Devotions Based on Hymns from Glory to God and Their Scriptural Allusions
READ: Exodus 16
We continue with the saga of Moses and the Israelites. After they had escaped Pharaoh and his chariots, they journeyed on to a wilderness area. Once there the people began to grumble and complain to Moses and Aaron. They believed that these two emissaries of God had brought them out to this wilderness to starve them to death. Moses corrected their perception and told them that their grumbling and complaints should be directed to the Lord. The Israelites’ short memory had them forgetting their oppression and suffering in Egypt. All they could remember was that they had plenty and more to eat while they were slaves in bondage to Pharaoh.
God heard their complaints and answered even if they had not prayed. God would provide them with manna which they would gather every morning except the Sabbath. On the sixth day they would harvest enough to satisfy their needs for two days. God would also supply them with meat in the form of quail that could be taken in the evening. Per God’s instructions, they were to gather enough food for each day and not to keep any as leftovers for it would spoil and breed worms. They were to learn to depend upon God for “their daily bread.” As we have seen in the past, the Israelites could be a stiff-necked people who often disobeyed God’s commands.
All Who Hunger, Gather Gladly is a hymn set in the “Lord’s Supper” section of Glory to God. As we saw with the previous hymn/devotion which looked back to an Old Testament story, this hymn begins by recounting the Israelites in the wilderness and their hunger being satisfied with God’s provision of manna.
All who hunger, gather gladly, holy manna is our bread. Come from wilderness and wandering, Here, in truth, we will be fed. You that yearn for days of fullness, all around us is our food. Taste and see the grace eternal. Taste and see that God is good.
This Communion hymn extends invitations:
1) Come from restlessness and roaming. Here, in joy, we keep the feast. We that once were lost and scattered in communion’s love have stood.
2) Come from loneliness and longing. Here, in peace, we have been led. Blest are those who from this table live their days in gratitude.
O God, we thank You for providing for the needs of Your people, Israel … for supplying them with manna and water from the rock. We thank You for the bread of life and for the cup of salvation. Call us back when we go astray and lead us into life everlasting, through Jesus Christ our Lord, we pray. Amen.