IN THE MORNING YOU WILL SEE THE GLORY OF THE LORD…Lately we Christians have been reduced to just plain-old grumbling about our current circumstances. It is no coincidence that God Almighty has appointed this lesson for us at exactly this time. Like the ancient Israelites, we have been crying out to God for deliverance, and our patience is fading fast. Listen now as the Lord speaks: “… In the morning you will see the glory of the Lord, because he has heard your grumbling against him…” Exodus 16:6
3500 years ago on the 15th day of God's second month, May 9, on our 2020 Gregorian calendar, a million or so Israelites arrived in the Desert of Sin after a traumatic introduction to a plague that took the lives of many Egyptians.
Though the plague itself was meant to deliver them from toiling their lives away under an oppressive government, which was exactly what they had prayed to be delivered from, they quickly decided that all the changes they were faced with were just too much to handle. Even though it was obvious there were under the protection and direction of the Almighty Himself, they were being asked to leave their old life behind and follow Him out into totally uncharted territory. After only a month of following God Himself and witnessing the miracles He was providing for their deliverance, they were reduced to second guessing His leadership, and grumbling, demanding their old lives back.
“The whole Israelite community set out from Elim and came to the Desert of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after they had come out of Egypt. In the desert the whole community grumbled against Moses and Aaron. The Israelites said to them, ‘If only we had died by the Lord’s hand in Egypt! There we sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death.’” Exodus 16:1-3.
After crying out to God for deliverance, they began their exodus from Egypt just hours after the Death Angel miraculously “passed over” their firstborn. The Red Sea literally parted so they could escape the pursuing Egyptians, and then thundered back over, drowning their enemy. Then God led them to the Desert of Shur, where He not only provided water for them, but sweetened it when they complained that it was too bitter. The Almighty then provided an oasis of rest in Elim, right in the middle of a vast desert, complete with 70 palm trees and 12 springs of water.
They certainly had ample time to reflect on how blessed they were to be following the Almighty and be on the receiving end of all those miracles! Instead, after leaving their oasis and arriving in the Desert of Sin, their grumbling only intensified. “Sin”, pronounced “Seen”, is a Hebrew transliteration of the word “thorn”. Indeed, God’s provision was quickly viewed as a thorn in their religious side. Can we hear God’s eternal Word as it crosses the chasm of time to convict us of our own 2020 religious “thorn”?
‘In the evening you will know that it was the Lord who brought you out of Egypt, and in the morning you will see the glory of the Lord, because he has heard your grumbling against him. Who are we, that you should grumble against us?... You are not grumbling against us, but against the Lord.’… While Aaron was speaking to the whole Israelite community, they looked toward the desert and there was the glory of the Lord appearing in the cloud.” Exodus 16:6, 8,10.
How incredible would it be to have a Christian leader say to us, “In the morning you will see the glory of the Lord…” 3500 years later, Exodus 16 is still about the glory of the Lord, and our response.
Exodus 16:4, 22-23 explains that the Lord sent manna and commanded the Sabbath. “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... Each morning everyone gathered as much as they needed, and when the sun grew hot, it melted away. On the sixth day, they gathered twice as much—two omers for each person—and the leaders of the community came and reported this to Moses. He said to them, “This is what the Lord commanded: ‘Tomorrow is to be a day of sabbath rest, a holy sabbath to the Lord.' ”
Yes, it is during the Exodus that the very first Sabbath day of rest is biblically appointed for mankind. From this point forward in our lesson, you will need to follow this timing very closely to receive the full blessing of God’s provision.
A week of time was appointed, and during that week the ONLY day of rest from collecting manna was the 7th day counted forward from the 15th day of the second month, noted in Exodus 16:1. That would put the first Sabbath observed by God’s chosen people as the 22nd day of the 2nd month.
The weeklong Feast of Unleavened Bread, like the Passover, was revealed to the Israelites at the time of the Exodus (Exodus 12-13) The Israelites were delivered from Egypt on the 15th day, but in the first month on God’s calendar as recorded in Exodus 12 and Numbers 33. That 15th day of the first month was also appointed by The Almighty as the first day of Unleavened Bread and designated a Sabbath in Leviticus 23:6-7.
That means that Sabbath days were reckoned back then by the lunar cycle of each month, and not by the count of 7 days. Each month is 29-30 days long, which makes it impossible for the Sabbath to fall on the 15th day in both of two consecutive months, counting by 7's. Each month counted in that same manner every single month means the Sabbath days were appointed on the 8th, 15th, 22, and 29th. The 1st day of the month was called New Moon Day in 1 Samuel 20:5,18, 24, 2 Chronicles 2:4, 31:3, Ezekiel 46:1-3, and considered a consecrated, holy day with worship and sacrifices. Isaiah 66:23 states the New Moon Day and the Sabbath Day will remain appointments in the New Kingdom of Jesus.
Let’s pause here and receive a true blessing from the precision appointments of the Almighty. Remember we learned that the Israelites left Egypt on the 15th day of the first month, the first day of God’s appointed Holy Week called the Feast of Unleavened Bread, beginning and ending on a Sabbath. We also learned that Moses said on the evening of the 15th, a Sabbath, “In the morning you will see the glory of the Lord”. The next morning would have been the 16th day of the 2nd month.
God’s commandment in Leviticus 23:10-14 for the same time period during the 1st month is to bring the first grain harvested, also known as Firstfruits, wave it on the day AFTER the Sabbath so God would accept it as a pleasing sacrifice on behalf of the people’s sins. Also offered was a year old lamb without defect as a sacrifice, together with flour mixed with olive oil, and a cup of wine. “This is to be a lasting ordinance for the generations to come, wherever you live.”
Here we clearly see the sacrificial Lamb of God together with the unleavened bread, which Jesus refers to as “my body” and the cup of wine as "the new covenant in my blood".
On the 16th day of the first month, Jesus, the Unleavened Bread, rose from the dead, from the earth itself, just as the unleavened bread did for the Israelites on the morning of the 16th day of the 2nd month. “I will rain down bread from heaven for you…At twilight you will eat meat. In the morning you will be filled with bread. Then you will know that I am the Lord Your God…In the morning there was a layer of dew around the camp. When the dew was gone, thin flakes like frost appeared on the desert floor.” Exodus 16:4,13-14
Yes, in the midst of all our grumbling and fear of the unknown, we can clearly see Jesus, having come down from heaven, seeded in the ground as man, rising from the earth, able to sustain and nourish us all the way to the Promised Land. In fact, Jesus Himself is saying to us right now, “I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever.” John 6:51
What more do we need?
IN THE MORNING YOU WILL SEE THE GLORY OF THE LORD…