Other books include NY Times Bestsellers Walking the Bible, Abraham, and Where God was Born
Host of the PBS series Walking the
Award-winning journalist and speaker
Frequent commentator on National Public Radio, CNN and Fox News
Married, twin daughters
Bruce Feiler: Moses, An American Founding Father
FINDING MOSES IN AMERICAN HISTORY
On a trip to visit his in-laws on Cape Cod, Bruce Feiler’s family stopped and visited Plymouth where he took a tour of the Mayflower II. One of the reenactors read a passage from Exodus 14, which tells the story of Moses and how he told the Israelites, “Hold your peace! The Lord shall fight for you.” This passage was read while the pilgrims were crossing from England to the new land. Bruce thought, 'Moses, on board the Mayflower?'
When Bruce took another trip to visit his parents in Savannah, GA, he went to his childhood synagogue. There he saw a letter that George Washington wrote a few weeks into his presidency that made reference to Moses and the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt. Bruce visited his sister in Philadelphia and went to the Liberty Bell. The quote on the face of the bell is from Leviticus 25, which God gave Moses on Mount Sinai, “Proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof.”
Upon more research, Bruce found that this was a common theme – various influential American historical figures comparing themselves to Moses. He found that Christopher Columbus compared himself to Moses when he sailed in 1492. The pilgrims, arriving in Massachusetts in 1620, likened themselves to the Israelites escaping slavery from Egypt, with King James as the pharaoh. Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and John Adams proposed that Moses be on the seal of the United States in 1776. Harriet Tubman adopted Moses’ name on the Underground Railroad. “Go Down, Moses” became the national anthem of American slaves and the Exodus “the sound track of the Underground Railroad.” The Statue of Liberty was molded in Moses’ honor – the tablets she holds and rays of light on her crown were directly taken from Moses. Martin Luther King, Jr. likened himself to Moses in a speech he gave the night before his assassination. Even the creators of Superman modeled their superhero after Moses by having the infant Superman, whose planet is facing extinction, be transported to another place and he later uses his powers to help others.
Bruce says Moses could be considered a true Founding Father of America.
Bruce Feiler is a well known commentator and author of several New York Times best selling books. His book Abraham explores the man who is considered the founding ancestor of Jews, Christians, and Muslims. Where God was Born retraces the Bible through Israel, Iran, and Iraq. And his book Walking the Bible takes readers on a journey through the first five books of the Hebrew Bible, or the Pentateuch. Just as Bruce has traveled extensively to research his other books, he has traveled across America to study firsthand how far reaching Moses’ influence is on American history.
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