Ex 17:6                      Moses Struck the Rock Twice                            11/8/2009      ßà   

  • Rebellion in Israel (Ex 17:1-7, 16:3)

 

 

#1.       Moses Struck the Rock at Rephidim (Jam 1:2-4)

 

 

 

  • The Shadow and the Substance (Ex 17:5-6)

 

 

 

  • That Rock Must Be Smitten (1Cor 10:1-5, Ex 17:5, 7:20, John 4:14)

 

 

 

#2.       Moses Struck the Rock at Kadesh (Num 20:1-13)

 

 

 

  • Similarities and Contrasts (Isa 8:14, Num 20:8-9, 17:10)

 

 

 

#3.       The Rock May Not Be Struck a Second Time (Rom 6:9-10, Heb 9:25-28, Num 20:12)

 

 

  • The Attraction of Sin (Heb 3:17-19, Num 16:13-14)

 

 

  • Moses Had to Die (Num 14:29-30, Isa 46:10-11)

 

 

  • Moses Struck the Rock of Ages (Isa 26:4, Psalm 19:14)

 

Please open your Bibles to the Prophecy of Exodus, Ex 17:1 (2X). This chapter begins with the word “And”, which connects it with chapter 16. But chapter 16 also begins with the word “And”, which ties it to chapter 15. And what do we see? We see that Israel was not convinced that almighty God was on their side. Even though He split the waters of the Red Sea for them, and even though He caused their enemy to be drowned, and even though He miraculously caused the bitter waters of Marah to become sweet, and even though He led them to the wonderful oasis called Elim, they still did not put their trust in God. And so, in chapter 16 there was rebellion in Israel, because they had nothing to eat, and our merciful God rained down manna for them. And in chapter 17 there was again rebellion in Israel because there was nothing to drink, and our merciful God provided abundance of water out of a rock.

  • Rebellion in Israel (Ex 17:1-7, 16:3)

Moses struck the rock, and miraculously a river of water flowed out of that rock. But did you know that at two different occasions Moses Struck the Rock, and God made water to gush out of the Rock? And therefore the title of the sermon for today is, Moses Struck the Rock Twice (2X). The first time this occurred was at Rephidim, in the beginning of the exodus of Israel out of Egypt. The second time was at Kadesh, about 40 years later, at the end of their wilderness wanderings. We read in Ex 17:1-7,

Ex 17:1-7 And all the congregation of the children of Israel journeyed from the wilderness of Sin, after their journeys, according to the commandment of the LORD, and pitched in Rephidim: and there was no water for the people to drink. Wherefore the people did chide with Moses, and said, Give us water that we may drink. And Moses said unto them, Why chide ye with me? Wherefore do ye tempt the LORD? And the people thirsted there for water; and the people murmured against Moses, and said, Wherefore is this that thou hast brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our cattle with thirst? And Moses cried unto the LORD, saying, What shall I do unto this people? They be almost ready to stone me. And the LORD said unto Moses, Go on before the people, and take with thee of the elders of Israel; and thy rod, wherewith thou smotest the river, take in thine hand, and go. Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. And he called the name of the place Massah, and Meribah, because of the chiding of the children of Israel, and because they tempted the LORD, saying, Is the LORD among us, or not?

God tested them and they miserably failed the test. Instead of turning to their Heavenly Father, and ask for water, they turned to Moses as if he was the miracle worker who had the power to give them water. He who could divide the Red Sea for them, and then made the waters return and overwhelm their enemies, would have no problem at all to supply them with water. Was He not their Shepherd? Had not the Lord Himself in the appearance of the Cloudy Pillar led them to Rephidim? He knew there was no water there, and yet He directed them to this place. But instead of turning to God, they turned against God (Ex 16:3) and against Moses, the faithful servant of God. It proves that they were not guided by God. But God guided Moses, and God instructed Moses to smite the rock with his rod.

#1.       Moses Struck the Rock at Rephidim (Jam 1:2-4)

Does God test His people? That is absolutely true! The Bible is filled with examples that God does indeed test His people. God tells us that explicitly in Jam 1:2-4, where God says: My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (trials); Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.

Just like the nation of Israel was again and again tested by God, so we can expect that our life will be filled with trials of our faith. Who needs those trials? God does not need it. He already knows our heart better than we know it. God knows how we will respond. But we need those trials, because our responses to those trials reveal to us the inner sanctums of our hearts. And through those trials God is building our patience, so that we may become more mature in the faith. Just like with the nation of Israel, we must expect to face trials that are extremely displeasing to the flesh. Why does God do that to us? This is why: God's design is to wean us from everything down here, to bring us to the place where we do not rely any more on people and on material things, but that we cast ourselves completely upon Him. And just like the nation of Israel, we are very slow to learn this lesson. We fail one test after another. And look how long-suffering is God is with us. Just like God Himself had led them to this dry place, called Rephidim, so we need to remember that God Himself has prepared those hard circumstances for us. We need not blame ourselves, or our friends, or our family, and we need not blame the Devil. It was God who placed us for some hard choices to test our faith. And very often the choice is between God and money. Am I going to spend this time to strengthen the cause of God in my household, or am I going to spend this time to make more money? Of course, you know what the right answer is. But will we do it? Then we see in verse 2 that: "the people did chide with Moses". That is an old English expression which means they strove, or they contended with Moses. What was going on inside these people? Did they think that Moses was the miracle worker who had caused all these miracles to take place? And now in their sinful mind, they insisted that Moses create some water for them. Something that only God can do. From this action you can see that they still had an evil heart of unbelief. And what was Moses' reaction to this situation? The same as what our reaction should be in any difficult situation. Moses cried to God, saying: "What shall I do?" In those words you can see that Moses was fully aware of his own inability to solve this situation. And those words also showed his confidence that Jehovah, the God of Israel, would come to their aid.           And what did God do? God showed him:

  • The Shadow and the Substance (Ex 17:5-6)

Now read verses 5 and 6 carefully. We read in Ex 17:5-6,

Ex 17:5-6  And the LORD said unto Moses, Go on before the people, and take with thee of the elders of Israel; and thy rod, wherewith thou smotest the river, take in thine hand, and go. Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the Rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel.

Go where Lord? Go to the rock that I will show thee, and thou shalt smite the rock. Where was that rock that Moses smote with his rod? That rock was somewhere at Rephidim. That rock was not at Horeb. Remember what God said in verse 7: Moses called the place Massah, which means "temptation" because they tempted the LORD there at Rephidim, and Moses called that place Meribah, which means "strife" because of the chiding, the striving of the children of Israel there at Rephidim. Massah and Meribah could not be associated with Horeb, the Mountain of God. But where was God standing? God said in verse 6: "Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the Rock in Horeb". But Horeb was nowhere near Rephidim. Mount Horeb, which is the same as Mount Sinai, was their next camping ground, which was a day's journey from Rephidim. How do we harmonize these two verses together? You see, God gives us here a beautiful spiritual picture. God described this event as if Moses was standing at two places at the same time: Physically he was standing at Rephidim but spiritually he was standing in Horeb. Physically Moses struck the rock at Rephidim but spiritually he struck the Rock in Horeb. Physical water flowed out of the rock at Rephidim and spiritual water flowed out of the Rock in Horeb. The event that took place at Rephidim was the shadow of the event that was on display in Horeb, which was the Substance. This was an awesome event that God has put on display here. Moses is here a representation of the law of God, and the Rock is representing the Lord Jesus Christ. The law of God struck the Lord Jesus Christ when He bare our sins in His own body on the tree of Calvary. How did this come to pass? In AD 33 the Lord Jesus Christ, as the Judge, declared us guilty of our sins, even though we did not exist yet, and even though we did not commit those sins yet. The law of God demanded that our penalty would be an eternity in Hell. We could not pay such a big penalty. Then Christ stepped from behind the judge’s bench and paid our penalty on our behalf. In other words, He imputed our sins onto His account. But then the law of God demanded that the bearer of those sins must pay the full penalty for all those sins, which was the equivalent of an eternity in Hell. And our God poured His righteous wrath upon the Lord Jesus on the cross of Calvary, until all the sins that the Lord Jesus came to pay were paid in full. And when all our sins were paid, Christ imputed His righteousness on us, His sheep. Just like He declared that our sins be transferred to His account, so He declared that His righteousness be transferred to all whose sins He has fully paid. You can see clearly that this double transaction can only be applied to all those whom the Father had given Him, His elect. He could not have done this for everyone in the world, for not everyone in the world is saved. Not everyone in the world believes this.

Physically, Moses struck the rock in Rephidim about 3500 years ago. But that was only a shadow. The real substance came about 1500 years later at the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ in AD 33. How could God portray the event of Christ's crucifixion 3500 years ago in Horeb? Did you notice that God speaks of the Rock IN Horeb? This Rock is IN the Mountain of God, which spiritually is out there in Heaven. God is NOT referring to an event that took place 3500 years ago there in Horeb. God does not need some weird action of man to implement an action from His side. His desires are always only His business. For example, when we read in Rev 13:8 that  Christ is “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” we should not try to make Christ suffer the crucifixion twice, once before the foundation of the world and once in AD 33. If God wanted to save Adam and Eve, and other OT saints, then God does not need to have Christ undergo first a crucifixion. God can simply make the cross of Christ effective to include all those He wanted to save all the way back to Adam. And this is the true meaning of the expression “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” Please turn in your Bibles to the First Epistle to the Corinthians, 1Cor 10:1 (2X).

  • That Rock Must Be Smitten (1Cor 10:1-5, Ex 17:5, 7:20, John 4:14)

The fact that the Rock was representing the Lord Jesus Christ is not something that I dreamed up. God confirmed this spiritual picture in the N.T. that I tried to describe. God says in 1Cor 10:1-5,

1 Cor 10:1-5 Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea (the Red Sea); And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; And did all eat the same spiritual meat (the manna); And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ. But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness.

God says here that the exodus of the nation of Israel was a picture of what salvation is. It was just a picture. They were not all saved, since: "with most of them God was not well pleased". “All our fathers” refers to all the elect from OT Israel over a 1500 year period. They all passed through the Red Sea, which represented Hell, for all were in Christ when He endured for them the equivalent of an eternity in Hell. All were washed when Moses acted out the atonement of Christ by walking through the Red Sea. Likewise, the Rock was a picture of Christ, who had to be smitten by the law of God, represented also by Moses. The law of God inflicted judgment on the Lord Jesus. What did Moses have in his hand? It was the rod of Moses. In Ex 17:5, God commanded Moses: "Take in thine hand thy rod, wherewith thou smotest the river". Which river? The Nile River. In Ex 7:20 we read that Moses lifted up the rod, and smote the waters that were in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh, and in the sight of his servants; and all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood. What does blood signify? Judgment! Christ, represented by the Rock, had to be judged by the law of God. The smiting of the Rock at Rephidim was a type of the Atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ. But now, what were the consequences of Moses smiting the Rock? Physically, water came out abundantly out of the Rock at Rephidim. But that was only a shadow of the spiritual water that came out of the Lord Jesus Christ as a result of His Crucifixion. What is that water a picture of? It is the water of the Gospel, the good news of God who is able to make a human soul born again by the power of His Holy Spirit. The Lord Jesus said to the Samaritan woman in  John 4:14, “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 (living water) springing up into everlasting life.” The water that flowed from the Rock in Rephidim was a picture of the Gospel preached to all the elect Israel of God, because in I Cor 10:4 we read that "all did drink the same spiritual drink" from the spiritual Rock that followed them. Only twice in 40 years do we read that OT Israel received water from a rock. But the Rock represents Christ who followed them for 1500 years and who continually brought them the Gospel.

Can you see that God puts us all to the test? Will we be faithfully comparing Scripture with Scripture so that we come to understand God's Word beyond the external, historical framework of the Bible. It is so easy, but so carnal, to read the Bible as just a historical book, but then it is no longer different from any other book. And that is not why God wrote the Bible. God wrote the Bible to bring us salvation. Therefore salvation is the focus of all the Scriptures, both in the O.T. and in the N.T. Please turn in your Bibles to the Prophecy of Numbers, Num 20:1 (2X). Now, let us look at the second time that Moses struck the Rock, and again water flowed out:

#2.       Moses Struck the Rock at Kadesh (Num 20:1-13)

This prophecy is called Numbers, because in there all the children of Israel were numbered, both at the start and at the end of their 40 years of wandering through the wilderness. We read in Num 20:1-13

Num 20:1-13 Then came the children of Israel, even the whole congregation, into the desert of Zin in the first month: and the people abode in Kadesh; and Miriam died there, and was buried there. And there was no water for the congregation: and they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron. And the people chode (they strove) with Moses, and spake, saying, Would God that we had died when our brethren died before the LORD! And why have ye brought up the congregation of the LORD into this wilderness, that we and our cattle should die there? And wherefore have ye made us to come up out of Egypt, to bring us in unto this evil place? it is no place of seed, or of figs, or of vines, or of pomegranates; neither is there any water to drink. And Moses and Aaron went from the presence of the assembly unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and they fell upon their faces: and the glory of the LORD appeared unto them. And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Take the rod, and gather thou the assembly together, thou, and Aaron thy brother, and speak ye unto the rock before their eyes; and it shall give forth his water, and thou shalt bring forth to them water out of the rock: so thou shalt give the congregation and their beasts drink. And Moses took the rod from before the LORD, as he commanded him. And Moses and Aaron gathered the congregation together before the rock, and he said unto them, Hear now, ye rebels; must we fetch you water out of this rock? And Moses lifted up his hand and with his rod he smote the rock twice: and the water came out abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their beasts also. And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them. This is the water of Meribah; because the children of Israel strove with the LORD, and he was sanctified in them.

What were the consequences of Moses smiting the Rock at Kadesh? Moses and Aaron were not allowed to bring the children of Israel across the Jordan River into the Promised Land. Did God have to punish Moses and Aaron so severely for this minor infraction? Was God fair? But let us now consider the similarities and the contrasts between the events at Rephidim and the events at Kadesh. 

  • Similarities and Contrasts (Isa 8:14, Num 20:8-9, 17:10)

Was this event at Kadesh analogous to the previous event at Rephidim? Did not Christ, the Rock, follow them, and was not Christ again represented by a Rock? Yes, this Rock was again representing the Lord Jesus Christ, but almost everything else in this event at Kadesh stands in sharp contrast to the previous event in Rephidim. First of all, this event at Kadesh occurred about 40 years later. The children of Israel were nearing the end of their wilderness wanderings. The older generation that walked out of Egypt, from 20 years and older had died, and a new generation is now striving against Moses and Aaron. This new generation is even more rebellious than their fathers were. Secondly, in Num 20 God did not say that Moses was also represented before the Rock in Horeb. Thirdly, the Hebrew word for Rock is not the same word as that used in Ex 17. In Ex 17 the word for Rock is a sharp rock, having sharp edges, and it is used for example in Isa 8:14, where Christ is spoken of. We read in Isa 8:14, “He shall be for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.” On the other hand, the word for Rock in Num 20 is a Rock that is high and lofty and it is a stronghold of Jehovah. Since the Rock in Ex 17 represents Christ as the crucified One, so in contrast the Rock in Num 20 represents Christ in His exalted state in Heaven, after His crucifixion. Therefore in Num 20:8 Moses was not commanded to strike the Rock, but to speak to the Rock; just like we are now commanded to pray to God. Fourthly, in Ex 17 only the "elders of Israel" witnessed the smiting of the Rock, just like during and after the crucifixion of Christ only His disciples were aware that their Lord and Savior had been smitten of God and afflicted for their sins. But in Num 20:8 Moses was commanded to gather the assembly together, just like we are now commanded to gather the assembly together on Sundays. Fifthly, although the rod in Moses' hand is the same Hebrew word in both passages, it was a different rod. In Ex 17 Moses had to use his own rod, because God said: "Take in thine hand thy rod, wherewith thou smotest the river". That was the rod of Judgment. But in Num 20:8 Moses was commanded to take the Rod of Aaron. We read in Num 17 about Aaron's Rod that Budded. Then God said in Num 17:10, “Bring Aaron's rod again before the testimony, to be kept for a token against the rebels….” Aaron's Rod that Budded was placed before the Ark of the Covenant in the Holy of Holies. But in Num 20:9 Moses was commanded to take this Rod of Aaron. We read in Num 20:9, “And Moses took the rod from before the LORD, as He commanded him.” This then was the Priestly Rod. Sixthly, did you notice how God further emphasized this aspect of the priestly duties of Moses by commanding him to take his brother Aaron along with him in Num 20:8. But the first time Moses smote the Rock in Rephidim, Aaron was not mentioned. Therefore, what conclusion do we draw from all these comparisons? Please turn in your Bibles to the Epistle to the Hebrews, Heb 9:25 (2X).

#3.       The Rock May Not Be Struck a Second Time (Rom 6:9-10, Heb 9:25-28, Num 20:12)

The Rock may not be smitten a second time, because that would spoil the shadow of the Cross that was given to us in Ex 17, and God is very jealous of the various pictures of Christ's Atonement that He has given us throughout the Bible. God says in Rom 6:9-10,

Ro 6:9-10 Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.

After His perfect sacrifice on the Cross & His victorious resurrection, Christ has overcome death. He can no more die. He died once, that is enough. Since Christ is God, he did everything perfectly. Therefore, He died only once. This is reinforced in Heb 9:25-28, where God says:

Heb 9:25-28 Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with blood of others; for then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.

The Bible is abundantly clear that Christ cannot be crucified more than once. I know that the man on the radio claims that Christ was crucified twice. I know that there are many churches, which believe that Christ is offered again and again whenever they celebrate the Lord's Supper. They believe the doctrine of Transubstantiation, which declares that the bread and the wine are miraculously transformed into the literal flesh and blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. But they are doing violence to these passages in Rom 6 and Heb 9, and in many other places. If God came down so hard on Moses that he was denied to enter into the Promised Land, then I fear that all those people who have been misled into believing in the doctrine of Transubstantiation are going to be denied entrance into heaven itself. How great was Moses' sin? In the eyes of God it was no minor infraction. God commanded Moses to speak to the Rock, but Moses disobeyed and struck the Rock. Moreover God said in Num 20:12 to both Moses and Aaron: "Ye believed me not". Whatever private conversation Moses and Aaron may have had before smiting the Rock, God knew about it, and God knew their heart. Moreover, the typology of Christ being crucified only once had to be preserved, and God counts it a very serious error if anyone believes that Christ could be crucified more than once. But God is not a respecter of persons. Therefore since Moses was an elect of God, Moses’ sins also had to be paid by the Lord Jesus Christ on the Cross. But God works out His plans through the sins of man. We can also see this principle at work here in Num 20.

  • The Attraction of Sin (Heb 3:17-19, Num 16:13-14)

Please turn in your Bibles to chapter 3 in Hebrews, Heb 3:17 (2X). Why was Moses so angry with the children of Israel that he smote the rock? They always wanted to go back to Egypt. It was an evil desire to return to the house of bondage. We hear that every Sunday in the reading of the law, but what does the house of bondage represent? It represents the bondage to Sin and Satan. Those who are still unsaved have a constant desire to give up to live like a Christian. But were the children of Israel still

unsaved? Indeed most of them were still unsaved. God says it very plainly in Heb 3:17-19,

Heb 3:17-19  But with whom was he grieved forty years? was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcases fell in the wilderness? And to whom sware he that they should not enter into his rest, but to them that believed not? So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.

Unbelief is the characteristic of an unbeliever. That is plain and simple. An unbeliever is still an unsaved person. We all come into this world as unbelievers, except for John the Baptist. God says that we all at one time were dead in trespasses and sins. We all were spiritually dead and by nature the children of wrath, even as others who never become saved. We all were enemies of God and haters of God, preferring to worship our own idols rather than worship the true God of the Bible. There is not one who will repent and turn to God. Wow! God should have thrown us all into Hell. That is what we deserve. But God, who is rich in mercy, chose to save here and there a few persons, purely according to the good pleasure of His will. Nothing catches God by surprise. Those whom God chose to save, God had already chosen before the foundation of the world. Please turn again in your Bibles to the Prophecy of Numbers, Num 16:13 (2X). Could God have saved the majority of the children of Israel? Yes He could, but He chose not to do so, for His own reasons. As a result, their 40 years of wanderings in the wilderness gave us a volume of warning, admonition, and instruction, which to us were exceedingly useful. Listen to their complaint out of an evil heart, from Num 16:13-14,

Num 16:13-14  Is it a small thing that thou hast brought us up out of a land that floweth with milk and honey, to kill us in the wilderness, except thou make thyself altogether a prince over us? Moreover thou hast not brought us into a land that floweth with milk and honey, or given us inheritance of fields and vineyards:

They called the land of Egypt, a land that floweth with milk and honey. No wonder that God says in Jeremiah that "the human heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked". We can read the ugly words they were saying in Num 20:3-5, and we can shake our head, but do we remember that we were like that at one time? It was our sins that led to the smiting of the Rock. Our sins brought Jesus to the Cross. It is only by the free grace of God that we have been given a changed heart. We must not be angry with the unsaved on this earth. We must have pity on them.

But there was another reason why Moses could not enter into the land of Canaan, which was a type of the Kingdom of God. Moses represented the law. Please turn back two or three pages to Num 14:29 (2X). No one can enter the Kingdom of God through obedience to the law, for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. Therefore, in the Gospel of grace the law must be out of the way.

  • Moses Had to Die (Num 14:29-30, Isa 46:10-11)

Therefore, the Providence of God took care of Moses. God declared in Num 14:29-30,

Num 14:29  Your carcases shall fall in this wilderness; and all that were numbered of you, according to your whole number, from twenty years old and upward, which have murmured against me,

Num 14:30  Doubtless ye shall not come into the land, concerning which I sware to make you dwell

therein, save Caleb the son of Jephunneh, and Joshua the son of Nun.

God said: “all that were numbered of you,” which means every one of them, of 20 years and older, would die in the wilderness. There were only two exceptions: Caleb and Joshua. God cannot lie. Therefore Moses also had to die, before the children of Israel could enter into the Land of Promise. God again showed that He is not a respecter of persons. But make no mistake: God did not make Moses to sin. Moses struck the Rock! It was Moses who sinned, but God used Moses' sin to accomplish His plans. Just like when Adam sinned and ate from the forbidden fruit, God was not caught by surprise. It was Adam who sinned, but God used Adam's sin to accomplish His plans, so that Christ came and preached to us a glorious Gospel of grace. God is entirely sovereign and He works out His plans ahead of time. His plans are sealed up in the Decree of God, also known as the Counsel of God. But in order to carry out His plans God exercises the Providence of God, which is something like the hands of God. Please turn in your Bibles to the Prophecy of Isaiah, Isa 46:10 (2X). The Providence of God carries out the decisions made in the Counsel of God before the foundation of the world. God, who is infinitely wise and omniscient, is not going to increase in knowledge as time goes on, and therefore all of God’s plans have been made before the foundation of the world. God says in Isa 46:10-11, 

Isa 46:10-11  Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure: Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel from a far country: yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it.

And so, all of world history is in the hands of God, and He is never surprised by the wickedness of man. And since the end result of world history is to take His elect into the NH&NE, it must mean that God directs world history in such a way that all His elect become saved. And then the end will come.

  • Moses Struck the Rock of Ages (Isa 26:4, Psalm 19:14)

One of the glorious titles of God in Scripture is “The Rock.” If you find it in the singular The Rock speaks of the Solitary, Sovereign, Eternal and Immutable God, who is the same yesterday, today and forever. But when you find in Scripture the plural word "rocks" it is often used as a title for the pagan gods. Why would Almighty God lower Himself to be described as The Rock? It is because some of the properties of The Rock resemble the characteristics of God. For example, The Rock has durability and stability. Houses built on the Rock as their foundation stand firm through spiritual wind and storm in this life. When our life is solidly built on Christ as our foundation, we will not be shaken by adversities, because God will keep us in His care. The Rock has strength. For this reason in many places in the O.T. the word Rock has been translated by the word strength. We read in Isa 26:4,

Isa 26:4  Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength (lit: JEHOVAH is the Rock everlasting)

Also, we read in Psalm 19:14,

Psalm 19:14  Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength (lit: my Rock) and my Redeemer.

The Rock also speaks of elevation. For example in Num 20, Moses struck the Rock that represents Christ in His exalted state. Moses was commanded to speak to the Rock, to sanctify God in the eyes of the children of Israel. That is what we are commanded to do: We are commanded to lift up the Lord Jesus Christ in the eyes of all the Israel of God, which are all those who belong to Christ.

And this we shall do as we sing to our Redeemer the Hymn titled, “Rock of Ages, Cleft for Me”.

AMEN.                 Let us turn to the Lord in prayer.