Last Sunday evening it was my plan to preach from Exodus 14 and 15, but with the inclement weather we experienced, I gave attention to some devotional, abbreviated, thoughts instead.
On the text of Exodus 14 and 15, it was my intent to highlight the Lord as a warrior (a man of war, 15:3). How the Lord dealt with situations of the past is a great encouragement to us in the present. As you know, historical lessons are crucial points of teaching that benefit all who take time to read, reflect and apply. We learn much about the Lord, but we also learn much from the people who, foolishly, refused to learn. Even more unfortunately, more times than not, people identifying themselves as belonging to God have refused to learn from the Lord. No doubt this has applied to you and me on, hopefully, rare occasions. This has resulted in much heartache and loss regardless of frequency.
The Israelites suffered much, but they also experienced much good in that which they suffered. The Lord redeemed (saved) them from Egyptian bondage, and He prevented them from going back after they crossed the Red Sea (in actuality, that was Israel’s Exodus from Egypt). But as they learned much, it seems that many refused to learn at all. There were difficulties before them, and on the occasion after having come from the depths of the Red Sea, they went back into the depths of old habits, not remembering the sustaining power of the Lord that was just experienced! They had a significant difficulty on their hands, that is, the lack of water. The significance of this is in relation to the sheer size of the nation (hundreds of thousands of people), coupled with their current location in the desert. What do many of the people do? Complain. This accomplished what? It certainly accomplished nothing positive in their relationship with the Lord. Thus, the Lord put them to the test (Exodus 15:26).
There are some lessons we can learn from this historical account. First, when faced with a significant difficulty complaining is not the answer. It only agitates the heart and mind. Second, facing the problem squarely, as Moses did, let us also do the same. The Lord is our solution. Third, reflect on what the Lord has done previously.
Learning from the past helps to remind us that as the Lord took care of His people long ago, He will do the same today.