BSF Study Questions John Lesson 12, Day 4: John 8:31-59

Summary of passage:  Jesus explains to the Jews that sinners are a slave to sin.  Only the Son can set them free.  The Jews insisted they were Abraham’s children; however, Jesus tells them if they were, they wouldn’t be rejecting him right now and they would love him.  Instead, their father is the devil who is a murderer and a liar.  If they belonged to God, they would hear what God says.

The Jews wonder if Jesus is a demon-possessed Samaritan.  Jesus rebukes them again, saying he is the way to eternal life.  Again, the Jews do not understand his words and say Abraham died and so did the prophets so how can he live.  Jesus says he was in existence before Abraham.  The Jews attempted to stone him, but he slipped away.

Questions:

9a)  Freedom from sin.  By holding to his teachings and knowing the truth (he is God’s Son).

b)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Freedom from sin.  Freedom from guilt.  Freedom to fail and be forgiven.

10a)  Abraham.  The devil.  God is the ultimate Father, which the Jews say as well; however, their actions and words and deeds (trying to stone Jesus and not believing him) show they are of the devil and sinners.  Furthermore, remember the Jews are all descended from Abraham, which guarantees them eternal life (before Jesus).  Now that Jesus is on the scene he’s the only way to heaven, be it Gentile or Jew.  Jesus is speaking of spiritual father here.  If God were their spiritual father, they wouldn’t reject him.  They do; so they are of this world and the devil.  Huge difference between God’s children and the devil’s.

b)  When the devil lied to Eve about the tree of knowledge.  We are all born sinners and under sin until we accept Jesus as our Savior and his blood cleanses us completely of sin.  Some scholars say the first sin was the killing of Abel but most would argue for Eve’s initiation of sin into this world.

c)  Part personal Question.  My answer:  By accepting Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross for our sins.  I was lucky:  I was chosen from early childhood to be a believer.  I don’t worry much.  I trust in Him.  I live my life.  I follow His voice.  It’s not been easy, but it’s easier day by day.

Conclusions:  Long passage which my summary condenses.  Jesus basically says those who believed themselves to be saved based solely on their heritage are not and are actually of the devil.  He calls them out, points out how he is in fact God, and they try to kill him for it–a heart act from the devil.  Freedom from sin is found only in Christ.  The alternative is the devil.  End of story.

End Notes:  Many did believe in Jesus so he is speaking to those who have the beginnings of faith but still have doubts.

Abide (hold to my teaching) means welcoming it, being at home with it, and living it.  When you do this, THEN you will be Jesus’ disciple and you will know the TRUTH and be set free.

The religious leaders don’t even consider Jesus’ words and ask more on how to be free.  Despite the facts the Jews have been in bondage on and off for 2000 years and Rome now controlled them, they say they are free already–because of Abraham.

“Sin” in this passage indicates habitual sin.  There is no escape from slavery to sin since it is within.

They are physically Abraham’s descendants but not spiritually.  Jesus knows their hearts and the Word (him) has no place there for him.

Again, they question where Jesus came from.  Jesus says bluntly, “You cannot love God or call him your Father without loving me and accepting me.”  It’s impossible.  The Jews found it incredibly hard to wrap their minds around the idea of the Trinity as we do today.

The ability to hear God’s word is a gift none of us should take for granted.

Instead, the leaders are spiritual children of the devil, indicated by their desire to kill him.  The devil lies.  They rejected Jesus because he spoke the Truth.

Jesus asks them to name one sin of his.  They cannot.  Instead, they just called him names!  They had nothing left to accuse him of and with each word of Jesus’ more and more believe him instead of them!

Jesus tells all the secret:  Accept the Word and receive eternal life!  Again, blasphemy from anyone but God’s Son.  Keep here mean continue and abide in it.

“See” is an intense word in Greek meaning long, steady vision.

Once more trying to trap Jesus, they try to get him to say something offensive by asking him again who he is.

Jesus again says he knows God and claims he is greater than Abraham who also acknowledged this fact.

Fifty was the age a priest retired.  The Jews are merely saying you are too young to have known/seen Abraham.

Jesus responds with the 3rd “I Am” statement (John 8:24, 8:28).  The ancient Greek phrase is ego emi, which is  the same term used in to describe the Voice from the burning bush.  Jesus used a clear divine title belonging to Yahweh alone (Exodus 3:13-14, Deuteronomy 32:39, Isaiah 43:10) and was interpreted as such by Jesus’ listeners (John 8:58-59).  I AM was recognized by the Jews as a title of deity.

Finally, the religious leaders understood as demonstrated by the stones.  They knew he was claiming to be God.  They saw it as blasphemy.  These stones would have been in the temple as it was still being constructed in some areas.  Jesus escaped, probably mixing himself with the people in the temple but he could have vanished miraculously.  We are not told.

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BSF Study Questions John Lesson 11, Day 5: John 7:40-53

Summary of passage:  Here we see repetition from earlier in the chapter.  The people are divided on who Jesus is:  The Prophet, The Christ, or just a man from Galilee.  Again, no one could lay on hand on Jesus because his time had not yet come as the guards admit he speaks so differently.  The Pharisees don’t understand how the educated ones (them) don’t believe in Jesus but the uneducated ones (the rabble) do.  Nicodemus, not admitting he may believe, says they shouldn’t be so quick to condemn him.  Again, the Pharisees say no prophet can come from Galilee.

Questions:

11)  The promised ruler or prophet to rescue them from the Romans.  Because he was one of them who performed miracles and spoke of ushering in a kingdom (of heaven of course) but they thought on earth.

12a)  Feebly if you ask me and it was barely a defense.  Instead of saying he may believe in Jesus, he just pointed out how Jesus needs a fair hearing before being condemned.  No.  The Jewish leaders had already convicted Jesus because he was wielding too much power and a threat to them and their rule and way of life.  Nicodemus did point out the leaders hypocrisy in not following the law as written but claiming they do.

b)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Jesus has his timing is a frequent defense of mine when others complain of unanswered prayers.  I think Nicodemus defended Jesus half-heartedly, afraid still for his life.  I defend him whole-heartedly.

Conclusions:  Nothing has changed in terms of the people since Jesus first stepped out on the scene.  Some believe; some don’t.  Seeing the tentativeness of Nicodemus is eye-opening.  We can’t be like that.  Jesus desires every warrior on his side whole-heartedly.  We must be bold, not timid, and answer his call when it comes.

End Notes:  Some thought an ancient prophet would be risen from the dead and precede the Messiah.  Others thought of Jesus as the Messiah.  Some rejected him and some were ignorant of Jesus’ origins and his birth.

Jesus elicted strong opinions about who he was.  “Divided” is a strong word.  However, the followers of Christ should never be divided.  We are united because of Christ and the cross.

Again, the officers could not arrest Jesus because it was not his time yet.  He spoke like no man and the Greek implication here is that he’s more than a man.

The pride of the Pharisees shines here as they can’t believe commoners/uneducated people can believe in Jesus when they are the ones who obviously know everything.  This is the pilgrim crowd who has come for the Festival of Tabernacles.  The Pharisees exaggerated the ignorance of the people knowledge of Scripture (which was probably better than the average Christian of today and they couldn’t read).  However, the average Jew did pay little attention to the details, being too bogged down with the struggle for daily subsistence and hard physical labor.  Hence, these regulations were widely disregarded.

Nicodemus did point out the untruth of a leader believing in Jesus and did point out their hypocrisy as they disregarded their own laws in condemning Jesus by hearsay.

Again, we see the prejudice against Galileans as the religious leaders believe nothing good comes from there.

In fact, a prophet had risen from Galilee.  Jonah (who was a picture of Jesus Christ) came from Gath Hepher, which was three miles north of Nazareth in Lower Galilee (2 Kings 14:25).  Elijah was from Thisbe; and perhaps also Nahum and Hosea were from Galilee.  Their contempt for Galilee made them lose sight of historical accuracy.  Most importantly, the Pharisees overlooked the idea that God can choose a prophet from anywhere He likes.

BSF Study Questions Revelation Lesson 7, Day 2: Acts 2:1-21

Summary of passage:  On the day of Pentecost after Jesus’s death, the Holy Spirit came upon God’s people and enabled them.  All the Jews who were there for Pentecost heard and understood one another in their own language.  Some accused them of being drunk but Peter told them they are prophesying due to the Holy Spirit being poured on them.  He quotes Joel.

Questions:

3)  Those who believed in Jesus received the Holy Spirit to dwell within them after his death, beginning at Pentecost and thereafter.  The Holy Spirit will guide the people and teach them and serve as a reminder of Jesus.  The people all believed in Jesus.

4)  Part personal Question.  My answer:  Believers today receive the Holy Spirit when they accept Jesus as their Savior and those who accept Jesus in the future will receive the Spirit as well.  Like Jesus promised, the Spirit guides me and protects me and reminds me I am His.  I believe the Spirit guides me to do His work and not my work.

5)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Family members.  I will speak of this bible study and see where it goes from there.  I will ask, “Did you know the book of Revelation is all about Jesus?”

Conclusions:  The answer to “Who are God’s people?” is those who believe in Jesus.  Here we see God’s gift to believers–the Holy Spirit–until the Second Coming when He will be our gift.  Ambivalent on the value of this lesson since it is a part of the study of Acts and am excited to hear the lecture and read the notes and hear the connection with Revelation.

End Notes:  Pentecost is held 50 days after Passover (pente means 50), which celebrated the first fruits of the wheat harvest.  Here, it is 10 days after Jesus ascended into heaven and commanded his followers to wait for the Holy Spirit.  This was a long time to wait and be patient in the aftermath of Jesus’s death.

The gathering together was important as they waited in prayer, obedience, and emptiness in their need for Him.

In Hebrew, Greek, and Latin, the word for Spirit is the same root word as wind.  This harkens us back to the beginning of time with God breathing life into His creation.  Amazing, isn’t it?

Fire is a purifier and the idea of “rested” or “sat” is permanent in the original Greek.  “Each of them”.  The Spirit is for individuals–Gentiles as well as Jews.  First time we see this in the Bible.

Many of these people were the same who had just demanded Christ die on the cross.  Hard to think about but amazing in God’s love for us.

There are 120 people gathered here (Acts 1:15)–probably in a temple, a place big enough to hold so many.  A crowd must have heard them and gathered.  The crowd is the one full of doubters and accusing them of being drunk.  Galileans were known for harsh speech and difficult to understand–uncouth if you will.  This amazes the crowd that such uncultured men could speak so eloquently.

Tower of Babel anyone?  This is deliberate (as all things God does in the Bible).  God separated with speech and language and now He brings together.  Awesome!

The crowd overhears the men speaking in diverse languages.  When Peter speaks to the crowd, it is in Greek, the language they all know.  Many argue and interpret this passage with regards to the gift of tongues which I will not go into since it has nothing to do with our Revelation study.

Remember God’s idea of time is not ours.  We are in the “last days” but how long the “last days” will last to us humans we do not know.

The pouring out of the Spirit begins the “last days” after Jesus ascends into heaven.  The wonders in heaven and signs on earth has yet to happen.

“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”  This is from God. We are decades away from Paul and the Gentiles being invited formally into God’s kingdom; here Peter says it will happen.  Everyone is eligible.  God is so amazing that it’s hard to understand those who see the Bible as a mere coincidence with history.

BSF Study Questions Revelation Lesson 3, Day 4: Revelation 1:9-20

Summary of passage:  John was exiled to the island of Patmos because of his beliefs in Jesus.  He heard a voice tell him to write down and send to the seven churches a message.  The 7 churches were:  Ephesus Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.

John saw 7 golden lamp stands and Jesus dressed in a robe and a golden sash.  He held 7 stars in his right hand and a sword came out of his mouth.  Jesus put his hand on John and told him he is God and he holds the keys of death and Hades.  He commands John to write what he has seen, including how the 7 stars represent the angels of the 7 churches and the 7 lamp stands are the 7 churches.

Questions:

10a)  On the island of Patmos in-between Turkey and Greece and he was suffering because of his belief in Jesus.

b)  They were killed, stoned, beaten, driven out of their homes, lost their jobs, banished from their homes, exiled, re-located, and discriminated against.

11a)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Same as last year’s answer.  In comparison to others around the world, nothing.  I live in America where I have the freedom of religion and speech.  Increasingly, there has been a backlash against Christians but I have not experienced anything close to death or loss of livelihood, etc.

b)  Personal Question.  My answer:  God is with you.  You will be rewarded in heaven. He will triumph.

Conclusions:  We have question 11a every year.  It’s hard to compare today and 2000 years ago when persecution was as common as water.  I’m extremely blessed to be alive in this time period as to then where I am free.

End Notes:  PATMOS was a prisoner island where most of the inhabitants mined marble for Roman Empire use.  It is 10 miles long and 6 miles wide, rocky and overall desolate.  Because of the historical uses for Patmos, most scholars agree John was exiled there.  However, Revelation just says John was there “because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus”.  It is possible he was there as a missionary to the exiled prisoners.

This is the first of four times John mentions being in the Spirit.  Scholars agree this means he received revelation from the Spirit and was not just literally walking in the Spirit.  The four times John mentions this are:  1)  Patmos (Revelation 1:10), 2)  in heaven (Revelation 4:2), 3)  in the wilderness (Revelation 17:3), and 4)  on the mountain of God (Revelation 21:10).

Some also say “in the Spirit” means John was praying.  Again, speculation.

What is the Lord’s Day?  Scholars are unsure.  Romans honored the emperor with Emperor’s Day the first day of the month so perhaps this was something similar.  What scholars do agree on is this is NOT The Day of the Lord as mentioned in the Old Testament.

Some scholars say the Lord’s Day is Sunday morning because the early Christians traditionally gathered together on the first day of the week.  Speculation.  Ask yourself:  would a man exiled on Patmos take the risk of gathering together with other Christians when he was exiled for being a Christian?  Unless he was a missionary…  Again, we just don’t know.

Note John was commanded to write (the first of 12 times he as commanded in the book of Revelation).  This is a good lesson for us.  Don’t just reveal visions to others unless commanded to do so.  Some are meant to be private.

John responded.  Very important.  When called, respond.  When hear Jesus, respond.

The number 7 is the number of completeness.  Why these 7 churches?  As I discussed BEFORE, it could be random.  It could be because they are in a circular pattern on a good modern road.  It could be because these letters are complete and these 7 churches represent complete churches.  Scholars are unsure.  Interestingly, Paul also wrote to 7 churches.

Point to us:  These letters are for us–as the church.

Map of 7 Revelation Churches HERE

Day 5 discusses primarily Revelation 1:12-20.  The commentary for those passages will follow Day 5.

BSF Study Questions The Life of Moses Lesson 28, Day 4: Deuteronomy 32:15-43

Summary of passage:  A continuation of Moses’s song.  Moses says how Israel will grow lazy in their blessings and worship foreign gods.  So God will hide his face from His people, and God will send calamities upon them and scatter them.  Moses pleads for the people to understand what will happen and correct it before it occurs and before the Lord brings judgement upon them.

Questions:

8a)  Part-personal Question.  My answer:  Israel abandoned God and turned to false gods instead.  Mine is to remember God always and obey.

b)  God.  The people themselves.

c)  It says “their”, meaning others.  Their rock (false gods) is not the Israelites’ Rock (One, True God).  Their teachings (wine) is as fatal as poison.

d)  The Lord will have compassion on His people “when he sees their strength is gone and on one is left.” God will take vengeance on his adversaries when “he sharpens his flashing sword and his hand grasps it in judgment”.  God will do this because He loves us and offers us grace and mercy and forgiveness.  God will “make atonement for his land and people” ultimately through the sacrifice of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Conclusions:  Not like 8a.  Answer is obvious.  This lesson was hard for me to dig deeper than the surface meaning.

End Notes:  Israelites turned on God; in turn, He turned on them.  Not being enough, God punishes the people through calamities in order to turn them back to Him again.  Then God pleads for them to return.

Verses 15-18 is the first true apostasy (abandonment or renunciation of God) by the Israelites.  The golden calf was a sin but at least the people worshipped the golden calf as God.  Here, they abandoned God, completely rejected Him, and sacrificed to false gods.

Jeshurun means “upright one.”  We see it used again in 33:5; 33:26 and in Isaiah 44:2.  It’s a term of affection for Israel.

Paul quotes verse 21 in Romans 10:19.

Excellent explanation of the Song of Moses (Moses wrote at least three recorded songs scholars believe in the Bible) HERE.  If you were like me and didn’t get much out of this song, then this link explains succinctly what it’s all about.  Highly recommended.

BSF Study Questions The Life of Moses Lesson 23, Day 5: Numbers 21:10-35

Summary of passage:  We follow the Israelites on their journey to the Promised Land.  They reached the land of the Amorites and their king, Sihon, would not let Israel pass through.  They fought and Israel occupied the land of the Amorites.  Another king, Og, marched out against the Israelites as well but God said to Moses do not be afraid for I have already handed them over to you.  So the Israelites conquered them and took their land as well.

Questions:

9a)  The Israelites turned away from the Edomites.  Here, Israel chose to fight and they were victorious.

[In Deuteronomy 2:30 we discover another reason for the engagement:  The Lord made Sihon’s spirit stubborn and his heart obstinate.  We also see in Deuteronomy 2 that God told the Israelites to engage Sihon in battle in order for other nations to begin to fear you and tremble before you.  God wanted the Israelites to possess the land and plunder the town.]

b)  It gave them a place to stay and rest on their way to the Promised Land.  The news of the defeat of the Amorites would spread to other nations and they would begin to fear the Israelites.  And it boosted their morale–what the Israelites desperately needed.  It also was a useful distraction that would leave them no time to grumble.

9c)  Personal Question.  My answer:  I haven’t had a spiritual victory in my life this week.

10a)  They may not have wanted 2 million people traipsing through their backyards.  They may be warring peoples who saw an opportunity to take riches and slaves from the Israelites.  They may have been afraid of being conquered so they struck first.  And in Deuteronomy 2 we see God’s hand as he hardened the heart of Sihon in order to hand him over to Israel.  Hence, God was the one deciding who Israel would fight and not fight.

b)  In my humble opinion, this is an extrapolation that does not make much sense especially in light of Deuteronomy 2 where we see God’s hand in these wars.  Comparing 2 million refugees if you will to individuals is completely different.  We see stubbornness in Deuteronomy 2 and an unwillingness to be magnanimous in life.  We see selfishness.  We see greed.  We see man’s nature and man’s sin.  Nothing has changed today as much as we tell ourselves it has.  Every war has evil and sin behind it as does every evil deed.  And there is no other way around it.

11a)  “Do not be afraid of him, for I have handed him over to you, with his whole army and his land.  Do to him what you did to Sihon king of the Amorites.”

b)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Again, another poor extrapolation.  In Numbers, the Israelites are facing death and so must defend themselves in a life and death situation.  So God says to kill them all.  The only thing I can think of here is to pray first and see what God says.  If you are facing a physical attack, obviously fight back.  If your character is being attacked, I would say the same–with God’s guidance.  Again, too open-ended and vague here to get a proper response.

In response to what we learn in Deuteronomy 2, I’d ask God, “God, what are you trying to teach me here through this person’s attack?  How are you looking to grow me?”  It seems God had a mighty hand in Sihon’s heart as he does in all believers’ and unbelievers’ hearts.  Everything is for a reason–one we normally cannot see.  So ask Him for guidance.  To see.  To learn.  To grow.

Conclusions:  Questions such as 9c make me wonder:  am I supposed to have a spiritual victory in my life?  What if I haven’t?  Is there something wrong with me?  Am I not doing enough for God if I haven’t had a spiritual battle this week?  Again, another open-ended question with no answer for me.  Too big to narrow it down to anything of substance and in this case a question that makes me feel inadequate–which I don’t like nor appreciate.  It’s a small part, but it’s there.

This lesson is driving me nuts and I’m sure you all will comment on how I shouldn’t say anything negative about BSF or their questions.  But that’s not me.  I tell it how I feel and to me this lesson was horrible–the worst in recent memory.  I almost want to skip lecture because of it!  5 out of 21 questions are of a personal nature (that’s 24%!) all of which I thought unnecessary and too broad.  A waste of time, effort, and space.

Yet, at the same time, I feel bad for saying how horrible this lesson was in my opinion because I’m not supposed to say such things and feel like I’m complaining.

For me, I would much rather have spent only a day or two on this chapter and moved on so I can digest the last 10 chapters of Numbers and the 1st 26 chapters of Deuteronomy in a few short weeks.  Furthermore, I wish the parallel chapters in Deuteronomy would have been assigned for us to read instead of re-reading them in the next few weeks.  This added much to my understanding here as more details are recorded.

Maybe I’m just missing the whole point here so enlightenment by you all would be most welcome.

End Notes:  The Book of the Wars is lost to us as are several other books mentioned in the Bible.

We see God strengthening the Israelites here, giving them opponents to bolster their faith and belief.  What a merciful God we have!

Scholars say the poetry quoted here is to show how cultured the peoples were who were conquered, adding to Israel’s victory.

This land conquered later becomes part of Israel, land given to Gad and Manasseh.

We end Chapter 21 on a positive note for once.  However, as we shall see, the Israelites still have an uphill battle in their quest for the Promised Land.

Cute Map of Exodus:  https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/originals/8a/c2/3a/8ac23af79414cbac4a8b64ded9c6bf3f.jpg

Another Version showing Iye Abarim:  http://www.bibleornot.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/exodus-route-map.jpg

BSF Study Questions The Life of Moses Lesson 19, Day 5: Numbers 12:4-16

Summary of passage:  God heard Miriam and Aaron grumble against Moses so He called them together for a meeting.  The God descended in a cloud and asked Miriam and Aaron to step forward.  God told them that Moses is more than a prophet, one whom He speaks face-to-face with.  He asks them why they were not afraid to speak against Moses?  Then God leaves in anger.  God struck Miriam with leprosy.  Both Aaron and Moses cry out to God to heal her.  God banishes her from camp for seven days.  They Israelites finally move on and camp in the Desert of Paran.

Questions:

10a)  He called Moses, Aaron, and Miriam together to the Tent of Meeting.  There he came down in a pillar of cloud and summoned Aaron and Miriam forward.  He chastised them, saying Moses is more than a prophet; he is someone I speak clearly with face-to-face.  Then his anger burned against them and He struck Miriam with leprosy.  Both Aaron and Moses pleaded on her behalf and she was banished for seven days outside the camp instead.

b)  Personal Question.  My answer:  His words.  How God called Moses a servant of His and is faithful and one whom He speaks with face-to-face clearly.

11a)  That Moses is a God’s servant whom He speaks face-to-face with clearly.  He sees the form of God and He reveals Himself to Moses in dreams and speaks to him.

b)  Faithful in everything.  I picture God’s house as the world and those saved who dwell in it.  Moses is faithful to God’s people and in whatever God asks of him.  Moses is faithful to God in the little things and in the big things.  Faithful everywhere–in all aspects of life.

12a)  God’s anger burned against her and He struck her with leprosy, later commuted to a seven-day ostracism.

b)  Leviticus 13:  Ostracize her and isolate her from the camp and label her unclean.  Miriam would have to wear torn clothes, let her hair be unkempt, over the lower part of her face and cry out “Unclean! Unclean!” for as long as the disease remains (probably the rest of her life).  She would have to live outside of camp.  Cleanse himself as well with sacrifices for touching an unclean person.  Her life would have been ruined if not for God’s grace!

c)  Moses forgave Miriam for her sins and asked God to do so as well.

d)  Personal Question.  My answer:  That God is a merciful God.  God can administer penalty for sin harshly or not-so-harshly.  God could have ruined Miriam’s life by giving her a skin disease that would have taken her from her people.  But God relented but still made sure everyone knew she had sinned against Him.  God is good.

Conclusions:  I liked Numbers 12.  Great lesson for us to curb our jealous nature.  Great lessons on God’s powerful, merciful nature.  Great example of God’s love for us.  Great example of how we are to answer our accusers:  with nothing, preferring God to handle them for us.

As we study more and more about Aaron, I get a weaker and weaker view of him.  If he hadn’t have been Moses’ brother, I don’t think he would have been chosen to be the High Priest of Israel.  Again, God’s infinite mercy and wisdom to choose Aaron.  Through him we see our own weaknesses and hopefully learn the lessons God was trying to teach Aaron ourselves.

Map of Hazeroth and Desert of Paran:  http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/ml/r1/lp-e/13

End Notes:  God specifically answers Miriam’s question and answers why Moses is so special:  God’s relationship with Moses.  It is intimate and personal and direct.

Miriam’s affliction reflects her heart and in the degree.  She receives a very severe case of leprosy.  Aaron notices first.

Aaron seems to be a follower here again.  He is swayed by the Israelites to make a golden calf.  He is swayed by his sister to speak against Moses.  He’s a very weak leader.  Note as soon as he notices his sister, he pleads to Moses to not hold against them their foolish sins.  He asks for forgiveness first, then to cure his sister.  He is self-interested the entire time.

Aaron is probably thinking, “Oh, no!  Am I next?  I must do something now to save face or I will suffer a similar fate!!”

Moses speaks now for the first time and for others.  He allowed God to handle his accusers.  Here we see Moses “faithful in all my house” as he speaks for his slanderers.

God did heal Miriam or she would have never been allowed back inside the camp.  Still, it was important for all of Israel to know she spoke against their leader.  God is gracious and merciful.