~~~~~Lesson: Exodus: Chapters 16-17 (reading after lesson)
This short section contains a vital point of importance. God cares about us. Even about insignificant things like our physical comfort. The Israelites were first given bread to eat. When they complained of the bread, they were given meat. Despite the bread and meat appearing to them, they then complained about water. (One can assume that they were not actually dying of thirst....they would have let the livestock die already!).
God works miracles for us every day, taking care of both our physical and spiritual needs.
There's a saying that has been wandering around for a few centuries now: "The age of miracles has passed." Cynics and even, sorrowfully, occasionally religious people claim that there are no more "obvious" miracles from God anymore...that we are meant to only know God through the Bible (properly translated by a certain church and/or people, of course) or through His "indirect" interventions.
What do you think about the current attitude of "healthy cynicism"?
Have you encountered a spiritual director (please do NOT name a specific church) who has tried to "explain away" the miracles of the bible and/or demeaned God's awe?
Why do you think that the wide-spread, almost universal faith, of past centuries has faded away?
~Reading: Chapters 16-17
(16: 1-3) Having set out from Elim, the whole Israelite community came into the desert of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after their departure from the land of Egypt. Here is the desert the whole Israelite community grumbled against Moses and Aaron. The Israelites said to them, "Would that we had died at the Lord's hand in the land of Egypt, as we sat by our fleshpots and ate our fill of bread! But you had to lead us into this desert to make the whole community die of famine!"
(16: 11-15) The Lord spoke to Moses and said, "I have heard the grumbling of the Israelites. Tell them: In the evening twilight you shall eat flesh, and in the morning you shall have your fill of bread, so that you may know that I, the Lord, am your God."
In the evening quail came up and covered the camp. In the morning a dew lay all about the camp, and when the dew evaporated, there on the surface of the desert were fine flakes like hoarfrost on the ground. On seeing it, the Israelites ask one another, "What is this?" for they did not know what it was. But Moses told them, "This is the bread which the Lord has given you to eat."
Chapter 17: 1-7
(1-7) From the desert of Sin the whole Israelite community journeyed by stages, as the Lord directed, and encamped at Pehidim. Here there was no water for the people to drink. They quarreled, therefore, with Moses and said, "Give us water to drink."
Moses replied, "Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you put the Lord to a test?" H
Here, then, in their thirst for water, the people grumbled against Moses, saying, "Why did you ever make us leave Egypt? Was it just to have us die here of thirst with our children and our livestock?"
So Moses cried out to the Lord, "What shall I do with this people? A little more and they will stone me!"
The Lord answered Moses, "Go over there in front of the people, along with some of the elders of Israel, holding in your hand, as you go, the staff with which you struck the river. I will be standing there in front of you on the rock in Horeb. Strike the rock, and the water will flow from it for the people to drink." This Moses did, in the presence of the elders of Israel. The place was called Massah and Meribah, because the Israelites quarreled there and tested the Lord, saying "Is the Lord in our midst or not?"
Jennifer Becker Landsberger
Who am I? Freelance writer (magazines, websites, & copywriting), Catholic, military wife, and Mensan. Double Bachelor's in History & Psychology.
Witnessing by charity and love are above all. Studying the Bible and beyond helps me on this quest. Feel free to join my walk into the Bible.
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~~~Prayer before Writing-
Oh creator of the universe, who has set the stars in the heavens and causes the sun to rise and set, shed the light of your wisdom into the darkness of my mind. Fill my thoughts with a loving knowledge of you, that I may bring you like to others. Just as you can make even babies speak your truth, instruct my tongue and guide my pen to convey the wonderful glory of the Gospel. Make my intellect sharp, my memory clear, and my words eloquent, so that I may faithfully interpret the mysteries what you have revealed.
To my readers & fellow writers,
1. I will pray that God's grace helps illuminate all of our interactions- both those of simple reading and more active conversations.
2. I will communicate with you respectfully and civilly. These are (rightly) issues which we feel passionate about. But even in disagreements, I will respect you fellow "seekers of truth."
3. I will not fall into negative behavior or words, such as insinuations, exaggerations, blames, or personal attacks. I respectfully ask you to do the same.
4. I will pray we will all find the truth and strive to fulfill the two greatest commandments: "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these." (Mark 12:30-31)
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Sites I Recommend
Biblical Evidence for Catholicism by Dave Armstrong