It's still right after the water has crashed down on Pharoah's armies as they tried to pursue the Children of Israel through the Red Sea. All night long, the Israelites marched through the Red Sea on dry ground in between two massive walls of water that God piled up on both sides of them. You might ask, "I thought God is a loving God...how can he kill all the members of Egypt's army?" The answer lies in the previous chapter: "But I will gain glory for myself through Pharaoh and all his army, and the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD." (Ex. 14:4)
God deserves our glory. God deserves our praise. We didn't make ourselves–he created us. The Israelites didn't push the water out of the way themselves, nor did some weather anomily cause the Red Sea to temporarily run dry up–God parted the waters.
Miriam is described here and elsewhere in the Bible as "the prophetess" and "Aaron's sister", but she is also Moses' sister as well. Other prophetesses of the Bible are Deborah, Isaiah's wife, Huldah, Noadiah, Anna, and Philip's daughters. After witnessing the miracles of the water of the Red Sea being walled up, the sea bottom being turned into dry ground, the safe passage of the millions of people and animals crossing from west to east into the Sinai Penninsula, and the drowning of over 600 charioteers in Egypt's army, Miriam grabbed a tambourine and led all of the women of the Children of Israel in celebration of singing and dancing, which was quite common after a victory in battle.
What can we learn from Miriam's singing?
- Give praise and glory to God for everything. She knew it wasn't her brother Moses' outstretched arms which caused the waters to divide. She know it was God who hurled the horse and rider into the sea.
- See in our own lives that God is still working on our behalf. See the wonders he has done and give him credit for them.
- Rejoice and celebrate when God gives us victory, whether it is a public victory or a private one. Come before him with thanks and acknowledge that he is God.