- General Questions
What age was Moses son circumcised? After reading this weeks reading, me and some friends were discussing what we read and heard. Some said 8 days,others said 15 years. Why did Moses delay Jeffrey Pearce
There are different opinions in Chazal which son is the one whose Brit was delayed. Some say Gershom and some say Eliezer. This is not a simple issue since it has to do with calculating their time of birth and the time separated from his wife and many commentators deal with this. (See Shmot Rabba 5:8 and commentaries). According to the "pshat" it is easier to understand that it is Eliezer, since Gershom was born after Moshe had married Tzipora and Eliezer was married at the beginning of Moshe's role in the redemption of Yisrael. According to the Midrash, Shmot Rabba 5:8, it seems that Eliezer's brit was delayed possibly only to immediately after the eighth day. The Midrash says that Moshe delayed the Brit "Sha'ah Achat"="One hour" after the designated time. Though it doesn't seem that the Midrash means literally one hour of 60 minutes, but more to emphasize that the designated time was passed, nonetheless it seems to denote a short time. Rabenu Bechaye on Shmot seems to support this idea since he says that it was understood that the punishment was because he wasn't circumcised on the "eighth day" and that only is clear when the punishment comes immediately. Even Ezra on Shmot (ראב"ע הקצר שמות יד:כד) also seems point in that direction although he doesn't place things in the eighth day time frame, nonetheless he speaks of Eliezer being born soon before and of the delay due to Moshe Rabenu's other considerations.