Then Moses cried out to the Lord, “What am I to do with these people? They are almost ready to stone(A) me.”

The Lord answered Moses, “Go out in front of the people. Take with you some of the elders of Israel and take in your hand the staff(B) with which you struck the Nile,(C) and go. I will stand there before you by the rock at Horeb.(D) Strike(E) the rock, and water(F) will come out of it for the people to drink.” So Moses did this in the sight of the elders of Israel. And he called the place Massah[a](G) and Meribah[b](H) because the Israelites quarreled and because they tested the Lord saying, “Is the Lord among us or not?”

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Footnotes

  1. Exodus 17:7 Massah means testing.
  2. Exodus 17:7 Meribah means quarreling.

“Take the staff,(A) and you and your brother Aaron gather the assembly together. Speak to that rock before their eyes and it will pour out its water.(B) You will bring water out of the rock for the community so they and their livestock can drink.”

So Moses took the staff(C) from the Lord’s presence,(D) just as he commanded him. 10 He and Aaron gathered the assembly together(E) in front of the rock and Moses said to them, “Listen, you rebels, must we bring you water out of this rock?”(F) 11 Then Moses raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff. Water(G) gushed out, and the community and their livestock drank.

12 But the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you did not trust in me enough to honor me as holy(H) in the sight of the Israelites, you will not bring this community into the land I give them.”(I)

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