Remember: God Judges Sin

Bruce Fiol

READ : Deuteronomy 24:9
Numbers 12:1-13

Remember what the Lord . . . did to Miriam. (Deut. 24:9)

Who that was there that day and saw what happened to her could ever forget? Miriam dishonored the leader God had installed. One does not do that without incurring God’s displeasure. As leader, Moses had been endowed with unique and uncommon gifts: meekness, wisdom, insight. There was no one to rival Moses.

Miriam and her brother Aaron verbalize their irritation: “Has the LORD indeed spoken only through Moses? Has he not spoken through us also?” (Num. 12:2). That’s pride and envy talking. God’s anger was kindled against the brother and sister. Public sin must be dealt with in a public way.

So the Lord commanded the three siblings to stand before him in the camp (v. 4) and said, “You dare to dishonor my appointed leader? You are thus guilty of dishonoring and questioning me! Let me tell you why Moses is unsurpassed. With other prophets I communicate through dreams and visions. But with my servant Moses I converse face to face [vv. 7-8]. And to question him and his message is to arouse my anger. Why were you not afraid to speak against Moses and call my authority into question?”

God withdrew. And Miriam was afflicted with leprosy for all to see. No one could miss the lesson. Beware, God always judges sin. But Miriam’s godly brother interceded for her. God heard. She was healed. God also forgives.


O Holy Father, grant that we never look lightly upon sin.