Synopsis – Soon after allowing the Children of Israel to depart from Egypt, Pharaoh chases after them to force their return, and the Israelites find themselves trapped between Pharaoh's armies and the sea. God tells Moshe/Moses to raise his staff over the water; the sea splits to allow the Israelites to pass through, and then closes over the pursuing Egyptians. Moshe and the Children of Israel sing a song of praise and gratitude to God.
In the desert, the people suffer thirst and hunger and repeatedly complain to Moshe and Aaron. God miraculously sweetens the bitter waters of Marah with a piece of wood, and later has Moshe bring forth water from a rock by striking it with his staff; He causes manna to rain down from the heavens before dawn each morning, and quails to appear in the Israelite camp each evening.
The Children of Israel are instructed to gather a double portion of manna on Friday Erev Shabbat, as none will descend on Shabbat, the divinely decreed day of rest. Some disobey and go to gather manna on the seventh day, but find nothing. Aaron preserves a small quantity of manna in a jar, as a testimony for future generations.
In Rephidim, the people are attacked by the Amalekites, who are defeated by Moshe prayers and an army raised by Yehoshua/Joshua.
Theme & Message – The focus of this lesson is that of letting go of the flesh in its many manifestations. It is about the struggle we, as humans, face when we allow our flesh to interfere with drawing near to our Lord. In order to truly know Him, we must completely trust Him, we must allow Him to take complete control, allow Him to be our provider, allow Him to fight the battles with the enemy. The first critical step in this life change is the letting go of the life we knew before accepting the Lord while also denying the desires of the flesh and only following only what is prescribed in the scriptures. Celebrate only that which is of God. Also we must allow the bitters waters of our life of the past be sweetened by the piece of wood that was used to bring us salvation and living water.
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