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Miriam: Snapshots of a Leader


... In Germany, France, Norway and Ireland, women make up 60-65% of active ... Naming: 'his sister,' 'the young woman' remains nameless in this story. ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Miriam: Snapshots of a Leader

Miriam Snapshots of a Leader
  • Exod 2.1-15 15.20-21 Num 12

Gender Issues in the Church
  • Reuther In Germany, France, Norway and Ireland,
    women make up 60-65 of active churchgoers and in
    Korea, India, and the Philippines, they
    constitute 65-70 of congregations.

Gender Issues in the Church
  • Weekly Church attendance in the USA (ABC News)
  • In General (M/F) 32/44
  • Catholic (M/F) 26/49
  • Protestant 42/50

Micah 64
  • For I brought you up from the land of Egypt,
  • From the house of bondage, I redeemed you.
  • I sent before you Moses, Aaron and Miriam.
  • The verb sent is often used as a word to
    commission a prophet or a leader

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His Sister Exod 2.1-10
  • Exod 2.4 "His sister stationed herself at a
    distance, to see what would be done to him.

His Sister Exod 2.1-10
  • Exod 2.7 "His sister said to Pharaoh's daughter,
    "Shall I go and call a woman, a nurse from the
    Hebrews so that she would nurse the child for

His Sister Exod 2.1-10
  • And Pharaoh's daughter said to her, "Go!" So the
    young woman went and called the mother of the

The Sister Exod 2.1-10
  • Naming "his sister," "the young woman" remains
    nameless in this story.
  • The story is about Moses
  • An Ironic twist.

Dancing Prophetess Exod 15.20
  • Then Miriam the prophetess, sister of Aaron took
    up a tambourine in her hand and all the women
    with tambourines and dancing went after her.

Dancing Prophetess Exod 15.20
  • Now Miriam answered them
  • Sing to Yahweh
  • For He has risen indeed
  • Horse and rider, He hurled into the Sea.

Dancing Prophetess Exod 15.20
  • Here Miriam is named!
  • Sister of Aaron
  • Prophetess
  • Worship "answer," tambourine, dance.

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Jealousy Envy Num 12.1
  • Now Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses because
    of the Cushite woman whom he had married, for he
    had indeed married a Cushite woman.

Jealousy Envy Num 12.10a
  • When the cloud departed from over the Tent,
    hinneh Miriam was stricken with snow-white
    scales. . . .

Jealousy Envy Num 12.1, 10
  • Who is this Cushite/Ethiopian woman? (An early
    Jewish tradition)?
  • What happened to the Midianite Zipporah? (Exod
    2.15b-22 4.24-26 18.1-7)?
  • The verbal form of "speak against" is a feminine
    plural, which may imply that Miriam was primary
    and Aaron secondary.

Cushite Woman 18 Dynasty Egypt (1570-1320 B.C.)?
  • Queen Hatshepsut
  • Queen Tiye, mother of Akhenanten
  • Queen Nefertiti, wife of Akhenanten

Jealousy Envy
Jealousy Envy
  • Envy begins with the perception of an unfavorable
    difference in advantage.
  • Envious person tends to think in terms of class
    and rank.
  • Envy can have an affective response, with a
    contagious result.
  • Envy can cause malicious intentions.

General Flow of Num 12
  • Num 121-5 Complaint of Miriam . . . and Aaron
  • Num 126-8 Yahwehs Response
  • . . . your prophets of Yahweh
  • . . . my servant Moses he is entrusted with all
    my house.
  • Num 129-15 Miriam becomes white Moses
    intercedes so that Miriam is healed
  • Num 12.16 from Hazeroth in the Wilderness of Paran

Spiritual Envy Num 12.2
  • And they said, "Has Yahweh indeed spoken only
    through Moses? Has He not spoken through us
    also?" But Yahweh heard.

Spiritual Envy Num 12.4
  • Then Yahweh suddenly said to Moses and to Aaron
    and to Miriam," Come out, the three of you to the
    Tent of Meeting" So the three of them went out.

Spiritual Envy Num 12.5
  • Then Yahweh came down in a pillar of cloud and
    stood at the entrance of the tent of and called
    to Aaron and Miriam. So the two of them came

Spiritual Envy Num 12.8b
  • Why were you not afraid to speak against my
    servant Moses?

Spiritual Envy
  • Recognize that it is God that gives spiritual
    gifts, so there is no "unfavorable advantage" in
    normal terms.
  • If ministries and gifts are to equip and
    strengthen the community of God then class or
    rank issues should be non-issues.
  • The affective response is not necessary nor
    actions that come from malicious intention.

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