Monday, January 30, 2006

The Journey Through The Desert

Exodus 17:1-7

After the Egyptians had been all destroyed, the Israelites went forward into the wilderness. They had been traveling three days, when they were in want of water.

They did find some at a place called Marah, but it was so bitter they could not drink it. So again they blamed Moses, as they had done when the Egyptians pursued them to the Red Sea, asking him what they were to do for drink.

God told Moses to throw a certain tree which He showed to him into the water. When Moses had done this, it became quite good to drink. A few days after, the people wanted food and again they were angry with Moses and his brother Aaron, who was with him taking care of the Israelites.

They said they wished they had stayed in Egypt, where they had enough to eat, for they had been brought into the wilderness only that they might die of hunger. Then Moses asked them why they murmured against him and Aaron, when it was God Himself who had brought them out of Egypt; their murmuring was really against God.

And though He was displeased at their conduct, God would supply them with food, that they might know that he was indeed their God. So, in the evening, great flocks of quail came about the camp for the Israelites to eat and in the morning, when the dew was dried up from the ground, there lay upon it a small round thing, like little seeds.

The people did not know what it was. Moses told them that it was bread that God had sent them. There it was, fresh every morning, except on the seventh day, which God had in the beginning made a day of rest. On that day He would not have them gather it, giving them twice as much on the sixth day, so that they might have enough for the seventh.

They called it "manna"; and when it was ground, like grain, they made bread of it. God gave it them for forty years, till they came to the land of Canaan. God had done so much for them but the children of Israel were a very ungrateful people. The very next time they wanted water, they were so angry with Moses that they were ready to kill him.

Moses prayed to God to tell him what to do. God told him to take some of the chiefs of the people, and go to a certain rock in Horeb, and strike it with his rod, and water would come out of it. So he took the men with him, and struck the rock, and water flowed abundantly.

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