Exodus 17- Victory From God

Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim. And Moses said unto Joshua, Choose us out men, and go out, fight with Amalek: to morrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in mine hand. Exodus 17:8-9

So since the Israelites went through the plagues, went through the Red Sea, tested God in the wilderness, you would think now the Israelites can sit back and relax for the rest of their lives till the Promise Land. Wrong! God promised us salvation but He never promised us an easy life

The Israelites have their first war, their first test the Amalekites. They dont want these strangers on their land, so they attacked Gods people. This would be a fatal mistake for the Amalekites as God is going to wipe them out from the face of the Earth. In fact if you look through world history, those who attacked Gods people were wiped out from the face of the Earth. Where is the might Egyptian empire? Where is the Roman Empire? Where is the Greek empire? Where is the Nazis? They are all in the graveyard

So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and fought with Amalek: and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. Exodus 17:10-11

We are first starting to see Joshua come on to the scene. Joshua will be the predecessor to Moses. One interesting note is Joshua in Hebrew is Yeshua, the same name as our Lord. 

But notice even though Joshua by faith with some other Israelites went to battle the Amalekites, it was God who was actually fighting them. As long as Moses obeyed God, he would fight for them!

But Moses’ hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. And Joshua discomfited Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword. Exodus 17:12-13

Moses arms were getting tired, but his brother helped to keep them lifted. Dont we all need help from our brothers and sisters when we get weary? By God, Joshua defeated the Amalekites. The Israelites faith made them victorious by God

And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven And Moses built an altar, and called the name of it Jehovahnissi Exodus 17:14-15

Just as God promised, He took care of the Israelites and wiped out the Amalekites. How did Moses respond? He built an altar and worshipped God. How do we respond when God gives us victory? Do we thank God? Do we worship and praise Him? Just as the old hymn “God will take care of You” Amen!

Exodus 17- The Living Water

And all the congregation of the children of Israel journeyed from the wilderness of Sin, after their journeys, according to the commandment of the LORD, and pitched in Rephidim: and there was no water for the people to drink. Wherefore the people did chide with Moses, and said, Give us water that we may drink. And Moses said unto them, Why chide ye with me? wherefore do ye tempt the LORD? Exodus 17:1-2

Once again the Israelites are complaining. Even after they saw the Glory of God in the cloud, even after God gave them the Manna from Heaven, even after God sent them quail to eat, the Israelites were never happy or satisfied. 

Moses response is “Why do you tempt God?” Who are we to tell God what to do? But again this moment, just like others, will be a foreshadow of Christ. As we are going to see the Living Water giving to the Israelites in the Wilderness

And the people thirsted there for water; and the people murmured against Moses, and said, Wherefore is this that thou hast brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our cattle with thirst? And Moses cried unto the LORD, saying, What shall I do unto this people? they be almost ready to stone me. Exodus 17:3-4

Continually the Israelites revolted against Moses, to the point Moses said “They are getting ready to stone me” Meaning they were ready to kill off Moses. So what was Moses response? He cried out to God. This should always be our response also!

And the LORD said unto Moses, Go on before the people, and take with thee of the elders of Israel; and thy rod, wherewith thou smotest the river, take in thine hand, and go. Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. Exodus 17:5-6

God had the solution , as always. But it may not of been a solution we would think is possible. God instructed Moses to strike a rock in the middle of the desert, and a river of flowing water would come out of it. Moses obeyed in faith with the eyewitnesses of the Elders.

He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. John 7:38

Jesus declared He is The Living Water, the Living Water that was delivered to the Israelites in the Wilderness was a foreshadow of Christ! Are you spiritually thirsty, come to Jesus and receive rivers of flowing Living Water, Amen!

Exodus 16- Our Sabbath

And he said unto them, This is that which the LORD hath said, To morrow is the rest of the holy sabbath unto the LORD: bake that which ye will bake to day, and seethe that ye will seethe; and that which remaineth over lay up for you to be kept until the morning. Exodus 16:23

While in the Wilderness , God instituted the Sabbath to the Israelites. The Sabbath was a sign that separated the Israelites from all other nations, it was a day of rest, a day to remember God and give him praise and thanks!

Again, like many things, the Sabbath was a foreshadow of Christ. As Jesus told us “He is our Rest” (Matthew 11:28) The word Sabbath simply means Rest, this day is really all about Jesus!

And they laid it up till the morning, as Moses bade: and it did not stink, neither was there any worm therein. And Moses said, Eat that to day; for to day is a sabbath unto the LORD: to day ye shall not find it in the field. Exodus 16:24-25

Moses instructed the Israelites to gather as much Manna and meat for tomorrow, because God is going to rest on the Sabbath also. There was no Bread from Heaven on the Sabbath day. Just as God rested on the seventh day creating the universe , God instructed the Israelites to rest on the 7th day in the Wilderness

Six days ye shall gather it; but on the seventh day, which is the sabbath, in it there shall be none And it came to pass, that there went out some of the people on the seventh day for to gather, and they found none. And the LORD said unto Moses, How long refuse ye to keep my commandments and my laws? Exodus 16:26-28

But of course, many of the Israelites didnt listen to Moses, they still went out to gather on the Sabbath day. God then asked Moses, “How long will they refuse to keep my commandments and laws” ? This is why we need Jesus, because we continually fail and fall short to keep The Law of God

See, for that the LORD hath given you the sabbath, therefore he giveth you on the sixth day the bread of two days; abide ye every man in his place, let no man go out of his place on the seventh day. So the people rested on the seventh day. Exodus 16:29-30

God actually provided the Israelites a double portion of Manna the day before the Sabbath. God is always our provider! Once the Israelites understood this, they started to observe the Sabbath in obedience to God

There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief. Hebrews 4:9-11

The author of Hebrews gives us more insight, God still has a Sabbath Rest for His people, its Jesus Christ! Without Christ you will never enter into Gods Rest, Jesus is the Sabbath Amen!

Exodus 16- Manna from Heaven

And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness: And the children of Israel said unto them, Would to God we had died by the hand of the LORD in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the flesh pots, and when we did eat bread to the full; for ye have brought us forth into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger. Exodus 16:2-3

Again we see the Israelites moaning and complaining to Moses, even though they were freed from the slavery of Egypt, they were never happy! Doesnt that sound familiar with people today. Jesus freed us from the slavery of sin and death, are you grateful?

The Israelites said they would rather be slaves to Egypt, because it was easier. God never promised us an easy life, God promised us salvation but the journey may be long and challenging, this is where your faith comes in!

Then said the LORD unto Moses, Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a certain rate every day, that I may prove them, whether they will walk in my law, or no. Exodus 16:4

Because God heard the complaints of the Israelites, he rained down “Bread (Manna) from Heaven” What a merciful God we serve, God would have been justified cutting off the Israelites or leaving them, but God will never leave or forsake us!

And Moses said, This shall be, when the LORD shall give you in the evening flesh to eat, and in the morning bread to the full; for that the LORD heareth your murmurings which ye murmur against him: and what are we? your murmurings are not against us, but against the LORD. And Moses spake unto Aaron, Say unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, Come near before the LORD: for he hath heard your murmurings. Exodus 16:8-9

God not only rained down Bread from Heaven in the morning, but he also gave them meat (qual) in the evening. Why did God do this? Because he heard the cries of His people and He wanted to show them who He is!  Don’t think God doesnt hear your cries, He knows and He will provide!

And it came to pass, as Aaron spake unto the whole congregation of the children of Israel, that they looked toward the wilderness, and, behold, the glory of the LORD appeared in the cloud. Exodus 16:10

The Glory of Yahweh was revealed in the cloud in the Wilderness, remember earlier Jesus was with the Israelites in the Wilderness when they parted the Red Sea, Jesus is still with His people in the Wilderness, and Jesus is still with You today

And when the children of Israel saw it, they said one to another, It is manna: for they wist not what it was. And Moses said unto them, This is the bread which the LORD hath given you to eat. Exodus 16:15

When the Israelites received the Bread from Heaven, they thought “What Is This”? Its the same when we receive Christ, our Bread from Heaven. We think “What is this Grace all about”? Its about God providing and delivering his children

And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. John 6:35

In John 6 , Jesus talks about the Bread from Heaven that God provided, and then Jesus declares “He is the Bread from Heaven” As Jesus said anyone who comes to Him will never hunger or thirst again! God provided the Bread from Heaven, Jesus Christ! Amen!

Exodus 15- Water of Marah

So Moses brought Israel from the Red sea, and they went out into the wilderness of Shur; and they went three days in the wilderness, and found no water. And when they came to Marah, they could not drink of the waters of Marah, for they were bitter: therefore the name of it was called Marah. And the people murmured against Moses, saying, What shall we drink? Exodus 15:22-24

So now the first test for the Israelites as they are now free in the Wilderness. Even though God delivered the Israelites from slavery, they were never happy. They have this unrealistic expectation that life would be easy because they were delivered. We as Christians have the same issues, we believe that life should be easy because Jesus delivered us. 

After everything Moses did for the Israelites, they turned on Moses already. Complaining about him, blaming him for everything that goes wrong. This is the same thing we do with Christ. When things dont go our way, we blame Christ, when we dont get what we want, we blame Christ. 

And he cried unto the LORD; and the LORD shewed him a tree, which when he had cast into the waters, the waters were made sweet: there he made for them a statute and an ordinance, and there he proved them,  Exodus 15:25

Notice what Moses solution was to the problem, he cried out to God. And guess what God gave Moses the solution. Instead of complaining and grumbling to God, why not give Him praise and ask him for direction? God will always provide!

And said, If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the LORD that healeth thee. Exodus 15:26

Heres an amazing blessing God put on the Israelites, if they will listen to God and follow his ways, he well keep them from diseases and heal them! Imagine that, if you just listen to God and be obedient He will take care of you! Just like the Israelites, we need to learn to be obedient to God and trust Him

And they came to Elim, where were twelve wells of water, and threescore and ten palm trees: and they encamped there by the waters.  Exodus 15:27

God is providing all the needs for the Israelites , even though they were weak and helpless in the Wilderness, He provided for them, He empowered them, He delivered them from all their afflictions.

The Water of Marah was bitter and undrinkable, but God made it sweet and sustaining for their lives, just as we need the Living Water of Jesus Christ Amen!