Exodus 16, grumbling and God's provision

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Helen, Aug 22, 2002.

  1. Helen

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    Aug 29, 2001
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    At the end of chapter 15, the Lord used Moses to turn the bitter water into sweet miraculously. At that time the Lord had told the Israelites through Moses that if they obeyed Him, He would prevent any of the diseases which had afflicted the Egyptians from affecting the Israelites.

    As chapter 16 opens, they are 45 days out from Egypt. And they are grumbling again. They blame Moses and Aaron for bringing them out into the desert only to starve them to death.

    They screamed in fear at the Red Sea.
    They complained about the water.
    Now they are grumbling about the food.

    I wonder how many of them remembered their constant pleas to heaven for rescue from slavery? It reminds me of the way the Jews all looked forward to a Messiah who would come right away as a conquering hero. But before the glory is the time of obedience, and testing, and maturing. Before the victory comes the cross. Before the King comes the Suffering Servant.

    But we can't afford to feel proud. We are all the same way. We all want the end result we dream about without the work it takes to get there! Human nature and all....

    God is incredibly patient with these people who are grumbling and complaining again. There is not a word of rebuke, only the reassurance that both meat and bread would be provided.

    And despite the study, What is Manna, I just looked again at the Lord's words in verse 4: "I will rain down bread from heaven for you." So back to the Concordances. The word means 'rain' all right, but it is also used idiomatically. In Job 20:23, "When he [the godless] has filled his belly, God will vent his burning anger against him and rain down his blows on him." In Psalm 11:6, this same variant of the word is used: "On the wicked he will rain fiery coals and burning sulfur; a scorching wind will be their lot."

    If it means "down from the sky but not necessarily water" then we have the manna NOT coming from the Tamarask shrubs!

    The quail, on the other hand, are extraordinarily easy to explain! It was their migration time. Even today, by the time the quail get to the other side of the Red Sea, many are so exhausted that people can still go and simply pick them up by hand. The first wave of the migration hit that evening.

    The first manna was the next morning.

    The three verses at the end of the chapter are probably later editorial additions. Verses 34 and 35 mention the jar of memorial manna being put in front of the Testimony, which was to come later, when the Tabernacle was constructed, and the last verse defines the omer in a parenthetic.

    The last note about this chapter is to look at the way the people persist in disobeying by 'checking for themselves' about whether or not the manna would keep overnight or whether or not there would be manna to gather on the Sabbath.

    And the last note after the last note is to note that the Sabbath is here defined, before Moses is given the law officially. Verses 25-26 define it as well as it is defined in the Ten Commandments. Six days gather food (go shopping?) and on the seventh do not. Rest.

    So the people rested on the seventh day. v. 30
  2. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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    Oct 10, 2001
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