We aren’t even on the same level as God.
Any Christian learns this- even Moses.
Israel was complaining again on its way to Canaan (before it rebelled and wandered for 40 years), this time about food, again. As a Baptist, I can completely understand why they were concerned about being properly fed. But when God is directly providing, why were they worried? (And why are we?) They were sick of manna and wanted flesh to eat. They complained to Moses, who then complained to God about their complaining.
God basically told him, “Fine, if you really want flesh, I’ll give it to you not for a few days or a week, but a month, until it’s COMING OUT YOUR NOSE and you loathe it.” (Read Numbers 11.) It’s almost comical, except that those who complained, saying they were better off before God’s redemption from Egypt were later killed. But after this is where it gets good.
“And Moses said, The people, among whom I am, are six hundred thousand footmen; and thou hast said, I will give them flesh, that they may eat a whole month. Shall the flocks and the herds be slain for them, to suffice them? or shall all the fish of the sea be gathered together for them, to suffice them?” (Num. 11:21-22)
According to the census at the beginning of the book, there were a little over 600,000 men of fighting age (20+), plus women and children. Moses is saying, “We’re looking at millions of people here, God. How can you feed us meat? Kill our flocks? Get all the fish from the sea?”
God’s response is classic and a lesson to all of us.
“And the LORD said unto Moses, Is the LORD'S hand waxed short? thou shalt see now whether my word shall come to pass unto thee or not.” (Num. 11:23)
We like to try and rationalize God, to bring Him on our level to understand Him better. But what Moses failed to remember is that they were already getting a mysterious dough from the sky every morning. They had already been led out of Egypt with ten plagues and the drowning of Pharaoh’s army. They were being led by a cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. What could God not do? He had already proved Himself.
It is this statement, “Is the LORD’S hand waxed short?” that helps refute atheism. The atheist will claim that miracles cannot happen, that a virgin birth is not possible, and that the origin of God cannot be explained. I respond, “Is the LORD’S hand waxed short?” If God had an origin, He would not be God. He IS “the beginning and the end”. I challenge the atheist to explain the origin of the particle that started the Big Bang. I challenge them to explain how life arose from hydrogen and helium in stars. They can’t do it. It isn’t possible.
I could go on, but we all must look impartially at the evidence before us. The atheist will claim the idea of God does not make sense- how can someone always be there? I agree, it does not make sense to our human minds. But in the words of Arthur Conan Doyle, “Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.” Since we know matter and energy cannot derive from nothing, something microscopic cannot create an unfathomably large universe, and life cannot come from non-life, then the explanation must be that there is something not just more powerful, but all-powerful, that created the universe- that created US.
This is a great comfort to the Christian. This chapter certainly shows us God’s wrath, but it is wrath against disobedience. Living in obedience allows us to tap into His power. Submitting to a God we know exists and allowing Him to empower us is so much more liberating than denying His existence so that we can be our own gods (Humanism, whether one likes the term or not). Because Jesus, God in the flesh, said “All power is given unto me…” Never doubt God’s power or capabilities in your life or on your life. Remember what He told Moses: “Is the LORD’S hand waxed short? thou shalt see now whether my word shall come to pass unto thee or not.” And guess what He did? He did exactly what He told Moses He would do, and in a miraculous way. Just as He always has, does, and will continue to do.