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And Moses cried unto the LORD, saying, What shall I do unto this people? they be almost ready to stone me.

New Defender's Study Bible Notes

17:4 ready to stone me. In effect the people were accusing God of covenant breaking and decided judicially to stone His representative. God therefore “stands before” them (Exodus 17:6) as the accused on the rock, and the rock is then smitten with the rod of judgment–the same rod with which Moses had visited judgment on Egypt (Exodus 17:5).

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