|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
12:1-9 The patience of Moses was tried in his own family, as well as by the people. The pretence was, that he had married a foreign wife; but probably their pride was hurt, and their envy stirred up, by his superior authority. Opposition from our near relations, and from religious friends, is most painful. But this is to be looked for, and it will be well if in such circumstances we can preserve the gentleness and meekness of Moses. Moses was thus fitted to the work he was called to. God not only cleared Moses, but praised him. Moses had the spirit of prophecy in a way which set him far above all other prophets; yet he that is least in the kingdom of heaven, is greater than he; and our Lord Jesus infinitely excels him, Heb 3:1. Let Miriam and Aaron consider whom it was they insulted. We have reason to be afraid of saying or doing any thing against the servants of God. And those are presumptuous indeed who are not afraid to speak evil of dignities, 2Pe 2:10. The removal of God's presence is the surest and saddest token of God's displeasure. Woe to us, if he depart! he never departs, till by sin and folly we drive him from us.
Verse 7. - My servant Moses is not so. No words could more clearly and sharply draw the distinction between Moses and the whole laudabilis numerus of the prophets. It is strange that, in the face of a statement so general and so emphatic, it should have been doubted whether it applied to such prophets as Isaiah or Daniel. It was exactly in "visions" and in "dreams," i.e., under the peculiar psychological conditions so-called, that these greatest of prophets received their revelations from heaven. The exceeding richness and wonder of some of these revelations did not alter the mode in which they were received, nor raise them out of the ordinary conditions of the gradus propheticus. As prophets of future things they were much greater than Moses, and their writings may be to us far more precious; but that does not concern the present question, which turns exclusively upon the relation between the Divine Giver and the human receiver of the revelation. If words mean anything, the assertion here is that Moses stood on an altogether different footing from the "prophet of the Lord" in respect of the communications which he received from the Lord. It is this essential superiority of position on the part of Moses which alone gives force and meaning to the important declarations of Deuteronomy 18:15; John 1:21 b.; John 6:14; 7:40, &c. Moses had no successor in his relations with God until that Son of man came, who was "in heaven" all the time he walked and spake on earth. Who is faithful in all mine house, נֶאֶמָן with בּ means to be proved, or attested, and so established (cf. 1 Samuel 3:20; 1 Samuel 22:14). The Septuagint gives the true sense, ἐν ὅλῳ τῷ οἴκῳ μου πιστός, and so it is quoted in the Epistle to the Hebrews (chapter 3:2). The "house" of God, as the adjective "whole" shows, is not the tabernacle, but the house of Israel; the' word "house" standing for household, family, nation, as so often in the sacred writings (see Genesis 46:27; Leviticus 10:6; Hebrews 3:6).
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My servant Moses is not so,.... Or such a prophet; he is not so used; it was not in such a manner the Lord spake to him; not in visions and dreams, as he had to Abraham and Jacob, and did to others in later times:
who is faithful in all mine house; in the house of Israel, or among that people which were the Lord's family, where Moses was a servant and steward, and did all things according to the will of the Lord, the master of the family; he faithfully delivered to them all the laws, statutes, and ordinances, which he appointed to be observed by them: unless this is to be understood of the tabernacle, which was the house of God, in which he dwelt, and which was made, and all things in it, exactly according to the pattern given by the Lord to Moses: see Hebrews 3:2.
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