326124
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
02/09/1999
Pages:
80
Product dimensions:
7.54(w) x 8.79(h) x 0.46(d)
Age Range:
3 Months

Read an Excerpt

God told Moses to threaten Pharaoh, to say he would turn the waters of the Nile into blood unless the Hebrew slaves were freed. When Pharaoh refused, Aaron raised his rod and struck the waters. Moses would not do this himself, since it was the river that had saved him as an infant.

Suddenly, all the water in Egypt turned thick and red, not only in the river but also in every pitcher and cup. God met each refusal to free the Children of Israel with another plague. Only the Hebrews and one Egyptian woman, Pharaoh's daughter, were spared.

After the plague of blood, frogs swarmed over the land.

Dust turned to lice.

Lions, wolves and bears attacked every home.

Pestilence killed all the cattle, horses, camels and sheep.

Boils broke out on everyone's skin.

Fiery hail struck down all the trees.

Locusts with the jaws of lions ate every leaf and blade of grass till nothing green was left in the land.

A darkness that rose from hell made it impossible to see or even to move.

Then, near midnight, God brought the tenth plague. The Angel of Death struck down all the firstborn of Egypt.

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