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  • Writer's picturePatricia

Miriam A Natural Leader

Updated: Jul 11, 2022

Word of the Day: Leader

One that leads or guides: one in charge or in command of others.

We get to meet Miriam as a little child following her baby brother's (Moses) basket on the banks of the Nile River. At this time, Pharaoh had commanded all the Jewish babies to be killed; and that would include her baby brother. She came up with the clever idea to make her own mother the person who was going to nurse Moses right after he was found by Pharaoh's daughter.

We have to remember that this was her idea. The opportunity was presented, and she took advantage of it. Her mother trusted this little girl's idea a little girl who was starting to develop leadership skills.

Exodus 2:4

And his sister stood afar off, to wit what would be done to him.

Exodus 2:7–8

Then said his sister to Pharaoh's daughter, Shall I go and call to thee a nurse of the Hebrew women, that she may nurse the child for thee?

And Pharaoh's daughter said to her, Go. And the maid went and called the child's mother.

Miriam was also known as a prophet. The Lord had given her this name, after the Jewish people crossed the Red Sea and which was also called the Exodus from Egypt. This time she lead the woman in songs to praise the Lord for their victory. They were no longer Pharaohs' slaves. This teaches us that she believed in the Lord's promises, and that the Lord had open the waters of the Red Sea; and she knew she was going to be free once they reached the other side of the sea. Before the crossing of the sea, she must have told all the ladies to gather the instruments because she was planning to have a feast once they crossed. What a great faith!! That really requires a whole lot of faith. She knew she served a God who does not lie.

Exodus 15:20–21

And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand; and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances.

21 And Miriam answered them, Sing ye to the Lord, for he hath triumphed gloriously; the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea.

Everyone has to know that trials are going to come to our lives, but Miriam also teaches us that we have to be prepared for those days when the trial is over. Moses needed a woman to lead the ladies, and she made herself available to help him. In our church everyone is a leader meaning that everyone carries responsibilities and I am not talking to those faithful ladies who serve at church on a daily basis. I am talking to those who are not serving. People can tell when you are a Christian, and pay attention to your walk with the Lord. Your testimony speaks greater than your service to the Lord. When the trials come are you counting blessings or cursing God?

The Jewish ladies followed Miriam because they believed in her God, but also because Miriam declared what she believed and demonstrated it with her actions. Miriam knew there was something greater coming up ahead, and did not focus on the present. Miriam also used her talents for the Lord. She knew how to sing, play an instrument, and also lead.

There was an incident when Miriam became jealous of her brother Moses. She rebelled against God's given authority. Moses had married an Ethiopian woman, and it might have been that she was jealous of this lady. We have to remember that for years it was just the three of them leading: Moses, Aaron and Miriam, and now there was the wife of Moses which must have meant a lot to the people. Every great leader who has a wife will automatically cause attention and interest, and Miriam was not happy about this fact. Miriam not only criticized her brother's wife, but was also sarcastic to criticized his leadership.

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.

And they said, Hath the Lord indeed spoken only by Moses? hath he not spoken also by us? And the Lord heard it.

She puts herself in an unfortunate position in history. The Lord called all three siblings to the tabernacle, Miriam was the instigator as you can see. The Lord mentioned her name first on Numbers 12:1, the Lord reprimanded both Miriam and Aaron. Aaron and Miriam where Moses' helpers, but the Lord was very specific unto whom he wanted to use to communicate His word to His people, My servant Moses is what He called him; With him will I speak mouth to mouth…

Numbers 12:4–9

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.

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.

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.

My servant Moses is not so, who is faithful in all mine house.

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?

And the anger of the Lord was kindled against them; and he departed.

Miriam becomes leprous as white as the snow, and the Lord commanded Moses to send her away from the camp for seven days. She had been condemned with the most humiliating disease. Aaron and Moses prayed that the punishment would pass from her. After the seven days, she was healed from the leprosy and was brought back to the camp. Later on Moses uses such event to write the law about leprosy.

Deuteronomy 24:8–9

Take heed in the plague of leprosy, that thou observe diligently, and do according to all that the priests the Levites shall teach you: as I commanded them, so ye shall observe to do.

9 Remember what the Lord thy God did unto Miriam by the way, after that ye were come forth out of Egypt.

God restored Miriam, but we do not hear from her again until her death before they reached the Promised Land.

Numbers 20:1

Then came the children of Israel, even the whole congregation, into the desert of Zin in the first month: and the people abode in Kadesh; and Miriam died there, and was buried there.

Conclusion: We learn from this story that God gives us talents and power, but He also takes them away when we challenge His authority. Miriam had great influence among the ladies, but became jealous and coveted Moses' authority.

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