Summary: Change may be difficult, but it is better than manna for another forty years.
No More Manna
The Israelites have now spent the last forty years wandering and wondering because they were afraid. They did not believe that they could live in a world that had giants, danger - so they chose to stay in the desert.
For forty years they ate the “heavenly food” called “manna.” They recognized that this was a provision of the Lord. It was regarded as a miracle of God. It never stopped coming. Talk about God’s provision.
The Hebrew word Manna means what? - What is it? We learn that it came every morning, except the Sabbath (for it would wormy), in the form of a small round seed resembling the hoar frost; that it must be gathered early, before the sun became so hot as to melt it.
We also know that it would not keep over night. It tasted like fresh oil, and like wafers made with honey, equally agreeable to all palates; that the whole nation subsisted upon it for forty years.
Numbers 11:8 says that the people went around gathering it, and then ground it in a handmill or crushed it in a mortar. They cooked it in a pot or made it into cakes. And it tasted like something made with olive oil.
There is a positive side of Manna:
It was all grace
Ask yourself if you were God, would you give these complainers the food they did not deserve.
It taught a valuable Lesson about God’s provision for His people. God taught them everyday that he provides for them.
So in this aspect we learn that we must go to Him every day for a heavenly blessing and we should stop complaining.
There is also a negative side to Manna:
It was not the fruit of the land that God had promised to them. There was a land with milk and honey - that was God’s plan and desires for them, it was their decision not to partake of it.
There are so many of us today that are choosing to eat manna when God wants something better, more filling, and more wonderful, but because we are afraid to do something different in our lives, we stay in one place eating manna. When God has a plan for your life, don’t settle for manna. There may be giants in the land but the greatest accomplishments come through hard work and much effort.
The Jordan river was the visible obstacle, but it was not what was keeping them out of the promise land, it was there fear and lack of trust in God.
There are other obstacles in our live that we do not want to face because we fear the other side.
I have heard it said that people would rather stay in the certainty of misery than move to the misery of uncertainty.
We like the familiar, it is hard to change.
The Promise Land
Josh 5:11-12 The day after the Passover, that very day, they ate some of the produce of the land: unleavened bread and roasted grain. The manna stopped the day after they ate this food from the land; there was no longer any manna for the Israelites, but that year they ate of the produce of Canaan.
A. The Promise Land brought about many changes in their lives.
They were to be in the middle of ungodliness and called to be separated unto him. They had to eat the same food. Their clothing had to change to adapt to the different climate.
They had to go work for their food. They had to plant, nurture, and reap from the land.
They had to capture new land and then they had to protect it.
There are some things you do differently because you live in today’s society.
They had to respond to new enemies and learn how to fight differently.
Things were different from this point on. There are of course some blessings to that and a whole new set of responsibilities.
They were called to be a light in the darkness. God wanted to use the Israelites to win the world and the only way He was going to do this is to put them in the middle of it and demonstrate His power through them
God did not call us into this world today to bury our heads in the sand, but to stand up and demonstrate to the world that you can live holy and righteous lives today. You can be people of integrity, you can move in the power and might of God, you can be victorious.
B. There are three basic responses to change:
1. The negative response.
This frustrates the work of God.
This is the attitude that the people had forty years earlier. It kept them out of the promise land and also kept everyone else out.