Moses stood in the “cleft of the rock” (Exodus 33:22); and there is much of the Rock which followed the children of Israel through the wilderness on their 40 year journey. The Rock is a very important part of the Old Testament history and of our LORD.
“Of the Rock that begat thee thou art unmindful, and hast forgotten God that formed thee.” Deuteronomy 32:18 (KJV)
It was the Rock which Moses was commanded to strike which followed them:
“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.” Exodus 17:6
It was also the Rock which Moses struck when he was commanded to speak to it that was with them in the wilderness. The Rock a source of survival, life, living, hope, sustenance. The image of God’s presence and sovereign power.
“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.” Numbers 20:8-11
So many times the children of Israel rebelled against the leadership of God and Moses. So many times God in His grace and mercy reached down to Israel and supplied their every need in a dry and thirsty land. Always, God is working to supply the needs of His children.
Those who know God through His Son Jesus are His children; and are children of this Rock. This Rock is Christ Jesus who died on the cross in our stead. He had no guilt, but suffered with our guilt, shame and sin on Him. He became our sin. He became unjust; the Just for the unjust. His righteousness is imputed to you and I who trust and believe in Him; and all our unrighteousness was imputed to Him. Which goes along with what the Psalmist wrote:
“Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man unto whom the LORD imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile.” Psalm 32:1-2
Jesus is our salvation, our strength, our defender; He is our sustenance; by Him “all things consist” (Colossians 1:17). Jesus is that Rock. Hear what the apostle Paul says of the Rock –
“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; and were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; and did all eat the same spiritual meat; 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.” 1 Corinthians 10:1-5
Just as Moses said, “…thou art unmindful”. So does Paul mention this; but the real picture is that “That Rock was Christ”. It was Christ who was with them in the wilderness. It was Christ who was with the Jew all through their journeys; in the wilderness; and throughout all their years of blessing; and He is their Rock even today when they look upon the One who was pierced for our sins.
That Rock is Christ.
-Tim A. Blankenship