Exodus 18:1–20:23

When Is Yitro Read?

/ 24 Shevat 5784
/ 17 Shevat 5785
/ 20 Shevat 5786


  • Yitro brings his daughter Zipporah and her two sons, Gershom and Eliezer, to his son-in-law Moses. (18:1-12)
  • Moses follows Yitro's advice and appoints judges to help him lead the people. (18:13-27)
  • The Children of Israel camp in front of Mount Sinai. Upon hearing the covenant, the Israelites respond, "All that God has spoken we will do." (19:1-8)
  • After three days of preparation, the Israelites encounter God at Mount Sinai. (19:9-25)
  • God gives the Ten Commandments aloud directly to the people. (20:1-14)
  • Frightened, the Children of Israel ask Moses to serve as an intermediary between God and them. Moses tells the people not to be afraid. (20:15-18)

Ten Minutes of Torah: Yitro Commentary

an image of a father with his arm around his son, you see the back of both men.

“What? Why?”

By: Jonathan K. Crane

Yitro is frequently praised in Jewish sources for inspiring his prophet son-in-law, Moses, to set up a judicial system and delegate his many responsibilities so that the Israelites could continue building their civilization. We might understand Yitro as the first cross-cultural consultant.

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