by Ron Dunn

Defense Against Discouragement
Exodus 15

Open your Bibles to the Old Testament, to the book of Exodus, chapter 15, and I want to begin reading with verse 22 and read through the end of the chapter, verse 27. You know the context. They have just had a marvelous deliverance from Egypt, and they have just come through the Red Sea episode. In the first twenty-one verses you have the song of Moses and the Children of Israel as they praise the Lord for all He has done. Then in verse 22, we pick up and read:
So Moses brought Israel from the Red Sea, and they went out into the wilderness of Shur; and they went three days in the wilderness, and found no water. And when they came to Marah, they could not drink of the waters of Marah, for they were bitter; therefore the name of it was called Marah. And the people murmured against Moses, saying, "What shall we drink?" And he cried unto the LORD; and the LORD showed him a tree, which when he had cast into the waters, the waters were made sweet: there he made for them a statue and an ordinance, and there he proved them. And said, if thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the LORD that healeth thee. And they came to Elim, where were twelve wells of water, and threescore and ten palm trees; and they encamped there by the waters.

Mention has already been made this week of the alarming statistics among Southern Baptists that each year 1,000 of our ministers leave the ministry. I read a report of a preliminary study a few weeks ago as to the causes of this defection from the ministry among our ranks. One of the primary contributing factors, especially among younger ministers, was discouragement and disillusionment. I believe that one of the most effective weapons that the dev ...

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