In this blogging mini-series of sorts we’ll be looking at some of the so called protagonists in the Bible, and what exactly they got up to. Seeing as the New Bible series is currently in Exodus, I thought Moses might be a good person to start with.
Moses in the Bible:
Moses was given the task by God to lead the Israelites out of Egypt and free them from the oppression of the Pharaoh. To do this, he stood there and did absolutely nothing as Aaron did all the talking and God performed all of the ‘miracles’.
Moses was raised by the Pharaoh’s daughter after he was abandoned in the Nile, but had to flee Egypt after he made his adopted grandfather angry after ruthlessly murdering an Egyptian guard in cold blood, burying him in the sand when no-one was looking. But it was okay – God hadn’t told everybody that murder was wrong yet!
But it wasn’t always so good. Shortly after God had turned himself into a burning shrub of all things, Moses forgot to circumcise his son, which he was apparently supposed to do as part of some sick covenant God had made with Abraham. God sought to kill Moses, and, instead of smiting him, he decided to come down to earth in person to do it. Luckily though, Moses’ wife remembered at the last minute, so Moses managed to stay alive.
After God had killed a few hundred thousand people and performed miracles that more closely resembled the apocalypse, Moses led his people out of Egypt, but got lost and spent 40 years wandering the desert, chasing a cloud. God, meanwhile, tampered with the Pharaohs chariots and drowned them all in an ocean.
Moses helped his people by performing miracles, like drawing water out of a rock, but they all betrayed him anyway and started worshiping idols once he climbed up a giant mountain to carve some rules into a tablet. Tablets which he immediately threw to the ground in a fit of rage when he saw what the Israelites were up to. After a lot of telling off Moses then climbed back up the mountain and then spent another week carving a new set.
Moses then spends fifteen whole chapters helping God tell the Israelites what to do and how to live their lives, before spending another five chapters building things. Moses’ kind-of-boring adventure continues into Leviticus, where he spends eight chapters telling people how to give God offerings.
After spending the rest of Leviticus talking about all of the rules everybody must follow, Numbers begins and Moses holds a census. And just when you’re ready to smash your head against a brick wall from the boredom, Moses and his people set out once more, heading for the land God promised to them, and all of their ancestors – A land that was already inhabited by tons of people.
Unfortunately the Israelites made God angry for some reason and he curses them, saying that all of them – Moses included – will not reach the Holy land. The Israelites go about looting and murdering, before finally reaching the Holy Land. Shame Moses keels over dead shortly before reaching it.
Like most stories in the Bible, this one does not have a happy ending.
So what have we learnt about Moses? He’s a murderer with anger management issues who likes to make lots of rules, laws and commandments – so he’s a bit of a control freak too.
Image Courtesy of Salvatore Vuono at FreeDigitalPhotos.net