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The Rev. Alan Stibbs: “The healing way” (Exodus 15:23-26)

September 6, 2018

From The Australian Church Record, here is a meditation on Exodus 15:23-36 by the Rev. Alan Stibbs, first published in 1960, and titled The healing way.  This is an excellent reflection on our attitude during trials, among other things, using the Israelites under Moses’ leadership as our example.  Rev. Stibbs makes this point about trusting and praying as opposed to doubting and murmuring:

If God’s people are not sure of his purposeful providence, there is very real danger lest such trials become an offence. This happened to the Israelites. They murmured or complained; they resented and disbelieved; they even said Egypt would be better, and talked of going back—that is, the beginnings of apostasy. No wonder the Holy Ghost still says, “Today, if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts” (Hebrews 3:7-13). On the other hand, Moses “tried unto the Lord”. His action indicates that such trial presented an opportunity for believing prayer, for expecting God to work. Nor was such confidence misplaced. If God had redeemed them from Egypt, if God intended to bring them into the promised land, surely he could be trusted to see them through the intervening wilderness? So, in similar circumstances, we, too, can sing: “He cannot have, taught us to trust in His Name, and thus far have brought us to put us to shame.” The tried soul should trust and pray, not doubt and murmur.

He further goes on to point out that divine provision and divine revelation require human appropriation: we must respond in faith.

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