You would think the Hebrew people would remember their suffering in Egypt. You would think they would remember slavery and murdered baby boys. You would think they would remember the plagues and the crossing of the Red Sea. You would think they would remember watching Egyptian soldiers pursue them and then being engulfed in the same waters that parted to allow them to cross.
You would think that Moses would remember the burning bush, staffs turned to snakes, messages from God.
But human beings are prone to amnesia.
And so the Hebrew people, tired of wandering, begin to complain.
We only eat manna.
We want meat.
Life was better in Egypt.
We had all the meat we wanted there.
And Moses? He can't stand the whining.
And so he starts some whining of his own:
What did I ever do to you that you put me in charge of these people?
There's no way I can give them what they want.
If this is what it's going to be like . . . just kill me now. (11:15)
Kill me now.
Send me back to Egypt.
In the midst of the struggle, in the midst of the hardship, they totally forget God's power. They forget how he delivered them in the past.
God tells Moses, get ready. I'm going to give you meat. So much you're going to wish you had never asked. So much it's going to come out your nose.
And Moses, man of faith who has seen God do incredible things in the past, says, "I'm sorry, God. That's just not possible."
I love God's response: "Is my arm too short? You think I can't do what I say I can do? Just watch."
There is a difference between Moses and the people, though.
Lacking faith for deliverance, the people cluster together and gossip.
Lacking faith for deliverance, Moses turns to God.
I too am prone to amnesia.
I will forget God's faithfulness.
I will doubt his power.
Instead of whining and gossiping with others, instead of longing for an idyllic past in captivity, I want to turn to God with my complaints.
He can handle my whining.
He can handle my doubts.