17:1 From the wilderness of Sin the whole congregation of the Israelites journeyed by stages, as the LORD commanded. They camped at Rephidim, but there was no water for the people to drink.
17:2 The people quarreled with Moses, and said, “Give us water to drink.” Moses said to them, “Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you test the LORD?”
17:3 But the people thirsted there for water; and the people complained against Moses and said, “Why did you bring us out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and livestock with thirst?”
17:4 So Moses cried out to the LORD, “What shall I do with this people? They are almost ready to stone me.”
17:5 The LORD said to Moses, “Go on ahead of the people, and take some of the elders of Israel with you; take in your hand the staff with which you struck the Nile, and go.
17:6 I will be standing there in front of you on the rock at Horeb. Strike the rock, and water will come out of it, so that the people may drink.” Moses did so, in the sight of the elders of Israel.
17:7 He called the place Massah and Meribah, because the Israelites quarreled and tested the LORD, saying, “Is the LORD among us or not?”
Moses’ journey into the desert with the Israelites was not one of joy. Sure there were victorious moments where the Lord rescued them. However, between those events were times of trial and testing. They were in a hot desert with little water and only manna to eat. They were without a home wandering for a very long time. They ran into communities that wanted to prevent their journey.
However, each and every trial was met with the intervention of the Lord. Even what Israel was abstinent God still rescued them. Like Israel we are going to be met with trials along the journey we are on. Yet, God’s desires for us is true have faith in him and not be “stiff-necked” as the Bible describes the Israelites. Hebrews says that it is impossible to please the Lord without faith.