Summary: Thi is for a believer who feels thirst and hungry for the things of God
FROM BITTER TO SWEET
“So Moses brought Israel from the Red sea, and they went out into the wilderness of Shur; and they went three days in the wilderness, and found no water.”
Believer in Jesus, has your soul gone along time without its thirst being slaked by the fresh waters of the Holy Spirit? You thirst for God to rescue your from these present sufferings and long for the wine of joy to intoxicate you or the streams of peace to cool your burning frustrated emotions. Yes, you have read his promise, “But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.” But you are still so dehydrated. It is hard to pray, even more difficult to believe… You have been rescued from bondage in Egypt, or saved from spiritual slavery and the tyranny of the Pharaoh Lucifer. They were baptized unto Moses with the water of the Red Sea, and you too have been baptized into Christ and taken the signature of the Son of God on your spirit. You rejoiced in your salvation and sang the Song of your heavenly Moses-Jesus! You, like these followers of Jehovah in the desert, have abandoned your whole life to Christ to trust him daily instead of relying on the fleshpots of Egypt or the world’s lifestyle to meet your needs? Now you are in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water-you are experiencing trials that seem beyond your ability to bear. You can identify with King David when he said, “I am weary of my crying: my throat is dried: mine eyes fail while I wait for my God.” (Ps. 69:3)
“And when they came to Marah, they could not drink of the waters of Marah, for they were bitter: therefore the name of it was called Marah. And the people murmured against Moses, saying, What shall we drink?”
This verse could read two ways. First, they could not drink of the waters for they (the Israelites) were bitter. Bitterness is a tormenting sin, a torture that many soul with in agony with today. The worst thing about bitterness is that it make a person unable to receive God’s blessing. The hand of faith is withered, the heart that would trust is faint, the mind is clouded with confusion. God deliver us all from this drought of the soul! There is nothing that makes a person more sour than trust that is betrayed, and somehow this mistrust is directed toward God. So, people have filled themselves, and gorged themselves on the bitter things which actually reveals their starvation for spiritual sustenance. “To the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet.” (Prov. 27:7b). Their heart is enslaved to the past and the people that have hurt them. They seek to fill their souls with all the deadly delicacies of revenge, accusation and unforgiveness. “And now what hast thou to do in the way of Egypt, to drink the waters of Sihor?” (Jeremiah 2:18) There are even some Christians who are drinking from the wrong faucet. Constantly, the Lord would reprove his own people for their infatuation with the world, and this verse directly translated would say, “What hast thou to do in the way of Egypt, to drink the waters of the muddy river?”
O true believer, called by grace and washed in the precious blood of Jesus, thou hast tasted of better drink than the muddy river of this world’s pleasure can give you; thou hast had fellowship with Christ; thou hast obtained the joy of seeing Jesus, and leaning thine head upon his bosom. You have eaten the bread of angels, and can you live on husks? O return quickly to the one living fountain: the waters of Sihor may be sweet to the Egyptians, but they will prove only bitterness to thee. How long will you drink of these muddy waters. Jesus asks you this question-what is your answer!
Yet when the fresh word of God would come, that word of God, “sweeter than honey and the honeycomb” (Ps. 19:10), the soul full of the world instead of the word, is unable love the Father, because they detest the honeycomb of God’s word (Prov. 27:7a). This is what Isaiah intended when he said, “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! (Isaiah 5:20). Yet, somehow by his grace they must be enabled to taste or live in misery. They must taste and see that the Lord is good!
Second, they could not drink the water because the waters themselves were bitter. This brings us to our next understanding. We cannot save ourselves, there is nothing so sugary in a man or a woman to make them pleasing to God-only the stagnation of a soul bound in sin. What a revelation to us when we find before any trial, hurt or disappointment the basement of our souls were already full of the bitter waters of spiritual death and sin. There is not a just man upon earth that does all good and never sins. (Eccl. 7:20). “Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter? Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.” (James 3:11,12) The toxic waste in our souls is more hazardous a product than anything technology can manufacture. But Christ, is coming with “pleasant words which are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones. (Prov. 16:24). He would say to you “Son, your sins are forgiven you, daughter, your faith has made thee whole…little girl arise…young man arise take up your bed and walk home!” One taste, of a meal prepared from the Lord, delivered by the messengers of his Word can give you a palette for his delightful Word.