So many days I'd heard the people's complaints.
This is wrong. That is horrible. Why isn't there food like in Egypt? Why isn't there more water? He did this--she did that. They never stopped.
If it weren't for my daily talks with the Lord, I'd get sick. I wish they knew how much I cared about them and how I'd asked the Lord to give them mercy, forgiveness, and to provide their needs.
We'd camped in the Wilderness of Zin and ran out of stored water. This morning, before I had a chance to go to the Tabernacle, the whole camp came to my tent. It didn't take a genius to know they were angry about something.
"Hey Moses. When will we get water?" "Yeah! Did you bring us to the wilderness to die?" "There isn't any grain or figs or vines or pomegranates or water here." "Why didn't we just stay in Egypt?"
My heart ached. I felt like weeping, but didn't let myself. I'd heard enough and wanted to leave. Aaron walked with me to the Tabernacle. I needed God. Aaron's sad face showed he needed God, too.
We stood at the door of the Tabernacle then fell on our faces. "God--please help us."
The glory of the Lord appeared, just as He had every other time we called for help. "Moses, take Aaron and your rod to the rock by the people. Speak to the rock so that the people see you. When you do, water will flow for all My people and their animals."
Aaron and I called the children of Israel back to the rock. I didn't have a chance to say one word before they complained again. "Where's our water? Where's our water?"
I took a deep breath and waited for them to quiet. My heart pounded in my head and my hands grew sweaty. I pounded my rod into the ground and screamed, "Quiet! Listen to me you rebels! Do Aaron and I have to bring water for you out of this rock?" I raised my hand and struck the rock twice as hard as I could with my rod.
Water gushed out, spilling into a pool. I stared at the people pushing and shoving each other to slop water into their mouths first. No one said thank you.
Aaron laid his hand on my shoulder then hugged me. "Come, my brother, have a drink."
"No. Not now. The Lord is calling us." We walked back to the Tabernacle. I knew--in every inch of my body I knew I had sinned. I hit the rock instead of speaking to it as the Lord told me to. But, worse than that--much worse than that, I told the people Aaron and I would make the water come from the rock.
How could I have said those words?
We fell to the ground at the Tabernacle door and laid our faces in the dirt. The Lord said, "Moses and Aaron, because you did not believe Me, or honor Me in the eyes of the children of Israel as the water came from the rock you will not be allowed to take them into the Promised Land which I have given them."
I went back to my tent and wept.
1. What did the children of Israel do wrong?
2. What did they want?
3. What should they have done?
4. What did Moses do wrong?
5. What was his punishment?
Something to think about: When the ten spies convinced the people not to go in to the Promised Land, God said Caleb and Joshua would be the only ones from the adults allowed to go into the land, since they obeyed. Although Moses and Aaron obeyed God at that time, do you think God gave a clue that Moses and Aaron wouldn't be allowed to go either?