Some people think the Old Testament is outdated and not pertinent to our lives. But God wrote all of the Bible, and every book contains important teachings and lessons for us. From the very beginning, the Bible points the way to Jesus. We are told in John 1 that Jesus was there at Creation. Once the fall of man occurred and sin entered the world, God began preparing the way for our Redeemer. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that in Exodus 17, there are “pictures” of Christ for us.
Once again, after God sent quail and manna to feed them, the people complained to Moses about the lack of drinking water at their new campsite. And once again, God provided for them.
“Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘Pass before the people and take with you some of the elders of Israel; and take in your hand your staff with which you struck the Nile, and go. Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock at Horeb; and you shall strike the rock, and water will come out of it, that the people may drink.’ And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel.” ~ Exodus 17:5-6
Tsuwr is the Hebrew word used for “rock”. This same word is used repeatedly throughout Scripture to describe God.
“The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge; my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” ~ Psalm 18:2
“O come, let us sing for joy to the LORD; let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation.” ~ Psalm 95:1
Jesus is also called the cornerstone, “the stone which the builders rejected” in Psalm 118:22 and Matthew 21:42.
Jesus, God the Son, our Rock, was struck at Calvary by the elders of Israel, and because of His death on the cross, we can drink freely from His Living Water, which we are told is the Holy Spirit.
“Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, ‘If any man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water’.’ But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.” ~ John 7:38-39
In Exodus 17:6, God told Moses that He Himself would stand before him there on the rock. So, God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are all pictured here!
Because Moses obeyed God and the rock was struck, the people lived and had water to drink. What if God had spared His Son, the Babe in the manger, our Passover Lamb, sent to die for us? If Jesus had not been struck on that cross, we would still be separated from God, still waiting for redemption and restoration.
Remember this, during this Christmas season when we celebrate the birth of our Saviour- He was born to die for us! How thankful I am, that God did not spare His Son. And how thankful I am that He lives, and I live with Him, for Him, through Him!
Joy to the world! 🙂