Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Exodus 16

This chapter is primarily devoted to the bounty of God and the sanctity of the Sabbath. 

In this version, when the Israelites  grumble, God provides quail. In Numbers 11, by contrast, God becomes angry and brings a plague against the Israelites. 
God also brings the Israelites their daily bread, the manna from Heaven.  He uses this to teach them two simple lessons: (1) whatever one gathers, whether little or great, will be enough and (2) one day of the week, one must cease from any labor, even cooking or traveling (to search for manna). 

The manna can be preserved, but only by bringing it before the "Testimony."  Matthew Henry's commentary equates the Testimony with the ark, but this contradicts other usage in Exodus. Others say that the Testimony is comprised of Aaron's staff, the two tablets of Commandments, and the omer of manna.  This is a puzzling construction, particularly since the tablets have not been introduced. 

One other peculiar point is that the Israelites complain of having no meat.  Yet we are told they emerged from Egypt with flocks. What happened to those flocks? 


Post a Comment

<< Home