Miriam was Moses’ elder sister who was given the task of watching over Moses when he was put in a basket afloat the bank of river Nile were pharaoh’s daughter would eventually come to see the baby.
Miriam was the first woman in the Bible with the title of prophetess.
Then Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a tambourine in her hand, and all the women went out after her with tambourines and dancing.
EXODUS 15:20 ESV
Siblings often bring out both the best and worst in each other. This certainly held true in Miriam’s life.
As a young girl, she lived as a slave in Egypt. When Pharaoh’s edict commanded that all newborn baby boys be killed, Miriam and her family worked to keep her newborn brother hidden. When they could no longer conceal Moses, Miriam’s mother made a papyrus basket, waterproofed it with tar, and left the basket floating in the Nile River.
She gave Miriam the job of watching the basket and the fate of her little brother. When Pharaoh’s daughter discovered and adopted Moses, Miriam courageously approached the royal daughter and offered to find a suitable nurse for the baby, thereby bringing the family back together under safe conditions.
Although Moses grew up and lived his early adult life near his sister, the two were separated for nearly forty years when Moses ran from Pharaoh (see Exodus 2). God reunited the siblings in the task of leading the people out of slavery and into the Promised Land (see Micah 6:4).
Along the way, Miriam became jealous of Moses (see Numbers 12:1–2).
When she and her brother, Aaron, began to display their jealousy, God struck her with leprosy for seven days to discipline her for her insolence (see Numbers 12:14).
In her adult life, Miriam is often best remembered for leading the people in song and worship after they crossed the Red Sea (Exodus 15:20–21).