Summary: God listens when we complain, God supplies better than we deserve, and God provides Salvation.
TITLE: GOD'S PROVISION
TEXT: EXODUS 16:1-15
- We’re continuing our study through the book of Exodus.
- Last week, we talked about being tested by God.
- We saw the Israelites start to complain against Moses when they realized their only source of water was bitter.
- Moses turned to God, and God told him to cast a tree into the water.
- When he did, God cleansed the water and made it drinkable.
- We saw that this was a test from God, and the test was soon after their deliverance, the test was difficult but had a solution, and the test was for their benefit.
- This week, we’re going to look at God’s provision as He miraculously provides food for the Israelites.
- I don’t know about you, but when I desperately need something, and someone provides it to me, or I find it on my own, I feel like I’ve won the lottery!
- I’m reminded of my first day of basic training.
- We were carted over to our barracks on a bus and had all our bags containing all our uniforms and gear.
- Those bags were heavy!
- Once we got to the barracks, the Drill Sergeants started yelling at us and telling us to get in formation with our bags.
- I remember how hectic it was, as soldiers were running all over the place, and the Drill Sergeants were yelling in peoples faces, making some cry, and others just froze.
- Once we were formed up, the Drill Sergeants instructed us to take one of our duffel bags and lift it up over our heads and hold it there.
- That might not sound too hard, but the bag was probably about 70 pounds, and we were standing in the hot sun of South Carolina, in the middle of July, and they were still getting in our faces, yelling at us for different reasons.
- So, as I’m standing there, sweating profusely, shaking as I’m trying to hold this bag, all I can think about is how thirsty I am and how much I need a drink of water.
- Once the Drill Sergeants were done with this step, they had us march over to an area in the shade where they started handing us large canteens full of ice cold water and told us to drink the entire contents.
- I wanted and needed water so bad that I would have paid $100.00 just to drink from one, but I didn’t have to…
- The Drill Sergeants provided it by simply handing it to me, and that was probably the best tasting drink of water I’ve ever had.
- All of us here today have at one time or other been in desperate need of something, and God has stepped in and provided it.
- That’s where we find the Israelites in the passage this morning…in desperate need of food, and we’re going to see God step in and provide above and beyond anything they could have imagined.
FIRST: GOD LISTENS WHEN WE COMPLAIN- VS 1-9
- Sometimes, I complain too much.
- I’m reminded of my time in Iraq, and one of the complaints I kept bringing up to any of my buddies who would listen.
- The Armed Forces Network provided radio and tv broadcasts to troops over there.
- The guys in my unit loved to watch College Football when they had the chance.
- So, I remember watching a few times with some of the guys and noticing that the cameras kept showing the fans in the crowd.
- I couldn’t help but notice all these college kids smiling and cheering, some of them holding signs, others with their team colors painted on their bodies, and just having a good time watching a football game.
- I remember thinking, “Those kids are so lucky. They get to be safe at home, enjoying a football game, with their friends and family, and I’m stuck in the middle of the desert, in a war zone where people want to kill me! This really stinks!”
- Looking back, I realize that I had the honor of serving my country, and being a part of history, something most of those college kids in the audience would never have.
- Yet at the time, I just wanted to complain.
- That’s what we find the Israelites doing here in Exodus 16, complaining once again.
- It’s been about 30 days since their departure from Egypt.
- They’ve already seen God provide for them in a miraculous way by cleansing the water at Marah, so they could quench their thirst.
- Yet now, they run into another issue.
- Their bellies are empty, and they want food, but they don’t have any because they’ve already used all or most of what they brought with them.