Numbers 20:14-29–Moses sent messengers from Kadesh to the king of Edom, saying: This is what your brother Israel says: You know about all the hardships that have come on us. 15 Our ancestors went down into Egypt, and we lived there many years. The Egyptians mistreated us and our ancestors, 16 but when we cried out to the Lord, he heard our cry and sent an angel and brought us out of Egypt.“Now we are here at Kadesh, a town on the edge of your territory. 17 Please let us pass through your country. We will not go through any field or vineyard, or drink water from any well. We will travel along the King’s Highway and not turn to the right or to the left until we have passed through your territory.”18 But Edom answered:“You may not pass through here; if you try, we will march out and attack you with the sword.”—-22 The whole Israelite community set out from Kadesh and came to Mount Hor. 23 At Mount Hor, near the border of Edom, the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, 24 “Aaron will be gathered to his people. He will not enter the land I give the Israelites, because both of you rebelled against my command at the waters of Meribah. 25 Get Aaron and his son Eleazar and take them up Mount Hor. 26 Remove Aaron’s garments and put them on his son Eleazar, for Aaron will be gathered to his people; he will die there.”
The place where Moses struck the rock instead of speaking to it was called Waters of Meribah. From there Moses sent messengers to the king of Edom, Esau’s descendants to allow them to pass through, but the king refused to let them pass through their borders. Therefore they set out from that place to Mount Hor, near the border of Edom, and the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron that Aaron would be gathered to his people, and the authority as the Priest should be transferred to his son Eleazar. Moses carried out this instruction in front of the whole congregation, and Aaron died there. These are the two occurrences in the later part of this chapter.
The enmity between the sons of Isaac ( Esau and Jacob) was still being nursed by this generation, They did not honor the request of Moses and was ready to fight them with the sword if they dared to trespass. This is the same trend we witness today between family members, colleagues, and even church members. It is only God that forgives our sins and overlooks our past. Human beings are difficult to pacify. The God that created us forgives our trespasses and restores us to our formal position but we are different. I thank God that our God is a long-suffering God and once we ask for forgiveness He forgives, but there are consequences (punishment) attached to our disobedience. This is what we see in the death of Aaron at Mount Hor because the LORD had given His judgment that both of them will not enter the promised land, As we move through the scriptures, we will be observing the nature of our God and comparing it to what we do today so that we can watch our actions, our thoughts and our words. Romans 12:1-2 says “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing, and perfect will.” This is what we should strive to achieve, His perfect will, all the time, and to the end of our journey on this earth. God is not a respecter of persons. If He could pass judgment on His faithful leaders because of their mistake at the Waters of Meribah, we should be asking for His mercies on all that we do especially now that His return is very near. May the LORD continue to teach and instruct us and guide us all the days of our lives in Jesus’ name Amen. Shalom!