From the end of the Book of Genesis to the beginning of the Book of Exodus story when Moses is born, there is a span of hundreds of years. Jacob’s 12 sons and many of their descendants have all died in Egypt and the Children of Israel have become a multitude of approximately one million people in bondage (Exodus 1:14) to a new Pharaoh who does not remember Joseph (Exodus 1:8).
Exodus 1:1 Now these are the names of the Children of Israel, which came into Egypt with את Jacob; every man and his household came. 2 Reuben, Simeon, Levi and Judah, 3 Issachar, Zebulun and Benjamin, 4 Dan and Naphtali, Gad and Asher. 5 And all the souls that came out of the loins of Jacob were seventy souls: for Joseph was in Egypt already. 6 And Joseph died and all his brothers and all that generation. C-MATS
Question: When did the enslavement of Israel begin? How long were the Israelites enslaved? The exile of the Israelites began as soon as they entered Egypt, but the enslavement of Israel began after Levi’s death. Joseph, who lived 110 years, was the shortest-lived of the brothers; Levi, who lived 137, was the longest-lived. Therefore the enslavement of Israel was no longer than 116 years (the period from Levi’s passing to the Exodus), and no shorter than 86, the age of Miriam at the time of the Exodus (Miriam, meaning “bitterness”, was so named on account of the bitterness of the exile). Chumash
Question: What did Pharaoh want to happen to the Israelites? The goal of Pharaoh was not slave labor, but the extermination of Israel, because he considered the Israelites a threat in the event of an invasion. The very location of the cities where they labored was calculated to cause suffering and degradation. The land was marshy and the heavy brick walls would sink and crumble, this forcing the work to be repeated endlessly to little apparent purpose. Chumash