The Sound of Life or Death Is In The Power Of The Tongue
“ Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” (Proverbs 18:21 KJV)
In biblical times the shofar sounded the Sabbath , announced the New Moon , and proclaimed the anointing of a new king. This latter custom has been preserved in modern Israel at the swearing in of the president of the state. Shofar is a Hebrew word that comes from a root meaning beauty.
The revelation here is that any test will always analyze the sound of your life. Our lives make a sound, according to scripture all who have blood flowing in or outside of their human shell there is a voice that resonates in Elohim’s hears. In Genesis 4:10 it establishes that HaShem monitors us as it reads,
In the book of Numbers we see various accounts of the people of Israel living before the Holy One in the wilderness. The wilderness is a season where HaShem deals with an individual’s character, revealing and stripping down the errors while restoring and strengthening the proper intensity of faithfulness (obedience) in our hearts toward Him and the Torah. The book of Numbers is filled with the errors and the mercy extended to the community of Israelites.
The two judgments that the people of Israel have suffered leading up to this point, were a) The displeased Miriam and Aaron regarding Moses choice for a wife caused Miriam to be sorely punished for their dishonor of Moses (Ahayah’s chosen) appointed leader, and b) Korah influencing the 250 leaders to oppose the leadership of Moses claiming, “Korah was as fit to lead as Moses and accused Moses of exhausting himself over the people. The one defining factor in both, and in what we are about to look at is, they all have to do with the mouth and use of the tongue against Ahayah’s appointed leadership. You would think after what had been already experienced, Miryam and her brother would have been more discerning about what they said. I believe that they both probably felt justified about what was being said. Maybe in a way they both felt it was a correct observation of their brother Moshe’s behavior. Therefore to them it wasn’t on the same level of sinfulness as the other situations which had just occurred in the camp. However, justified or not they are about to find out what Ahayah thinks of their secretive meeting and what was said.
The fact remains, that both situations revolve around the use of the tongue. Just as our above Scripture admonishes. Death and life are both within the power of that small member of the physical collective. The Jewish description of the misuse and abuse of this member is known as lashon hara, or the evil tongue. Our words can build up or tear down. Our words can heal and cleanse or they can push people to do evil things and defile. I hope we are paying attention here. There will be more of this kind of thing ahead in the not too distant future for the people of Israel We in our present day will find ourselves in situations just like what we are reading. May Ahayah give us grace to learn by example and NOT by the bitterness of experience.
We find in Numbers 12:2 that Miryam and Aharon were alone in a tent when the conversation unfolded. They weren’t out among the people. They were alone…or at least they thought they were. The catalyst that started things off was Moshe’s choice of a wife. This then led to the real subject at the heart of the discussion. What made Moshe so special? What about us? So our brother is a prophet. Has Ahayah only spoken through Him? Has not He spoken through us also? That’s when we read these fateful words in our Torah text,
“…And Ahayah heard it.” (Bamidbar/Numbers 12:2b KJV)
Let’s be honest with ourselves, do we also make the mistake today of living our lives as though HaShem cannot hear us. He heard them. They were in a tent. No one else was privy to the situation. Miryam herself was considered to be a prophetess among the people of Israel. Her position seemed to grant her the right to make such an evaluation of their brother. After all, they were not spreading things among the people like the rabble had. This was between two people, who in their eyes had equal standing with their brother.
Miryam and Aharon were using Tzipporah as a means to get at their real reason for their conversation. It apparently wasn’t justification in Ahayah’s sight for it though. Over the past few weeks we have been focusing on the fluff of our words used to disguise our true motives. Ahayah knows what is in our innermost being, our very blood has a voice that screams to him where we err in our hearts. The blood flows through the heart of man and is a necessary means for the hearts condition. If there is jealousy, arrogance, falsehood it streams through your blood and beats in your heart. Therefore, it will make a specific sound when you speak in the ears of Ahayah. Also, as the scriptures often state, those who have ears to hear can also hear what Elohim is saying and rightly discern and divide the word of truth. They were touching His beloved servant and it was in fact a subtle form of a much more serious sin…rebellion! Because of Moshe’s meekness, he probably wouldn’t have attempted to defend himself between his brother and sister. However, Ahayah would. His response was immediate and forthright. What had been done by Miryam (Aharon while involved was not the instigator) was worthy of death. The use of the supernatural outbreak of the skin leprosy which we studied in the book of Leviticus, was known as the walking death. It made Ahayah’s point about lashon hara in two ways. It showed that He will not tolerate such misuse and abuse of the tongue among His people, even those in leadership. It also was a means by which the reverential fear of Ahayah might be brought to the hearts of the people of Israel. What Miriam and Aharon were guilty of was rebellion. [Touching Ahayah’s delegated authority is the same as touching Him] Miriam, the instigator, would serve as a living testimony as an Afflicted One for all Israel to look at and remember NOT to speak evil in the camp.
When Ahayah left the weight of the violation was painfully clear. Miriam stood there completely covered in the leprosy. A person completely covered with leprosy was in fact considered clean because the leprosy had run its full course. She was completely covered. It was no longer contagious, but the afflicted one could never be completely at rest. The symptoms could flare back up at any time. Aharon cried out to Moshe to beg Ahayah not to leave their sister like this. He did, and Ahayah relented, but still required that she be put out of the camp for seven days. At the end of that time the leprosy would be removed and she could be received back into the camp again.
The entire nation is at a halt during the process of Miryam’s deliverance. Yes, she is restored. Blessed be our Ahayah for His mercy and longsuffering. However, it was time of lost progress. Beloved, may we let what we are seeing here sink deep down inside our hearts. Many congregations suffer from the sins associated with lashon hara/the evil tongue. Spiritual progress ceased Physical effectiveness in fulfilling the vision Ahayah has given to congregations and ministries is constantly being set back. Some may recover in time. Others may never fulfill their purpose. How such a little member of the human body can have if allowed to guide as an instrument, or literally a weapon of unrighteousness.
Maturity in your walk is heard in your talk
The season of the gathering and ingathering back to the Torah is developing those ordained to walk in a greater Torah. You can hear the shofar blow when they speak. The tongue is a major apparatus to create the path you will walk down the next day.
May Ahayah give us ears to hear and a heart to receive what He is saying through His Torah today. Amen
Loving you enough to share the truth,