Exodus 16

1 And they toke their yourney fro Elim, and all the hole copanye of the childern of Israell came to the wildernesse of Sin, which lieth betwene Elim ad Sinai: the .xv. daye of the seconde moneth after that they were come out of the lande of Egipte.
2 And the hole multitude of the childern of Israel murmured agaynst Moses ad Aaro in the wildernesse
3 and sayde vnto them: wold to God we had dyed by the hande of the Lorde in the lande of Egipte, when we satt by the flessh pottes and ate bred oure belies full for ye haue broughte vs out in to this wildernesse to kyll this hole multitude for honger.
4 Than sayde the Lorde vnto Moses: beholde, I will rayne bred fro heaue doune to you, ad let the people goo out ad gather daye by daye, that I maye proue the whether they wil walke in my lawe or no.
5 The .vj. daye let the prepare that which they will brige in, ad let it be twise as moch as they gather in dayly.
6 And Moses ad Aaro sayde vnto all the childere of Israel: at euen he shall knowe that it is the Lorde, which broughte you out of the lade of Egipte
7 ad in the mornynge ye shall se the glorie of the Lorde: because he hath herde youre grudgynges agaynst the Lorde: for what are we that ye shuld murmure against vs.
8 And moreouer spake Moses. At eue the Lorde will geue you flesh to eate ad in the mornynge bred ynough, because the Lord hath herde youre murmur whiche ye murmur agaynst hi: for what ar we? youre murmurynge is not agaynst vs, but agaynst the Lorde.
9 And Moses spake vnto Aaro: Say vnto all the copanye of the childere of Israel, come forth before the Lorde, for he hath herde youre grudgiges.
10 And as Aaro spake vnto the hole multitude of the childere of Israel, they loked toward the wilderuesse: ad beholde, the glorie of the Lord apeared i a clowde.
11 And the Lorde spake vnto Moses sayng:
12 I haue herde the murmurig of the childre of Israel, tell the therfore ad saye that at eue they shall eate flesh, ad i the morninge they shall be filled with bred, ad ye shall knowe that I am the Lorde youre god
13 And at eue the quayles came ad couered the groude where they laye. And in the mornynge the dewe laye rounde aboute the hoste.
14 And whe the dewe was falle: behold, it laye apo the grounde in the wildernesse, small ad roude ad thyn as the hore frost on the groude.
15 when the childre of Israel sawe it, they sayde one to another: what is this? for they wist not what it was And Moses sayde: this is the breed which the Lorde hath geue you to eate.
16 This is the thinge which the Lord hath comauded, that ye gather euery ma ynough for hi to eate: a gomer full for a ma acordige to the nobre off you, ad gather euery ma for the which are in his tente.
17 And the childern of Israel dyd euen so, ad gathered some more some lesse,
18 and dyd mete it with a gomer. And vnto him that had gathered moch remayned nothinge ouer, ad vnto hi that had gathered litle was there no lacke: but euery ma had gathered sufficiet for his eatinge.
19 And Moses sayde vnto them. Se that no ma let oughte remayne of it tyll the morninge.
20 Notwithstondinge they harkened not vnto Moses: but some of the lefte of it vntyll the mornynge, and it waxte full of wormes ad stake and Moses was angrie wyth them.
21 And they gathered it all morniges: euery ma as moch as suffised for his eatinge, for as sone as the hete of the sonne came it moulte.
22 And the .vj. daye they gathered twise so moch bred: ij. gomers for one ma, ad the ruelars of the multitude came ad tolde Moses.
23 And he sayde unto the, this is that which the Lorde hath sayde tomorow is the Sabbath of the holie rest of the Lord: bake that which ye will bake ad seth that ye will seth, ad that which remayneth lay vp for you ad kepe it till the mornynge.
24 And they layde it vp till the mornynge as Moses bad ad it stake not nether was there any wormes theri
25 And Moses sayde: that eate this daye: for to daye it is the Lordes Sabbath: to daye ye shal finde none in the feld,
26 Sixte dayes ye shall gather it, for the, vij. is the sabbath: there shal be none there in.
27 Notwithstondinge there went out of the people in the seuenth daye for to gather: but they founde none.
28 The the Lorde seyde vnto Moses: how longe shall it be, yer ye will kepe my comaundmetes ad lawes?
29 Se because the Lorde hath geue you a Sabbath, therfor he geueth you the .vj. daye bred for .ij. dayes. Byde therfore euery ma athome, ad let no ma go out of his place the seuenth daye.
30 And the people rested the seuenth daye.
31 And the housse of Israel called it Man, And it was lyke vnto Coriander seed and white, and the taste of it was lyke vnto wafers made with honye.
32 And Moses sayde: this is that which the Lorde commaundeth: fyll a Gomor of it, that it maye be kepte for youre childern after you: that they maye se the bred wherewith he fedd you in wyldernesse, when he had broughte you out of the lande of Egipte.
33 And Moses spake vnto Aaron: take a cruse and put a Gomer full of man therin, and laye it vppe before the Lorde to be kepte for youre childern after you
34 as the Lorde commaunded Moses. And Aaron layed it vppe before the testimonye there to be kepte.
35 And the childern of Israel ate man .xl. yere vntill they came vnto a lande inhahited. And so they ate Man, euen vntill they came vnto the bordres of the lade of Canaan,
36 And a Gomer is the tenth parte of an Epha.

Exodus 16 Commentary

Chapter 16

The Israelites come to the wilderness of Sin. They murmur for food, God promises bread from heaven. (1-12) God sends quails and manna. (13-21) Particulars respecting the manna. (22-31) An omer of manna to be preserved. (32-36)

Verses 1-12 The provisions of Israel, brought from Egypt, were spent by the middle of the second month, and they murmured. It is no new thing for the greatest kindness to be basely represented as the greatest injuries. They so far undervalue their deliverance, that they wished they had died in Egypt; and by the hand of the Lord, that is, by the plagues which cut off the Egyptians. We cannot suppose they had plenty in Egypt, nor could they fear dying for want in the wilderness, while they had flocks and herds: none talk more absurdly than murmurers. When we begin to fret, we ought to consider, that God hears all our murmurings. God promises a speedy and constant supply. He tried whether they would trust him, and rest satisfied with the bread of the day in its day. Thus he tried if they would serve him, and it appeared how ungrateful they were. When God plagued the Egyptians, it was to make them know he was their Lord; when he provided for the Israelites, it was to make them know he was their God.

Verses 13-21 At evening the quails came up, and the people caught with ease as many as they needed. The manna came down in dew. They called it "Manna, Manhu," which means, "What is this?" "It is a portion; it is that which our God has allotted us, and we will take it, and be thankful." It was pleasant food; it was wholesome food. The manna was rained from heaven; it appeared, when the dew was gone, as a small round thing, as small as the hoar frost, like coriander seed, in colour like pearls. The manna fell only six days in the week, and in double quantity on the sixth day; it bred worms and became offensive if kept more than one day, excepting on the sabbath. The people had never seen it before. It could be ground in a mill, or beaten in a mortar, and was then made into cakes and baked. It continued the forty years the Israelites were in the wilderness, wherever they went, and ceased when they arrived in Canaan. All this shows how different it was from any thing found before, or found now. They were to gather the manna every morning. We are hereby taught, 1. To be prudent and diligent in providing food for ourselves and our households; with quietness working, and eating our own bread, not the bread of idleness or deceit. God's bounty leaves room for man's duty; it did so even when manna was rained; they must not eat till they have gathered. 2. To be content with enough. Those that have most, have for themselves but food and raiment; those that have least, generally have these; so that he who gathers much has nothing over, and he who gathers little has no lack. There is not such a disproportion between one and another in the enjoyment of the things of this life, as in the mere possession of them. 3. To depend upon Providence: let them sleep quietly, though they have no bread in their tents, nor in all their camp, trusting that God, with the following day, would bring them in their daily bread. It was surer and safer in God's storehouse than their own, and would come thence sweeter and fresher. See here the folly of hoarding. The manna laid up by some, who thought themselves wiser, and better managers, than their neighbours, and who would provide lest it should fail next day, bred worms, and became good for nothing. That will prove to be most wasted, which is covetously and distrustfully spared. Such riches are corrupted, ( james 5:2 james 5:3 ) . The same wisdom, power, and goodness that brought food daily from above for the Israelites in the wilderness, brings food yearly out of the earth in the constant course of nature, and gives us all things richly to enjoy.

Verses 22-31 Here is mention of a seventh-day sabbath. It was known, not only before the giving of the law upon mount Sinai, but before the bringing of Israel out of Egypt, even from the beginning, ( Genesis 2:3 ) . The setting apart one day in seven for holy work, and, in order to that, for holy rest, was ever since God created man upon the earth, and is the most ancient of the Divine laws. Appointing them to rest on the seventh day, he took care that they should be no losers by it; and none ever will be losers by serving God. On that day they were to fetch in enough for two days, and to make it ready. This directs us to contrive family affairs, so that they may hinder us as little as possible in the work of the sabbath. Works of necessity are to be done on that day; but it is desirable to have as little as may be to do, that we may apply ourselves the more closely to prepare for the life that is to come. When they kept manna against a command, it stank; when they kept it by a command, it was sweet and good; every thing is sanctified by the word of God and prayer. On the seventh day God did not send the manna, therefore they must not expect it, nor go out to gather. This showed that it was produced by miracle.

Verses 32-36 God having provided manna to be his people's food in the wilderness, the remembrance of it was to be preserved. Eaten bread must not be forgotten. God's miracles and mercies are to be had in remembrance. The word of God is the manna by which our souls are nourished, ( Matthew 4:4 ) . The comforts of the Spirit are hidden manna, ( Revelation 2:17 ) . These come from heaven, as the manna did, and are the support and comfort of the Divine life in the soul, while we are in the wilderness of this world. Christ in the word is to be applied to the soul, and the means of grace are to be used. We must every one of us gather for ourselves, and gather in the morning of our days, the morning of our opportunities; which if we let slip, it may be too late to gather. The manna must not be hoarded up, but eaten; those who have received Christ, must by faith live upon him, and not receive his grace in vain. There was manna enough for all, enough for each, and none had too much; so in Christ there is enough, but not more than we need. But those who ate manna, hungered again, died at last, and with many of them God was not well pleased; whereas they that feed on Christ by faith, shall never hunger, and shall die no more, and with them God will be for ever well pleased. Let us seek earnestly for the grace of the Holy Spirit, to turn all our knowledge of the doctrine of Christ crucified, into the spiritual nourishment of our souls by faith and love.

Chapter Summary

INTRODUCTION TO EXODUS 16

This chapter begins with an account of the journeying of the children of Israel from Elim to the wilderness of Sin, where they murmured for want of bread, Ex 16:1-3, when the Lord told Moses that he would rain bread from heaven for them, which Moses informed them of; and withal, that the Lord took notice of their murmurings, Ex 16:4-12 which promise the Lord fulfilled; and a description of the bread, and the name of it, are given, Ex 16:13-15, and some instructions are delivered out concerning the quantity of it to be gathered, Ex 16:16-18, the time of gathering and keeping it, Ex 16:19-21, the gathering a double quantity on the sixth day for that and the seventh day, with the reason of it, Ex 16:22-30 and a further description of it, Ex 16:31, and an order to preserve an omer of it in a pot, to be kept for generations to come, that it might be seen by them, Ex 16:32-34, and the chapter is concluded with observing, that this bread was ate by the Israelites forty years, even till they came to the borders of the land of Canaan, and the quantity they ate every day is observed what it was, Ex 16:35,36.

Exodus 16 Commentaries