God has blessed us tremendously through the blood of His Son. It is indescribable how infinitely valuable His redemption of us is. He has ransomed us out of darkness and into His marvelous light! The Exodus story is a beautiful picture of this redemption. In fact in 1 Corinthians 10:11 Paul says that the things that happened to the children of Israel were to serve as an example for us. In other words the things that God did for the children of Israel in the Old Testament have significant bearing on our lives 4,000 years later. That is amazing!
One of the things we can learn from the children of Israel in Exodus 16 is that we, like them, are monumental forgetters. It is almost comical how quickly we find these people grumbling against God right after He has brought them out of Egypt with a mighty hand. The people grumble because they quickly forget. Moses had told them in chapter 14 that all they had to do was, in my paraphrase, “shut up and see how God saves you!” (14:14) That is exactly what God did. He split the waters of the Red Sea and brought about a mighty deliverance. But as soon as these folks start having hunger pains they are ready to head back to their lives of slavery. Why is this? Why did they act like this? Why do we act like this with our grumblings when the heat gets turned up a bit? How is it that people who have seen the grace of God slide so easily into grumbling and disobedience?
I think there is really one fundamental answer to these questions. People who did what the Israelites did on the heels of the Exodus and people who do what we do today when we grumble against God are people who think that God exists to serve their needs. They are ultimate, not God. They are the center. Their desires are what must be fulfilled and if these desires go unmet they are ready to ditch any one or any “god” until they find one to meet those needs. Let us beware. While God, in a sense, serves us He does not do so ultimately. He serves us in saving us and daily sustaining us in an untold myriad of ways. But this service is not because we are the masters. In fact, the total opposite is true. He serves us this way because He is the Master, and the goal of this service is to cause us to come to the place where we realize He is the center and all the planets of our passions must revolve around Him!