Did I conceive all these people? Did I give them birth? Why do you tell me to carry them in my arms, as a nurse carries an infant,1 to the land you promised on oath2 to their forefathers?313
Where can I get meat for all these people?4 They keep wailing to me, 'Give us meat to eat!'
I cannot carry all these people by myself; the burden is too heavy for me.515
If this is how you are going to treat me, put me to death6 right now7--if I have found favor in your eyes--and do not let me face my own ruin."
The LORD said to Moses: "Bring me seventy of Israel's elders8 who are known to you as leaders and officials among the people.9 Have them come to the Tent of Meeting,10 that they may stand there with you.
I will come down and speak with you11 there, and I will take of the Spirit that is on you and put the Spirit on them.12 They will help you carry the burden of the people so that you will not have to carry it alone.1318
"Tell the people: 'Consecrate yourselves14 in preparation for tomorrow, when you will eat meat. The LORD heard you when you wailed,15 "If only we had meat to eat! We were better off in Egypt!"16 Now the LORD will give you meat,17 and you will eat it.
You will not eat it for just one day, or two days, or five, ten or twenty days,
but for a whole month--until it comes out of your nostrils and you loathe it18--because you have rejected the LORD,19 who is among you, and have wailed before him, saying, "Why did we ever leave Egypt?" ' "2021
But Moses said, "Here I am among six hundred thousand men21 on foot, and you say, 'I will give them meat to eat for a whole month!'
Would they have enough if flocks and herds were slaughtered for them? Would they have enough if all the fish in the sea were caught for them?"22