What kind of impact do you think it would have on your life if you experienced nonstop miracles? Well, that is exactly what happened to the Israelites when they wandered in the wilderness for 40 years.
The children of Israel were in a situation that demanded miraculous intervention. They were in the wilderness with no food or water, and if God hadn’t intervened, they would have died. But God provided for them. He brought miracle after miracle to supply everything they needed.
Hebrews 3:9 tells us, “Your fathers tempted Me, they proved Me, and they saw My works for forty years.”
The word “tempted” means to test an object to see if its quality is as good as others have said about it. The Israelites had heard about God’s goodness and faithfulness from Moses, but out in the wilderness, their desperate circumstances — just like our circumstances in life — gave them an opportunity to test God, to see if He really would come through for them.
Verse 9 also says, “They proved Me.” The word “proved” describes something that has been found to be true and genuine. Every time the Israelites put God to the test, He proved to them that He was good and would take care of His people. When they needed food, He brought it. When they needed water, He provided it.
The Israelites experienced God’s power firsthand, every single day. They tempted Him and proved Him — and they saw His works for 40 years in the wilderness. In every situation, they found God to be reliable and true.
Many people in our world are facing difficult situations right now where they need to see the goodness of God. And today I want to tell you that God is a good provider. He wants to supernaturally provide for you. And if you will come to Him in your time of need, He will prove to you that He is faithful.
Many Jewish scholars say that when the Israelites came out of Egypt, there were about three million of them. Do you know how much food and water it would take to provide for three million Israelites? Jewish scholars tell us that it took close to 4,500 tons of manna and 70 million liters of water just to meet their basic needs every day. Can you believe that? Every day!
No other generation, before or after, has experienced such a continual flow of God’s power. That 4,500 tons of manna appeared outside their tents each morning (see Psalm 78:25). Quail rained down on them, dropping right at their feet (see Psalm 78:27,28). And 70 million liters of water flowed every day from the rock that God told Moses to strike (see Exodus 17:5,6).
Just think — the children who grew up during this time were so accustomed to this divine provision that they considered it normal for 4,500 tons of manna to show up every morning. That is supernatural!
Without food and water, the Israelites would have died. And remember, this was the wilderness — there was no natural source for these things. God faithfully provided what they needed every single day.
You might think that after living this way for so long, the Israelites would have found it easy to follow the Lord. But in spite of all that God did for them, the Israelites became hard-hearted.
That is why the writer of Hebrews said, “Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness” (Hebrews 3:8).
The word “hardened” is a medical term in history which described an arm that had become stiff. It is the same word used in the Old and New Testaments to describe people that are stiff-necked or someone that is calloused.
The children of Israel ate the manna, and after a while, they didn’t even think about where it came from anymore. They ate the quail without remembering how supernatural it was. They drank the water, fed their animals, and forgot that it was a miracle. The Israelites had what they needed, but, eventually, they became calloused and unappreciative of all that God had done for them.
Think about how much God has blessed you.
- He’s changed you.
- He’s healed you.
- He’s delivered you.
- He’s rescued you.
- He’s given you a job.
- He’s answered your prayers.
- He’s provided for you financially.
- He’s showered you with blessing after blessing.
If God has been faithful to you, then why are you tempted to worry?
Rather than fall into the trap of ungratefulness like the children of Israel did, trust that God is exactly who He says He is. God is good. And He will be faithful to you.
Remembering His Faithfulness
It’s so important that we remember everything God has done for us because what God has done for us in the past is the foundation of what He’s going to do for us in the future.
Your flesh wants to count all the negative things going on in your life. Your flesh wants to say, “Oh, it’s so bad right now. It’s never been this hard before. You’ve never had it worse than you have it right now.”
But if you’ll stop and think about your life, you’ll probably realize that things have been a whole lot worse than they are now. And even then, you made it through. God has been faithful to you!
Friend, I want to tell you that Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever (see Hebrews 13:8).
We’re the ones that change. We’re the ones that can become hard-hearted. But the God who gave 4,500 tons of manna and 70 million liters of water to the Israelites every day is the same God we serve today!
During difficult times when you are tempted to give in to fear and worry, remember that God is a good provider. You can trust Him because He is faithful.
— A Message from Rick Renner