Have you ever wondered how God sustained the Israelites in the wilderness? Well, wonder no more. The Bible has the answers.
One way God sustained the Israelites in the wilderness is with manna from heaven. This manna God formed in the morning right after the dew lifted (Ex. 16:14). So, in the early morning they could gather as much as they needed for the day but no more. The bible says “…it was like white coriander seed, and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey.” (Ex. 16:31) But how did they eat it? Numbers 11:8 says “The people went about and gathered it, ground it on millstones or beat it in the mortar, cooked it in pans, and made cakes of it; and its taste was like the taste of pastry prepared with oil.” The Israelites ate this for forty years, until they came to the border of Canaan and ate the produce of the land.
Another way God sustained the Israelites is with water from a rock. Two times He did this, the first time being at Rephidim. But Rephidim had no water so the people complained against Moses and God saying they wished to be back in Egypt. So God told Moses to go to the rock at Horeb and to strike it so that water would come out. So he did and the people were satisfied. Moses then named the place Massah and Meribah “…because of the contention of the children of Israel, and because they tempted the LORD, saying, ‘Is the LORD among us or not?’”(Exodus 17:7)
The second was at Kadesh. The Israelites came into the Wilderness of Zin and camped in Kadesh. But alas there was no water here either! Again the people got mad at Moses and wished to go back to Egypt, but God told Moses to speak to the rock and it would yield water. So Moses gathered the people and—struck the rock! Of course, the water came rushing out and the people drank, but Moses was not able to lead the people into Canaan.
A third way God sustained the Israelites in the wilderness is that their clothes and shoes did not wear out. For forty years they didn’t have to make or buy new garments. That wouldn’t happen in our house!
“Truly, O God of Israel, our Savior, you work in mysterious ways.” (Isaiah 45:15) I’m glad God took care of the Israelites so many years ago. And I’m glad He takes care of His children today, also.