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Moses Strikes the Rock Twice

Moses Strikes the Rock Twice

Excerpt
Milgrom has examined Moses’ actions against the backdrop of Egyptian and Mesopotamian magicians and diviners as well as in the context of the nature of God revealed in the Pentateuch. Moses’ actions were tantamount to that of an idolatrous pagan magician, and thus Milgrom notes, “Here, in a direct address to his people, Moses ascribes miraculous powers to himself and Aaron. Indeed by broadcasting one word, nôṣîʾ, “we shall bring forth”—Moses and Aaron might be interpreted as having put themselves forth as God.… Israel had to be released from more than chains; it still had to purged of its pagan background.363 In summary, Milgrom states, “Against the backdrop of the Pentateuchal sensitivity to man’s usurping of God’s powers, Moses’ act is manifestly shocking.”364 The collapse of character was so critical that he would suffer severely for his actions and his attitudes. He would not experience the fullness of God’s promise, the ultimate goal of his divinely ordained mission. He had been used dramatically and wondrously by God to bring his people Israel out of Egypt, but he would not bring them into the Promised Land. More
Cole, R. Dennis. Numbers. Vol. 3B. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2000. Print. The New American Commentary.
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