by Pastor Tim Burt
In my last post, Part Three: Godly Relationships Need “The Manna Factor.” I began to talk to you about the amazing satisfaction, joy, and blessing that comes by bringing God into your relationships. and understanding how significantly The Manna Factor in relationships rewards your life with a richness that could not come any other way!
So today I want to begin to answer the question, what is The Manna Factor?
As you read through the following scriptures, you will find an explosive truth in the parallel between Manna and God’s Word. The Word of God reveals that God provided Manna for the Israelites–a type of food substance to sustain them in the desert. But in God’s eyes, it was to be much more than just their provision of food. It was to be a type of the Word of God. God would reveal to His people that just as they were to depend on God every day for their Manna, they were also to learn to depend on God every day for a Word to direct and sustain their lives. Let’s read through some scriptures and see just that!
We read in EXODUS 16:3-5 & 12, 14-21 (NIV) “Then the LORD said to Moses, “I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions. On the sixth day they are to prepare what they bring in, and that is to be twice as much as they gather on the other days.” “…in the morning you will be filled with bread. Then you will know that I am the LORD your God.’ When the dew was gone, thin flakes like frost on the ground appeared on the desert floor… When the Israelites saw it, they said to each other, “It is manna” (meaning “What is it?”) For they did not know what it was. Moses said to them, “It is the bread the LORD has given you to eat. This is what the LORD has commanded: ‘Each one is to gather as much as he needs. Take an omer for each person you have in your tent.'” The Israelites did as they were told; some gathered much, some little. And when they measured it by the omer, he who gathered much did not have too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little. Each one gathered as much as he needed. Then Moses said to them, “No one is to keep any of it until morning.” However, some of them paid no attention to Moses; they kept part of it until morning, but it was full of maggots and began to smell. So Moses was angry with them. Each morning everyone gathered as much as he needed, and when the sun grew hot, it melted away.
As you see in these verses, God said He would “test them and see whether they would follow my instructions.” God wasn’t testing them to see what they would do. God knows the beginning from the end. He knew that many would disobey Him. He was testing them so they could see their own disobedience to Him. They didn’t trust God and they needed to. God was trying to teach them that they would have to learn to rely on and trust in Him each and every day. It’s man’s tendency to not want to trust God, but to build up some sort of security. The Israelites were no different. They wanted to horde up manna in case God didn’t come through for them. The problem was, manna would turn to maggots when kept more than a day. Also the Israelites were to learn to share what they had when they had too much, and ask others for some if they didn’t have enough. “And when they measured it by the omer, he who gathered much did not have too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little.”
Over time God brought revelation to His people about all that manna represented! We see this in the following verses.
DEUTERONOMY 8:3 “God humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD. ” We see for the first time in this verse that the comparison is being made of Manna to every Word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.
Now, these scriptures are telling us that we are no longer to think in terms of eating manna from off the ground but feeding on the bread of life, who is Jesus.
JOHN 6:31 Our forefathers ate the manna in the desert; as it is written: He gave them bread from heaven to eat.
JOHN 6:58 This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your forefathers ate manna and died, but he who feeds on this bread will live forever.
JOHN 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
JOHN 1:14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.
Jesus and his Word are the same, and His Word is the bread that when fed on, will speak, direct, encourage, and comfort us daily!
Jesus was instructing His disciples when He taught them how to pray. He said in LUKE 11:3 “Give us day by day our daily bread.” He was instructing them and us to live by His Word day by day or in other words, to partake of his Word every day! From reading these scriptures, you can see the correlation between Manna and God’s Word. We no longer go outside looking for manna on the ground. Instead we look in God’s word for that word that speaks to us and feeds us as manna! And we remember, it’s not only for us, but also for the weary—for those around you in your daily life! It’s manna that brings God and life to relationships—His power and an intimacy with God and others that is life-changing! We’ll learn more about manna – God’s daily bread next time. For today, try reading your Bible until it speaks to your heart and then stop and meditate on it! You’ll experience getting manna!
Luke 24:32 (NLT2) “They said to each other, “Didn’t our hearts burn within us as he talked with us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?”
In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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