Jon Reed, evangelist
Moses, commissioned by God, marched into Egypt and told Pharaoh to set the the Israelites free. After many signs and wonders, Pharaoh had to comply. The people of God march out of years of slavery and into the plan of God.
Unfortunately, Pharaoh followed them into the dessert with the intent to destroy them, but God intervened. When it looked like there was no way out, Moses obeyed the Lord's instructions and God split the Red Sea. "The Israelites went through the sea on dry ground, with a wall of water on their right and on their left."
Imagine walking on the dry ocean floor surrounded by a wall of water to your right and to your left. When God delivered them, He surrounded them with the supernatural. I am not sure how long it took them to cross, but for an unspecified amount of time they walked, watched, and witness the indescribable power of God.
They felt the dry ground under their feet. With their own eyes, they saw the wall of water all around them. They were completely surrounded by the power of God.
Just a few moments earlier, they were terrified. They were wishing they had never left Egypt, and verbally attacked and blamed Moses for bringing them to this point. At that moment, God intervened and "the Israelites saw the mighty hand of the Lord."
Maybe it's just me, but I want to think this would mark my memory. I want to think that from that time forward, I would never doubt or forget the power and plan of God. But, it did not take long for them to begin complaining and questioning God again.
Actually, it only took three days. They traveled through the Desert of Shur and when they came to Marah, the water there was bitter and undrinkable. Thirsty and desperate, they lash out at Moses again. And the Bible says that they grumbled and complained in verse twenty-four.
Can you remember when God delivered you from slavery? I can. It was January 23rd, 1992. I was in Gatlinburg, TN on the third floor at the Edgewater Hotel. You heard it right, the "Edgewater Hotel!"
Even though I was raised in church and baptized at the age of eight. I was lost. I didn't loose my salvation, I simply had never been truly saved in the first place.
I had became a slave to sin and that sin almost cost me my life. But God sent a Moses to me and just at the right time, God saved me. I walked right out of years of slavery! It was the first time that I had experienced the supernatural work of God. I was surrounded by a wall of worship. There were college students all around me worshiping God like I had never seen before. I saw tears and laughter side by side.
The Spirit of God was all around me and amazingly, I knew it! That night, I repented of my sins and gave my life to Jesus Christ. From that day forward, my life has never been the same.
I wish I could say that I haven't struggled with my faith since that day, but you guessed it, I have. The enemy followed me just like Pharaoh followed the Israelites. And yes, God has delivered me from the enemy in a supernatural way countless of times. Yet, I still catch myself in doubting, worrying, and even complaining sometimes when my situations seem hopeless.
When we read the biblical narrative, it's easy to see the frailty and frustrations of the Israelites. We tend to wonder how they could forget God's intervention so quickly and so easily. Yet, I confess, I have done the same.
Sometimes our senses can overwhelm us. The Israelites are thirsty. It has been three days since they have had water and they are in a full blown panic. They finally come to a water source, but the water is undrinkable. And the cycle begins again. They begin to blame, complain, and grumble to Moses.
In verse 25, Moses cried out to the Lord and again God provided a piece of wood that would make the water fresh again. In spite of their grumbling and complaining, God would heal the waters and save the people ... again. And God issue a ruling and instructions that day in verse 26, "If you listen carefully to the Lord your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the Lord, who heals you."
And the Lord blessed the Israelites that day when they came to Elim, where there were twelve springs and seventy palm trees, and the camped near the water. When our journey begins with God, that is exactly what it is ... a journey.
There will be times when our faith is tested. There will be times when our senses over ride our ability to remember that God is in control. We must remember that "He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." (Phil. 1:6)
Can you remember when you were delivered from sin and slavery?
If we can trust God with our salvation, can we trust Him with our sanctification?
When was the last time that you experienced a great need?
How has God brought healing in your times of great need?
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