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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Miriam and her slanderous speech about Moses in marrying a Cushite

In the 1800's a Rabbi by the name of the Chafetz Chaim devised laws of inappropriate speech based on this story sadly though he twisted this to be more about not being able to criticize or speak out against legitimate wrongs then not slandering someone out of jealousy and/or envy as clearly was the case here.

Numbers 12:1  Miriam and Aaron spoke about Moses because of the Cushite woman he had married "He married a Cushite women 2. They said Has the lord only spoken through Moses has he not spoken through us as well? God heart it 3. Now Moses was a very humble man more then any other man on earth



My comments: So just by reading this you see the issue their complaining was unwarranted. Moses was in exile from his own people Moses was in exile when he got married and found women who cared for their flock and had a father that cared about them as well which he felt was a good women to marry and this was proven true as she made sure her child was circumcised (Exodus 4:25-26)

God then explains to them that they are wrong for criticizing Moses

12:6 When a prophet of the Lord rises arises above you I make myself known to him in a vision, 7. Not so with my servant Moses he is trusted throughout my household 8. With him, I speak mouth to mouth, plainly, and not in riddles, and he beholds the likeness of the Lord. How then did you not shrink from speaking against my servant Moses still angry with them God departed.

She then was stricken with leporsy.

And Moses asks God to heal her which God says  14. If her father spat in her face would she not bear her shame for 7 days to which she has this for 7 days and has to be outside the camp.

During the whole episode the issue is the Miriam is criticizing Moses falsely and behind his back and what she is saying is unfair to the situation Moses was in. And Moses at this time didn't take very much offense to it but regardless due to the principle of the matter God felt that a message had to be sent.

Sadly though, as I started this post a Rabbi the Chafetz Chaim wanted to develop laws on this which really isn't needed as this is pretty much common sense. But a lot of what he had to say basically was to make it hard to speak out against someone who is doing legitimate wrongs and was more concerned about protecting the wrongdoer then the fact that he or she could hurt others as well. In Moses case if he was a vain man who you couldn't speak to directly because he couldn't take criticism that would be different then this.

And further, CC in my own opinion didn't even follow his own laws when it came to issues effecting him and competition in his own area. And that was in the area of religion. He was very critical if anyone left his Yeshiva and he would see this guy went off the path if he left and had a new lifestyle. That is very vague and may be false by the way. When it come to other area's it didn't affect him so he didn't speak negatively but when it came to religion he did in ways that seem to be vague and violating his own laws.

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