Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘I will rain down bread from heaven for you.
“We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God” (Acts 14:22).
‘The heirs of salvation, I know from his Word,
Through much tribulation must follow their Lord.’ (John Newton: from the hymn ‘Begone, Unbelief!’)
We have seen in recent days, that the freshly redeemed people of God quickly ran into trials and tests. First there was a lack of water, and now, soon afterward, a lack of bread.
I find Alec Motyer writes helpfully about this in his book ‘The Message of Exodus’:
‘To say that the book of Exodus is full of visual aids in no way calls into question its historicity. Rather, it is just because it is history that it is spiritually reliable: here is history ordered in the hand of God for the instruction of his people’ (p.175).
He goes on to say: ‘There is no such thing as an untried faith…’ (p.176).
Motyer points out that the people of Israel were in the wilderness precisely because God had led them there. (We can’t argue that they were suffering because of Satanic attack or because they were ‘out of the will of God’).
We have seen that their response was to grumble against Moses and Aaron (but ultimately it was against God).
So when I read in the next line the Lord saying He will “rain down bread from heaven”, my response can only be, ‘This is amazing grace.’ God is not only going to provide bread to this ungrateful, unbelieving group of people; He’s going to provide it abundantly.
We find, when we turn to the New Testament, that Jesus is the ultimate fulfilment of this “bread” (John 6:33-35). He is God’s greatest, most generous gift, and He satisfies the spiritual hunger of all who feed on Him by faith.