Exodus 16: 1-36
Dr. S. Lewis Johnson continues his typical exposition of the Exodus of Israel from Egypt by commenting on the symbolism of the manna.
[Prayer] Father we thank Thee for Thy word and we ask Thy blessings upon us in this hour as we turn again to it; enable us to understand and to profit and to put into practice the things that we study. We are grateful for the way in which Thou hast given us the word of God as a light for our feet and lamp unto our paths, and we thank Thee for the exhortations to feed upon it, for man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God, and we ask you Lord that Thou wilt be with us in our study tonight. For Jesus’ sake, Amen.
[Message] We are turning to Exodus chapter 16 for our study tonight, but let me remind you that what we are doing in our studies is seeking to set forth Israel’s progress from Egypt to Canaan, and we are looking at it in a typical way, in the sense that we are finding in the Old Testament experiences of Israel, illustrations of our Christian life. Now, the authority for this is found in the New Testament in Paul’s statements and passages like 1 Corinthian’s chapter 10 and since the passage that we are looking at tonight is a passage that Paul speaks about specifically, I am going to begin tonight by reading a few verses from 1 Corinthians chapter 10, beginning at verse 1. And Paul writes to the Corinthians, “Moreover brethren, I would not that you should be ignorant now that all our fathers were under the cloud and all passed through the sea.” And you can see, he is thinking about the Exodus there and were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea. “And they did all eat the same spiritual meat.” He is talking about the manna and they did all drink the same spiritual drink, the passage we will look at next week, Lord willing, for they drank of the spiritual Rock that followed them and that Rock was Christ. “But with many of them God was not well pleased for they were overthrown in the wilderness. Now these things were our examples to the intent we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted. Neither be ye idolaters as were some of them, as it is written, the people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. Neither let us commit fornication as some of them committed and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. Neither let us tempt Christ as some of them also tempted and were destroyed of serpents. Neither murmur ye as some of them also murmured and were destroyed of the destroyer. Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples, and they are written for our admonition upon whom the ends of the world are come.”
So the Apostle says these were matters that happened illustratively to the nation Israel and furthermore they have been now incased in the book that we know as Holy Scriptures for the benefit of us. So we look at them then as passages in the word of God that pertained to us. Now their examples then we are responsible to find the great spiritual truths that are example to buy these instances and we have seen Israel and the land of Egypt and we saw that that illustrated the servitude to sin that we all have naturally. We saw how as a result of the Passover lamb they were sheltered from the destroying angel and escaped the judgments of God, and that has suggested to us the redemption that we have through the blood of the Lamb of God who has given his flesh for our salvation.
And then last week we looked at the celebration of the salvation that they possessed by the power of God as they came through the Red Sea. When people who have been sheltered from divine judgment and have been saved by the power of God need sustenance for their journey through this particular pilgrim pathway that we are to follow, and so we are not surprised when we read that in the very next chapter God will unfold the provision that he made for them as they pass through the wilderness. As so many of the things in the experiences of Israel show the things that God provided for them rose out of the fact that they so often complained about the way in which God was dealing with them.
Now we have emphasized that salvation is only in and by the blood of Christ and it’s just as important for us to stress the fact that we are sustained by the word of God. So we look at the Old Testament picture and then we will seek to show how the New Testament in its revelation concerning the Lord Jesus Christ parallels this, we make a final New Testament application by way of showing one of the great promises of the word of God and that will conclude our study for the night.
Then now looking at the Old Testament picture and here we will just take a rather brief survey of Exodus chapter 16 where we have Israel’s experience and God’s provision of the manna. We read in verse 1 now, they have just come through the water and they have been brought up by the power of God and they have come to the waters of Marah, and there they have murmured against Moses saying what shall we drink and God had supplied their needs, and now we read they took their journey from Elim,
“And all the congregation of the children of Israel came under the wilderness of Sin which is between Elim and Sinai on the fifteenth day of the second month after their departing out of the land of Egypt. And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. And the children of Israel said unto them, would to God we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt when we sat by the fleshpots and when we did eat bread to the full, for ye have brought us forth into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.”
You notice that their complaint has the God of poverty about it, and so they think of the way in which God had met their needs in the land of Egypt, and they have forgotten all about the bondage of which they complained. But now they murmur against the Lord and complained to the Lord’s representatives Moses and Aaron that God is not really doing them good at all. And so we read in verse 4, then, notice that little then,
“Then said the Lord unto Moses, Behold I will rain bread from heaven for you and the people shall go out and gather a certain rate everyday that I may prove them whether they will walk in my law or no. And it shall come to pass that on the sixth day, they shall prepare that which they bring in and it shall be twice as much as they gather daily. And Moses and Aaron said unto all the children of Israel at even then ye shall know that the Lord hath brought you out from the land of Egypt. And in the morning then you shall see the glory of the Lord for that he heareth your murmurings against the Lord and what are we that ye murmur against us. And Moses said, this should be when the Lord shall give you in the evening flesh to eat and in the morning bread to the full. For that the Lord heareth your murmurings which you murmur against him. And what are we? Your murmurings are not against us but against the Lord.”
Well, this is a marvelous provision of grace because actually if God had dealt with them as they deserved he would have exercised discipline upon them rather than supplying their food as he does. But he is gracious and longsuffering with the children of Israel and this illustrates that. Now in verse 9 Moses describes the provision of the manna. And we read in verse 9,
“‘And Moses spake unto Aaron, Say unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, come near before the Lord for he hath heard your murmurings.’ And it came to pass as Aaron spake unto the whole congregation of the children of Israel, that they look toward the wilderness and behold the glory of the Lord appeared in the cloud. And evidently this was some unusual manifestation of the glory of God in that pillar of cloud and pillar of fire, which guided the children of Israel through the wilderness. And the Lord spake unto Moses saying, ‘I have heard the murmurings of the children of Israel. Speak unto them saying at even ye shall eat flesh and in the morning ye shall be filled with bread and ye shall know that I am the Lord your God.’ And it came to pass that at even the quails came up and covered the camp and in the morning the dew lay round about the host. And when the dew that lay was gone up, behold, upon the face of the wilderness there lay a small round thing as small as the hoar frost on the ground. And when the children of Israel saw it, they said one to another, it is manna, for they wist not what it was. And Moses said unto them, this is the bread which the Lord has given you to eat. This is the thing which the Lord has commanded. Gather of it every man according to his eating and omer for every man, (about two quarts I think) according to the number of your persons. Take ye every man for them which are in his tents. And the children of Israel did so and gathered some more, some less and when they did measure with an omer, he that gathered much had nothing over and he that gathered little had no lack. They gathered every man according to his eating and Moses said, let no man leave of it till the morning. Not withstanding they hearken not unto Moses (isn’t it not interesting, they don’t believe Moses even though he is now giving them the words of God). But some of them left of it until the morning and it bred worms and stank; and Moses was wroth with them and they gathered it every morning every man according to his eating and when the sun waxed hot it melted.”
That is of “the Lord provides” is given a rather strange name and scholars have debated to good bit what is meant by the Hebrew expression mannhu. It can mean several things but it appears to be that they recognized it is being something they could not really explain. And so, in effect, they were saying it’s, what do you call it? or a thing-a-ma-jig, or something like that, because actually the Hebrew expression means or can mean something like, what is it? And so this is the description of it. They don’t really no what it is and they are puzzled a bit and they referred to it in that way. Later on it’s called simply mann instead of mannhu. And may be that it does refer to some particular kind of thing that was known but the chances are what it was is its just something that they did not really understand what, what is it or its a thing-a-ma-jig, or what could it be? Its mann.
Now many scholars have sought to relate this to the secretion from the Oriental Tamarisk tree, now called by the Arabs “the gift of heaven”. Because it is true that at certain times of the year this particular tree, the Tamarisk, does exudes something that would be something similar to the manna. But of course it is clear that that’s not what this is intended to be although it may relate then something very much like it. Because in the first place, they were there for forty years by this and not simply in a couple of months of the year. And furthermore, usually the account of a certain amount came every day but when the Sabbath day came nothing failed.
And then we know further from reading this account that if you kept the manna over for the next day, it became filled with maggots and stank, whereas on Sunday or on the Sabbath day, I should say, it didn’t do that. So obviously this is something supernatural. It may have been something like the Tamarisk tree and the secretion of it, but it is different.
Some have even said this is probably a term that means a “a gift” where again we don’t really know. We know in Psalm 78, in verse 25, when latter the Psalmist going over the history of the children of Israel and describing the things that happened to them. The Psalmist says in verse 25 of Psalm 78, man did eat angel’s food. He sent them meat to the full. So they recognized that it was something supernatural although it may have looked like something with which they were familiar. The method of gathering for the six days is very interesting and its spelled out in detail in verse 22 through verse 30. So we will continue our reading. And it came to pass that on the sixth day they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for one man, and all the rulers of the congregation came and told Moses. And he said unto them. This is that which the Lord has said, tomorrow is the rest of the Holy Sabbath unto the Lord. Bake that which ye will bake today and seethe that which ye will seethe and that which remaineth over lay up for you to be kept until the morning. And they laid it up till the morning as Moses bade and it did not stink. Neither was there any worm therein. So we are talking about something that is supernatural.
Then Moses said, eat that today; for today is a Sabbath unto the Lord. Today you shall not find it in the field. Six days you shall gather but on the seventh day which is the Sabbath in it there shall be none. And what do you think that people would do. They would go out and test but Moses said, so never go out on the Sabbath and look for it, that is precisely what we are reading in verse 27, that is why the Bible is so true to human experience. I just know that is what people would do and in fact I know two three people in this congregation that would have done that. But I won’t reveal their names. And it came to pass that there went out some of the people on the seventh day for to gather and they found none. So, gatherings were interesting.
I should read out through verse 30 and the Lord said unto Moses,
“How long refuse ye to keep my commandments and my laws. See for that the Lord hath given you the Sabbath therefore he giveth you on the sixth day the bread of two days, abide ye every man in his place. Let no man go out of his place on the seventh day. So the people rested on the seventh day.”
In other words, on that day, there was a miraculous increase and also a preservation of that which they had gathered on the day before. This is remarkable when we turn to John 6 and we see the parallel with the Lord Jesus as the bread of God who came down from heaven.
Now we continue in verse 31. Description is given, further description of the manna, “And the house of Israel called the name thereof manna, (what is it) and it was like coriander seed, white and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey. Now over to Numbers chapter 11 and verse 7, there is another feature, its appearance that is described by Moses and there we read and the manna was as coriander seed and the color thereof as the color of bdellium. So it was somewhat transparent in its appearance.
Now the manna is deposited in the ark, we read in verse 32 through verse 34 and of course if you are a careful student of the Bible you remember that the ark is not an existence of this part, and so Moses afterwards is filling in the details of what took place because you remember that when finally Moses did construct the Tab — Moses and the children of Israel constructed the Tabernacle and then they had the ark of the covenant and they put inside the Ark of the Covenant the tablets of the Lord given on Mount Sinai, and the rod of Aaron, and the golden pot of manna was in it. So in that pot, there was a supernatural kind of manna placed because it stayed with them for the forty years through the wilderness. Verse 32 and Moses said,
“This is the things which the Lord commanded. Fill an omer of it to be kept your generations. That they may see the bread wherewith I have fed you in the wilderness when I brought you forth from the land of Egypt. Moses said unto Aaron, take a pot and put an omer full of manna therein and lay it up before the Lord to be kept for your generations. As the Lord commanded Moses so Aaron laid it up before the testimony, (that is, the Ark of the Covenant, to be kept and then finally the miraculous continuance of it is stated in verse 35 and verse 36) and the children of Israel did eat manna forty years until they came to the land inhabited they did eat manna until they came unto the borders of the land of Canaan.”
Now an omer is the tenth part of an ephah. When Paul said these things that had happened to them are ensamples and for other he specifically mentions this by saying and did all eat the same spiritual meat. And in verse 6 he says, now these things were our examples to the intent, you should not lust after evil things as they also lusted. So, let us turn to John chapter 6 and verse 22 through verse 65 is the passage in which we have the account of the message that the Lord Jesus gave to the Jewish people following if you will remember the feeding of the five thousand and the walking upon the water. And this New Testament parallel is obviously built on just what we read in Exodus chapter 16. And if Paul tells us that these things were ensamples and that they are written for us upon whom the ends of the ages have come, then we are responsible as individuals to pay attention to these things and not murmur after murmur as they murmured and lust after evil things.
Now the parallel of the manna with Christ is specifically stated in verse 48 where we read Jesus said, I am the bread of life. And then in verse 35, I am the bread of life, he that cometh to me shall never hunger and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. And in verse 32 and verse 33 verily, verily I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven, but my Father gave you the true bread from heaven, for the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven and giveth life unto the world. See, they have just said in verse 31, our fathers did eat manna in the desert, as it is written He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Why don’t you do something for us? What sign do you show us that we may see and believe Thee? What dost thou work? And Jesus said, I am the manna. Now what way is this the Lord Jesus like the manna? Well, obviously, the first thing that stands out from what we have read and what I have said is that the manna was incomprehensible. They looked at it. They could see physically what it looked like, I bet they really know, what it was. They said, what is it?
Well when we think of the Lord Jesus Christ, there are certain things that we can see about him that are very plain. He was a man, he must have looked very much like other men. We do not have any indication that there was anything unusual about his personal appearance except the statement, he is not yet fifty years of age, which suggested that he had apparently suffered a great deal and may be the lines of the some of the suffering had appeared in his face but otherwise he was a man as he himself says who told them the truth. In verse 42, we read and they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph whose father and mother we know? How is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven? And verse 60 reads, many therefore of his disciples, when they heard that said, This is an hard saying.
Who can hear it? The Lord Jesus was incomprehensible. So far as his ultimate person was concerned none could see certain things about him and the true believers came to recognize that he was the Lord God but so far as understanding the person of our Lord, they did not really understand fully his person. And it is — as a matter of fact, if you go into all the evangelical seminaries all over the face of this globe where you might expect to have full understanding of spiritual things, evangelical, true to the Bible, understanding certain things about Christology, the person in work of Christ — you will find in every honest teacher of the word of God, they will finally say, the person of Christ is a mystery. And that does not mean that we cannot understand a great deal about him, and we should continue to study the person of our Lord. The more we understand of him the more faith is created, have a knowledge of the word of God.
But there is finally always, even for the finest of the theologians that period of time, when he will say, beyond this I am unable to go. The way in which the two natures unite in the one person is a very, very difficult thing, and in fact, I believe an impossible thing for us to fully understand. And, in fact, those great men in the past who have said, A God understood is not God, were speaking truth. We cannot ever expect to understand the person of our Lord Jesus Christ because his personality is a divine personality. So incomprehensible.
I think it is just part of the inspired word of God that when they looked at that manna which would illustrate our Lord, they said, what is it? And, as far as we know, they never understood what it was. Well it was small, and that suggests to me the humiliation of our Lord Jesus. He was one who humbled himself and humbled himself finally even unto death. The fact that it was round, well now we may engage in a bit of speculation, but the fact that it was round might suggest, it does suggests in the minds of some the eternal nature of our Lord in that you cannot really measure him.
You know, when we have the marriage ceremony, we take out a ring and we will say something like, this ring in its material essence speaks of this, in its circularity, it speaks of the completeness that you have one in the other, in its endlessness it solemnly symbolizes the permanence of the vows that you are taking in the wedding ceremony. Well perhaps because it was round it suggested the eternal nature of our Lord, In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God, an eternal being. White, it was white perhaps that suggests the Holiness of our Lord for white is often associated with holiness in Scripture. The fact that it was like the bdellium or transparent may suggest the holiness of his nature in that there are no cloudy aspects in his nature it is perfectly clean and pure. The fact that it tasted like honey suggests to most Christians the preciousness of the Lord Jesus to the hearts of the saints and the way in which the saints of God speak of the marvelous benefits of the word of God, How sweet are Thy words to my taste, suggests the Lord Jesus Christ and his preciousness and also the fact that it was like fresh oil suggests to many that he was the Son of God who was anointed by the Holy Spirit and went about doing his work in the power of the Holy Spirit.
Now the parallel of this incident with the Lord Jesus Christ is also I think important because it illustrates the way in which he nourishes the spirits of believers. He is the Bread of Life, he says. And he that cometh to me shall never hunger and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. Think of Israel’s experiences without the manna. Israel would have perished without the manna. He was absolutely essential for the survival of Israel. Many have estimated that the children of Israel were perhaps as many as two million in number at this time. May be that is an exaggeration. Let us say there are only five hundred thousand of them. Take a twenty five percent estimate. But they would never have been enable to survive in that wilderness where they were. The manna was absolutely essential for them, and so the Lord Jesus is absolutely essential for the life of believers.
In fact, the Scriptures say, neither is there salvation in any other for there is none other name given among men whereby we must be saved. He is the manna for us so far as life is concerned. Israel’s manna also had a supernatural origin and Jesus says in verse 51, I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If any man eat of the bread, he shall live for ever and the bread that I shall give is my flesh which I will give for the life of the world. So the manna was a supernatural origin and our Lord was a supernatural origin. The manna was a gift in grace, read full chapter 6 over and over we have reference to the fact that he is given for us and furthermore we read that we are given to him. Look at verse 37, all that the Father has given to me shall come to me and him that cometh to me I will no wise cast out. And verse 33 gives the other side of that for the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven and giveth life to the world. So we are given to the Son and the Son gives us life and furthermore everyone that he gives life he will save completely.
Look at verse 39 and 40. This is the Father’s will which hath sent me that of all which he hath given me I shall lose nothing but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that everyone which seeth the Son and believeth on him may have everlasting life, and I will raise him up at the last day. Israel’s manna was a gift in grace. They did not deserve this, they deserved judgment. They had been brought out through the magnificent experience of the parting of the Red Sea and the first thing they do in the wilderness is forget all about it and start murmuring against the Lord. They earlier murmured and now they murmur again. Now they murmur again.
In fact Moses again describes a number of cases where they continued to murmur against the Lord God. But God, in marvelous grace, gives them the provision of the manna necessary for life. God commends his love toward us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us. And not only that, but as we live the Christian life, day after day, how often do we find ourselves murmuring against that which God has brought into our lives. Israel’s manna was sufficient for everyone. Notice the emphasis. In the sixteenth chapter of how they went out and they gathered the manna and those who gathered little had sufficient and those who had gathered much when they measured it out they had what they needed. Every man had what he needed. Every individual had precisely what he needed and so with the people of God. God has made provision through the Lord Jesus for the full supply of everything that is needed for everyone of the people of God. Not a one of the people of God is going to be left and abandoned; the Lord God Jesus will save every one of them and raise them up on the last day. That is an encouragement, is it not?
Israel’s manna was always near them and it was always there before them and the Lord Jesus, like the word of God, is now the even in the body through the Holy Spirit. In every experience of life, he is available for us, and Israel’s manna is to be continually gathered, day after day, they were to gather the manna. That seems so strange. I can just imagine that there would be some people there who would say what we have to do this everyday? Why don’t we gather once a week? Let us save a lot of time. I know a lot of people would say, why don’t we just gather it for a month and store it up and then we don’t we have to go into field everyday. In a way, good reasons why a person might think that would be necessary or desirable. But this manna was to be gathered day by day.
Now, obviously, the reason for this was so that they would be constantly reminded of what the Lord God had done for them. I want us to return to the New Testament, and I will read about how we are fed by the word of God and I read in the New Testament and you read in the New Testament that the study of the Scriptures is not something that we do over the weekend for the whole month. We don’t have in effect say we will study the Scriptures for a few days and then we don’t have to bother with the Scriptures for a period of time.
In fact, there is one particular group of people who are singled out for special mention in the New Testament, the Bereans because they searched the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so. And if the manna is that by which Israel was preserved in their life and if as our Lord says man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God, then the word of God is, in another manner, its our provision, and it seems to me very plain that we are exhorted that we are to feed upon that word daily.
Now, I know that there may be some occasions in which you are unable to do that but we don’t, and therefore we do not want to make out of this a legalistic thing but it seems very plain to me that the intent of this is to lay great stress upon the fact that feeding upon our Lord s to be something that is characteristic of Christians, not something that they do just every now and then. What is the excuse that we really have for a well-thumbed novel and a dusty Bible. What excuse from can we possibly have for hours talking over the telephone and with our friends and discussing various types of things and then praying for a few minutes? What kind of excuse cane we come up for that?
I can imagine a person saying well I cannot always be engaged with Christ. Well, I don’t really know what you can say there. But its surely true for most of us that most of us neglect the word of God, we neglect the time of prayer, we neglect the fellowship that we should enjoy with him and the other things that are far more important for us than these most important things in our lives. And this is God’s way of saying, You need to come to me, day by day, you need to feed upon the supernatural food which I supply. The Lord Jesus preeminently and the word of God as the means by which we feed upon the living manna.
You can go down places in the United States where there is a great deal of reliance upon the Scriptures, the southern part of the United States, Grand Rapids, Michigan. Grand Rapids, Michigan is a kind of like the holy land of the United States. All kinds of stress on reading the Bible, but when you go there, things are pretty dead and they are pretty dead because people have forgotten this daily feeding on the word of God. This Israel was to eat the manna to give strength for service. It was not an end in itself; you cannot do anything to please the Lord in your Christian life if it does not flow out of our relationship with the Lord Jesus. We often say, we are saved to serve, we want to witness and we witness in the strength of the word of God and if we are not feeding upon the word of God, we will not be fruitful; we will not be faithful. In fact, we will have little courage to tell others about the things of the Lord.
Well, there is one final promise I would like to call your attention to and it is found in the Book of Revelation. In Revelation chapter 2 and verse 17, I know that you may be thinking well like one of those things that manna that happened a long time ago. We are living in an entirely different age and we are, so is it right for us to speak about the manna in this way or we living in an entirely different age . Let us see what the Lord Jesus says to the church. Chapter 2 of the Book of Revelation and verse 12. He says a few words to the church of Pergamum.
“And to the angel of the Church in Pergamum write: These things saith he which hath the sharp sword with two edges. I know your works and where you dwell, even where Satan seat is. Thou holdest fast my name and hast not denied my faith even in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr who was slain among you where Satan dwelleth. But I have a few things against thee because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balak to cast a stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols and to commit fornication. So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of Nicolaitans, which thing I hate. Isn’t it striking the Lord Jesus can say things like that, which thing I hate. Repent, or else I will come unto thee quickly and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth. He that hath an ear let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches. To him that overcometh, will I give to eat of the hidden manna.”
What is the hidden manna? This is probably a reference to Exodus chapter 16 and verse 34 where we read these words. Exodus 16 and verse 34, As the Lord commanded Moses, so Aaron laid it up before the testimony to be kept. The hidden manna was the manna that was placed in the golden pot and placed in the arc of the testimony to remind them of what God had done for them as they went through the wilderness. And so when our Lord speaks here of giving to the overcomer to eat of the hidden manna, he is talking about that which is the testimony to God’s faithfulness to us, the Lord Jesus Christ, and he is also, I think, exhorting us to be faithful to him, and also promising us as we are faithful to him, we may feed upon the risen Christ as a daily provision for our life through the word of God. Every need met, every lack supplied through our living, risen Savior who dwells within the Tabernacle in heaven and throughout all eternity.
May I say a final word to you by way of application? The manna was of no avail to the children of Israel if they did not eat it. Not enough to have a lot of manna lying out from the hills round about the children of Israel. If they did not go out and gather it and then eat it and so it is useless for us to think about the provision that God has laid for us through the Lord Jesus Christ, if we do not eat of him, also in that same John 6, we are exhorted to feed upon him, to eat his flesh and to drink his blood. Augustine said creda et mandecaste: trust and you have eaten. That is the way you eat, that is the way you feed upon the manna, you read the promises of the word of God and you rely upon them. That is what it is to eat and feed upon the hidden manna.
So one another thing, the manna was appropriated before it was understood. I think a lot of people do not know what it is to live the life of faith because they think that they have got to understand all about it before they live it. Now the children of Israel, they looked at the manna and they said what is it? As far as we know them they never really understood what it was. But they learned to eat of it in order to survive and no doubt they learned more about it as the time went on and as they reflected more upon this marvelous mystery of God’s provision. And so the individual who waits to understand our Lord and understand all of the promises of the word of God and understand had all fits together before he trusts in Christ, he won’t live. And for believers who, having fed upon him as Savior and who never really begin to feed upon him day by day for their Christian life, they are going to experience the ups and downs, the disappointments, the murmurings, the disciplinings of the Lord God until finally sometimes it also happens when the Lord takes us into his presence.
Finally, they will reach the end of sanctification after a life lived largely in the wilderness. May the Lord help us to understand how important it is for us to feed upon the hidden manna and to make it part of our daily life and also to come to the practice of believing the word of God and living by that word. In business, in your family, in your school, in your relationship with your neighbors, relationship with your friends, and to tell you truth, it might help in your relationship with your husband or your wife. So often, I have people come to me, I had a person come to me not too many days back, after the marriage is in great difficulty, when if certain things have been practiced earlier all of that would be so unnecessary. May God help us to learn to believe his word and to rely upon Him. When Paul said these things were ensamples for us and they are written for our admonition, he may fail at things that we should give the greatest attention to. May God help us to do it. Let us bow in prayer.
[Prayer] Father we thank Thee for Thy word and we thank Thee for these marvelous illustrations which Thou hast prepared for us so many centuries ago in the experiences of the children of Israel. Deliver us Lord from the murmurings and the failures and the lustings, little bit of rebellion and the other things that so characterized with them. We know Lord, we are of the same makeup. But Thou hast provided for us marvelously in the permanent indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. O God! Teach us to believe and to eat.
For Jesus’ sake. Amen.