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PERIOD III.]

MANNA AND QUAILS SENT.

21. THE BITTER WATER. AMALEK CONQUERED. Exodus xv.-xix.

When Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the sea-shore they feared the Lord, and believed the Lord, and his servant Moses. Then the Israelites sang a song of praise to God. They entered the wilderness of Shur, and after three days' journey came to Marah, where the waters were bitter. They

murmured, saying, "What shall we drink ?" The Lord shewed Moses a tree, which when he had cast into the waters, they were made sweet. They came to Elim, where were twelve wells of water, and threescore and ten palm-trees; here they encamped.

They left Elim, and came into the Wilderness of Sin. Here they murmured against Moses and Aaron, because they wanted bread. Then the Lord said unto Moses, "I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall gather it every day." On the sixth day they were to gather a double portion, because the morrow was the sabbath, when there should be none. A pot of the manna was laid up, and kept ; so that their children might see the food with which the Lord fed them in the wilderness. God also gave them quails, saying, "At even ye shall eat flesh, and in the morning ye shall be filled with bread."

The Israelites again murmured against Moses, because they wanted water. God told Moses to smite the rock in Horeb, and water should come out of it. He did so, and the Israelites drank. The Amalekites came against Israel at Rephidim. Moses stood on the top of the hill, and held up the rod of God during the battle; when he held up his hand Israel prevailed, but when he let it down Amalek prevailed. Moses' hands were heavy; and Aaron and Hur seated him on a stone and stayed up his hands until the going down of the sun, when the Amalekites were discomfited. And the Lord said unto Moses, "Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua; for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven." After leaving Rephidim the Israelites came into the Wilderness of Sinai. God called to Moses out of the Mount Sinai, saying,

THE PEOPLE TO BE SANCTIFIED. [1635-1451 B.C.

"Thus shalt thou tell the children of Israel, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then shall ye be a peculiar 'treasure unto me above all people; for all the earth is mine, and ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation." The Lord then commanded that the people should be sanctified, for the third day he would come down in the sight of all the people upon Mount Sinai. Jethro, the father-in-law of Moses, came to him bringing with him Zipporah, Moses' wife, and her two sons, Gershom and Eliezer; Jethro rejoiced with Moses for all the goodness which the Lord had done to Israel. By the advice of Jethro Moses appointed rulers to assist him in the government of the people. Jethro returned to his own land, and Moses went up into the Mount Sinai.

NOTES AND EXPLANATIONS. murmured-grumbled; complained; reproached Moses again.

bread-the dough and other food which they had brought with them out of Egypt had now been consumed.

God,' because of its connexion with the miracles performed by the Lord in Egypt and in the wilderness.

prevailed-overcame; gained the advantage. Hur-one of the chief men in Israel; he

heaven-the sky; the clouds. Lesson 1, was the son of Caleb. Less. 25, 26, and 32. 'heaven,' and 'firmament.'

double-two-fold; the quantity required for two days. This miracle was repeated weekly for forty years in order to preserve inviolate the Sabbath, or rest of the Lord; and in attestation of its sanctity.

manna-the name of the bread from heaven' on which the Israelites were fed for forty years. When first it was seen by them they exclaimed Man-hu, 'What is it?' from this question arose its name.

quails the quail is a bird similar in form and habits to the partridge, but not so large. At this season, spring, the quails migrate in immense flocks from Asia into Europe; a strong wind would therefore take them out of their direct route, and bring them over the camp of Israel, about which they fell from fatigue.

rock-St. Paul refers to this rock as a type of Christ. 1 Cor. x. 4.

rod of God-that which was once the humble staff of Moses when tending the sheep of Jethro, is here called the rod of

discomfited-routed; compelled to flee. write-Moses was commanded to write in a

book-this is the first mention of writing that we find in Scripture.

memorial-a thing to be remembered by. Lesson 20.

rehearse-repeat; make it known; let it not be forgotten.

Joshua-the Lord saves;' he was the captain of the army of Israel at the battle with the Amalekites; he is called the minister of Moses, and he was the leader of the Israelites after the death of Moses. Lessons 29 and 30.

utterly-completely; none shall remain.

remembrance - the remembrance of their country which cannot now be determined with certainty; while that of their deeds and doom was written by Moses.

peculiar particular; pre-eminent; select; having special advantages.

treasure-wealth; riches; they should be the preservers of the riches of divine revelation, and of the true worship of God.

PERIOD III.

MARAH'S WATERS HEALED.

priests-their sacrifices being according to God's appointment were acceptable unto him; while the sacrifices of the heathen were abomination in his eyes.

Gershom-' a stranger;' his father thus named him, "because," said he, "I have been an alien in a strange land."

Eliezer-God my help:' at his birth Moses felt secure from the "sword of Pharaoh," therefore he expressed his gratitude to God in the name he gave to his second son. rejoiced this shows that Jethro was a worshipper of the true God; it is generally believed that he was a descendant of Abraham. The Kenites and the Rechabites descended from Jethro; they afterwards lived among the Jews and became proselytes.

rulers-by Jethro's advice they were to be able men, such as fear God, men of truth and hating covetousness.

GEOGRAPHICAL NOTES.

SHUR-a sandy tract of wilderness, west of Arabia Petrea, and between Canaan and Egypt. Hagar fled to this wilderness the first time she left her mistress.

MARAH-bitterness;' a place in the Wilderness of Shur to which the Israelites came after three days' journey from the Red Sea, and where they found the waters so bitter that neither they nor their cattle could drink of it. It is supposed that the bitterness was not permanently removed, for travellers inform us of a well, named Hawarah, the waters of which are now bitter, the locality also corresponding with that of Marah.

ELIM-the place in the wilderness of Sin at which the Israelites encamped after they left Marah.

WILDERNESS OF SIN-the wilderness which the Israelites traversed between Elim and Mount Sinai. In this wilderness God first sent the Israelites manna, and commanded the observance of the Sabbath.

HOREB-refers to a mountain district, or group of mountains, from one of which, called Sinai, an extensive and terrible wilderness derived its name. The Mount

Horeb where Moses fed Jethro's flocks was another part of this mountain chain. Lesson 17.

AMALEKITES-a powerful tribe, living chiefly by predatory warfare; they were descended from Ham; their country lay towards the southern extremity of the land of Canaan. They were the first of nations to oppose the Israelites in their progress to Canaan. Their existence, as a nation, was endangered by Saul, and extinguished in the time of David. Lessons 45 and 53.

REPHIDIM-one of the noted encampments of the Israelites in the wilderness, near to Mount Horeb, where they wanted water, and complained bitterly to Moses for bringing them out of Egypt.

WILDERNESS OF SINAI-the desert which the Israelites traversed between Rephidim and Taberah. In this wilderness Jethro visited Moses, judges were appointed, the Tabernacle was erected, and Aaron and his sons were consecrated. This wilderness had its name from one of the principal mountains of the Horeb range named Sinai.

THE HEALING OF MARAH'S WATERS.

"THEY COULD NOT DRINK OF THE WATERS OF MARAH FOR THEY WERE BITTER.'

Marah! whate'er the tree might be
Which made thy bitter waters sweet,
The christian in its power may see
Of power divine an emblem meet.
Full many a cup from which the lip
Draws back as from a poisoned bowl,
Through love's divine discipleship
Is rendered grateful to the soul.

THE LAW DELIVERED.

[1635-1451 B.C.

The world's distaste, pride's heartless scorn,
A toilsome life, perchance a grave,
Are things as loveless and forlorn

As ever was thy bitterest wave.
But these endure'd for Jesus' sake,
Are render'd, through his love divine,
A cup 'tis pleasure to partake,

Change'd by his power like Cana's wine.
The tree which Marah's waters heal'd,
Which sweetness gave, or could restore,
Is of his cross a type reveal'd,

Which he who bears repines no more.
O may this love in us abound
Guide to our Elim's happy shore,
Where wells for every tribe are found,
By living palm-trees shadow'd o'er!

BARTON.

22. THE DELIVERY OF THE LAW.
Exodus xx. 1-21.

The people were sanctified and gathered around the mountain, and the third day there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud upon the mount, and the voice of the trumpet exceeding loud, so that all the people that were in the camp trembled. And God spake all these words, saying, "I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.

1. Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

2. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; and shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.

3. Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

4. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days

PERIOD III.]

THE COMMANDMENTS.

shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: but the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, : the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

5. Honour thy father and thy mother; that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee. 6. Thou shalt not kill.

7. Thou shalt not commit adultery.

8. Thou shalt not steal.

9. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour. 10. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's."

When the people saw the Law delivered amidst thunders and lightnings, and the mountain smoking, and heard the noise of the trumpet, they feared exceedingly and stood afar off. The glory of God was on Mount Sinai six days, and on the seventh day God called Moses into the mount, and he remained there forty days. Then God gave him the two tables of stone, with the Ten Commandments written on them.

NOTES AND EXPLANATIONS.

sanctified externally purified. God spake the voice of the Lord God was heard speaking out of the fire; the commandments were spoken audibly, so loud as to be heard by the immense multitude gathered round the mount, but no similitude or form was seen whence that voice proceeded.

I am, &c.-God proposes himself as the sole object of religious worship. jealous-God will not allow halfheartedness in his service; people cannot give themselves partly to God and partly to the world.

upon the, &c.-that is if their character at of their fathers-haters of God. ne-to dislike those habits and

practices which are pleasing to God is to dislike him; to prefer any pleasure to that of worshipping God in spirit and

in truth is to hate him. Luke x. 16.

in vain―unnecessarily; thoughtlessly. holy-separate; implying that it was not to be a day of labour.

nor, &c. this blessed provision for the advantage of God's creatures extends to the domestic animals which labour for man, and to those persons who are strangers to religion, as well as to faithful servants of God.

hallowed-consecrated; set apart for religious service.

honour-respect; reverence; esteem;

obey.

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