Prayer: O God, let your Word inspire me today to share your kingdom, in Christ. Amen.
Bread delivered fresh daily
…I will test them, whether they will follow my instruction or not. (v. 4)
God tests the Israelites. God promises to feed His people while in the wilderness, but He also means to test them as to how well they can follow His instructions. Therefore God provides more than enough manna, but tells them to only gather what they need for that day. But the people still tried to hoard extra and the extra would spoil. This was a test for daily sustenance. God promised to sustain them with bread in the morning and quail in the evening so they would learn to trust that God will provide for their daily needs.
Our devotion writer reminds us that today we can learn from this lesson that perhaps we are too consumed with “endless worry about whether we will have ‘enough’ provisions for our future.” Perhaps it would be better for us to learn that we have plenty for today so we can share what we have with others because God will provide for tomorrow. We must have faith and trust that God will provide as He has promised.
Prayer: “Strengthen our faith, O Lord, to believe that you truly will provide our daily bread. Amen.”
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
2 The whole congregation of the Israelites complained against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. 3 The Israelites said to them, “If only we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the fleshpots and ate our fill of bread; for you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.”
4 Then the Lord said to Moses, “I am going to rain bread from heaven for you, and each day the people shall go out and gather enough for that day. In that way I will test them, whether they will follow my instruction or not. 5 On the sixth day, when they prepare what they bring in, it will be twice as much as they gather on other days.” 6 So Moses and Aaron said to all the Israelites, “In the evening you shall know that it was the Lord who brought you out of the land of Egypt, 7 and in the morning you shall see the glory of the Lord, because he has heard your complaining against the Lord. For what are we, that you complain against us?” 8 And Moses said, “When the Lord gives you meat to eat in the evening and your fill of bread in the morning, because the Lord has heard the complaining that you utter against him—what are we? Your complaining is not against us but against the Lord.”
9 Then Moses said to Aaron, “Say to the whole congregation of the Israelites, ‘Draw near to the Lord, for he has heard your complaining.’” 10 And as Aaron spoke to the whole congregation of the Israelites, they looked toward the wilderness, and the glory of the Lord appeared in the cloud. 11 The Lord spoke to Moses and said, 12 “I have heard the complaining of the Israelites; say to them, ‘At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall have your fill of bread; then you shall know that I am the Lord your God.’”
13 In the evening quails came up and covered the camp; and in the morning there was a layer of dew around the camp. 14 When the layer of dew lifted, there on the surface of the wilderness was a fine flaky substance, as fine as frost on the ground. 15 When the Israelites saw it, they said to one another, “What is it?” For they did not know what it was. Moses said to them, “It is the bread that the Lord has given you to eat.