Manna (Food) and Water in the Wilderness – Exodus 17
In an earlier story, we learned how Moses and the Israelites crossed the Red Sea into the wilderness. And after 1 and 1/2 months passed, all the Israelites began to complain to Moses because they were hungry. And so the LORD said to Moses “Look, I will rain bread from heaven for you, and the people will go out every day and gather a certain amount, and I will test them to see if they follow my law or not. And it will happen that on the 6th day they will prepare what they gather, and that day it will be twice as much as the rest of the days.”
And so Moses told the people “in the evening you shall know that the LORD brought you out from the land of Egypt, and in the morning you shall see the glory of the LORD for he hears your complainings and they are not against us (Moses and Aaron) but against the Lord. And it happened that the children of Israel looked towards the wilderness and the glory of the LORD appeared in the cloud. And in the evening quails came, and in the morning there was a small round thing, as small as heavy frost, but the people didn’t know what it was. But Moses told them that this was the bread which the LORD gave them to eat.
And Moses told them that the LORD commanded that they take enough for their families, and some gathered more, some less. They were not to leave any bread until the next morning, but all of them did not listen to Moses, and the bread that was left got worms and smelled, and Moses was very angry with them. And so after that they gathered it every morning, except for the 6th day when they gathered twice as much because on the 7th day, the Sabbath, there was no bread to gather.
And they called the bread Manna – and it was white, and it tasted like wafers made with honey. And the Israelites ate manna for 40 years until they came to the borders of the land of Canaan.
Another time the people were thirsty and they complained to Moses because there was no water for them to drink, and again Moses prayed to the LORD. And the LORD told Moses to “go and take three elders and your rod. I will stand before you upon the rock in Horeb, and you shall strike the rock, and water will come out of it, so the people may drink.” And so Moses did this, and he called the name of the place Massah and Meribah, because the people complained and because they tempted the LORD.
Memory Verse: Exodus 17:5 “…I will stand before you there upon the rock..and you shall strike the rock, and there will come water out of it.”
1 How long were the people in the wilderness when they began to complain for food? Answer: 1 and 1/2 months
2 What did the Manna look and taste like? how often were they to gather it? Answer: It was small, round and white, and it tasted like honey. They were to gather it every morning except on the 6th day they were to gather twice as much.
3 What happened if they left it over till the next morning? Answer: It got worms and smelled
4 What did the LORD tell Moses to do when the people asked for water? Answer: to take 3 elders and his rod and strike the rock at Horeb where the LORD would stand
5 What do you think are two miraculous things in this story? Answer: that the LORD provided the bread (manna) from heaven, and the water from the rock.