5. God tells Moses it’s time to die.
Joshua chosen to lead Israel in his place.
a. Evidence of God’s grace toward Moses—
- God continued to give him breath for forty years after Moses failed to demonstrate His holiness to the people at the waters of Meribah. Numbers 27:14
- Moses wasn’t just alive and breathing. He climbed Mt. Nebo! “The mountains of Abarim, according to Dr. Shaw, are a long ridge of frightful, rocky, precipitous hills, which are continued all along the eastern coast of the Dead Sea, as far as the eye can reach.” (Adam Clarks Commentary)
I can’t imagine any elderly person I know climbing a steep, rocky mountain of any kind, much less at the age of 120. (For more photos and video of the mountain, see the links at the end of this lesson.)
- God allowed Moses to see and experience victories against inhabitants east of the Jordan.
- God took Moses to see the Land of Promise from Mount Nebo which was the same as Pisgah.
- Death did not cut Moses off completely. God promised Moses would join Aaron and other members of his family who preceded him in death.
- And the best of all—Moses joined Jesus and Elijah on a high mountain in the Promised Land. —The transfiguration Matthew 17:1-7
b. Upon hearing it was time to die, Moses asked God to—
Please appoint a new man as leader for the community. Give them someone who will guide them wherever they go and will lead them into battle, so the community of the Lord will not be like sheep without a shepherd. Numbers 27:16-17 NLT
It’s interesting Moses didn’t see himself as a prophet or a king. He saw himself as God’s servant who fed the flock and led them as God directed. His humility is showing.
Moses wanted God Himself to chose his replacement.
c. It depends on whether man or God told me I only had a week to live.
A doctor told my mother she had a month to live. She lived for seven more years because God healed her.
If God said it was my time to die, the spiritual and physical needs of my family would be my greatest concern. I would talk to each of them and put my blessing for each of them in writing.
I would ask God to choose others to wear all my hats. (I ask Him for help now. I’m inadequate.)
If I’m still writing on this website, I would also ask the Lord if He had someone to take it over. More likely, He will raise up many others long before I’m gone. Who knows what I will be doing then.
I believe God will tell me when it’s time for me to go. I’ve asked Him to.
He prepared me before my mom died, and before both of my grandmothers’. Each time, I had about two weeks notice. The news was delivered so lovingly. I was sad, but also comforted.
Moses had such an intimate relationship with God, I doubt he felt any fear when he heard this news. His only concern was for the flock.
6. Moses’ relationship with God was unique. God spoke to him face to face.
It’s interesting that God said, “put some of your honor and authority upon him”—but not all—by laying your hands on him. Numbers 27:20 AMP
Moses went directly to God with requests and concerns.
God empowered Moses to perform mighty and terrifying miracles.
Joshua consulted God through Eleazer, the high priest.
When God called Joshua to succeed Moses, He said Joshua already had the breath of His Spirit in him.
Joshua qualified and proved himself by—
- showing his courage in fighting Amalek.* Exodus 17:9-13
- being Moses’ assistant from the time he was a young man. Exodus 24:13
- his presence on Mount Sinai when Moses received the law. Exodus 24:13
- lingering in God’s presence at the tent of meeting. Exodus 33:9-11
- demonstrating his faith and sincerity in witnessing against the report of the evil spies.* Numbers 14:6
Photo Credit Mount Nebo87 by Samir I. Sharbaty – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons –
Video taken from Mount Nebo (the second half of the video is sunset on the Dead Sea from Jordan side.
Slideshow of Mount Nebo photos For some reason, I previously thought the specific mountain was unknown.