Sunday, March 11, 2007

Don't insult Him!

Note: I added an update to Friday's post and a correction to Tuesday's.

Some of the Israelites rebel against Moses, and God is angry with them.
20The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, 21"Separate yourselves from this assembly so I can put an end to them at once."
Numbers 16:20-21
What happens afterward is not pretty, but what I noticed was their response:
22But Moses and Aaron fell facedown and cried out, "O God, God of the spirits of all mankind, will you be angry with the entire assembly when only one man sins?"
Numbers 16:22
I think this has got to be part of their training -- God training Moses and Aaron I mean. They have many years of leadership ahead of them, and something they really need is patience. I suspect that God was giving voice to some of the exasperation that Moses -- and maybe Aaron too at this point -- felt toward these exasperating people. And by doing that, I suppose he awakened their compassion, another leadership essential.

Something else I noticed from this passage -- one might think that these guys (Korah and his followers I mean) were only insulting Moses and Aaron, but the Lord is apparently pretty upset with them, because "...these men have treated the Lord with contempt." (Numbers 16:30, emphasis added). when God puts someone in a leadership role, he seems to take it pretty seriously. That's something to remember when I'm tempted to criticize a pastor or other church leader.

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