Key Verse: “And no one takes this honor on himself, but he receives it when called by God, just as Aaron was.” Hebrews 5:4
Aaron’s was Moses older brother. He was born in a slave hut in the Egypt. He was older enough to miss the order to kill all baby boys on birth which affected Moses. Nevertheless, he was born into a time where only one future for him at that was slavery.
Aaron and Moses probably has a broken relationship growing up. While Moses was living as a prince of Egypt, enjoying the best of everything Egypt had to offer, Aaron was making bricks in the desert sun. While Moses attended banquets, Aaron lived on rations. Moses had his own room in the palace, Aaron shared with other families in a slum. They lived worlds apart.
As Aaron approached eighty-three years of age, God lays on his heart to visit his younger brother who by this time was a fugitive in the wilderness. Little did he know as he went looking for his little brother that God had spoken to Moses through a burning bush and appointed Aaron to be his mouthpiece.
After being used to deliver the people from Egypt, Aaron rose to became the first high priest of God’s people. There was no higher position on earth. Aaron was responsible for teaching the people in regards to all aspect of life. People came to him to make offerings for their sins. He could even enter the Most Holy Place in the tabernacle.
Aaron had the most important job on earth, but he was still a man. Consequently, like us, he had failures and weakness. Aaron was a people pleaser. He was easily lead. Maybe he just didn’t like to say no. Maybe just he wanted people to like him. Either way, we can sympathize, because we too often struggle to say no to things we know are wrong rather than risk upsetting or offending someone. We too are often guided by other people’s opinions, thoughts, criticisms, and approval. Typically, the need to always please others is deeply rooted in either a fear of rejection and/or fear of failure.
Aaran was probably one of the nicest and most helpful people you could know. He would never say “no.” He would always do you a favour and always agree with what you said.
Left alone for forty days as Moses went up Mount Sinai. Aaron couldn’t cope with the people pressure. Exodus 32:1 says “When the people saw that Moses was so long in coming down from the mountain, they gathered around Aaron and said, “Come, make us gods who will go before us. As for this fellow Moses who brought us up out of Egypt, we don’t know what has happened to him.” Aaron should have rebuked them and said ‘“NO!”, but he feared their rejection and made a golden calf for them to worship (Exodus 32:4.)
Aaron had a similar problem at home. All parents know what it’s like to give in to your children and not to discipline them the way we ought. We often don’t say no, because “we just want them to be happy.” So once again we give in. Aaron’s two sons didn’t take the calling seriously. Leviticus 10:1 says “they offered unauthorized fire before the LORD, contrary to his command.” As a result, the fire killed them, Aaron was not allowed to mourn for them and restricted into God’s presence (Lev. 16:1-2).
Aaron was also easily influenced by his sister Miriam. He joined her in gossip and disrespecting Moses for marrying an Ethiopian woman (Numbers 12). Once again he was carried along by others to do what he knew was wrong.
We too must guard ourselves against people pleasing. Paul wrote in Galatians 1:10 “Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.” Paul is reminding us, that while we are called to love others, we must always love God in first place and seek to please Him above everyone else.