Regarding Moses’ birth, we read that “his mother saw that he was good.” What did she see? One interpretation, cited in several classic sources, is that she saw that he was circumcised and knew that there was greatness in store for him. Being born circumcised was an expression of the otherworldly perfection that characterized the one who would speak face to face with G‑d.

Midrash Tanchuma1 lists Moses among seven special people who were born circumcised. They are: Adam, Seth, Noah, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, and Job.

Avot D’Rabbi Natan2 provides a longer list: Adam, Seth, Noah, Shem, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Balaam, Samuel, David, Jeremiah, Zerubabel, and Job.

Both of these Midrashim, as well as the Talmud3 and Shemot Rabbah4, see an allusion to Moses’ being circumcised in the abovementioned verse. Other interpretations can be found, however, where different significance is attached to these words.