Today I was going to talk about our WONDERFUL COUNSELOR, but when I was doing my Bible Study, I got excited about another topic - Marah. I don't know about you, but I get really psyched when I get a "new" word from an "old" story. I have heard the story about the "Bitter Water" many times during past years...I've even taught it several times...always seeing it as just another miracle - which, of course, is awesome in itself. Today though, I saw some deeper meaning in this story...I saw it as a story of fortelling...
The Israelites were wandering in the desert parched and grumbling. They wandered for three days without water. When they FINALLY came to a stream and tried to drink, they found it was bitter and undrinkable. God, however, directed Moses to chop down a tree and throw it into the water...The tree absorbed the bitter and made the water sweet. God had come to their rescue once again! But, I never before saw that tree as the cross. The cross was the tree that Jesus hung on to submerge our sins and make them pure. How many times have we read of Jesus being the "spring of living water"! It is SO cool to me that a story in the Old Testament, before Jesus ever was born, fortold of His gift to us.
Then, after he purified that water, He took them to Elim where they found TWELVE pure SPRINGS and seventy palm trees...They could relax and be cooled off and refreshed!! Jesus healed the water so they didn't die of thirst - as He healed us by the tree he died on - and then He led them to refreshment. He sometimes allows us to drink bitter water, so we will accept the "tree" that will purify it...and then He leads us to a place of rest and refreshment.
Take a break and relax as you put together this picture of Elim - the place in the Sinai wilderness where God led the Israelites for rest and refreshment.