Some of the people of Israel began to complain about not having a home of their own to live in, they were tired and they were hungry. When the Lord heard their complaints, he was angry. Moses tried to pray to God for the sake of his people, and the Lord answered.
“Assemble for me seventy of the elders of Israel,” he told Moses, “men you know for true elders and authorities among the people, and bring them to the meeting tent. When they are in place beside you, I will come down and speak with you there. I will also take some of the spirit that is on you and will bestow it on them, that they may share the burden of the people with you. You will then not have to bear it by yourself.”
The Lord instructed Moses to tell the people to prepare themselves for his message. They complained they had no meat, so the Lord said he would send them so much meat they would not want any more. Moses knew the amazing wonders God had performed to bring the people safely out of Egypt, but he did not know how the Lord could provide so much meat. There were so many people. So Moses said, “The people around me include six hundred thousand soldiers; yet you say, ‘I will give them meat to eat for a whole month.”
And the Lord replied, “Is this beyond the Lord’s reach? You shall see now whether or not what I have promised takes place.”
Although he did not understand, he obeyed the Lord. He summoned the 70 elders of Israel and told them to stand by the tent. Then the Lord came down in a cloud and spoke to Moses. The spirit of the Lord touched Moses and each one of the elders. Two other men, Eldad and Medad, were not with Moses and the elders. They felt the spirit of the Lord where they were, and they prophesied to the people who remained back in the camp. Joshua heard of this and immediately went and told Moses.
“Moses, my lord,” he said, “stop them.”
But Moses did not want to stop them. Instead he said to Joshua, “Are you jealous for my sake? Would that all of the people of the Lord were prophets! Would that the Lord would bestow his spirit on them all!”
READ MORE ABOUT IT:
1. What were the Israelites complaining about?
2. What happened to the elders of Israel?
Jerome Sophronius (342-420) studied religion from the time he was a small boy. His father sent him to Rome to continue his schooling in literature and languages.
Since much of his religious education was more academic than spiritual, he did not have a strong drive to serve God. As a young man, he decided he wanted to change his life and become a true religious person. After a vision in which God asked him who he was, Jerome set his life toward devotion to God. He began his training for the priesthood under the condition that he would not be assigned to a church but would be allowed to become a monk or religious recluse. Following this path, Jerome was asked by Pope Damasus to be his personal secretary.
Jerome is revered today for his scholarship and dedication to the church. We honor him on Sept. 30.