Moses & the Manna — The bread from heaven & the Word of God.
Reading 1: Exodus 16
Reading 2: Deuteronomy 8
Reading 3: Matthew 4:1-4
If you read today’s readings in a newer translation, the full contrast between God’s patient training and Israel’s sin-fuelled self-will is clear. Repeatedly the people of Israel show they are set on their own understanding, their own needs, and their own preferences, more than on obeying God’s instructions. And this is despite the supernatural deliverance from Egypt and the miraculous escape across the Red Sea.
They are much like young children, needing to be patiently trained in the right way; the chapter from Deuteronomy shows that most clearly. In our society we tend to see discipline as punishment to be avoided, but in God’s Kingdom discipline makes us disciples.
Even Jesus was tested by hard times in the wilderness! And He tells us that true life comes from hearing God’s voice and obeying God’s loving instructions, not from focusing on earthly needs that distract us from God.
Moses knew this too, when he told the people in Deuteronomy 8:18: “Remember the lord your God. He is the one who gives you power to be successful, in order to fulfill the covenant he confirmed to your ancestors with an oath.”
Let’s take that advice to heart today, and watch God provide, direct, and disciple us.
Have a great day!