TESTING IN THE DESERT
Key Verse: 16:4
“Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions.’”
1. Read 15:22-27. How do you think the Israelites felt after traveling three days without finding water? When God provided water for his people, why did he lead them to bitter water first? What is the meaning of what Moses did to purify the water? What did God teach about himself?
2. Read 16:1-15. What was the content of the Israelites’ next complaint (1-3)? How true was their claim? What kind of test did God give the people through the provision of manna? What did Moses and Aaron teach them about their grumbling? (7-8)
3. Read 16:16-30. How is the fairness of God’s provision demonstrated in the appearance of the manna? In what ways did Israel violate God’s commands, and why? Why did God tell them to preserve a sample of the manna?
4. Read 17:1-7. Why do you think Israel so soon had another crisis about the same issue? How did Moses produce water, and what is the significance of this to us (1Co 10:3-4)? What is the meaning of testing the Lord, and why is it bad?
5. Read 17:8-16. What new type of obstacle did Israel face? What was God’s plan for victory over the Amalekites? What part did Moses, Aaron, Hur and Joshua and the men of Israel play in the victory?
6. Review the names of God that were revealed in this passage. How can we overcome complaining and grumbling to live victoriously before God?