Friday, May 5, 2017

Notes on Numbers 12

McCheyne's calendar takes us to Numbers once a year. Matthew Henry has provided ample material for helping us learn from this neglected book.
In this chapter we see the meekness of Moses. There are lessons here for how we should die to self.
Miriam and Aaron, envy at the heart of their dispute...?
Even those that are well preferred are seldom pleased if others be better preferred. Cursed pride! See it and recognise it for what it is.

When God's honour is at stake, Moses is like a lion. When his own honour is at stake, he is like a lamb. Grace and wisdom to know when is which and what to do.

And sometimes the unkindness of our friends is a greater trial of our meekness than the malice of our enemies. Christ himself records his own meekness (Matt. xi. 29I am meek and lowly in heart), and the copy of meekness which Christ has set was without a blot, but that of Moses was not.

While Moses needs a veil to hide his glory, Miriam needs one to hide her shame. Note, Those distempers which any way deform us ought to be construed as a rebuke to our pride, and improved for the cure of it, and under such humbling providences we ought to be very humble. It is a sign that the heart is hard indeed if the flesh be mortified, and yet the lusts of the flesh remain unmortified.

Aaron's repentance is another trial for Moses but he is like the Lord in praying for their forgiveness. A great example for us when offended personally. 
If we can reverence earthly fathers who chasten us, much more should we abase ourselves before the Great Father. 
The camp is stalled by this waiting for Miriam: individual sin (ie. of Aaron and Miriam), even the delay in remedying it, hampers our speed to glory. 

Numbers 13: how near and yet how far they were from the promised land. How exciting and glorious to be appointed as a spy. Yet how ignominious they are in their sour report.

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