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Learning From Others

So Moses brought Israel from the Red Sea; then they went out into the Wilderness of Shur. And they went three days in the wilderness and found no water. Now when they came to Marah, they could not drink the waters of Marah, for they were bitter. Therefore the name of it was called Marah. And the people complained against Moses, saying, “What shall we drink?” So he cried out to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a tree. When he cast it into the waters, the waters were made sweet.  There He made a statute and an ordinance for them, and there He tested them, Exodus 15:22-25(NKJV)

Have you ever had someone disappointed in you because they felt you let them down?  You may have been very faithful to them in the past, and yet they only focused on your not meeting their needs/desires.  This very thing happened multiple times in the Book of Exodus, as the Israelites would become discouraged, frustrated, and even angry with God, because they felt their needs/desires were not being met properly. 

I think we can learn a lot as we read these stories contained within the Bible. And if we learn from them we should be able to keep from making the same mistakes they made.  I believe we can clearly see a pattern within the Book of Exodus with respect to the actions and resulting failures of the Israelites.  So let's take a look at them as I feel there are four things we can apply to our life.

1. The first thing we can see is they had experienced abundance.  They had experienced an abundance of God’s miracles when He freed them from the bondage of slavery and provided for their needs as they left Egypt. 

We should take a look at our own lives and choose to acknowledge the abundance of blessings that God has poured out upon us, such as forgiveness, freedom from the bondage of sin, our health, food, homes, family, friends, jobs, as well as our very lives.

2. The second thing we can see with the Israelites is their Expectation. They had become complacent in God’s provision and simply expected Him to continue. 

We need to guard ourselves from expecting everything to continue as it has in the past.  This will keep us from taking things for granted.

3. The third thing we can see happening, is they became Disappointed when their expectations were not met. 

We should ask ourselves, “Does my attitude change when things are not going the way I want them to?”  Or, “Am I walking around like Eeyore on Winnie the Pooh when I hit hard times, or do I still have a joy in my heart—trusting in God’s perfect plan?”

4. The fourth thing we can see is, once they became disappointed they began to Grumble

Again, we must ask ourselves, “Do I complain when things get tough, or do I go to my knees and then cry out to God?”  Or, “Do I make myself out to be a victim, or do I claim victory through Christ Jesus?”

As I read these stories within the Bible, I realize we will all face different sorts of trials, but with the same type of root temptations (i.e. fear, doubt, lack of trust, complacency, etc.).  And we are all susceptible to making the same mistakes as the Israelites did if we are not careful.  Another great truth from these stories of history is, God always came through and provided for His children—He never failed. Jesus gave us great reason to have this same expectation in our lives as well, but He asked something of us.  We see this in Matthew 6:31-33,

“Therefore do not worry, saying, “What shall we eat?’ or “What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.  But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” Matthew 6:31-33 (NKJV)

I want to encourage you today to think about these great lessons within the Bible. As we make it our priority to read God’s Word daily we will see similar temptations within the things we will face, but we will be properly prepared to face them and to make wise choices when we do.  We can avoid making the same types of mistakes the Israelites made, simply by learning from theirs, and by seeking God’s will within His word.  Our worst mistake would be to not learn. 

STUDY QUESTION: According to Exodus 15:22-25 what did the Israelites do when they found the water to be bitter?  What did Moses do?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you willing to respond to your trials as Moses did in these verses?

PRACTICAL APPLICATION:  Seek the Lord, and continue to trust in Him as well as His perfect plan.  He is in control, and He knows what is best.

PRAYER: Father, I trust You for all provision today.  I am sorry for the times where I have become nervous and anxious, because I focused upon the challenges that I faced, and I gave them more merit than Your great power to provide.  I praise You for all provision, and I acknowledge everything I have is from You.  Help me to remember these lessons when I am facing trials.  In Jesus’ precious name, amen…


Be Blessed, Pastor Scott



Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000