Exodus 18:14

14 When Moses’ father-in-law saw all that Moses was doing for the people, he asked, “What are you really accomplishing here? Why are you trying to do all this alone while everyone stands around you from morning till evening?”

Exodus 18:14 Meaning and Commentary

Exodus 18:14

And when Moses's father in law saw all that he did to the
people
Or for them F17; for their information and instruction in the laws of God, and for the decision of cases brought before him, according to them; and what a deal of business was on his hands, and he went through for the good of the people:

he said, what is this thing that thou doest to the people?
this question he put, not as being ignorant what he did, he saw what he did, and understood it full well, but this he said to lead on to some conversation upon this head:

why sittest thou thyself alone?
no other judge upon the bench with him to assist him, to take it by turns, and to relieve and ease him:

and all the people stand by thee from morning unto even?
not being able to get their causes heard and tried, there being so many of them; and therefore some were obliged to wait all day long, before they could have their business done, which was both fatiguing to him and them.


FOOTNOTES:

F17 (Mel) "propter populum" Vatablus.

Exodus 18:14 In-Context

12 Then Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, brought a burnt offering and sacrifices to God. Aaron and all the elders of Israel came out and joined him in a sacrificial meal in God’s presence.
13 The next day, Moses took his seat to hear the people’s disputes against each other. They waited before him from morning till evening.
14 When Moses’ father-in-law saw all that Moses was doing for the people, he asked, “What are you really accomplishing here? Why are you trying to do all this alone while everyone stands around you from morning till evening?”
15 Moses replied, “Because the people come to me to get a ruling from God.
16 When a dispute arises, they come to me, and I am the one who settles the case between the quarreling parties. I inform the people of God’s decrees and give them his instructions.”