Bible characters. / Adam to Achan

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While, all the time, each several one of the three was all the more dependent on the other two just because of the greatness of his own and her own special gift. The very magnitude of their own gifts made the others gifts more necessary to them, till the whole house of Amram was a complete and a rounded and a perfect gift of God to all Israel. And till all that Israel could ever need as a nation and as a church, as fathers and as mothers, as masters and as servants, as slaves and as redeemed from slavery, as sinners and as the chosen people of God all Israel was complete in Moses and Aaron and Miriam, even as they also were complete in God and in one another.

Yes, indeed, what a highly honoured house was the house of that son and daughter of Levi, Amram and God-her-glory. It was the depth and the weight and the fulness of Moses mind that made him a man of such slow speech and of such a slow tongue. He had been so 4 5. He had taken the shoes off his feet so often before God that he never could put them on again or walk in them with any ease or any free dom before men.

And, who am I? Moses was a great philosopher, says Matthew Henry, and a great statesman, and a great diyiae, and yet he was no orator. But, better than all his great philosophy and great statesman ship, Moses was a great divine, the greatest of Old Testament divines ; the greatest because the first of all divines. And yet he was no preacher, as we say. In this Moses was somewhat like certain of our own great divines.

Butler for one, and Foster for another. Whereas certain others of our great divines are like Aaron in this, that they can speak well. And yet we have sometimes heard of great divines and great preachers too who shrank back from the pulpit as much as Moses himself shrank.

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The call of Isaiah, and the call of Jeremiah, and the call of Calvin, and the call of Knox, and the call of Bruce all remind us of Moses noble modesty, his fear of his office, his fear of himself, and of his fellow-men. Is not Aaron the Levite thy brother? And he shall be thy spokesman unto the people ; he shall be to thee instead of a mouth, and thou shalt be to him instead of God. Cato the Censor defined a great orator to be nothing else than a good man well skilled in speak ing.

Bible Characters by Alexander Whyte (english) Hardcover Book

And Quintilian, in his Institutes of Oratory, has a noble passage on the great Roman s great text. Let all our young orators, and, especially, let all our sacred and Aaronic orators, study the delightful Institutes, that perfect treasure-house of ancient letters, ancient wisdom, and ancient truth and beauty. Now, Aaron r was one of Gate s good men skilled in speaking.

We are sure of that, because for Aaron s goodness as a man we have not only his long lifetime in the most sacred of all services, but also the psalmist s testimony that Aaron, with all his great trespass, was a great saint of God. The sword had entered Aaron s soul also. The iron furnace of Egypt had been burning for long in Aaron s covenant heart also. But when 7 8. Aaron looked at the tremendous and impossible task of delivering Israel out of Egypt, he felt that he was helpless and hopeless. At the same time, he felt sure that if there was a man on the face of the earth made of God on special purpose for such a service, it was just his own banished brother Moses.

Behold, Aaron thy brother cometh forth to meet thee, and when he seeth thee he will be glad in his heart. And thou shalt speak to him, and put words in his mouth ; and I will be with his mouth and with thy mouth, and will teach you both what you shall both do. And he shall be, even he shall be to thee instead of a mouth, and thou shalt be to him instead of God.

Bible characters adam to achan

And Aaron went and met Moses in the mount of God. And Aaron kissed Moses, and Moses told Aaron all that the Lord had said concerning him, till Aaron answered, and shrank back, and said : Surely it is not so. Surely the Lord did not so speak concerning me. I speak well! I speak for thee, my brother! I am not worthy to be of the same name with thee. I should always sit silent.

follow site I should never speak. My tongue will not tame. I need thee, my brother.

I need thy patience. I need thy command. Thou art the wisest and the best of men. Thou art a king in Israel. Moses, my dear brother! While all the time Moses felt more than ever before how all this must be of God. For even as Aaron so spake, Moses saw to his delight that Aaron had always the right word ready.

No man could resist Aaron. No man could refuse Aaron. Pharaoh himself would not be able to resist and refuse Aaron. Moses felt beside Aaron that he would never open his mouth again. The right word always went away, somehow, when Moses opened his mouth to speak.

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Whereas Aaron had but to open his mouth and the right 9 Till, with Aaron beside him, Moses felt that he could face without fear of failure both all Israel and Pharaoh with all his priests and all his magicians. Now, as we have already seen, we have always had men among ourselves more or less like Moses, and other men more or less like Aaron. Men like Moses that is, men of great originality, and of great depth and grasp and strength of mind.

And ; yet men who have been of a stammering tongue. Dollinger knew too much to write much. On the other hand, what are those men to do, who, like Aaron, have no such depth, and grasp, and originality, and productivity of mind as Moses and the great thinkers and great scholars of our race have had? A minister, for instance.

He may not be a great scholar or a great thinker himself, but he is set over those who are still less scholars, and who think still less. Now, what is such a man to do?


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What, but just to take Moses instead of God. What, but just to find out those great divines and other great authors who have been so immediately and so richly gifted of God, and to live with them, and work with them, and make them his own, just as if God had given him all the great gifts He has given them.

If I am a man of no learning and no originality, then I know men, both living and dead, who are ; and they are all that, of God, and under God, for me. We are not all the men of Moses- like genius and originality we might like to be. We are not all epoch-making, history -making, nation-making men. But we are what we are. We are what God has made us to be ; and Moses himself is no more. And Moses may be as glad to meet me in my teachableness and in my love and in my reverence as I am to meet him in his magnificent supremacy and high solitariness of gift and of office.

One thing is sure : we shall be satisfied with what He shall say to us, and we shall have no room left in our hearts wherewith any more to envy Moses for his god-like gifts and for his god-like services. Aaron faced the elders of Israel, and scattered all their 12 The crossing of the lied Sea also, Mount Sinai, and the giving of the tabernacle and the law it has certainly been by some one who could both speak well and write well also that all that wonderful piece has been put into our hands.

by Alexander Whyte

And, whatever part Aaron and Aaron s great gifts may have had in all that, at any rate, all went well with Aaron through all that. Aaron did splendid service through all that, and both his great name and his great service would have gone on growing in love and in honour to the end if only he had never let Moses out of his sight. But always when Moses was for any length of time out of sight, Aaron was a reed shaken with the wind ; he was as weak and as evil as any other man.

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Those forty days that Moses was away on the Mount brought out, among other things, both Moses" strength and greatness and Aaron s little ness and weakness in a way that nothing else could have done. Up, make us gods, which shall go 13 A man mav be. Hejnay speak jweU jmder sufficient applause whoj has no nobility of character. It has often been seen, both in sacred, and in pro- fan e, and in coatejiipQxary- Iiistory, liow- -soon.

And men of the oratorical order Have so often flinched and failed in the hour of action and of suffering that our eloquent men are aptjobe too lightly esteemed. The love of popularity, and the absolute necessity to have the multitude with him, is a terrible tempt- ation to that leader of men and of movements in the church and in the state who has the gift oi 15 What would the people like me to say to them on that subject? Will they crowd to hear it? How will they take it? And what will be said about what I have said after I have said it and cannot unsay it?