The Bible has two parts of the same book: the Old Testament and the New Testament. The Old Testament tells the story of God’s people before Jesus was born, and the New Testament tells the story of His people after Jesus was born. God’s people were called the Israelites. Their first leader’s name was Moses. The book of Exodus tells about Moses and the Israelites’ journey to the Promise Land.
You see, at this period in Bible history, the Israelites were slaves to the Egyptians. God chose Moses to free them from their captivity and lead them to the land that God promised them as their home. Their journey was a long and hard one mostly through the desert. Often, they had little to eat and drink. The people began to complain and grumble to Moses. They said, “At least when we were slaves in Egypt, we had plenty to eat and drink. Now, you have brought us out here to starve to death.” God heard His people complaining and told Moses, “I am going to rain down bread from heaven for you, and each day the people can go out and gather enough bread for that day. On the sixth day, when they prepare what they have gathered, it will turn out to be twice as much as they need for that day.” (Remember on the 7th day, the Sabbath, they were to do no work.)
The next morning when the people went outside their tents, the ground was covered with a fine, flaky, white substance. It was unlike anything they had ever seen. When they saw it, they asked, “What is it?” Moses said to them, “It is the bread that the Lord has given you to eat.”(Exodus 16:15) God’s bread was called manna, and it tasted like sweet cake made with honey the Bible says.
Moses told them that God had said they were to gather only enough bread/manna for one day at a time. If they tried to gather more, it would spoil. Why do you think God told them that? It is because God wanted to see if the people would obey Him and trust Him to send the bread that they needed to live each and every day.
God still provides what we need for each and every day, doesn’t He? That is why in the New Testament Jesus taught us to pray, “Give us this day our daily bread.” in the Lord’s Prayer. Daily, God sends us what we need to get through the day if we will trust and rely on Him.
Let’s pray together. Dear Father, just as You provided daily bread for Your children in the time of Moses, You still provide all our needs each and every day. For all of Your goodness, we give thanks. Amen.
Ann Moody is pastor of Wilkesville First Presbyterian Church and the Middleport First Presbyterian Church. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author.