Numbers 11:30



The Bible says in Numbers 11:30-35, “And Moses gat him into the camp, he and the elders of Israel.[31] And there went forth a wind from the LORD, and brought quails from the sea, and let them fall by the camp, as it were a day's journey on this side, and as it were a day's journey on the other side, round about the camp, and as it were two cubits high upon the face of the earth.[32] And the people stood up all that day, and all that night, and all the next day, and they gathered the quails: he that gathered least gathered ten homers: and they spread them all abroad for themselves round about the camp.[33] And while the flesh was yet between their teeth, ere it was chewed, the wrath of the LORD was kindled against the people, and the LORD smote the people with a very great plague.[34] And he called the name of that place Kibroth-hattaavah: because there they buried the people that lusted.[35] And the people journeyed from Kibroth-hattaavah unto Hazeroth; and abode at Hazeroth.” In this passage the sin of the children of Israel is made clear: lust. Lust is an strong human desire that goes past the bounds that God set for it. The Tenth Commandment is, “Thou shalt not covet.” The consequence that the children of Israel received for this sin was very terrible: death. It says in Romans 6:33, “For the wages of sin is death…” They lived under the law and were subject to death for disobedience. How fortunate we are that Jesus suffered death in our place, and now that we live in the age of grace, mercy is showered upon us instead of wrath from God.


The Bible says in Numbers 12:1-2, “And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married: for he had married an Ethiopian woman.[2] And they said, Hath the LORD indeed spoken only by Moses? hath he not spoken also by us? And the LORD heard it.” Why would Mariam and Aaron not like Moses to marry an Ethiopian woman? Maybe they were prejudiced against anyone of a different skin than their own. The Bible supports no such prejudices. The Bible is the greatest book of equality ever written. According to the Bible, everyone is a sinner, God loves everyone, Jesus died for everyone on the cross, and everyone gets saved the same way by calling upon the name of the Lord Jesus. Once a person is saved through faith in Christ, they are a brother or a sister to every other believer, and they all have the same eternal destiny in heaven forever.


If we look at verse two, we know that Mariam and Aaron had a problem that was even deeper than their racial prejudices: they were jealous. Moses was the leader. Moses was honored and looked up to. Moses was at the very top of the human hierarchy over the children of Israel. Mariam and Aaron were not. They started looking at what they did not have instead of what they did have. But notice that when they spoke against Moses, it says at the end of verse two, “And the LORD heard it.” Of course, the Lord hears everything and knows everything. God has established all hierarchy. He is always at the top, and therefore, rebellion against authority is a great sin.


It is interesting that it says in Numbers 11:3, “(Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.)” To be meek means to not seek your own will. A meek person is a person who is ready and willing to surrender to God and to God’s will. Not many humans are like that. Humans tend to want something, to want it badly, and o want it so much that they will not surrender to the will of the Lord. No wonder that Jesus said, “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the Kingdom of God.”


The Bible says in Numbers 12:4-8, “And the LORD spake suddenly unto Moses, and unto Aaron, and unto Miriam, Come out ye three unto the tabernacle of the congregation. And they three came out.[5] And the LORD came down in the pillar of the cloud, and stood in the door of the tabernacle, and called Aaron and Miriam: and they both came forth.[6] And he said, Hear now my words: If there be a prophet among you, I the LORD will make myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak unto him in a dream.[7] My servant Moses is not so, who is faithful in all mine house.[8] With him will I speak mouth to mouth, even apparently, and not in dark speeches; and the similitude of the LORD shall he behold: wherefore then were ye not afraid to speak against my servant Moses?” The statement that God makes in verse six prepares Miriam and Aaron for the next two verses: “If there be a prophet among you, I the LORD will make myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak unto him in a dream.” Before we had the complete written Word of God, God had His ways of revealing Himself to certain individuals. God would always reveal Himself to those individuals so that they would take the truth about God to others, and thus they were called prophets. A prophet was someone who would speak forth the Word of God. Not everyone was a prophet. Just like today not every believer is a preacher or a teacher of God’s Word. When Jesus ascended into heaven, He gave gifts unto men: some apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers. These gifts are to be used to preach forth the Word of God. You must have something to say. God has given you what to say because He has given to you the Word. Read it, learn it, and speak it.


Miriam, and Aaron, and Moses were all prophets because God did use all three of them in the way described in verse six above. God has created hierarchies on the earth. Find out who you report to in God’s hierarchy and make sure that you have the proper attitude of submission, obedience, and respect. Moses was at the top of this hierarchy, but of course under God.


God said about Moses in verse seven, “My servant Moses is not so, who is faithful in all mine house.” God is saying that He did not speak to Moses like God typically did with other prophets, and like God did with Miriam and Aaron. Moses was different. Moses had his own category in God’s plan. After all Moses was the law-giver. Moses was the instrument to deliver the children of Israel out of Egypt. Moses was the leader of the children of Israel through the wilderness. Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible, what we call the Pentateuch. The Israelites always looked for another prophet who would have a status similar to that of Moses. That prophet was Christ, who brought the New Covenant to replace the old one. What gave Moses this unique calling and position before God? We were already told that Moses was the meekest man to ever live on the earth. The same thing is said of Christ: “I come to do thy will, O God.” Notice that two thigs are said about Moses in verse seven, “My servant Moses is not so, who is faithful in all mine house.” God called Moses a “servant,” and God said that Moses was “faithful.” It is not about results. God sees who you really are. Evidently, it is very rare for God to look into the heart of a human being and for God to conclude: “there is one of my servants.” Jesus was a servant. Jesus came to serve. Isaiah described Jesus our Savior as the Suffering Servant.


Moses was a servant, and Moses was also “faithful.” To be faithful means to be consistent. To be faithful means to live a life of faith, which is to trust God for everything that comes into your life. To be faithful means that you remember God’s Word and God’s promises, and you apply the truth from God to the way that you think and the way that react to the things that happen to you.


God did not speak to Moses as He spoke with other prophets. As God said at the end of verse eight, “With him will I speak mouth to mouth, even apparently, and not in dark speeches; and the similitude of the LORD shall he behold…” God said that He would “speak mouth to mouth” with Moses. God is saying that they would have an extremely close relationship. That symbolizes that they would have the same type of relationship that every believer can now have with Jesus. God said that He would “speak” with Moses. God speaks to us through His Word. That is why God gave us the Bible. If you know Jesus as Savior, you have the Holy Spirt and the Holy Spirit will enlighten you with the words of the Bible and touch your heart. As you read and hear the Bible, the Holy Spirit uses it to speak to you. That is why it says in Hebrews 4:12, “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”


Numbers 12:8 is an emphasis on the fact that Moses would have a personal relationship with God. That is exactly what Christianity is supposed to be like for every believer. True Christianity is not a religion: it is a relationship. If you are a true Christian, you have been introduced to Christ. You know Him personally. When you bowed before Him and called upon His name to be saved, that was just the beginning of your personal relationship with Christ.


The Bible says in Numbers 12:9-16, “And the anger of the LORD was kindled against them; and he departed.[10] And the cloud departed from off the tabernacle; and, behold, Miriam became leprous, white as snow: and Aaron looked upon Miriam, and, behold, she was leprous.[11] And Aaron said unto Moses, Alas, my lord, I beseech thee, lay not the sin upon us, wherein we have done foolishly, and wherein we have sinned.[12] Let her not be as one dead, of whom the flesh is half consumed when he cometh out of his mother's womb.[13] And Moses cried unto the LORD, saying, Heal her now, O God, I beseech thee.[14] And the LORD said unto Moses, If her father had but spit in her face, should she not be ashamed seven days? let her be shut out from the camp seven days, and after that let her be received in again.[15] And Miriam was shut out from the camp seven days: and the people journeyed not till Miriam was brought in again.[16] And afterward the people removed from Hazeroth, and pitched in the wilderness of Paran.” God can be angry with believers. Jesus died for us and therefore we owe Him everything. We should become what He wants us to become, believe what He wants us to believe, and do what He wants us to do because we are His. Sometimes sickness in Christians is a result of sin. God chastises His children in order to teach us. It says in First Corinthians 11:30-32, “For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.[31] For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.[32] But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.”


Miriam’s chastening was that she was given leprosy. Leprosy symbolizes sin. God wanted her and Aaron and the rest of the children to know that what she had done was sin. What had she done? She committed the sins of arrogance and rebellion. God has created hierarchies. That is the way the world works because God made it that way. There are not multiple CEOs of a company: there is only one. There are not multiple leaders of a country: there is only one. There are not multiple individuals in a family who have the final say: there is only one, and that one is the husband in a Christian family. Of course, there may not be a man in the family, and all the responsibility falls to the woman. Also, the man may delegate much authority to the woman. The man and the woman are supposed to work together. God made the woman out of the man’s side in order to be next to the man, side-by side. God did not make the woman from the man’s feet so that the man would rule over her, and God did not make the woman out of the man’s head so that she would rule over him either. God said that the woman would be a helpmeet for the man. That does not mean that only the woman would help the man. That means that they would help each other. Ephesians 5:25 says, “Husbands, love your wives….” That does not mean that only the husbands love. Of course, each is to love the other.


It says in Numbers 12:14, “And Miriam was shut out from the camp seven days.” This symbolizes the fact that when a Christian sins, that Christian is out of fellowship with the Lord. The way to get back into fellowship is to confess your sins, and by the way, the sins of arrogance and rebellion are very common among Christians. Learn to repent of your sins daily and be cleansed from your leprosy. You do not have to be cast out for seven days or longer if you will only turn to Jesus and ask Him to cleanse you. It says in First John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Apply this promise to your heart and life every day and you will continue walking in fellowship with Jesus.




Copyright; 2019 by Charles F. (Rick) Creech
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