John 6:58 - This is the bread which came down from heaven—not as your fathers ate the manna, and are dead. He who eats this bread will live forever.
Praise God. He provides. He has always provided, providing people respond!
In Exodus Israel had been freed from their captivity in Egypt. They knew God had delivered them. They saw the miracles. So off they went, saved from the enemy at the Red Sea. They praised God and worshiped Him for all He had done and they began their journey to the Promised Land. All went well for awhile, like three days! How soon we forget. Like any of us at times, the grumbling and complaining began. It sounded like this:
“What shall we drink?”
“Oh, that we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the pots of meat and when we ate bread to the full! For you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.”
“Give us water, that we may drink..."
“Why is it you have brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our livestock with thirst?”
"...but now our whole being is dried up; there is nothing at all except this manna before our eyes!”
(Exodus 15:24, Exodus 16:3, Exodus 17:2-3, Numbers 11:6)
There is nothing at all except this manna?!? If only they knew. If only people today knew. What more could one want? They had what God knew would sustain them. It doesn't really say but I'm certain God knew they were about to complain. He knew they needed water and He would have supplied, but they grumbled before He could. How often do we wonder just how long it will be before God will provide for us? Doesn't He know our needs already? Isn't His timing perfect?
There's more than just physical food (and water) provision here in this account. We are being shown a spiritual provision analogy also. Jesus is our Bread from heaven. He is the Manna from heaven that Israel ate in the desert. What more could we want?
When we get to a place in our lives when we are not satisfied with what we have, and it grieves us, or we find ourselves in need, Jesus is there to supply us with Himself...all that we need. For He satisfies the longing soul, and fills the hungry soul with goodness. (Psalms 107:9) He is the Bread come down from Heaven.
Israel thought as men think. They wanted more. They wanted what they physically knew. They'd just gone through a life changing situation coming out of captivity, but they still wanted what was familiar to them. And so do we. We don't always want the faith in something unseen; we want what we are familiar with. Every day God is working in someone's life hoping they will recognize Him and seek Him for the bread that will not leave them hungry.
Although they ate this bread for forty years, they didn't always acknowledge the hand feeding them. Jesus' hand is outstretched today wanting to be the Bread in people's lives. He might be offering you that Bread. He offered Himself 2000 years ago for you. He might get you to a place where that Bread, the Manna from heaven, will be just what keeps you alive. So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Lord. (Deuteronomy 8:3) He can do this!
He gave them bread from heaven to eat in the desert. What's your desert? Are you in one? He says, I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.” (John 6:51) Do you want eternal life? Humble yourself before He humbles you. Don't be counted as the stubborn and rebellious people of Israel who wandered 40 years in their disobedience...then died before entering their promised land. He wants you today. Don't miss what He has for you.
Psalm 78:24-25 - He...commanded the clouds above, and opened the doors of heaven, ...rained down manna on them to eat, and gave them of the bread of heaven. Men ate angels’ food; He sent them food to the full.