Jesus said very clearly that the Old Testament Scriptures bear witness about him (John 5:39). In fact when he walked as the risen Stranger with the two disciples on the road to Emmaus, he started with the books of Moses and began to explain to them from all the Scriptures the things concerning himself (Luke 24:27). That presents us, as new covenant people with both Old and New Testaments as our Scriptures, with a puzzling task—how are we to read these OT passages in such a way that they throw light ultimately upon Jesus?
Here is one way we can do that from this passage today of Numbers 12. In this passage Miriam criticized her little brother Moses, presumably out of jealousy of his prophetic ministry; but the LORD defended him as a sovereignly appointed, uniquely favoured prophet. But in actual fact Moses wasn’t going to remain unique. Moses himself foretold in Deut. 18:15 that the LORD would ‘raise up a prophet like him’ from among the Jewish people, and they were to listen to him. Both Peter and Stephen, in their sermons-old in Acts identify that much-awaited Prophet as none other than Jesus (Acts 3:22; 7:37). And isn’t it fascinating to notice that Jesus incurred similar criticism and disbelief from his siblings and countrymen? (John 7:5; Mark 6:3) Moses as a prophet experienced in part what Jesus as the Prophet experienced in full. And Jesus warned us that his followers should expect the same.