Sermon on Manna in the Wilderness and Jesus as the Bread of Life
Different kinds of bread:
Pita, communion wafer – gluten and non-gluten, loaf bread sliced, unsliced bread.
Which one is the REAL one for Holy communion? Which one is Jesus’ body?
Never spent much time in the desert. Can be beautiful. Can be desolate. Very hot in the daytime. Very cold at nighttime.
Have experienced desert times in my life: emotionally, financially, spiritually.
We have experienced these in our lives; perhaps like the children of Israel – wish we were back at that OTHER place, at least we had food to eat.
Children even willing to give up the freedom they had, return to slavery, in order to eat.
We are like that – willing to give up some of the freedoms we have in our lives, just to get something to eat.
They complained to Moses, who cried out to God. Manna was provided. (which literally means “What is this?”)
It was given daily. Don’t hoard it, for it will go sour/bad.
Exodus states that raw manna tasted like wafers that had been made with honey. The Israelites were instructed to eat only the manna they had gathered for each day. Stored manna “bred worms and stank”: the exception being that stored the day before the Sabbath (Preparation Day), when twice the amount of manna was gathered. This manna did not spoil overnight, because, Exodus 16:23-24 states, “This is what the Lord commanded: ‘Tomorrow is to be a day of rest, a holy Sabbath to the Lord. So bake what you want to bake and boil what you want to boil. Save whatever is left and keep it until morning.’ So they saved it until morning, as Moses said was commanded, and it did not stink or get maggots in it.”
In the emotional and spiritual deserts of our lives, we can cry out, and God will feed us.
In the desert, the children were dependent upon God DAILY.
God provides. Desert times of our lives, we are totally dependent upon God.
We don’t always like that. WE CAN MAKE IT ON OUR OWN! WE DON’T NEED ANYONE!
But in reality, for true feeding, for true sustenance, we need this amazing, spiritually nourishing food from God daily.
For the Christians, manna stands for how the Lord speaks to their hearts with vital words (scriptures or scriptural words) that really minister to their particular needs or circumstances. These words sustain them on their journey with Him.
Any time God speaks to our hearts about some promise, or command, or word of encouragement, or whatever; this word is like manna to us. It sustains us on our journey with God. This implies more than just reading the Bible. It implies that the Holy Spirit uses the Bible to speak to our hearts.
Difference between manna – given daily and tasted like honey bread, and unleavened bread:
The unleavened bread was eaten at specified times to remember that one point in time that God delivered His people out of Egypt. Of course, the unleavened bread for the Christians is eaten to remember how Jesus’ body was broken on the cross to deliver us from our sinful selves; i.e.. we were crucified with Christ by grace.
Jesus tells those who are listening to him: “I AM THE BREAD OF LIFE. WHOEVER COMES TO ME WILL NEVER BE HUNGRY, AND WHOEVER BELIEVES IN ME WILL NEVER BE THIRSTY.”
Come to Jesus. Be fed by him. Don’t delay. Don’t’ stay in your starving condition. He will provide what you need. Come to him, who is the bread of life – and be filled completely!