Exodus 15:22-27

The waters of Marah and Elim

22 Then Moses led the Israelites away from the Red Sea. They travelled into the desert called Shur. They walked into the desert for three days and they could not find any water to drink. 23 Then they arrived at Marah. But they could not drink the water there because it was too bitter. That is why they called that place ‘Marah’.

15:23Marah in the Hebrew language means ‘bitter’.

24 Then the people complained. They spoke against Moses. They said, ‘There is nothing for us to drink!’

25 Then Moses called to the Lord for help. The Lord showed Moses a special tree. Moses threw a branch into the water. Then the water became good for them to drink.

There at Marah, the Lord made a law for the Israelites to obey. He tested them there, to see if they would trust him. 26 He said, ‘Be careful to listen to what the Lord your God says to you. Let him see that you are doing things that are right. Obey his commands and his rules. Then I will not give to you the illnesses that I gave to the Egyptians. I am the Lord. I am the one who gives you health.’

27 Then the Israelites arrived at Elim. There they found 12 wells of water and 70 palm trees. The Israelites put up their tents there, where there was water.