We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt freely; the cucumbers, and the melons, and the leeks, and the onions, and the garlic:…
I. The complaining of the Israelites in this case was very REPREHENSIBLE, as it manifested a state of aggravated neglect of the peculiar circumstances in which the despised manna was provided for them. Their soul had been dying away for want of it, were we to believe their complaint, and now their soul was dying away when it was possessed. The manna seemed everything when they first beheld it strewn all around the camp, and now it was as nothing at all in their eyes. Nevertheless, it was of such value in the eyes of God, that a pot of it was kept in the ark of the covenant as a memorial of His kindness in providing it for the rebels. The children He feeds may forget the token of His goodness, but He does not forget the emanations of His bounty, or reckon anything small in the blessings He confers.
II. The complaining of the Israelites in this care was all the more SINFUL, INASMUCH AS THE MANNA SO DESPISED WAS BOTH SUFFICIENT AND AGREEABLE FOOD — WAS all that they stood in need of in their journey, and more than they deserved.
III. The complaining of the Israelites was all the more sinful, inasmuch as THE MANNA THEY SO DESPISED WAS PROVIDED FOR THEM WITHOUT COST OR LABOUR. And it is for a like reason that all despising of the bread of life will be accounted the greater transgression, for it is freely offered — without money and without price. No one is required to pay anything for it in silver or in gold — in bodily labour or mental suffering, or in any gift of worldly substance. No equivalent is looked for it in any sacrifice whatever that man can make.
IV. The complaining of the Israelites was the more aggravated, as IT INVOLVED A VERY SINFUL DISREGARD OF THE MIRACULOUS MANNER IN WHICH THE MANNA WAS DAILY SUPPLIED FOR THEIR USE. Alas! multitudes are as blind to the wonderful character of the spiritual or "hidden manna," as were the Jeers in the instance here recorded, as to the manna provided for them. All the more that the miraculous character of the wonderful provision God has made for the salvation of the soul is overlooked or despised, all the more of blind infatuation and sin are involved. It cannot be safe to speak slightingly of an interposition, in providing for the life of immortal souls, into which, it is said, "the angels desire to look."
Parallel VersesKJV: We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt freely; the cucumbers, and the melons, and the leeks, and the onions, and the garlick: