Welcome to the Word of Life Study Series- The Wilderness Part 1! The teaching on the “Wilderness” experience of the children of Israel will address the highlights and major events over a 40 year period. I will try to cover the material in sequential order as much as possible. The primary objective of this teaching series is to accomplish what is so eloquently stated in 1 Corinthians 10, “Now these things occurred as examples to keep us from setting our hearts on evil things as they did.” God records these events for our benefit as warnings and illustrations for us not to make the mistakes they made. So let’s learn from these historical events as New Covenant believers in Jesus!
1. The Waters of Marah
Their first test in the desert came after three days of being in the desert they came to a place called Marah (which means bitter) and found the water was bitter. Israel’s response was that they grumbled against Moses, an unfortunate and habitual pattern that would be repeated many times to their own demise. Yet in the New Covenant we are instructed in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, “Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” We don’t give thanks for the circumstance, but in the circumstance we give God the glory!
2. Manna and Quail
For the 40 years the people of Israel were in the desert, God provided for their every need. God was revealing to them that He was their source; the provider, the supplier, their all in all. Just think, every day God was faithful to give them their daily bread until in Joshua 5:11, the manna stopped the day after they first ate the produce of the Promise Land.
3. Water from the Rock
Water is essential to sustain life, God knows this, and one could reason that if God delivered them from Egypt, surely He will not let them die from thirst. Unfortunately, they complained and quarreled with Moses again. Notice the response Moses gave in Exodus 17:2, “Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you put the LORD to the test?” Interesting, so complaining and grumbling about things is a lack of faith, a lack of trusting in God, giving into fear, worrying about the bad things that could happen- doubting God’s ability to take care of us!
4. The Golden Calf
This event is probably one of the most famous in the Old Covenant. It represents supreme betrayal and rebellion. God had delivered the nation from hundreds of years of bondage, parted the red sea, supernaturally fed them and led them by a pillar of fire by night and a cloud of smoke by day. Just prior to Moses ascending Mount Sinai, God appeared to the people in a cloud of glory and spoke to them- the Covenant confirmed and the fear of God was put into them not to sin and break the Covenant.
5. Miriam and Aaron Oppose Moses
The following historical event is significant because it deals with the age old issue of submission and authority and humanity’s continual challenge with authority. It also speaks of jealousy that takes place and the consequences of it.
6. Exploring Canaan
The place is Kadesh Barnea on the outskirts of the Promise Land; at last the people of Israel are on the verge of entering into their land flowing with milk and honey. This is the same land that God had promised Abraham for his decedents to inherit. After all this time, God’s promise is about to be manifest. This is one of the great Old Covenant stories, for it teaches volumes on the principles of faith.Support the show