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Aaron: The Prophet's Prophet
Exactly as the LORD said would happen, the Pharaoh refused the first command to let the Israelite people go (see Bricks Without Straw). Moses was told that it would happen, but he seemed to forget it when his mission "failed."
"5:22 And Moses returned unto the LORD, and said, Lord, wherefore hast thou so evil entreated this people? why is it that thou hast sent me? 5:23 For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in thy name, he hath done evil to this people; neither hast thou delivered thy people at all." (Exodus 5:22-23 KJV)
"Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet"
The LORD again reminded and instructed Moses what was surely going to happen. It wasn't all depending on Moses, who seemed to be taking personal responsibility for it all.
Another revelation was given to Moses at that time: "I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name JEHOVAH was I not known to them." "JEHOVAH" is an English language rendering of The Name in Hebrew, shown in the illustration (see Jehovah).
"6:1 Then the LORD said unto Moses, Now shalt thou see what I will do to Pharaoh: for with a strong hand shall he let them go, and with a strong hand shall he drive them out of his land.
Moses then tried to assure the Israelites that they would be set free - but they wouldn't listen because of their "anguish of spirit."
"6:9 And Moses spake so unto the children of Israel: but they hearkened not unto Moses for anguish of spirit, and for cruel bondage." (Exodus 6:9 KJV)
The LORD then told Moses to go again unto the Pharaoh, but Moses again pleaded with the LORD to not send a man with a speaking impediment to the Egyptian king, a request probably not without some merit - the stress had apparently made Moses' stammering much worse. Moses may well have wanted to not return more out of a fear of embarrassment, than of failure. Did the Pharaoh mock and laugh at Moses' speaking the first time? Perhaps.
"6:10 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, 6:11 Go in, speak unto Pharaoh king of Egypt, that he let the children of Israel go out of his land.
Moses apparently had a much more difficult time speaking with humans than he did with people; he certainly had no problem talking with the LORD (see the Fact Finder question below). The LORD had already appointed Aaron as Moses' spokesman, but Moses obviously tried to speak to the Pharaoh himself (if he hadn't, the speaking problem would not still be an issue). This time, the LORD commanded Moses to let Aaron be his "prophet" - "and Moses and Aaron did as the LORD commanded them."
"7:1 And the LORD said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a god to Pharaoh: and Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet. 7:2 Thou shalt speak all that I command thee: and Aaron thy brother shall speak unto Pharaoh, that he send the children of Israel out of his land. 7:3 And I will harden Pharaoh's heart, and multiply my signs and my wonders in the land of Egypt. 7:4 But Pharaoh shall not hearken unto you, that I may lay my hand upon Egypt, and bring forth mine armies, and my people the children of Israel, out of the land of Egypt by great judgments. 7:5 And the Egyptians shall know that I am the LORD, when I stretch forth mine hand upon Egypt, and bring out the children of Israel from among them.
Fact Finder: Although Moses sometimes had difficulty in speaking with people, he had no difficulty in speaking with the LORD, amazingly, face to face like a friend. How do we know that?