Saturday, 23 March 2013

Dear Pilgrim, are you thirsty?

Dear Pilgrim, are you thirsty? Are you feeling the burden of walking in a dry, parched land where there is no water? Is your soul thirsty? Are you like a deer, panting for some water? Then come with me, I have something to show you.

Come with me to Kadesh. 40 years of wandering in the desert, witnessing the daily miraculous provision of manna from heaven, and the Israelites are thirsty. There is no water for them. Some of them must surely remember that 40 years ago, when their fathers were thirsty at Horeb and grumbled, Moses cried out to God and was commanded to “Strike the rock, and water will come out of it for the people to drink.” Surely they will remember. Surely they will ask their God to quench their thirst.

Dear Pilgrim, can you hear? That is not the sound of people crying out to God in humility that He might meet their need and quench their thirst! I hear the sound of grumbling. Murmuring. Oh! Why are these people so stiff-necked? Why are they caught in their unbelief?

But what is this? Can you hear the Voice of the Lord, dear Pilgrim? He commands Moses to “Speak to that rock before their eyes and it will pour out its water.” Not strike the rock! The Rock has been smitten once, this Rock that points us to Christ, that points us to His death once and for all for the forgiveness of sins, from Whom a spring of water welling up to eternal life is given. No, this Rock must not be struck again. All that is needed is to “speak” to the Rock. Speak to Christ. Come before Him in humility, acknowledge your thirst, your need, your desperation for Him. It matters not that water had been given at a previous time to meet a previous thirst. The needs of today are different.

Dear Pilgrim, look! Moses…he is striking the rock twice…frustration, anger….disobeying the command of his God, marring the perfect picture of Christ that God had wanted to provide His people….but look, look at the grace of God. Water….water….it is gushing out of the Rock! Do you see, thirsty Pilgrim? Our God has an abundant provision, and He is waiting for us to ask of Him! Oh, thirsty Pilgrim, come with me to this high mountain in the land of Israel, look, see this water flowing from the temple…come, walk with me…ankle deep…now knee deep….waist deep….deep enough to swim in….it’s too deep to cross! Water…water…it is gushing out of the Rock!

Do you see this, thirsty Pilgrim? Do you see this? Then let us be bold, and let us ask that He might quench the thirst of our souls with the water gushing out of the Rock.