Starting over: Choosing faith over fear (Exodus 15:27)

PASTOR BRIAN K. BROWN, St. Mark M.B. Church

Our start overs have their highs and lows, but no matter, we are still here, and we continue each day with a new start over.  Each day God gives us something to help us with the day’s start over.  The referenced text shows us, through the Israelites journey to a land of milk and honey, in spite of setbacks along the way they continued the journey.  At this point they had traveled from Marah (bitter water) to Elim (forest of trees).  Elim had 70 trees and 12 wells.  At Marah there were trees but not water they could drink and now they are at a place that had both water they could drink and trees that provided shelter.

At Elim they had the option of camping by the trees or camping by the water.  Verse 27 gives the answer of where they camped, by the water.  We have two options, life by faith or life by fear.  Israel chose to live in the light of the knowledge that God has all they needed.  They set there camp in a place that symbolizes their faith, by the water.  As they journeyed, they learned something about God that was connected to water, water at the Red Sea, bitter water at Marah and now 12 wells of water at Elim.  Israel recognized that at the waters they would find God working on their behalf.

Fear freezes us from possibilities, but faith gives blessings to others and ourselves.  Whatever we feed will win and that we don’t feed will lose (feed faith or fear).  Faith always wins.  Israel finally gets it that it’s better to choose the God of the water that they know rather than the god of the forest they don’t know.  Israel choice was driven by faith rather fear.  What are we afraid of?  Are we feeding or starving our fears?  Fear keeps us from blessings, but faith brings us to blessings so we should feed our faith.  Faith is a confident expectation that God will do what he says.

The first point of consideration offered by Pastor Brown coming from Chapter 14:28-31 was God saved them by the water.  Everything that was an enemy to them God delivered them from by the water and from this they understood that they should trust God.  God used the water as a weapon against the Egyptians at the Red Sea.  While Israel crossed the Red Sea on dry ground, when the Egyptians tried to follow after them, they were drowned.  At Elim the Israelites chose to camp by the waters as they remembered God had delivered them by water.

The second movement of water and point from Chapter 15 and verse 25 was God sweetens our water.  The Israelites had found bitter water at Marah, but God used a tree to sweeten the water for them.  When God shows up the bitter can become sweeter.  They trusted God when he gave them the solution to the problem of bitter water by putting a certain tree in the water that caused the bitter water to become sweet.  We too experience bitter in our lives, but God can take the bitter and make it sweeter.

The final point, from Chapter 15 and verse 27, was God knows how to supply us the water.  When God brought the Israelites to Elim there was plenty of water.  Some of us won’t leave the sweet water of Marah.  Afterall that was not their final destination.  The water was sweeten for a time but eventually it would be bitter again.  At Elim they chose to camp by water as God had demonstrated to them time and time again that he would supply their need.  We too can know that it is God who supplies our needs and feed not our fears but feed our faith.  We dare not trust in any other than Jesus who supplies what we need.

May God continue to bless and keep you.  Please join our live stream service on YouTube @ St Mark MBC each Sunday @ 10:20 and bible study on Wednesdays @ 7:00 p.m.

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