The Uniqueness of Moses
the Leader and his People

Biblical Sources:

The following passages tell about Moses and the way he related to the Children of Israel.

As you study these passages, consider the following question:

How does Moses see his role as leader in daily life, and how well does he perform in this role?

The passages:

	Exodus 	5:20-23;	     	16	     	18     		32:30-32.	Numbers 11:1-3     		11:11-15     		14:1-5     		17:1-15     		20:1-11	     	21:4-9	Jeremiah15:1	Psalms 	106:23

We see Moses' tremendous efforts on behalf of the people mainly in the following passages:

	Exodus 	16:6-10   	Providing food for the people     		17:4-7          Providing water for the people     		18:23-14      	Judging the people (Jethro's advice)

Teacher Focus


How does Moses care for the needs of the people in each of the above sources?

Analysis: Is it a leader's responsibility to supply food and water? What is your opinion?

In Depth:

Is the leader the one who is DIRECTLY responsible for supplying food and water?

Irrespective of your answer to the previous question, give five reasons for a positive answer and five reasons for a negative answer.

Sources and Role:

The following sources show the difficulty of Moses' dual role as G-d's representative to the people and the people's representative to G-d:

	Exodus 	32:11-14 	(the golden calf -- Moses comes to the 				people's defense)	Numbers	11:1-3         	(Taverah)     		14:1-3; 11-19   (the spies)     		17:1-15         (Korah)     		20:1-11     		21:4-9          (the plague of snakes)	Jeremiah15:1            (Moses as advocate for the people)	Psalms 106:23           (Moses holding off God’s anger)

Please note:
All these passages are long and difficult. It is a good idea, therefore, to focus on one or two and to try and to discover how Moses deals with those who sin, and how he comes to the people's defense.)

Sources and Personality:

The following passages reveal Moses' human reactions -- moments of weakness and despair of a leader, who, after all, was only human:

	Exodus	5:23-20        	(despair over the people's complaints)        Numbers 11:11-15        (Moses' responsibilities are too much                                to bear alone)                14:1-5          (disappointment with the people over                                the spy incident)                20:1-11         (Mei Merivah)

Teacher Focus:


How does Moses react in each of these episodes?
What are the different emotions revealed in these incidents?


In your opinion, is it proper for a leader to express his emotions openly?

In Depth:

Irrespective of your answer to the previous question, give five reasons for a positive answer and five reasons for a negative answer.


The most outstanding and decisive element of Moses' leadership is his identification with the people, his efforts on behalf of the people, and his role as the people’s advocate before G-d. His leadership includes supplying food and water, organization, mediating internal and personal conflicts, and supplying the people's needs.



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05 Jul 2005 / 28 Sivan 5765 0