“Then Joshua the son of Nun, the attendant of Moses from his youth, said, ‘Moses, my lord, restrain them.’ But Moses said to him, “Are you jealous for my sake? Would that all the LORD’s people were prophets, that the LORD would put His Spirit upon them!'” (11:28-29)
I love these chapters.
After much more complaining about food, and how “great” things were back in Egypt, the LORD brings food for the people, but also another thing: Seventy more people start prophesying. Moses has been overwhelmed with these needy people. He’s exhausted from being their go-between and the only one who “get’s it”. He isn’t proud about this, in fact he’s “more humble than any man on the face of the earth.” (12:3) When more people prophesy, he’s like, “FINALLY! Someone is experiencing the LORD without my help!” But, good old Joshua anticipates it as something that must be squelched.
What actually needs squelching, is the pride that follows Aaron and Miriam when they see that they’ve heard the LORD too. They think this is a green light to judge Moses for marrying a Cushite.
The LORD responds in a very cool way (in my opinion). He spells out just how important Moses is to Him. He’s not just someone who prophesies or sees visions. The LORD is his friend. They talk face to face.
So the LORD strikes Miriam with leprosy and Moses cries out for her to be healed (because, seriously… he’s the nicest). But not unlike a daughter who has disrespected her father, Miriam must stay outside the camp for seven days before she can come in and be cleansed.
There is so much to glean from these stories.
- Don’t complain!
- Don’t compare yourself to others!
- Don’t be jealous of power
- Don’t disrespect those the LORD chooses to exalt
- Pride puts you in opposition to the LORD
- Humility is the greatest possible feature the LORD can find in us
- Don’t be possessive of the LORD, we should want EVERYONE to experience Him.
What do you notice about Moses’ relationship with God? Last time, Carly pointed out how Moses (even as the LORD’s closest human) called himself servant. We can make the mistake of being too ‘chummy’ sometimes. The best thing we could ever be in this life is a servant of the LORD.