128-129 : Mana From Heaven
ONWARD from Elim they journeyed,
and all the children of Israel came to the wilderness of Sin,
which is between Elim and Sinai,
on the fifteenth day of the second month after their departure from Egypt.
And the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness,
saying: "It would have been better for us to die by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt,
when we sat down to bowls of meat and ate our fill of bread.
For you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill all of us with hunger."
THE BREAD IS GATHERED
Then God said to Moses: "You shall see. I will rain bread down from heaven for you. The People shall go out and gather a certain amount every day, so that I may test them, to see whether they will obey my laws or not. And it shall be arranged that on the sixth day they shall prepare what they bring in, which shall be twice as much as they gather on other days."
Moses and Aaron said to all the children of Israel:
"When evening comes, you shall know that it is the Lord who brought you out of the land of Egypt. And when morning comes, you shall see the glory of the Lord.
For he has heard your murmurings against him.
Your murmurings are not against us for what are we?-but against the Lord."
And while Aaron was speaking to the congregation of the children of Israel,
they looked out over the wilderness, and there they saw the glory of the Lord appear in a cloud.
Then God spoke to Moses, saying:"I have heard the murmuring of the children of Israel. Speak to them and say. 'In the evening you shall eat meat,and in the morning you shall have your fill of bread, and so shall you know that I am the Lord your God."'
And it came to pass that in the evening quails flew up all over the camp,
and in the morning dew lay all around the people.
And when the dew had disappeared,
they saw lying on the face of the wilderness small round things, as small as hoarfrost, on the ground.
And Moses said to them: "This is the bread which the Lord has given to you to eat.
And this is the commandment of the Lord: You are to gather an omer (about a tenth of a bushel) for each man, depending on how many you have to feed.
Each man is to gather for those in his tents."
So the children of Israel went out and gathered the bread.
Some took more and some took less, but when they measured it with an omer,
those who had gathered a great deal had nothing over,
and those who had gathered little had enough.
Each man had enough to feed his people.
"Do not leave any of it until the morning," Moses said.
Nevertheless they did not listen to Moses, and some of them left it until the next morning,
and it bred worms and smelled foul.
And Moses was angry with them.
So they gathered the bread every morning,
each man according to those he had to feed, and when the sun grew hot, it melted.
When the sixth day came, they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for each man.
And all the rulers of the congregation came to Moses for directions.
And he said to them: "This is what the Lord has said:
'Tomorrow is the day of rest, the Lord's sabbath.
Bake what you want to bake today, and boil what you want to boil,
and what is left you may save, to keep for tomorrow."'
So they laid it away until the next morning, as Moses told them,
and it did not smell bad, nor was there a single worm in it.
And Moses said: "Eat today, for today is the Lord's sabbath.
Today you shall not find bread in the field.
Six days you are to gather it, but on the seventh day, which is the sabbath, there shall be none."
And so it was, for some of the people went out on the seventh day to gather, and they found none.
And the Lord said to Moses: "How long will you refuse to keep my commandments and my laws? Because I have given you the sabbath, I give you the bread for two days on the sixth day.
Let no man go out to seek food on the seventh day."
Now the house of Israel called the name of the food manna.
It was white like coriander seeds, and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey.
And Moses spoke to the people,
saying: "The Lord has commanded that an omer of manna shall be kept for your descendants,
so that they may see the bread which was given to you in the wilderness,
when you were brought from the land of Egypt."
And he commanded Aaron to take a pot and to put an omer of manna into it,
to be kept for this purpose.
And the children of Israel ate manna for forty years,
until they came to the borders of the land of Canaan.
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