And then the bread ran out…

Why does Moses record the date of the children of Israel’s exhausted food supply?

“The whole Israelite community set out from Elim and came to the Desert of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after they had come out of Egypt. In the desert the whole community grumbled against Moses and Aaron (Ex. 16:1-2).

Israel departed Egypt with unleavened bread. They had prepared for the journey, as they were instructed; yet, the prepared supply ran out.

Several rabbinic commentators suggest that the date, included by Moses, was the date when the Lord intended to do another miracle for Israel, just before the Sinai revelation. To show them, He was still there.

As the supply ran out, Israel cried out, “The Israelites said to them, “If only we had died by the Lord’s hand in Egypt There we sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death” (Ex. 16:3).

The point of departure, with the crushing harshness of slavery, began to look good: “at least there was food!”

Still, why this miracle at that time? God knew. He knew their supplies would run low, and ultimately they would have nothing. So God orchestrated a miracle:

“Then the Lord said to Moses, “I will rain down bread from heaven for you” (Ex. 16:4).

Now, not the unleavened bread they carried, but bread from heaven would rain down. “מָן הוּא,” “Man-na,” they would ask, “What is it?” To which Moses would answer: “It is the bread which the Lord hath given you to eat” (Ex. 16:15).

In the exact moment of need, when the bread was gone, on that exact day, when the grumbling began, the Lord announced His supply: “I will feed you with a miraculous bread that neither you nor your fathers knew. My bread from heaven.”

There yet remains a living bread from heaven that satisfies the weary soul: “Truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world” (Jn. 6:32-33).

Often we are worn out and weary along the way, our supply is running low, and we need provisions. It’s hard to ask for help, and to acknowledge that we are in a place of need. Yet, as with Israel, the Lord knows the exact time of our need, and has prepared a miracle supply. We just have to open our mouths.

The apostle Paul wrote, “And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:19).

At the moment of the need, when we are out of our prepared provision, the need will be supplied through the bread from heaven, Yeshua/Jesus. He knew your need before you set out, so the supply will be there when you arrive at the need.

The message is simple: reach out. Reach out to heaven, reach out to others, and what is supplied, you may not immediately be able to identify. “What is it?” Heavens answer.

Be well. Shalom.

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