Tuesday, May 28, 2013

David & Moses: The Making of a Leader

David Moses
David is the youngest child in his family (except according to some interpretations which suggest that he has one younger brother called Eliyahu). Moshe is the youngest child in his family.
David's mother and father have a complicated relationship. (His mother may have been married to Nachash, been widowed, and only later married his father. Per Midrash, his mother tricks his father when his father wants to sleep with a servant girl, and he is conceived through this trickery.) Moshe's mother and father have a complicated relationship. Per Midrash, they divorced because of Pharoah's decree and only remarried (and later conceived Moshe) because their daughter told her father that he was being harsher than Pharoah himself had been.
David is raised in the palace as lyre-player to Saul. (I Samuel 16:22)

כב  וַיִּשְׁלַח שָׁאוּל, אֶל-יִשַׁי לֵאמֹר:  יַעֲמָד-נָא דָוִד לְפָנַי, כִּי-מָצָא חֵן בְּעֵינָי.22 And Saul sent to Jesse, saying: 'Let David, I pray thee, stand before me; for he hath found favour in my sight.'
Moses is raised in the palace as the adopted son of Bitya, daughter of Pharoah. (Exodus 2:10)

י  וַיִּגְדַּל הַיֶּלֶד, וַתְּבִאֵהוּ לְבַת-פַּרְעֹה, וַיְהִי-לָהּ, לְבֵן; וַתִּקְרָא שְׁמוֹ, מֹשֶׁה, וַתֹּאמֶר, כִּי מִן-הַמַּיִם מְשִׁיתִהוּ.10 And the child grew, and she brought him unto Pharaoh's daughter, and he became her son. And she called his name Moses, and said: 'Because I drew him out of the water.'
David kills Goliath, which frightens and antagonizes Saul, and eventually leads to his needing to run away from Saul. Moshe kills the Mitzri (Egyptian), which frightens and antagonizes Pharoah, and eventually leads to Moses' needing to run away from Pharoah.
The son and daughter of Saul are valuable allies for David. (Both of them save his life.) (I Samuel 19:12)

יב  וַתֹּרֶד מִיכַל אֶת-דָּוִד, בְּעַד הַחַלּוֹן; וַיֵּלֶךְ וַיִּבְרַח, וַיִּמָּלֵט.12 So Michal let David down through the window; and he went, and fled, and escaped.
The daughter of Pharoah is a valuable ally for Moses. (She saves his life.) (Exodus 2:6)

ו  וַתִּפְתַּח וַתִּרְאֵהוּ אֶת-הַיֶּלֶד, וְהִנֵּה-נַעַר בֹּכֶה; וַתַּחְמֹל עָלָיו--וַתֹּאמֶר, מִיַּלְדֵי הָעִבְרִים זֶה.6 And she opened it, and saw it, even the child; and behold a boy that wept. And she had compassion on him, and said: 'This is one of the Hebrews' children.'
David faces Saul again on multiple occasions.  Moses faces Pharoah again on multiple occasions.
Saul consistently has changes of heart and claims he is ready to make peace with David, but he never really is (until the end, when the choice is taken from him because David has run away to Gath). Pharoah consistently has changes of heart and claims he is ready to send out Moses and his people, but he never really is (until the end, when the choice is taken from him because of Makat Bechorot).
David works as a shepherd. Moshe works as a shepherd.
David has a difficult time leading his men (they continually want to kill Saul and he has to stop them; they don't want to share the booty equally and he has to intervene). Moshe has a difficult time leading his people (they complain throughout their journey in the wilderness).
David sends out two spies to see if Saul has truly come. (I Samuel 26: 4)

ד  וַיִּשְׁלַח דָּוִד, מְרַגְּלִים; וַיֵּדַע, כִּי-בָא שָׁאוּל אֶל-נָכוֹן.4 David therefore sent out spies, and understood that Saul was come of a certainty.
Moses sends out 12 spies to spy out the land of Canaan. (Numbers 13:16)

טז  אֵלֶּה שְׁמוֹת הָאֲנָשִׁים, אֲשֶׁר-שָׁלַח מֹשֶׁה לָתוּר אֶת-הָאָרֶץ; וַיִּקְרָא מֹשֶׁה לְהוֹשֵׁעַ בִּן-נוּן, יְהוֹשֻׁעַ.16 These are the names of the men that Moses sent to spy out the land. And Moses called Hoshea the son of Nun Joshua.
David's people want to stone him. (I Samuel 30:6)

ו  וַתֵּצֶר לְדָוִד מְאֹד, כִּי-אָמְרוּ הָעָם לְסָקְלוֹ--כִּי-מָרָה נֶפֶשׁ כָּל-הָעָם, אִישׁ עַל-בָּנָו וְעַל-בְּנֹתָיו; וַיִּתְחַזֵּק דָּוִד, בַּיהוָה אֱלֹהָיו.  {ס}6 And David was greatly distressed; for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters; but David strengthened himself in the LORD his God. {S}


Moses' people want to stone him. (Exodus 17:4, possibly Numbers 14:10)

ד  וַיִּצְעַק מֹשֶׁה אֶל-יְהוָה לֵאמֹר, מָה אֶעֱשֶׂה לָעָם הַזֶּה; עוֹד מְעַט, וּסְקָלֻנִי.4 And Moses cried unto the LORD, saying: 'What shall I do unto this people? they are almost ready to stone me.'
David cannot enter his Promised Land (he cannot build the Beit HaMikdash, even though he has stockpiled all the supplies for it).  (I Chronicles 28:3) However, his successor, Shlomo, can.

ג  וְהָאֱלֹהִים אָמַר לִי, לֹא-תִבְנֶה בַיִת לִשְׁמִי:  כִּי אִישׁ מִלְחָמוֹת אַתָּה, וְדָמִים שָׁפָכְתָּ.3 But God said unto me: Thou shalt not build a house for My name, because thou art a man of war, and hast shed blood.
Moses cannot enter the Promised Land. However, his successor, Yehoshua, can. (Numbers 20:12)


יב  וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה, אֶל-מֹשֶׁה וְאֶל-אַהֲרֹן, יַעַן לֹא-הֶאֱמַנְתֶּם בִּי, לְהַקְדִּישֵׁנִי לְעֵינֵי בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל--לָכֵן, לֹא תָבִיאוּ אֶת-הַקָּהָל הַזֶּה, אֶל-הָאָרֶץ, אֲשֶׁר-נָתַתִּי לָהֶם.12 And the LORD said unto Moses and Aaron: 'Because ye believed not in Me, to sanctify Me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this assembly into the land which I have given them.'

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

thanks very nice!

Anonymous said...

very nice post! thx! zeev

Chana said...

I found this today:

A particularly strong analogy can be found between two shepherds: Moses and David. The analogy begins in Chronicles. Both Moses and David are referred to as “the man of G-d” (Deut. 33:1; Neh. 12:24, 36; II Chron. 8:14); both Moses and David led the people for forty years (Sam. 7:7; Deut. 31:2; 34:7; I Kings 2:11); David’s preparations for building the Temple call to mind Moses’ preparations for erecting the Tabernacle (cf. Ex. 35:4-29 and I Chron. 28:11ff).

The parallels between Moses and David are also brought out in legends of the Sages, as we see in Midrash Tehillim 1.2 (Buber ed., p. 3):

The greatest prophet was Moses ... the greatest king, David. One finds that whatever Moses did, David did as well. Moses took the Israelites out of Egypt, and David took Israel out of the bondage of exiles. Moses waged war on Sihon and Og, and David waged war on all those around him... Moses ruled[1] over Israel and Judah, ... and David ruled over Israel and Judah. Moses made the sea part for Israel, and David parted the rivers for Israel ... Moses gave Israel the Five Books of the Torah, and David gave Israel five books of Psalms.
The homilist’s point here is to elevate David to the level of Moses. The homily is based on the fact that both of them started out as shepherds and continued as faithful guardians of the flock, and also on the analogy between them that is drawn in Chronicles. This comparison opens the way for the homilist to search Scripture, in order to show further similarities between them.