Exodus 17

Talks for Growing Christians

Water from the Rock and the Defeat of Amalek

Exodus 17

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Lesson Number 21

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. The water from the rock is a spiritual picture of the Water of the Holy Spirit.
  2. The war with Amalek is a spiritual picture of the war with the flesh.

Practical Application

  1. You can at least be a Hur!


  1. Review the miracles we have seen in the recent chapters of Exodus.
  2. Moses named the stopping place in this chapter “Massah and Meribah.” What do these names mean?
  3. How does 1 Corinthians 10:1-4 relate to this passage?
  4. Who were the Amalekites?
  5. Give some keys to victory in the war with the flesh.


  1. After the miraculous plagues on Egypt, God led the people out and miraculously parted the Red Sea. In the wilderness He turned the bitter waters sweet, and provided them with quail for meat and manna every day.
  2. They mean “testing and quarreling.” The people were once again complaining about the Lord’s provision.
  3. It tells us that the event of the water from the rock was a spiritual picture of the life-giving water available in Christ.
  4. They were a fierce nomadic tribe that lived in the region of the Dead Sea. They were descendants of Esau, deeply-rooted enemies of Israel.
  5. 1) Recognize that Christ is making intercession for us 2) Realize the importance of prayer 3) Fight with the Sword of the Spirit


  1. As believers we come to Christ, the Solid Rock. Christ was smitten by God, struck, that we may receive the living water. What is this water, specifically? See John 7:37-39.
  2. Discuss how the war with Amalek is a spiritual picture of the war with the flesh. The “flesh” is the sinful nature we still possess as believers. We are involved in a constant battle between the flesh and the spirit. Read Galatians 5:16-17 and Romans 7:14-25.


  1. Hur played an important role in the defeat of the Amalekites, by helping Aaron support Moses’ upraised arms. How can you support the spiritual leaders of your church or help them shoulder some responsibility?

Key Verses

  • “And the people thirsted there for water, and the people complained against Moses.” Exodus 17:3
  • “You shall strike the rock, and water will come out of it, that the people may drink.” Exodus 17:6
  • “So Joshua defeated Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.” Exodus 17:13

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