Deuteronomy 34

Quite The View

Israel would soon take possession of the Promised Land but Moses their leader would not finish this last part of the journey with them. Moses understood that his people would not go alone, and he was confident in Joshua's leadership, but he must have longed to go over Jordan and share in what lie ahead. Moses climbs Mount Nebo to the top of Pisgah where he would view the land and then be gathered to his people. It would be interesting to know what his thoughts his mind entertained as he made the journey to the top. Moses had lived one hundred twenty years in which time he was saved from infanticide, adopted by a princess of Egypt, raised with royalty, escaped as a fugitive, sojourned in loneliness, and finally led Israel from captivity while enduring all these years in the wilderness. Moses believed God's promises, preached God's promises, prayed for God's promises, fought for God's promises, and labored for God's promises but with Canaan now in sight, his journey in this life would reach its end. As he reached the summit, the Lord gave him a view of the land all the way to the Mediterranean. This was the land that God had sworn to Moses' ancestors, and his promise would now be fulfilled, but Moses would not cross over with his people. 

Moses Dies

Moses' final acts were singing with his people and speaking words of blessing over them. The people must have watched Moses as far as their sight was able and maybe they could make out his silhouette on Pisgah. Did Moses slowly study every inch of the land he could see? Did he comment on the land's beauty to the Lord? Did he ask the Lord any questions about his children? Did his face shine a bit more brightly as he communed with the Lord with no need for the veil anymore? What did the Lord say in his last moments? The answers to these questions are not recorded; the Bible simply states that Moses died and the Lord buried him in a location known only to God. Moses was in remarkable shape and still enjoyed sight and strength. This would be the last time that anyone saw Moses until the Mount of Transfiguration when he was seen with Elijah and Jesus by three disciples. How long did the silence last until the people began to weep and mourn for thirty days? Joshua was filled with wisdom, discipled, trained, and equipped for leading God's people. Moses laid his hands on Joshua, and the people recognized his authority. God's people would not know a prophet like Moses who enjoyed a unique intimacy and performed such signs until Jesus.

Things To Consider:

  • Are you dealing with any disappointment currently? How are you coping?
  • Why do you think God let Moses see some of the land before he died?
  • What can we learn about death from Moses?
  • Why is it significant that God buried him?
  • Do you think the people had any doubts about Joshua? Why?
  • What pictures of Christ can you see from Moses life and death?
  • What do you think it was like when Peter, James, and John saw Moses on the Mount of Transfiguration?
  • Why is Jesus the greater Moses?