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Exodus - Chapter 16

Exodus Chapters

1 Setting out from Elim, the whole community of Israelites entered the desert of Sin, lying between Elim and Sinai -- on the fifteenth day of the second month after they had left Egypt.

2 And the whole community of Israelites began complaining about Moses and Aaron in the desert

3 and said to them, 'Why did we not die at Yahweh's hand in Egypt, where we used to sit round the flesh pots and could eat to our heart's content! As it is, you have led us into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death!'

4 Yahweh then said to Moses, 'Look, I shall rain down bread for you from the heavens. Each day the people must go out and collect their ration for the day; I propose to test them in this way to see whether they will follow my law or not.

5 On the sixth day, however, when they prepare what they have brought in, this must be twice as much as they collect on ordinary days.'

6 Moses and Aaron then said to the whole community of Israelites, 'This evening you will know that it was Yahweh who brought you out of Egypt,

7 and tomorrow morning you will see the glory of Yahweh, for Yahweh has heard your complaints about him. What are we, that your complaint should be against us?'

8 Moses then said, 'This evening Yahweh will give you meat to eat, and tomorrow morning bread to your heart's content, for Yahweh has heard your complaints about him. What do we count for? Your complaints are not against us, but against Yahweh.'

9 Moses then said to Aaron, 'Say to the whole community of Israelites, "Approach Yahweh's presence, for he has heard your complaints." '

10 As Aaron was speaking to the whole community of Israelites, they turned towards the desert, and there the glory of Yahweh appeared in the cloud.

11 Yahweh then spoke to Moses and said,

12 'I have heard the Israelites' complaints. Speak to them as follows, "At twilight you will eat meat, and in the morning you will have bread to your heart's content, and then you will know that I am Yahweh your God." '

13 That evening, quails flew in and covered the camp, and next morning there was a layer of dew all round the camp.

14 When the layer of dew lifted, there on the surface of the desert was something fine and granular, as fine as hoarfrost on the ground.

15 As soon as the Israelites saw this, they said to one another, 'What is that ?' not knowing what it was. 'That', Moses told them, 'is the food which Yahweh has given you to eat.

16 These are Yahweh's orders: Each of you must collect as much as he needs to eat -- a homer per head for each person in his tent.'

17 The Israelites did this. They collected it, some more, some less.

18 When they measured out what they had collected by the homer, no one who had collected more had too much, no one who had collected less had too little. Each had collected as much as he needed to eat.

19 Moses then said, 'No one may keep any of it for tomorrow.'

20 But some of them took no notice of Moses and kept part of it for the following day, and it bred maggots and smelt foul; and Moses was angry with them.

21 Morning by morning they collected it, each man as much as he needed to eat, and once the sun grew hot, it melted away.

22 Now, on the sixth day they collected twice the amount of food: two homer per person, and all the leaders of the community came and told Moses this.

23 Moses replied, 'This is what Yahweh said, "Tomorrow is a day of complete rest, a Sabbath sacred to Yahweh. Bake what you want to bake, boil what you want to boil; put aside what is left over, to be kept for tomorrow."

24 So, as Moses ordered, they put it aside for the following day, and its smell was not foul nor were there maggots in it.

25 'Eat it today,' Moses said, 'for today is a Sabbath for Yahweh; you will find none in the fields today.

26 For six days you will collect it, but on the seventh day, the Sabbath, there will be none.'

27 On the seventh day some of the people went out to collect it, but they found none.

28 Yahweh then said to Moses, 'How much longer will you refuse to obey my commandments and laws?

29 Look, Yahweh has given you the Sabbath; this is why he gives you two days' food on the sixth day; each of you must stay in his place; on the seventh day no one may leave his home.'

30 So on the seventh day the people rested.

31 The House of Israel named it 'manna'. It was like coriander seed; it was white and its taste was like that of wafers made with honey.

32 Moses then said, 'These are Yahweh's orders: Fill a homer with it and preserve it for your descendants, so that they can see the bread on which I fed you in the desert when I brought you out of Egypt.'

33 Moses then said to Aaron, 'Take a jar and in it put a full homer of manna and store it in Yahweh's presence, to be kept for your descendants.'

34 Accordingly, Aaron stored it in front of the Testimony, to be preserved, as Yahweh had ordered Moses.

35 The Israelites ate manna for forty years, up to the time they reached inhabited country: they ate manna up to the time they reached the frontiers of Canaan.

36 A homer is one-tenth of an ephah.


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