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In Egypt, the Israelites were held as slaves by the Egyptians. After many years of being mistreated the Lord answered their prayers and sent Moses to lead them out of Egypt and to the Promised Land. While the Israelites were wandering in the desert they were tested five times by the Lord. These tests were the Bitter Water Test, Manna and Quail Test, Water from The Rock Test, Mount Sinai Test and the Remember Test.
In Exodus 15:22-27 the Israelites faced their first test in the desert. In this passage, Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt into the wilderness of Shur. They were heading towards the Red Sea with only the belongings they could carry. They travel for three days and could not find water.
The Israelites were complaining that they didn’t have any water to drink. Finally, they reached a well-named Marah and the water in the well was bitter. The people could not drink the water and they became angry. They criticized Moses because they didn’t have anything to drink.
Moses took his problems to God and the Lord answered by telling Moses to throw a log into the well which turned it to sweet water. After the Lord gave them drinkable water, God decided to put them to the test. He said, “If you listen carefully to the Lord your God and do what is correct for his eyes and pay attention to his commands I will not bring on you any of the unfortunate things that happened to the Egyptians for I am the Lord the heals all of you.”
Then they came to Elim, where there were twelve offspring and seventeen palm trees, and they stayed there for the night.
The purpose of God behind the first test was to teach all of Moses’s people into trusting the Lord and keep walking and if they keep walking, much better things would come their way.
The good things would only come if they believed God, and all that God had to offer to Moses and his people.
The people that were following Moses failed the test the Lord had given to them. Not a single person besides Moses passed the test. The reason the Israelites failed their first test in the desert was that they did not trust the Lord. They were quick to doubt the Lord. That was the reason they all failed the first test God had given to them.
The first lesson that the Israelites learned was to trust God. The Lord always knows what he is doing and he will never get you in trouble. They also learned to work more as a community and not as individuals. Not working together was the second reason why they all failed the test that the Lord gave them. The last reason the Israelites failed this test was that they did not lookout for the weak of the tribe, the ones that needed the most help.
The second desert test is found in Exodus 16. The whole Israelite community left Elim and traveled into the desert of Sinai. This area was located between Elim and Sinai. In the desert, everyone was complaining against Moses and Aaron. The Israelites were actually wishing that they had died in Egypt. They thought that dying with plenty of food to eat and water to drink was better than where they were now. The Israelites continued to complain to Moses and Aaron. The Lord answered Moses and told him that bread will fall from the sky every morning. Each day the people are to gather only enough for that day. No more or no less. Since the Lord was not going to work on the Sabbath the people were to gather twice as much on the sixth day so they would have food for the next day. This the only day they were to gather enough for the Sabbath day. So, Aaron and Moses told the Israelites what God had commanded. Some of the people did not trust God and tried to gather more Manna then what was needed. This Manna that was saved would spoil by morning. The only morning that the saved Manna would not spoil was on the Sabbath. At night the Lord provided quail for the people to eat. The Lord wanted the Israelites to know that God would provide all their needs. The people did not fully trust God. They continued to eat Manna and Quail for forty years.
God’s purpose in this test was for the whole Israelite community to trust the Lord and also have patience so that you can wait for the good things to come because they will come.
Out of all of the Israelite community, some of them passed the test and some of them failed the test. Some passed because they were patient enough to wait for the food that the Lord was going to give to them. The other part of the Israelites failed the test because they were not patient enough to wait for the food that God was going to bless them with. They were hungry and didn’t want to wait.
The lesson that the Israelites learned from this second test is to trust God. The Lord is perfect, and he will always make the right decision.
The third test is found in Exodus 17 which was the Water from the Rock Test. The whole Israelite community put out from the Desert of Sin, walk from place to place as the Lord directs. They camped at Rephidim, but there was no water for the community to drink. So they brawl with Moses and said, “Give us water to drink.” Moses responded, “Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you put the Lord to the test?” But the community was thirsty for water, and they complain again to Moses.
They said, “Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to make us and our offspring and livestock perish of thirst?” Then Moses cried out to the Lord, “What am I to do with these people? They are almost willing to stone me.” The Lord answered Moses, “Go out in front of the people. Take with you some of the elders of Israel and take in your hand the staff with which you struck the Nile, and go. I will stand there before you by the rock at Horeb. Strike the rock, and water will appear out of it for the community to drink.” So Moses did this in front of the elders of Israel. He called the place Massah and Meribah because of the Israelites brawl and because they were testing the Lord saying, “Is the Lord among us or not?”
After that the Amalekites came and attack Israelites Moses told Joshua to pick some men to go out and fight the Amalekites the next day. During the battle as long as Moses’ hands were raised up the Israelites were winning. When Mose was tired and lowered his hands the Amalekites were winning the battle. Moses was very tired so Aaron and Hur held his hands up until sundown. As long as Moses held up his hands, the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, the Amalekites were winning. Moses said, “Because hands were upraised up against the throne of God, the Lord will be at war against the Amalekites from generation to generation.”
God’s purpose with this test was to show the Israelites that he was among them and that they didn’t need to have any fear because God was there always taking care of them.
On this test, the people were testing God and they all failed because they weren’t supposed to test God. God was supposed to test them. The Israelites did not trust the Lord on this test.
The lesson the Israelites learned was to never test the Lord because the Lord is perfect and to look out for the weak that are among you.
The fourth test can be found in Exodus 19 & 32 and this test is the Mountain Sinai Test. On the first day of the third month after the Israelites left Egypt, they came to the desert of Sinai. After they set out from Rephidim the community enters the desert and camped in front of a mountain. Moses went up the mountain and God the Lord told Moses “this is what you are to say to the descendants of Jacob and what you are to say to the people of Israel: ‘you yourselves saw how I saved you from Egypt now you have to obey me and you are to not let me in the promised land’ this is what you are to say, Moses.” Moses goes back and says everything the Lord asked him to say and the Israelite community said: “We will do everything the Lord has said.” Moses brought the answer back to the Lord and God told Moses “I am going to come to you in the form of a cloud so that the people will hear me talk with you and will always put their trust in you.” then Moses told God that the people have said and the Lord said to Moses go to the people and prepare them for the third day because it’s the day God will go down and talk to all the people. Mountain Sinai was covered with smoke because God was there. Then when they got there Moses told God “The community cannot come up Mount Sinai, because you yourself warned us, ‘Put limits around the mountain Sinai and set it apart as holy.’” God replied to Moses saying “Go down the mountain and bring Aaron with you. But the priests and the people must not force their way through to come up to the Lord, or he will break out against them.” Moses went up the mountain to talk to God and everyone was confused because he went up and didn’t show so everyone was worried Aaron answered by saying “ take off your earrings and given to me” then he burned them and made them into an altar in front of the calf, and told everyone tomorrow would be a festival. Then the Lord told Moses “Go down, because your people, who you brought out of Egypt, have become unholy. They did not do what I told them to do and have made themselves an idol cast in the shape of a calf. They have bowed down to it and sacrificed to it and have said, ‘These are your gods, Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt.” When Aaron saw this, he start to build an altar in front of the calf and announced, “Tomorrow there is going to be a festival to the Lord.” So the next day the people woke up early and sacrificed burnt offerings and offered fellowship offerings. Afterward they sat down to eat and drink and got up to indulge in revelry. Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go down, due to the fact your human beings, whom you delivered up out of Egypt, have become corrupt. They were short to turn away from what I commanded them and have made themselves an idol solid within the form of a calf. They have bowed right down to it and sacrificed to it and have said, ‘These are your gods, Israel, who delivered you up out of Egypt.’ “I actually have seen these people,” the Lord said to Moses, “and they may be a stiff-necked people. Now go away me on my own in order that my anger may additionally burn against them and that I may additionally destroy them. Then I will make you right into a first-rate country.”When Joshua heard the noise of the human beings shouting, he said to Moses, “There is the sound of struggle in the camp. ” But Moses sought the favor of the Lord his God. The tablets were the work of God; the writing turned into the writing of God, engraved at the drugs. “Lord,” he said, “why should your anger burn against your human beings, whom you delivered out of Egypt with first-rate electricity and a robust hand? Turn from your fierce anger; relent and do no longer bring catastrophe in your human beings.
Moses became and went down the mountain with the two pills of the covenant regulation in his palms. “You know how inclined those human beings are to evil. He said to Aaron, “What did those people do to you, which you led them into such exceptional sin?” “Do not be indignant, my lord,” Aaron answered.When Moses approached the camp and saw the calf and the dancing, his anger burned and he threw the capsules out of his palms, breaking them to pieces at the foot of the mountain.
However, whilst the time comes for me to punish, I will punish them for their sins.” And the Lord struck the human beings with a plague due to what they did with the calf Aaron had made.Then Moses said, “You have been set aside to the Lord these days, for you have been towards your very own sons and brothers, and he has blessed you these days.” The subsequent day Moses stated to the human beings, “You have devoted a high-quality sin.
Now, please forgive their sin — but if not, then blot me out of the ebook you have written.” The Lord answered to Moses, “Whoever has sinned towards me I will blot out of my e book. They have made themselves gods of gold. Now pass, lead the humans to the place I referred to, and my angel will cross before you.
The purpose of the Lord on this test was to teach obedience, patience and trust to the Israelites. Most of the Israelites failed the test God had given them because they weren’t patient enough to wait for what God wanted to show the Israelites. The lesson that they learned was first to obey the Lord. The second lesson the Israelites learned was to trust God because the Lord is perfect.
You can find the last test in Deuteronomy 6:10-19. In the last test, the Israelite community finally was into the promised land that the Lord swore to give to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. It was full of food and all other things the Lord promised. They needed to be careful not to forget the Lord your God, the one that took you out of Egypt and the land of slavery.
The Israelites were to fear the Lord your God, serve him only, and take your oaths in his name. Do not follow other gods or the gods of the people around you. The Lord your God is a jealous God and he will burst in anger if you start following other gods. He will destroy you from the land do not test the Lord to the test like you did in Massah. Follow God’s commands, do what is right and good in the Lord’s sight so that everything can go well and that you may go in and take over the land the Lord promised to give you on oath to your ancestors.
God’s purpose for the last test was to remind the Israelite community to obey the Lord and to not forget about Him.
The people both failed and passed throughout history. They passed because they got to the promised land and they failed because they failed most of the other test.
The lesson learned by the Israelites was to always remember the Lord and to trust him.
There were five tests the Lord put the isrealite community throughout all of the forty years they were in the desert they were the Bitter water Test, Manna and Quail, Water from rock, Mountain Sinai and the Remember Test. The isrealite community was allowed in the promised land God promised to give to their ancestors after the forty years they were in the desert.
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