Daily Thought for: 16th February

MIRIAM

Exodus 2. 1-10; 15. 20-21; Numbers 12; 20. 1; 26. 59 

Miriam at the age of 13 years joins with her mother and father in the protection and care of her baby brother Moses. This must have taken some courage on her part and shows that, even as a young believer, she was not afraid to stand up for Jehovah and His people. She is called a prophetess in Exodus 15. She must therefore have been close to the Lord, and therefore able, constantly, to encourage God’s people. We see her in this role as she leads the women of Israel in praise after the defeat of the enemy, Exod. 15. 20. It is a lovely role and one every believer should ambitiously follow. 

Unfortunately, later, she and Aaron speak against Moses saying ‘. . . Hath the LORD indeed spoken only by Moses? hath he not spoken also by us’, Num. 12. 2. She spoke this out of motivation of pride, and because of Moses’ wife, 12. 1. This public expression of criticism was no doubt the result of much bitter thought; how sad when envying comes in amongst God’s people. The enemy will attempt to use even believers to accomplish his work. However, take note of James’ words, ‘Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain, the spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy?’. The assurance is ‘. . . he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you’, Jas. 4. 5-7. 

Because of her sin and, presumably, because she was the leader in the criticism, the Lord judges her. She is inflicted with advanced leprosy, Num. 12. 12, maybe to show clearly the result of the spreading influence of her sin. In any case, Aaron pleads on her behalf, Moses intercedes, and after seven days she is able again to enter the camp. How gracious God is to forgive and receive back the believer, even after grievous sins; ‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness’, 1 John 1. 9. 

The Lord is absolutely just in His dealings and remembers faithful service in spite of failure, for long after her service has finished the Lord credits her with being a leader of Israel, alongside Moses and Aaron; see Micah 6. 4. 

 

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