EXODUS 16 – DAILY BREADCRUMBS
There are many things in life that are new and confusing. A new recipe tried this week for making Quiche for the first time proved nerve-racking, especially when it was for 6 people at a public event, and I should have tried a test run on the day before! So then, if simple daily tasks like cooking can be overwhelming, don’t be at all surprised or intimidated by reading my Daily Breadcrumbs. I’m no more intelligent than you. I just have 50 years experience that I am writing about. In 50 years from now, you’ll be telling me incredibly complex things that I had never thought of. How am I sure of this? Because of two reasons: our Father God, is an incredibly complex Person who is infinite in every way, including His ways and His understanding.[a] And secondly, because both you and I take after our Father who created us in His own image to be like Him… in all our complexity and depth of thought for understanding what we possibly can of Him.[b] But you may be asking what a bunch of hungry Hebrews in a desert four millenniums ago, have to do with us in the 21st Century.
This chapter yet again is incredibly important for our journey through this ‘wilderness’ of Life on Planet Earth, and until we come to the place that our Father God has prepared in advance for us to go. The physical journey of the Children of Israel is our metaphoric/spiritual journey today, but how is that possible? Well….
“The entire Kitvei HaKodesh (Word of God/Hebrew scripture, all of it from start to finish) is Hashem-breathed (God-breathed) and useful for hora’ah (teaching), for reproof, for correction, for training in tzedek, (righteousness), that the ish (man/woman belonging to, from the country of) haElohim (God) may be proficient, having been equipped for every one of the ma’asim mitzvot (every good work).” [OJB Timotiyos II 3:16-17; 2 Timothy 3:16-17]
Everything from start to finish recorded by the Hebrews during the 2000+ years before our calendars began, that was then miraculously preserved by our Father God (so that someone would accidentally stumble upon it all in 1958, The Dead Sea Scrolls), is our message from our Maker. His Handbook for LIFE; and, since He preserved it in such a supernatural way (when moth, mildew, water, salt, termites, age, anything at all could have destroyed it), then we really must read and process every single word – in case it is essential for our eternal existence. For example, the fact that He preserved for Himself a 2.8kg jar of the fragile flakes of manna to be kept in a tent, and it lasted 1000+ years when everyone saw with their own eyes how the manna got worms in it on the very next morning, tells me that He is saying and doing something significant, and the lasting manna is the proof. [v32-34] So here’s some things that I notice about my Father God in today’s chapter….
The level of detail in v1, sets this story not in fairytales, like the Brothers Grimm story of Hansel and Gretel, but in real history. The fact that places, times, and distances can now be easily calculated today for verification, puts the story firmly in the category of fact not fiction.
The fact that the Hebrew recorders recorded all their bad behavior and disobedience [v3,20,27-28] serves as proof that its believable. No religion/religious group on earth, with hopes of sucking in gullible adherents, would be so honest! This chapter is clearly setting out at a very basic level (according to Marslow’s Hierarchy of Needs) that human images of the Creator God are far from good and righteous. Before we even progress from the first rung of the ladder to self-actualization, we’re selfish, forgetful, abusive, grumbling failures.
Unlike His created images, our Father God almost ignores their behaviour and meets all their needs according to the riches of His glory.[c] He immediately provides what they need [v4] without first questioning or addressing their behaviour. The closest thing we have to this example is the Baby Boomer helicopter parenting[d], which hovers over the entitled generation that we birthed, then swoops in at every need. However, our Maker does it in a way that tests them (sifting out the wheat from the chaff, the good children from the naughty children) to see who will obey the smallest of instructions concerning the most basic of needs. [v4-14]
Besides the enormous flock of quails to feed 2 million+ people that night, the bread that appeared in the dew was also supernatural and something that they had never seen before. [v15] It lasted 40 years [v35] during all their wilderness wanderings; and to this day, no-one can argue that 2 million+ refugees sitting in the Sinai or Saudi desert and living as a complete group could possibly have survived, nor remained as a single unit for 40 years, without miraculous food and water provision.
So why do I think that this is at all relevant for us today? Well… two things must be understood from this point on, and it involves us and our Maker…
Firstly, v15-30 proves that the best of the human race that saw such supernatural power unleashed right before their eyes, will fail to obey even the smallest commands as soon as the trouble is over. No-one can convince me now that these people were somehow worse people than I am. We modern day humans are all made from the same substance, even 3,800+ years later; and because of this, they proved for all time that no-one is righteous, no, not even one.[e] We’re broken beyond repair. However, the second truth that today’s chapter shows is the long-suffering nature of Father God’s parenting. Every parent has rules – simple rules to be obeyed whether the children agree or understand the reasoning of them. In this case, simple rest on the seventh day shouldn’t have been hard to argue with. [v22-30] From the outset of the world’s longest running drama that is still unfolding today, our Father God is showing all the elements of a perfect Father.
For the next 40 years of storyline that covers the following Books of Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy (taking us up to Easter in my Breadcrumbs), will prove how our Great Shepherd has the ability for displaying every part of what makes up LOVE. Before we loved Him, He loved us first[f]; and HIStory as it will now unfold over the next 65 books that will journey through my Breadcrumbs until the end of this year, will prove that He embodies Love.[g]
Ahavah (Love) suffers long; ahavah is kind; ahavah does not have kinah (envy); ahavah does not brag; ahavah is not puffed up in ga’avah (conceit, pride); ahavah does not behave shamelessly; ahavah does not in anochiyut insist on its own way; ahavah is not touchy and vindictive, keeping a record of wrongs. [Zecharayah 8:17] Ahavah does not find simcha (take joy/rejoice) in evil, but rejoices in HaEmes (truth). Ahavah covers all things [Mishle 10:12], believes all things, has tikvah (hope), even zitzfleisch (endurance), for all things. Ahavah never fails. [OJB – 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a]
CLICK to return to today’s “Daily Breadcrumbs”
[a] Romans 11:33-36
[b] Genesis 1:26-28
[c] Philippians 4:19
[e] Ecclesiastes 7:20; Romans 3:9-10
[f] Romans 5:8
[g] 1 John 4:8