Aug. 4. Christian Life Compared to Wilderness Wandering

I Cor. 10:1-13

To further illustrate the importance of steadfastness in living the Christian life, Paul reminded the Corinthians of the events surrounding the deliverance of the Israelites from Egypt and their eventual entry into Canaan.

Egypt represented the time that a person was lost in sin. Moses was a type of Christ who led the people out the Egypt of sin and into the wilderness of the Christian life. The Israelites passed through the Red Sea with water on both sides and a cloud hovering over them hiding (burying) them in baptism from the grasp of the Egypt of sin. This analogy relates to baptism into the church to save from sin. Eating the manna and drinking the water from the rock was a type of the communion enjoyed by Christians as they partake of the Lord’s Supper each Lord’s Day. Finally, crossing the Jordan River into Canaan represented the passage through death from the physical life of the wilderness to the everlasting glory of heaven.

Paul pointed out that many were saved from the Egypt of sin, but various sins of lust, idolatry, fornication and complaining caused many of them to die in the wilderness. Many of the Israelites even wanted to return to Egypt. Just as these sins caused the Israelites to die in the wilderness, these same sins cause Christians to die spiritually in the wilderness of life preventing them from entering into the Canaan of everlasting life in heaven.

In closing this admonition, Paul gave another warning and an encouragement. He warned the Corinthians to be alert for temptations because they come when least expected. However, they were encouraged by the fact that God will not allow a Christian to be tempted greater than he is able to bear, but will provide a way of escape.