Moses did not lack for anything in his palatial life, yet he rejected it all and did not take pride in it. On the contrary, he wanted to boast of the Israelites, who were moaning and suffering before Heaven. Furthermore, he wanted to be proud of the land of Canaan with which Abraham was blessed, the land that the seven Canaanite peoples had claimed. His desires were in tune with the wishes of God, who wanted to raise a chosen people of Israelites in the land of Canaan and be proud of them. Therefore, God put Moses at the helm of the people and led them to that land. We have to understand that this was the situation of God.
When Moses appeared before the 600,000, no one among them understood his innermost feelings. Most of them opposed him. However, through many miracles and calamities, God led the people to the realization that Moses was the one to guide them to the garden of pride in which they could dwell. They were thus able to fathom Moses’ heart, and God was able to lead them out.
The Israelites should have believed in Moses as the one sent by Heaven and should have been proud of him until the end. When he came with heavenly authority and struck the palace of Pharaoh, they rejoiced that he was their Heaven-sent leader. Yet when they faced more humble and difficult circumstances in the wilderness, they lost faith in him and discredited him, saying that he was not fit to lead the people.
Among the Israelites there should have been some who centered their lives on Moses, believing that he was their proud leader. They should have shared his sorrow, his path, and his leadership, knowing that it was all for the sake of saving the people. Had there been such people, then the 600,000 would not have been lost in the wilderness.
The people held grudges against Moses. They betrayed him and did not attend him when they should have boasted about him, followed him and served him. From this moment, the basis for the pride of God, Moses and the people was shattered. This will should have been realized by Moses, yet it did not come to pass. The people betrayed Moses, who was their representative. You have to understand that, at this moment, Moses felt more pain and sorrow than when he was living in the palace, longing for the land of Canaan.
Moses led the people into the wilderness to guide them to the land of Canaan, the land of hope. Even when he was being ostracized and betrayed by the people in the wilderness, he had to guide them. This is why he felt incredibly bitter. The people did not realize they should be proud of him and treated him with contempt instead. They surely deserved to perish. If the Israelites had truly understood the heart of Moses, they could not have complained.
When he was looking at the starving people, Moses was most courageous. He pleaded with Heaven to give blessings to the people. This moved Heaven. The Israelite people never understood that Moses was never concerned about himself. Instead, he was praying for their sake.
The 600,000 Israelites should have understood that Moses suffered more starvation and misery than they did. They then would have avoided destruction. They also should have understood that Moses was trying to save them. When they turned their backs and opposed him, Moses felt much pain and grief.
The people failed to realize that they should comply with the wishes of Moses, who was living for Heaven with all his heart and soul. Their attitudes not only caused grief to Moses, they made God even more sorrowful. You have to understand that God’s grief was more intense than that of Moses. Although, Moses was the leader of the people and a person in which God could take pride, because of the faithlessness of the people, his life ended in miserable tragedy.
Let Us Understand God, Who Wanted to be Proud
Reverend Sun Myung Moon
February 8, 1959