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Numbers 20:1-13

Lawsuit over water and Moses’ disobedience

1 In the first month, the entire Israelite community entered the Zin desert and the people stayed at Kadesh. Miriam died and was buried there.
2 Now there was no water for the community, and they assembled against Moses and Aaron.
3 Then the people confronted Moses and said to him, "If only we too had died when our brothers perished in the LORD's presence!
4 Why have you brought the LORD's assembly into this desert to kill us and our animals here?
5 Why have you led us up from Egypt to bring us to this evil place without grain, figs, vines, or pomegranates? And there's no water to drink!"
6 Moses and Aaron went away from the assembly to the entrance of the meeting tent and they fell on their faces. Then the LORD's glory appeared to them.
7 The LORD spoke to Moses:
8 "You and Aaron your brother, take the staff and assemble the community. In their presence, tell the rock to provide water. You will produce water from the rock for them and allow the community and their animals to drink."
9 Moses took the staff from the LORD's presence, as the LORD had commanded him.
10 Moses and Aaron gathered the assembly before the rock. He said to them, "Listen, you rebels! Should we produce water from the rock for you?"
11 Then Moses raised his hand and struck the rock with his staff twice. Out flooded water so that the community and their animals could drink.
12 The LORD said to Moses and Aaron, "Because you didn't trust me to show my holiness before the Israelites, you will not bring this assembly into the land that I am giving them."
13 These were the waters of Meribah, where the Israelites confronted the LORD with controversy and he showed his holiness to them.
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