Moses’ and Miriam’s Songs

This meditation is based on a passage for April 13, 2010 in the Daily Lectionary Year 2 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).

Text: Exodus 15:1-21

Reflection and Question: I learned in seminary that Miriam’s short song at the end of this passage is among the oldest fragments in all of Scripture. It is the first verse of a longer poem attributed to Moses that expands upon the defeat of Pharaoh and the people of Israel settling in already inhabited lands. In both the short and the long versions God is a warrior who triumphs in battle. For me the distance between this sense of God and the nature of God captured in Jesus gives us a measure of how, through time, human understanding of God changes. What image of God touches you most deeply?

Prayer: Mighty God, I listen to the joy in the proclamation that You have “triumphed gloriously,” and I want You at my side when I go out against adversaries in the world. And I remember how You come in Jesus, with love and compassion. As You are, be with us. Amen.