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Daily Rations

Words of Faith Final

Daily Rations
Words of Faith 11-29-2022
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2022
Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL
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Exodus 16
[31] The people of Israel called the bread manna. It was white like coriander seed and tasted like wafers made with honey. [32] Moses said, "This is what the Lord has commanded: 'Take an omer of manna and keep it for the generations to come, so they can see the bread I gave you to eat in the desert when I brought you out of Egypt.' "
[33] So Moses said to Aaron, "Take a jar and put an omer of manna in it. Then place it before the Lord to be kept for the generations to come."
[34] As the Lord commanded Moses, Aaron put the manna in front of the Testimony, that it might be kept. [35] The Israelites ate manna forty years, until they came to a land that was settled; they ate manna until they reached the border of Canaan.
[36] (An omer is one tenth of an ephah.)

The Lord instructed Moses to keep some of the manna as a remembrance. An "omer" was to be saved. And just how much is an omer? Why, a tenth of an ephah! Hmmm. If that doesn't help, just know that an omer was a daily ration of grain consisting of about two quarts. Apparently, this one omer of manna would not go rotten. It was placed before the "Testimony," the stone tablets of the Ten Commandments.
Manna remained a common occurrence for 40 years. We don't know what exactly happened to this omer of saved manna. In 2 Chronicles 5:10, the "ark" containing the commandments arrived at the Temple. It was placed in the most holy place beneath the overarching cherubim. At that time, the only contents in the ark were the two stone tablets of the Law.
The author of Hebrews wrote that the ark also contained Aaron's rod and a pot of manna (Hebrews 9:4), but this is nowhere attested in the Old Testament. Our text, and Numbers 17:10, say that the rod and manna were placed in front of the tabernacle, not in the ark. These additional objects may have been added to the original contents sometime later than the time of Solomon. Or perhaps they had been lost by Solomon's time. Hopefully, a hungry archeologist, grateful to find a snack, will not stumble upon the manna!
So what is the point here? Remembering is important. We will see this more and more as the Lord shapes the Israelites into a unique nation. There will be many points at which the Word will recap the events of Israel's redemption and rescue. Saving the manna was a reminder of God's provision.
We need to remember as well. When times are "good," we often forget how gracious the Lord has been in providing for us. While in seminary, my wife and I had very little income, but we were always provided for wonderfully. One man in the church we served would bring us frozen filets of chicken, and another would bring fresh vegetables from his garden. What more could we have wanted! We were also very grateful that no one brought a live chicken to the parsonage, as was common in the old days!
We sometimes forget the absolute joy of God's provision. The vegetables and chicken would not keep, but our memories testify of God's gracious provision through the Body of Christ.
Today, we do not have a jar of manna for remembrance, but we have something wonderful. We have the Word of God. The Word is the manna of Life that has come from the Lord's mouth and has been preserved for thousands of years. It is the testimony of the Lord's redemption and provision. This is one excellent reason for consuming our daily ration of God's Word-- an omer-- not as a chore or a legalism, but as a joyful reminder of the Lord's blessing.

Father God, I give thanks for You and to You. Thank You for the magnificent way You have redeemed and cared for Your people. Thank You for the Word of God and the testimony of Your constant care. Help me to never forget. In Jesus' name.

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© Jeffrey D. Hoy 2022
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy - Faith Fellowship Church (EFCA)
2820 Business Center Blvd.
Melbourne, Florida 32940 (321)-259-7200
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The Words of Faith devotion is published five days a week by E-mail, excluding Federal holidays. Please feel free to forward this devotion to a friend who might be blessed by this devotion. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is quoted from the New International Version (R) of The Holy Bible. Copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. Words of Faith (c) 1997, 2022 Jeffrey D. Hoy. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to forward this copyrighted material or use portions of it with appropriate notation of the source for non-profit purposes.