The death of Moses

CODEX Entry 1034: The death of Moses


Moses proved himself a loyal and talented leader in unprecedented circumstances. On several occasions Moses had successfully interceded on behalf of the Israelites when Yahweh, in his fury, had decided to massacre them all. Moses would massage Yahweh’s ego with suggestions of how this would look bad with the other gods. Trapped between a rock and a hard place, as Yahweh burned civilians and the survivors pleaded with Moses, he even begged to be relieved of his duties or killed¹.

At the rock of Horeb it appears that Yahweh made a conscious decision to replace his management team in the form of Aaron and Moses, with Eleazar and Joshua. Yahweh had failed to deliver water for three days. Children and animals were dying in the Sinai Desert. The people were delirious with thirst and furious with Moses. Moses and Aaron bowed before Yahweh and explained the situation. Yahweh gave them a ham·maṭ·ṭeh, translated as a rod, but having more the meaning of a wand, that could draw water from the ground. Yahweh told them to make a dramatic display before the doubting people. However, when Moses used it, he did something wrong, smashing it on a rock and dropping it, possibly damaging the equipment². Yahweh was furious with them. As punishment, Aaron was taken to the top of Mt. Hor and stripped and left to die of exposure, while Yahweh said he would allow Moses to see Canaan before he killed him too³. This promise he fulfilled on Mt Nebo4, after showing Moses the land to the West. Moses was in good health5, despite his age, when taken up the mountain by Yahweh. Devotees seem to be able to glide past this monstrous betrayal of his most loyal servant, and the murder of a man still venerated to this day.



¹ Num. 11:11

² Num. 20:11

³ Num. 20:12

4 Deut. 32:48-52

5 Deut. 34:7