“He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your ancestors had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.”
When God rescued the Israelites from slavery in Egypt, they had to wander through the desert for forty years. They faced many trials and difficulties along the way, many of them self-induced. Several times they even complained to God, saying they would’ve been better off in slavery than wandering in the desert.
But all the while, God sustained them.
This verse gives an insight into God’s purpose for both the wandering and the provision. When the people were hungry and had nothing to eat, God provided them with manna, bread from heaven, to sustain them. No work was required on their part to make it or to store it. It went bad every night and there was a new supply every morning. Through this, the Israelites were humbled. They were able to see the way that God was able to provide for them, but also came to understand their true reliance on him. Without him, they would still be slaves. Without him, they would’ve starved in the desert. But with him, they would be delivered to the promised land, fed all the while by the miraculous manna that he provided.
We can learn from the Israelites in this situation. After a while, they began complaining about the manna, saying they were getting tired of eating the same thing, that they wanted meat, not just bread. Can you imagine starving in the desert, being given a miraculous food source every morning, and then complaining about it? It’s because they lost the humility God had tried to show them.
They forgot the whole point of the manna, which was that food is not the only thing that sustains us. In fact, it’s not even the most important thing that sustains us. The word of God is what gives us life. And unlike the food we eat every day, it never goes away.
Help us to learn from the Israelites. We can be a lot like them at times, ungrateful, not humble, and totally missing the point. I pray that you’d forgive us and help us to see that you are what sustains us, not our food or our money or our possessions. Help us to live and thrive off of your word.
In Jesus’ Name,