Journey with Daniel
“Day 12 (Numbers 12)”Categories: 40 Days in the Wilderness
Moses, Aaron and Miriam
People in places of leadership know that problems often come in clusters of two or three. Satan is alive and busy and sinful people fight against the holy will of God. Just about the time the Lord helps you overcome one crisis, another one appears.
In Numbers 12, Moses, Aaron and Miriam were a team sent by God to help lead Israel (Micha 6:4). God has used Miriam to save Moses, her younger brother (Ex. 2:1-10). She was also a prophetess who lead the Jewish women in praising God (Ex. 15:20-21). Aaron was the older brother appointed by God not only to assist Moses in confronting Pharaoh but to serve as the first high priest. Everybody in Israel knew Moses, Aaron and Miriam were chosen by God, but that Moses was the leader.
However, there was rebellion that came from Moses’ own family, that is, Miriam and Aaron. It began when Miriam differed with Moses over his wife. Miriam eventually got around to her real complaint. Was Moses the only spokesperson for God? Didn’t Miriam and Aaron also have the right to declare God’s word? In questioning Moses’ authority and God’s will, Miriam and Aaron were acting just like the people of Israel. Moses didn’t answer them or try to vindicate himself. He left the defense to God. This was one evidence of his meekness. Meekness is not weakness. It is power under control.
God heard their words and saw their evil motives and acted swiftly before the sin spread among the people.
God made it clear that Moses was more than a prophet. He made it clear that He communicated with Moses personally. Aaron and Miriam had their assigned roles but Moses was God’s chosen leader of Israel. It was God who gave Moses that place and authority. It was wicked for Miriam to challenge Moses. Miriam paid the price. She was afflicted with leprosy.
It is a serious thing to be a spiritual leader, for the great honor, the greater responsibility. Leadership is not about the leader. It is about the leading for the good of the people. For those under that delegated authority it is vitally important that the role assigned by God to the spiritual leader be respected. Moses will write, “Remember what the Lord did to Miriam on the way when you came out of Egypt” (Dt. 24:9). There is a terrible price to pay for rebelling, not against those who are delegated the authority, but God who delegated that authority.
Also, when leaders are attacked from within, they cannot vindicate themselves or defend themselves. In Moises’ case, God did. Absent God’s direct defense, it requires those who know the leader will stand up to defend him against such self- evident self-serving accusations. Sadly, it may end up being like Paul, where not one stands to defend. But, as with Moses and Paul, God knows and He will exact His judgment against those who attack His delegated representatives.