“MORE, MORE, MORE!”
SAID THE ISRAELITES
There is a children’s book titled “More, More, More, said the Baby.” Like the baby in the book, the Israelites were never satisfied with God’s provision. They doubted and did not trust Him to take care of them.
Psalm 78:12 Marvellous things did he in the sight of their fathers, in the land of Egypt, in the field of Zoan.
Susie: Even while the Israelites were still in captivity in Egypt, the Lord performed miracles through Moses and Aaron. He sent the plagues to cause Pharaoh to allow His people to leave. He protected His own people from each of the plagues.
Psalm 78:13 He divided the sea, and caused them to pass through; and he made the waters to stand as an heap.
Susan: When the Israelites had traveled as far as the Red Sea, they thought this was the end. They thought their fate would be to be overrun by Pharaoh’s army. They were completely perplexed and overwhelmed. As they saw the army closing in on them, with their backs to the Red Sea, they cried out in fright:
Exodus 14:11 And they said unto Moses, Because there were no graves in Egypt, hast thou taken us away to die in the wilderness? wherefore hast thou dealt thus with us, to carry us forth out of Egypt?
Susie: Then what did God do right before their eyes?
Susan: God blew a boisterous wind and the waves became dynamic walls of water on either side as they marched forward safely on a completely dry freeway.
Exodus 14:21 And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided.
Susie: Keep in mind that over two million people were following Moses through this sea! The rest of the story is that once God’s people had crossed, the Egyptian army followed them. As the horses, chariots, and infantrymen entered the Red Sea. . .
Susan: God used the walls of water as a deluge crashing down upon them to swallow them up! Pharaoh’s army was in opposition to God and His people, so He destroyed them.
Psalm 78:14 In the daytime also he led them with a cloud, and all the night with a light of fire.
Susie: This phenomenon of the Lord’s presence is recorded in Exodus.
Exodus 13:21 And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night:
Susan: Some scholars interpret this to be the Shekinah glory of God. I concur.
Susie: At the beginning of the story in Exodus, God had appeared to Moses in burning bush that was not consumed by the flames.
Psalm 78:15 He clave the rocks in the wilderness, and gave them drink as out of the great depths. 16 He brought streams also out of the rock, and caused waters to run down like rivers.
Susie: Twice when His people complained to Moses that there was no water source or that the only source was bitter, the Lord instructed Moses to bring water directly out of a rock! Since this water was to quench the thirst of about two million people AND their cattle, I doubt this was a mere trickle.
Susan: According to the notes in the John MacArthur Study Bible, “Rock (petra) refers to a massive cliff, not simply a large stone or boulder, signifying the pre-incarnate Messiah (Christ), who protected and sustained His people.”
1 Corinthians 10:4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.
Susie: To take care of the entire entourage accompanying Moses, the Lord must have provided a river of water flowing from that rocky cliff.
Susan: According to Jesus, the Holy Spirit flows through us like a river:
John 7:38 He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.
Psalm 78:17 And they sinned yet more against him by provoking the most High in the wilderness. 18 And they tempted God in their heart by asking meat for their lust. 19 Yea, they spake against God; they said, Can God furnish a table in the wilderness? 20 Behold, he smote the rock, that the waters gushed out, and the streams overflowed; can he give bread also? can he provide flesh for his people?
Susan: The children of Israel were never satisfied. Their desire for miracles or a magic show was insatiable. It was greater than their desire for their Maker.
Susie: This makes me think of something the Apostle Paul said.
Philippians 3:18-19 (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)
Susie: The Israelites were constantly testing God with a new demand and doubting His ability to provide for and sustain them.
Susan: The Israelites were like stubborn toddlers throwing a tantrum to get their way.
Susie: In light of all God had already done for them, they should have had more confidence in Him. Their doubting and demanding got them attention, but not the kind they desired. We will see the Lord’s response to their behavior in the next segment.
1. What miracles are recounted in this passage?
2. Imagine what it would be like to walk through two walls of water. Would you be frightened? Why or why not?
3. Have you ever thought about how much water would be necessary for an entire nation traveling on foot? Do you think the Israelites had an adequate appreciation for all that the Lord did through Moses? Explain.
4. Has the Lord ever shown Himself mighty, maybe even miraculous, in your own life? Describe the incident below.
5. Have you told your children or someone you are mentoring about the powerful things God has done in your life? Write about an example of God’s work in your life as if you were telling it to a child.
6. Israel witnessed many miracles and still doubted and complained. Are we guilty of failing to appreciate all the Lord has given us? Write a prayer of thanksgiving naming specific the things the Lord has done for you.