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December 16 – Picture #2: Water

Whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” – John 4:13-14

Scripture reading: Exodus 15:22-27

The Israelites escaped from Egypt and safely crossed the Red Sea. But they were not in the Promised Land yet. A vast wilderness now stood before them. Sand, sand and more sand. Scorching heat. Some poisonous snakes too. But no food. Rarely any water. This would be no picnic! But God was with them.

They traveled for three full days without finding any water. Then, when they finally did find water, they found it was too bitter to drink. Since the desert is a drink-or-die environment, this was a state of emergency.

Knowing that God graciously brought the Israelites out of Egypt, you would think they would believe God would continue to take care of them throughout their wilderness journey. But no! They doubted, disbelieved and grumbled. Yet God responded with grace. He told Moses to throw a piece of wood into the bitter water and suddenly it became sweet. Grace for grumblers. What a God!

The next stop was at the oasis of Elim. The twelve springs and seventy palm trees symbolize the fullness of God’s provision. Twelve springs, one for each tribe; seventy palm trees, one for each of Israel’s elders. Full provision for the full number of God’s people.

This life-giving water in the wilderness was a picture of Jesus. He says, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink…. The water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 7:37; 4:14b).

Suggestions for prayer

Thank God that the waters of His sin-cleansing, eternal life-giving grace flow in an unending stream and are available free of charge through faith in His Son, Jesus Christ.

This daily devotional is available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God DevotionalRev. Brian Zegers has been serving the Lord by working with Word of Life Ministry as home missionary to the Muslim community in Toronto, Ontario since 2015.

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