by Daniel Rendelman
One day some children at a Catholic elementary school were lined up in the cafeteria for lunch. At the head of the table was a large tray of bread slices. The head nun posted a sign on the bread tray, “Take only one. God is watching.” Further along the lunch line, at the other end of the table was a large pile of chocolate chip cookies. One child whispered to another, “Take all you want. God is watching the bread.”
Bread, or “lechem” in Hebrew, was and is a part of everyone’s life. Rich and poor people eat it at every meal. It’s no wonder then that when Y’shua taught on prayer, the first thing he prayed for was, “our daily bread.” This plea for bread surely reminded his disciples of the manna that appeared daily for the Israelites during their trek to the Promised Land. The miracle of manna proved that YHWH will never allow the righteous to be forsaken or begging for bread.
In our current Torah portion of “Beshalach,” the Hebrews left Egypt in such a hurry that their bread wasn’t even able to rise. Then they miraculously crossed the Red Sea. Later they grew hungry in the dessert. YHWH spoke to the Israelites and promised to provide for them the food of angels. They called it “manna” or “mannu” meaning “what is it?” in Hebrew. The bread from YHWH confused them because it was different than anything they had eaten or even expected. They could only pick up enough for one day. Anything over their need would spoil before day’s end. Supernaturally, a double portion could be gathered on the sixth day of the week. This was so they wouldn’t have to worry about food preparation on the Sabbath. The book of Exodus / Shemot also recounts how Aharon placed some of the manna in a jar that was to be kept hidden in the Tabernacle as a reminder of this divine provision.
The manna was a foreshadow of a better bread that was yet to come. It is a picture of an important meal that spoils if not enjoyed daily. “Y’shua said unto them, ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of YHWH is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.’ Then said they unto him, Master, evermore give us this bread.’ And Y’shua said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. But I said unto you, that ye also have seen me, and believe not. All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day,” John 6:32-40.
From this passage quoted above, we can understand that the manna which came from heaven was not the true bread of life. While it may have been quite miraculous, this miracle was only to serve as a sign pointing to the true life bread – Messiah Y’shua. And just as people looked upon the manna and asked “what is it,” the masses did not fully understand Messiah or His mission. “Y’shua said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever,” John 6:53-58. After saying these words many people left Messiah. They couldn’t accept this teaching of Him being the “bread of life.” The crowd didn’t grasp how they could “live by” His indwelling presence.
This “eating” of His flesh and “drinking” of His blood is not reserved for a once a year Passover or a once a week Communion. We are to constantly and consistently “dwelleth” in Him and eat from His spiritual bread. Y’shua is the “bread of life.” A prayer for “daily bread” is a petition for a daily revelation of the Messiah Himself. Do you hunger for this food? History’s move of the Spirit is stale and hard. Yesterday’s victorious living doesn’t count for today. We must seek YHWH daily for a surprise from the baker and the bakery. The manna of the exodus was a type and foreshadow of the living manna Y’shua. Tasting the abundant life through an intimate relationship with Y’shua is to actually eat of hidden manna. We are to eat and live by His word. “YHWH fed you with manna, which you knew not, neither did your fathers know; that He might make you know that man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of YHWH,” Deuteronomy 8:3.
It’s easy to misread and think the Israelites picked up their food and then went on their merry way. But, manna wasn’t a microwave ready-made meal. “The manna looked like small coriander seeds, pale yellow in color. The people gathered it from the ground and made flour by grinding it with hand mills or pounding it in mortars,” Numbers 11:7, 8. It had to be gathered, crushed and then cooked. Our manna-like relationship with Y’shua is the same way. We are to receive the word of YHWH and grind it throughout our day by surrendering to the Holy Spirit / Ruach HaKodesh. As fiery trials test us, we eat the bread of life and are sustained. Again, Deuteronomy 8 says that YHWH “humbled you by letting you go hungry and then feeding you with manna, a food previously unknown to you and your ancestors. He did it to teach you that people need more than bread for their life; real life comes by feeding on every word of YHWH.” His word is the manna we need to feast upon.
The Creator’s original intention from the beginning was that we would experience His greatness each minute. Man mad the one hour worship service. (And even put it on the wrong day of the week!) Adam was originally created to fellowship with YHWH. Sin produced a chasm between creation and the Creator until Y’shua came to bridge the gap. Now, through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit you can encounter the Almighty’s bread of life in amazing and personal ways. Abiding in Y’shua is the only true way to eat the bread of life. Most people would shrivel up and die within a week if they didn’t have some type of physical sustenance. Your spiritual life is exactly the same way. Your spirit will grow feeble and weak if you go a few days, or worse a few weeks, apart from Y’shua. This is why we must abide in YHWH and allow His words to abide in us. The old saying is true, “you are what you eat.” When you eat the word, when you speak and think on the Word of YHWH, you will become the word made flesh. The manna of Messiah is supposed to be your daily diet.
Abiding with the bread starts with thinking upon the Scriptures. Psalm 16:8 tells us to “continually set YHWH before you.” Life is different when you are ever mindful of Y’shua’s presence in you and with you. As you walk with YHWH and persist in the Word your mind will be in tune with the Spirit and your thoughts will become His thoughts. YHWH hates evil and you as well will begin to hate evil as we well. To “abide” means to “continue in a particular condition, attitude, or have a relationship.” You can abide or reside in a home and believers are to abide in Y’shua. “If you continue in my word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free,” John 8:31-32. This starts with reading and thinking upon the Scriptures. Do you read and think on the Word daily? One pollster recently found that “at a North American seminary, fifty students planning to go overseas in ministry for the summer were interviewed for their suitability. Only three–six percent–could testify to regular quiet times of reading the Bible and devoting themselves to prayer.” How much time and effort do you spend in memorizing and meditating on His Word? YHWH told us, “This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you will meditate on it, day and night so that you may be careful to do, for then you will make your ways prosperous and then you will have good success,” Joshua 1:8.
The best way to allow the living bread Y’shua to abide in you is by filling your mind, heart, soul and emotions with His perspective. Messiah is the hidden manna! Paul wrote, “Let the word of Messiah dwell in you richly with all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another with songs and hymns and spiritual songs. Singing and making melody in your hearts and whatever you do in word or deed do all in the name of Master Y’shua,” Colossians 3:16, 17. What are you doing to practice His presence? You can bring the divine into any situation by renewing your mind minute by minute. Most people snack on some sort of bread throughout the day… biscuits in the mornings, crackers as a snack, sandwich bread for lunch, rolls for dinner, and cookies as dessert. We are to feast upon the living bread all day too.
Sadly, too many of us take our relationship with Messiah Y’shua for granted. We treat His Word like a meal that doesn’t thrill, because we that we have eaten it over and over again. Like the Israelites who grew tired of the manna, we don’t truly treasure YHWH. How depressing! Just take a moment and count. How many Bibles do you own? How many different versions of the Word do you have at your home? Now, consider how many of these you actually picked up to read this week? Imagine being warned that that every Bible in the nation was to be confiscated in two weeks. You only have 14 days to learn the Word until every Scripture is taken away. Would you treat the Scriptures differently than you do now? Would you take off work and cram in some reading? Or would you not care? Perhaps such an event may come to your country one day. This is a concern that we should keep in mind. Instead of worrying about the various end times conspiracy theories we really should be utilizing our time to grow in our knowledge of the Word so that if and when the Scriptures are outlawed we are prepared. Your Bible preparation is much more important than any survival preparation you could do. Pray for “daily bread” and a hunger for YHWH’s presence. He will prove Himself as you read His word and focus your thoughts upon Him.
Consider Psalms 62:1-2, 5-6, “My soul finds rest in YHWH alone; my salvation comes from Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I shall never be shaken. Find rest, O my soul, in YHWH alone; my hope comes from Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I shall not be shaken.” Do those words describe your spiritual life or does such an idea of listening and waiting make you uneasy? Take time to chew up His word and digest His presence. Begin to tune your ears to the Spirit of YHWH. By doing this you will be eating daily manna. You will actually taste and see that YHWH is good. The Word of YHWH was meant to be “chewed” and digested slowly. We should start our day with the Word and then set it before us at all times. Then, and only then, can we produce spiritual fruit. Y’shua said, “The words I speak are spirit and life.” Whatever YHWH speaks to you will not be about death or destruction. His words are always about spirit and life.
You should prepare yourself for each day by eating some spiritual bread and then waiting on YHWH. Amos 8:11 speaks prophetically of today when it says, “Behold, the days are coming,’ declares YHWH, ‘when I will send a famine on the land. Not a famine for bread or a thirst for water but rather for hearing the Word of YHWH.’” We need this famine for YHWH’s word. Indeed, this is the biggest necessity of our generation. Y’shua said, “blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they shall be filled.” If YHWH has sent a famine to us, then He has given us a desire for His Word. As our spiritual stomach growls we will be satisfied by Him. A famine for His Word will cause us to abide with Him more and more until we eat of the hidden manna. Eat your daily bread by continuing to abide in prayer, study, and listening to the Spirit. As you do this, people may look at you and wonder “manu?” or “what is it” about this person that is different? That’s when you can share your hidden manna, which is every word that comes from the mouth of YHWH.