Read Exodus 16:1-20.
A few weeks later, one month after they had been freed from Egypt (one month), the people started in on Moses and Aaron again. “We wish the Lord had killed us in Egypt. When we were there, we sat around big pots filled with meat. We had all the bread we wanted. You two losers have brought us out here to starve to death!”
Now, let’s think about those statements for a second. First of all, they were slaves in Egypt. They did back-breaking manual labor. The Pharaoh had tried to kill them off by working them to death. It is hard to believe that he would have put forth such effort to beat them down and then set a feast before them every night.
And also, consider that Moses and Aaron were acting in obedience to God to lead His people. They were not acting of their own accord – they were doing what God had commanded them to do. As Moses and Aaron said in verse 7, “What have we done? Your complaints are against the Lord, not against us.”
The people were complaining about God.
What Is It?
God told Moses, “I have heard the grumbling of the people of Israel. Say to them, ‘At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall be filled with bread. Then you shall know that I am the Lord your God (v.12)’” God sent quail in the evening. The next morning, a flaky substance was left on the ground. Nobody knew what it was. They said, “What is it?” The Hebrew word “manna” means “what is it.” (See 16:31.)
God gave very specific instructions for the manna. Every family was to gather what they needed for a day. He promised that everyone would have enough for each day, but that there was no point in trying to hoard it. Whatever wasn’t needed for the day would spoil before the next day.
It worked exactly as God described. Everyone had enough for each day.
Some of the Israelites tried to beat the system and collected more than they needed. As was promised, it was an ugly mess the next morning.
God will not be mocked.
The Israelites had enough provision for each day, but they had to gather manna each day. God provides strength for us day by day, but we have to go to Him every day. What has God provided for us to gain the strength we need for each day?