Read Exodus 14 -- 16
In Today's Reading:
Crossing the Red Sea; song of Moses; the waters of Marah; murmurings; manna and quail.
Freed from slavery in Egypt, the Israelites were on their way to the promised land. They had traveled only a short distance when they saw all the chariots of Pharaoh's army rushing toward them in a desperate effort to recover his slaves and the Egyptians . . . chased after them and caught up with them. . . .the Israelites became very afraid and cried out to the LORD for help. They said to Moses: Is it because there are no graves in Egypt that you took us to die in the wilderness?(Exodus 14:7-11). When the Israelites cried out to the LORD, it was not in faith, but in fear, hostility, and criticism toward Moses.
The Israelites had seen the miracles in Egypt that had set them free; yet, they chose not to trust God and His ability to provide for them. Although Moses could not see how the Lord would save them, he confidently declared: Don't be afraid. Stand firm and see the LORD's salvation (14:13). In a spectacular display of His power, the LORD hurled the Egyptians into the sea. The waters came back and covered the chariots and horsemen, the entire army of Pharaoh (14:27-28).
Although God met that need miraculously, just three days later He led the Israelites to Marah, where they could not drink the bitter water. And the people complained to Moses (15:24). So . . . the LORD showed him (Moses) a tree. When he threw it into the water, the water became sweet (15:25).
The children of Israel's lack of trust in God was again evident when their food supply was exhausted. In the wilderness the whole Israelite community complained about Moses and Aaron . . . and said to them, If only we had died by the LORD's hand in the land of Egypt . . . Instead, you brought us out into this wilderness to make this whole assembly die of hunger! Then the LORD said to Moses, I am going to rain bread from heaven . . . so that I can test them to see whether or not they will follow My instruction. . . . The household of Israel named the substance manna. . . . They gathered it every morning (16:2-4,15,31,21).
Jesus declared Himself to be the true bread . . . who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world. . . . I am the bread of life (John 6:32-35).
Through the bread (manna) from Heaven (Exodus 16:15). Jesus said: I am the living bread which came down from heaven (John 6:51; also 6:32-48).
Government Officials: Rep. Steve Chabot (OH), Rep. Anne Northrup (KY), and Rep. Jim Saxton (NJ)· Country: Mauritania (3 million) in western Africa · Major language: Hasaniya Arabic · Islamic state with no mission work allowed · 99+% Muslim; .5% Roman Catholic · Prayer Suggestion: Pray not to be envious of others (Psalms 37:1).
Optional Reading: Matthew 22
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 5:5