Dear reader, we now come to the Mount of Vision, or to Mount Nebo. You remember that Moses in the 34th Chapter of Deuteronomy went from the plains of Moab to the top of Nebo or to Pisgah’s heights to view the Promised Land before he went to live with the Lord. We see him standing on the top of Nebo and God seemed to touch his eyes and he was permitted to see the land from Gilead to Dan, but was not allowed to go over and take possession of the goodly land that he had been working for for the past eighty years. No doubt he thought that God would send him with the people out of bondage forty years before He sent him to do it, and now after at least forty years of as hard trials as a man ever went through in this world, Moses is allowed to go to the mountain top and view the Land of Promise.
There he was to die and his funeral was to be held, and there was to be nobody there but the Lord himself. The funeral of the man Moses was too sacred to be held by mortal man, and again, the Lord knew that if He let the world know where the grave of Moses. was that, not only the Israelites, but the world would almost worship the grave of Moses. Well, I will leave out the word “almost.” I suppose that if I knew just where the grave of Moses was I would be willing to pay almost any kind of a price to get to see the grave of Moses, and we would see thousands of men that never keep the Law of Moses that would cross the oceans to see the grave of the man Moses.
We see the old hero in the last conversation with his children, for the Old Book says that for forty years he carried them as a mother carried her children in her bosom, so we see that he was a mother to them as well as a father, and he was to them as a god. Now the time comes for the separation, and the Lord speaks to him and tells him to get himself up out of the plains of Moab to the top of Nebo. We find that the last conversation that ever took place between Moses and the children of Israel is recorded in the 33rd Chapter of the Book of Deuteronomy. In the opening of the 34th Chapter we see him on the way to the mountain. What wonderful experiences the man Moses had on the tops of mountains. He got his commission to go to Egypt and deliver Israel, from the top of Mount Horeb, and he went and did the greatest work that was ever done by any living man; and he got the call from the Lord while he was in the plains to come to the top of Mount Sinai and receive the Law, and he went and received it, and we have it today. Now, as he finishes up his life’s work the Lord has him to come to the top of Nebo to die.
What a great thing it was to get to die on the top of a beautiful mountain. He was just out of the sight of the Israelites when he died, but he was in sight of the land of Canaan and in sight of heaven and in the presence of God. If ever the angels did want to see what was going on, it was while the Lord was burying the body of Moses, for I tell you, my friend, three worlds were interested while the Lord buried Moses. I have not heard of all the funerals of the earth, but I am of the opinion that there was never another funeral just like the one we have before us. If ever a man in this world was buried in great pomp and glory, it was the man Moses. How in the world could anything be greater than his funeral? The idea of the Lord Himself coming down to this earth and burying a man and holding the funeral Himself!
Brother, I have seen men with black crepe on their arms and other men with big hats with plumes on them, and the horses all draped in mourning, and the men with their little white aprons on, and white gloves on, walk around the grave and throw in a shovel full of dirt and say, “Alas, my brother!” but when you think of the funeral of Moses, their little show makes a fellow sick. Of course, that is the best they can do, and I am not finding fault with them, I am only stating a fact.
The reader will remember that the title that Moses wore was this: “Moses, the servant of God.” Now that was his title. He was not an A. M., or a D. D., or an LL. D., or a Ph. D., and they never called him Dr., but notice his title, “Moses, the servant of the Lord.” No wonder he had a mountain to die on. No wonder he was commissioned from the top of a mountain. No wonder he received the Law from the top of a mountain. No wonder he had the privilege of going to the top of Nebo to die. No wonder he had a funeral unlike any other that is left on record. No wonder he had the Lord God of the whole earth to bury him, for his title is unlike anybody’s I ever heard of; just simply “The servant of the Lord.” The title he wore cut him off from the people; he was not the people’s man, he was the Lord’s man, and of course when the time came for him to die, it was the Lord’s place to look after him, and thank the Lord He did it, and the world has never quit talking about it.
Hundreds of years after the burying was over, we hear the devil raising a racket about the body of Moses, but the angels paid no attention at all. The thing did not concern the devil, for the Bible says that “Moses was the servant of the Lord.” But how different it would have been if Moses had been the servant of the devil. He never would have seen the Land of Canaan from the top of Mount Nebo, but thank the Lord he did just the same. The Lord knows His own, and the Lord knew that Moses was His man, and the devil had no claim on Moses at all.
The reader will remember that the devil is a mightier man for tombstones, and the thing that he wanted was a tall spire to go at the head of the grave of Moses, but the Lord knew that a man with the record that Moses had did not need a tombstone, for they represent the dead, and Moses is still alive. Glory to God in the highest!