During the Holiday Season, so many people like to emphasize the GIVING experience. We even quote Scripture to punctuate our giving experience: “For God so greatly loved and clearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son…” ~ John 3:16.
But what I want to discuss in this particular blog-Post is, how we can we thoroughly partake in what God has already given?
The GIFT — God gave to us all and now… we need to reach out and receive. We’ll never know what’s on the inside unless we RECEIVE!
EXODUS 15:22-27 AMPLIFIED BIBLE:
 Then Moses led Israel on-ward from the Red Sea and they went into the Wilderness of Shur; they went three days [thirty-three miles] in the wilderness and found no water.
 When they came to Marah, they could not drink its waters for they were bitter; therefore it was named Marah
 The people murmured against Moses, saying, What shall we drink?
 And he cried to the Lord, and the Lord showed him a tree which he cast into the waters, and the waters were made sweet. There [the Lord] made for them a statute and an ordinance, and there He proved them,
 Saying, If you will diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord your God and will do what is right in His sight, and will listen to and obey His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases upon you which I brought upon the Egyptians, for I am the Lord Who heals you.
 And they came to Elim, where there were twelve springs of water and seventy palm trees; and they encamped there by the waters.
HOW GOD REVEALS TO US HIS CHARACTER, HIS NATURE IN THE BIBLE:
GOD has revealed Himself in various ways in the Bible for us to better understand His character–who He is by indication in His name. [See Footnote [i]- source for the following names listed.]
* ELOHIM=Creator, Preserver, Keeper of His Covenant.
* EL-SHADDAI=Almighty God, Our all-sufficient supply, Restorer of power, gifts, and the One Who makes us fruitful.
* ADONAI=Lord–Owner of all!
* JEHOVAH=LORD–holiness (Truth Revealer), righteousness, redemption.
After being married to my dear wife for over fifty years, our relationship has grown even closer; utilizing the names we have for each other: honey (sweetness), sweetheart (character; heart), babe (physical attraction), and other descriptive qualities that will go unmentioned. The names we’ve chosen shows the endearing relationship we have for one another.
GOD REVEALS HIS NATURE IN SCRIPTURE: (*Footnotes [i].)
The names of God which He progressively reveals Himself in the OT is a response to His people’s progressing needs:
* ABRAHAM in his test to offer up his son Isaac on Mt. Moriah. JEHOVAH- JIREH=The God Who provides. God provided a SACRIFICE. And there, caught in the thorny bushes, a ram. The GIFT had been provided and Abraham gladly received.
* The PASSOVER LAMB, who would be slain so God’s people could go free (from Egypt) and Christians could be set free from the power of sin through “the Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world”.
And from this experience came the expression “on the mount of the Lord it will be provided.” And so it was, 2000 years later (Now 2000 years ago!) – on Mt. Moriah, which is, geographically CALVARY–“That’s where Jerusalem was built.”
These stories are all lessons to us. In fact…the whole of the OT is!
“Now these things befell them by the way of a figure [as an example and warning to us]; they were written to admonish and fit us for right action by good instruction, we in whose days the ages have reached their climax (their consummation and concluding period)” (1 Corinthians 10:11 amp).
I hope this study will speak to you as you’re reading and meditating on the application in your life.
GOD REVEALS something else of His nature.
* That He is the HEALER.
* The LORD who HEALS.
In the verses above from Exodus 15, basically, God’s people have made it out of Egypt through the Red Sea. After 400 years captive in slavery, and God providing the way of escape, they came out with Excitement, Expectation, and Energy! This carries them on day one into the desert (they don’t notice the heat or thirst at this point).
Then comes day TWO…and their throats become progressively dry and parched.
Then comes day THREE…and they really start to moan! I wonder in the story who or what was bitter here!
Then they see the water! Yippee!! An Oasis!!! “God, you’ve done it!” UP! – But the water taste foul. DOWN – Undrinkable, Bitter, Frustration, Disillusionment. They get more bitter from the experience and decide to take it out on Moses. He then takes it out on God.
Bitterness described in the Bible as a spiritual poison (Hebrews 12:15). It can be tricky to recognize because it’s NOT a symptom that’s visible on the surface like anger. Bitterness is an underlying problem that often goes unnoticed in the believing Christian. It doesn’t manifest on the outside and yet it sours the inside spirit of man.
“BITTERNESS” IN THE DESERT:
It becomes a test–
Not of them to God (as they think: “will He come up with the goods?”), but God to them. He has a lesson for them to learn.
“GET…(receive)THAT TREE…THE WOOD”
‘Throw the tree in the water and you’ll be okay.’ In fact: follow the LORD’s commands and statutes (decrees) and NONE of these diseases will hit you, for I AM JEHOVAH-ROPHE:
ROPHE meaning in the Hebrew language: “Restore to heal, to make healthful – in body, mind and spirit” (*See Footnote [ii].).
HEALING is in the Name and Nature of God–
“BLESS (AFFECTIONATELY, gratefully praise) the Lord, O my soul; and all that is [deepest] within me, bless His holy name!  Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not [one of] ALL His benefits–  Who forgives [every one of] ALL your iniquities, Who heals [each one of] ALL your diseases,…”
So if this is so in God’s nature, why is there so much sickness?
It boils down to why God’s first name was revealed–SIN. I’m not saying specifically because I, you, have sinned (though that may be the case and the cause) Cf John 9. BUT because of the PROBLEM of sin in the world.
– The world going away from Him.
– Us going away.
– The pollution of power of sin.
That is the real problem!
THE SOLUTION TO SICKNESS:
It’s the hand out–
1. For reaching out and taking and receiving…
2. It’s the wood nearby…
3. The tree.
The PROBLEM just might be “Bitterness”–
– Of heart, of life.
– Within you. Your name is “Marah.”
– Maybe a death in your family that goes unexplained.
– Perhaps what you’ve done to others…or what they’ve done to you.
– And there’s a need for forgiveness–one way or another.
– Your experiences, memories?
– Who did what? Who hurt you? It’s all tied together.
– And so is the SICKNESS: spirit, sin and unforgiveness affects the mind, which affects the body.
And the ANSWER is there to RECEIVE–THE WOOD–THE CROSS.
FORGIVENESS from God through repentance releases God’s hand in your life. What WATER has flown through your life?
“You have made me drink bitter waters!”
The ANSWER IS JESUS:
JESUS answering the Samaritan woman at the well when He was asked, “You being a Jew, how is it that you are asking me for a drink of water?” Jesus answered her,
“If you had only known and had recognized God’s gift
and Who this is that is saying to you, Give Me a drink,
you would have asked Him [instead] and He would have given you
~ John 4:10~
If you find yourself with a dry, parched throat and DOUBT of the OUTCOME…
John 4:11-12: “She said to Him, Sir, You have nothing to draw with [no drawing bucket] and the well is deep; how then can You provide living water? [Where do You get Your living water?]  Are You greater than and superior to our ancestor Jacob, who gave us this well and who used to drink from it himself, and his sons and his cattle also?”
John 4:13-15: “JESUS answered her, All who drink of THIS water will be thirsty again.  But whoever takes a drink of THE water that I will give him shall never, no never, be thirsty any more. But the water that I will give him shall become a spring of water welling up (flowing, bubbling) [continually] within him unto (into, for) eternal life.  The woman said to Him, Sir, give me THIS water, so that I may never get thirsty nor have to come [continually all the way] here to draw.”
John 7:37-39: “Now on the final and most important day of the Feast, Jesus stood, and cried in a loud voice, If any man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink!  He who believes in Me [who cleaves to and trusts in and relies on Me] as the Scripture has said, From his innermost being shall flow [continuously] springs and rivers of living water.  But He was speaking here of the Spirit, Whom those who believed cr(trusted, had faith) in Him were afterward to receive. For the [Holy] Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified (raised to honor).”
Revelation 22:1-3: “THEN HE showed me the river whose waters give life, sparkling like crystal, flowing out from the throne of God and of the Lamb  Through the middle of the broadway of the city; also, on either side of the river was the tree of life with its twelve varieties of fruit, yielding each month its fresh crop; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing and the restoration of the nations.  There shall no longer exist anything that is accursed (detestable, foul, offensive, impure, hateful, or horrible). But the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and His servants shall worship Him [pay divine honors to Him and do Him holy service].”
Revelation 22:17: “The [Holy] Spirit and the bride (the church, the true Christians) say, Come! And let who is listening say, Come! And let everyone come who is thirsty [who is painfully conscious of his need of those things by which the soul is refreshed, supported, and strengthened]; and whoever [earnestly] desires it, let him come, take, appropriate, and drink the water of Life without cost.”
IN GOD’S WISDOM, THERE’S A PRIORITY LIST TO FOLLOW:
#1. Getting right with God comes first (and getting right with others).
#2. The healing of the Spirit.
#3. Then the healing of the mind. PEACE! How often is that mentioned in the Bible? 365 times!
#4. The body. Because that does matter to God. The Israelites in the desert needed a DRINK, here! And, God knew that.
#5. Look at all the physical healings of Jesus.
All Christians get HEALED 100%–
Healing of the spirit comes first and if that’s true, and Scripture backs up the percentage, there should be no more fear.
It’s when we get taken to be with the LORD. The Lord’s GIFT has already been given. It is time to reach out and RECETHE ACTION COMES WITH THE GIFT:
Every man and woman must have their MARAH moment to drink; sour or bitter tastes in the mouth. Life is full of disappointments, trouble, stress, losses, conflict, sickness…
But GOD had a remedy for Moses. God told Moses to get that tree over there, toss it in the water and the act of God created SWEETNESS out of BITTERNESS.
BUT THERE’S MORE!
The Elims of Life–“And they came to Elim…” (VERSE 27)
What every one of us must realize, just as there are the “MARAH’S”, the bitterness of life, there are also the “ELIMS” of life. “Elim” will always follow a “Marah”.
“…where there were twelve springs of water and seventy palm trees; and they encamped there by the waters” (Exodus 15:27).
The LIVING WATER is there for you to partake of. Now you need to go and RECEIVE the sweetness and encamp there in the midst of your doubt.
[i] Names of God/Bible.org – https://bible.org/article/names-god/
[ii] Expository Dictionary Of Bible Words.
– Photo Pin.
– Unknown (Wood Cross)
– Lessing Images.com
– The Exodus Route: Marah/Elim @ www. bible.ca/archeology/bible-archeology/-exodus-route-marah
AMPLIFIED BIBLE translation.
VINE’S COMPLETE EXPOSITORY DICTIONARY OF OLD AND NEW TESTAMENT WORDS
Young’s Bile Dictionary by G. Douglas Young, PhD