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Yahweh Provides Food in the Desert

16 And they set out from Elim, and all the community of the Israelites[a] came to the desert of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai,[b] in the fifteenth day of the second month of their going out from the land of Egypt. And all the community of the Israelites[c] grumbled against Moses and against Aaron in the desert. And the Israelites[d] said to them, “If only we had died[e] by the hand of Yahweh in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the pots[f] of meat, when we ate bread until we were full,[g] because you have brought us out to this desert to kill all of this assembly with hunger.” And Yahweh said to Moses, “Look, I am going to rain down for you bread from the heavens, and the people will go out and gather enough for the day on its day; in that way I will test them: Will they go according to my law or not? And then on the sixth day, they will prepare what they bring, and it will be twice over what they will gather every other day.”

And Moses and Aaron said to all the Israelites,[h]In the evening, you will know that Yahweh has brought you out from the land of Egypt, and in the morning, you will see the glory of Yahweh, for he hears[i] your grumblings against Yahweh, and what are we that you grumble against us?” And Moses said, “When in the evening Yahweh gives you meat to eat and bread in the morning to fill up on,[j] for he hears[k] your grumblings that you grumble against him—and what are we? Your grumblings are not against us but against Yahweh.” And Moses said to Aaron, “Say to all the community of the Israelites,[l] ‘Come near before Yahweh because he has heard your grumblings.’”

10 And at the moment of Aaron’s speaking to all the community of the Israelites,[m] they turned to the desert, and just then[n] the glory of Yahweh appeared in the cloud. 11 And Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying, 12 “I have heard the grumblings of the Israelites.[o] Speak to them, saying, ‘At twilight[p] you will eat meat, and in the morning you will be full with bread, and you will know that I am Yahweh your God.’”

13 And so it was, in the evening, the quail came up and covered the camp, and in the morning, a layer of dew was all around the camp. 14 And the layer of dew came up, and there[q] on the face of the desert was a fine granular substance, fine like frost on the ground. 15 And the Israelites[r] saw, and they said to each other,[s] “What is this?” because they did not know what it was. And Moses said to them, “That is the bread that Yahweh has given to you as food. 16 This is the word that Yahweh commanded, ‘Gather from it, each according to what he can eat,[t] an omer per person[u] according to the number of you.[v] You each shall take enough for whoever is in his tent.’”

17 And the Israelites[w] did so, and they gathered, some more and some less. 18 And when they measured with the omer, the one gathering more had no surplus, and the one gathering less had no lack; they gathered each according to what he could eat.[x] 19 And Moses said to them, “Let no one leave any of it until morning.” 20 But they did not listen to Moses. Some people[y] left some of it until morning, and it bred worms and stank. And Moses was angry with them. 21 And they gathered it morning by morning, each according to what he could eat,[z] and it melted when the sun was hot.[aa]

22 And when it was the sixth day, they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for one person, and all the leaders of the community came and told Moses. 23 And he said to them, “This is what Yahweh has said. Tomorrow is a rest period, a holy Sabbath for Yahweh. Bake what you want to bake, and boil what you want to boil. Put aside all the surplus for yourselves for safekeeping until the morning.” 24 And they put it aside until the morning, as Moses had commanded, and it did not make a stench, and not a maggot was in it. 25 And Moses said, “Eat it today, because today is a Sabbath for Yahweh. Today you will not find it in the field. 26 Six days you will gather it, but on the seventh day, the Sabbath, it will not be present on it.”

27 And on the seventh day some of the people went out to gather, and they did not find any. 28 And Yahweh said to Moses, “How long do you[ab] refuse to keep my commands and my laws? 29 See, because Yahweh has given to you the Sabbath, therefore he is giving to you on the sixth day bread for two days. Stay, each in his location;[ac] let no one go from his place on the seventh day.” 30 And the people rested on the seventh day.

31 And the house of Israel called its name “manna.” And it was like coriander seed, white, and its taste was like a wafer with honey. 32 And Moses said, “This is the word that Yahweh has commanded. ‘A full omer of it is for safekeeping for your generations so that they will see the bread that I fed you in the desert when I brought you from the land of Egypt.’” 33 And Moses said to Aaron, “Take one jar and put there a full omer of manna. Leave it before Yahweh for safekeeping for your generations.” 34 As Yahweh had commanded Moses, so Aaron left it before the testimony for safekeeping. 35 And the Israelites[ad] ate the manna forty years, until their coming to an inhabited land; they ate the manna until their coming to the border of the land of Canaan. 36 (And an omer is a tenth of an ephah.)


  1. Exodus 16:1 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  2. Exodus 16:1 Literally “and between Sinai”
  3. Exodus 16:2 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  4. Exodus 16:3 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  5. Exodus 16:3 Literally “who will give our dying”
  6. Exodus 16:3 Hebrew “pot”
  7. Exodus 16:3 Literally “to contentment” or “to satisfaction”
  8. Exodus 16:6 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  9. Exodus 16:7 Literally “at/in his hearing”
  10. Exodus 16:8 Literally “to be satisfied”
  11. Exodus 16:8 Literally “at/in his hearing”
  12. Exodus 16:9 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  13. Exodus 16:10 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  14. Exodus 16:10 Literally “look” or “behold”
  15. Exodus 16:12 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  16. Exodus 16:12 Literally “between the evenings”
  17. Exodus 16:14 Literally “look” or “behold”
  18. Exodus 16:15 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  19. Exodus 16:15 Literally “a man to his brother”
  20. Exodus 16:16 Literally “a man for the mouth of his eating”
  21. Exodus 16:16 Literally “skull” or “head”
  22. Exodus 16:16 Or “the number of your selves”
  23. Exodus 16:17 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  24. Exodus 16:18 Literally “a man for the mouth of his eating”
  25. Exodus 16:20 Literally “men”
  26. Exodus 16:21 Literally “a man according to the mouth of his eating”
  27. Exodus 16:21 Literally “and the sun was hot, and he/it melted”
  28. Exodus 16:28 Plural
  29. Exodus 16:29 Literally “a man under him/it”
  30. Exodus 16:35 Literally “sons/children of Israel”