Then the LORD said to Moses, “I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions….
… That evening quail came and covered the camp, and in the morning there was a layer of dew around the camp. When the dew was gone, thin flakes like frost on the ground appeared on the desert floor. 15 When the Israelites saw it, they said to each other, “What is it?” For they did not know what it was.
Moses said to them, “It is the bread the LORD has given you to eat.
— Genesis 2-3, Exodus 16
This is just an interesting observation that I heard on manna and how the Israelites would have looked at that provision that was given to them while they were in the wilderness. In the Garden of Eden, everything that man needed was there for him to freely use. He could have anything he wanted to eat and did not have to work or sweat to get it. It was just there for the taking. After the fall from the Garden, man had to work and only by the sweat of his brow could he get something to eat. To get bread he had to plant and cultivate, harvest, then grind, knead and bake just to get a meal.
In the Exodus story, God took them to one of the most remote, hottest places on earth and then told them to count on him for something to eat. God said, “I’ll give you something to eat every day. All you have to do is go out and pick it up, no sweat or work needed”. God didn’t leave big bags of wheat and tell them to turn it into bread, he just left it on the ground for them to pick up and eat. So, in a sense, God was giving them the Garden of Eden back. I’ll provide for you, just like I did before you messed it up in the Garden. He was starting over with the people that he so desperately wanted to have fellowship with. He gave them some of the Garden of Eden back while they were in a hot and dry place.
In the same way, God gives us Garden of Eden moments while we are in the middle of our desert experiences. While we are going through our hot and dry wilderness tests, there will be some incredibly wonderful moments along the way where God miraculously provides some manna, water and shade that we need to keep going. “Give us this day, our daily bread,” Jesus said when he taught the Lord’s Prayer. Give us enough of the Garden of Eden to get us through the trials and problems that we have today. Jesus also said that, “He was the bread come down from heaven”, in John 6:30-35. He is that manna; He is our daily nourishment and what we need to make it through each day.