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Aaron was the eldest son of Amram, of the Israelite tribe of Levi. His name means “Light Bringer”. He was born into the slavery in Egypt three years before his brother Moses, around the year 1559 BC. He married Elisheba, the daughter of Amminadab of the tribe of Judah, by whom he had four sons: Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar
When the time for the deliverance of Israel out of Egypt drew nigh, he was sent by God to meet Moses, to co-operate with him, because God sent him to be the “mouth” or “prophet” of his brother, to speak for him. When the Israel fought with the Amalekites, Moses was attended by Aaron until Israel gained the victory.
Afterwards, when encamped before Sinai, Moses ascended the mount to receive the tables of the law. While Moses remained on the mountain with God, Aaron was with the people. But the people considered that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, so they said to Aaron: “Up! Make us gods who shall go before us”. So he, yielding through fear, or ignorance, or instability of character, made unto them a golden calf, and made proclamation saying: “Tomorrow is a feast to Jehovah”. On the return of Moses to the camp, Aaron was sternly rebuked by him for the part he had acted in this matter, being shame among their enemies. But Moses interceded for him before God, who forgave his sin.
On the mount, Moses received instructions regarding the system of worship, so Aaron and his sons were consecrated to the priest’s office. When Israel had reached Hazeroth, Aaron joined with his sister Miriam in murmuring against Moses, because of the Cushite woman whom he had married, saying that God did not speak only by Moses, but also spoken by them. But God vindicated his servant Moses, and punished Miriam with leprosy, so Aaron acknowledged his own and his sister’s guilt, and at the intercession of Moses they were forgiven, and Miriam was healed.
Aaron was implicated in the sin of his brother when the people contended with them because there was not water, so Moses God commanded what to do, but when he struck the rock, and the water came out plentifully, they do not sanctify Him in the eyes of the Israelites, which was considered by God like rebelliousness, so God said that they would not bring the congregation into the land which He promised. When the tribes arrived at Mount Hor, in the edge of the land of Edom, Moses led Aaron and his son Eleazar to the top of that mountain, in the sight of all the people. There he stripped Aaron of his priestly vestments, and put them upon Eleazar. There Aaron died being 123 years old, in Av first, fifth biblical month, around the year 1436 BC (“And Aaron the priest went up to Mount Hor at the command of the LORD and died there, in the fortieth year after the sons of Israel had come up out of the land of Egypt, in the first of the fifth month. And Aaron was a hundred and twenty-three years old when he died in Mount Hor.” Numbers 33:38-39)
On Saturday, August 2nd 2008, was the first day of the fifth month that it is written in the Bible, so there was roughly 3444 years since the death of Aaron. On a day like this, it is important that we consider the most important strengths and weaknesses of Aaron, and then to imitate the good and discard the bad.
Analyzing the foregoing, we find 3 sins of Aaron:
1. He made a golden calf, which promoted the idolatry of the people.
2. He murmured against Moses, the chosen of God.
3. Rebelliousness against God because they did not sanctify him in the eyes of the people.
We can also highlight 3 strengths:
1. He obeyed God’s voice to tell to Pharaoh what the Lord commanded Moses.
2. He helped Moses in the fight against the Amalekites.
3. He repented and asked forgiveness for to sin against God when he murmured against God’s chosen.
About mistakes we should consider:
1. For any circumstances, we should encourage or practice idolatry, even as it is believed that is in honor to God, because Aaron also proclaimed “feast to Jehovah” with the golden calf, but it was a celebration that offended the Almighty. Today some have taken pagan festivities to celebrate festivals in honor of Jesus Christ. This is not an accusatory criticism, but a reflection so we seek to please God. But the idolatry is also found in anything to replace God to some extent. In our times, each has produced his/her own gods.
2. Murmuring or affront against everything that God has commanded, it is a sin that we must avoid. We must not murmur against the neighbor.
3. In everything that we do/make, we should glorify God, because He is the cause of our existence.
But we can learn from the strengths:
1. Obedience to God’s commandments teaches us to be best servers to Him and to the neighbor.
2. Helping those who are fighting against adversity and who are promoting truth and mercy of God.
3. We must recognize our mistakes and leave them to have mercy (“He who covers his sins shall not be blessed; but whoever confesses and leaves them shall have mercy” Proverbs 28:13)
Aaron was a man who was born in slavery, but died in freedom. So, although we born into slavery of sin, we must be faithful to die being free.