-A very interesting and brief chapter explains for us the forgiving and humble heart of Moses. Miriam, his sister (Exodus 2:4, 7-8; 15:20), and Aaron, his brother (Exodus 4:14), were speaking against Moses in a display of racism. They must have apparently disliked the fact that Moses was married to a Cushite woman, or in other words, a foreigner. In pride they spoke as if they had equal rights for the LORD to speak through them in comparison to Moses. The LORD heard their boasts and dealt with it with a strong Hand (Numbers 12:1-2). “Now Moses was very humble, more than any man who was on the face of the earth (Numbers 12:3).” The LORD summoned the three family members who were in conflict together for a meeting at the tent. He came down in a pillar of cloud and stood at the doorway of the tent and called for Aaron and Miriam to come forward, which they did. Then, He offered these words, “Hear now My words: If there is a prophet among you, I, the LORD, shall make Myself known to him in a vision. I shall speak with him in a dream. Not so, with My servant Moses, He is faithful in all My household; with him I speak mouth to mouth, even openly, and not in dark sayings, and he beholds the form of the LORD. Why then were you not afraid to speak against My servant, against Moses (Numbers 12:4-8)?” The anger of the LORD burned against them and He departed leaving Miriam leprous, as white as snow, with infection. Aaron started begging for forgiveness and repented vigorously, as one could imagine in that type of situation. He was groveling to the max. He realized how foolish he had been as he saw the LORD’s response. Moses, remarkably, had a forgiving spirit as we can see from his pleading words on behalf of his sister, “Oh, do not let her be like one dead, whose flesh is half eaten away when he comes from his mother’s womb! O God, heal her, I pray (Numbers 12:9-13)!” God did relent and had her be shut up for seven days outside the camp to heal and get rid of the leprosy. Then, she was received again back into the camp as the Hebrew people waited in Hazeroth. Afterwards, they moved out and found a suitable place to camp in the wilderness of Paran (Numbers 12:14-16).
-*Application* God uses humble, forgiving people for His Kingdom purposes far more readily than any other type of person. Moses was able to navigate these conflicts that arose with the right heart attitude. This is very hard to do sometimes isn’t it? We want to be like Aaron and Miriam too often and fight for rights, complaining and being disgruntled. This obviously does not incur the favor of Almighty God. Rather, we should learn from Moses how to act in order to receive the blessing and reconcile situations properly. Don’t forget, be ever meek and learn to pardon.
Verse to Memorize: Numbers 12:3