Numbers 11:1-15

Talks for Growing Christians

Complaints About the Problems and God's Provision in the Wilderness

Numbers 11:1-15

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Lesson Number 11

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. The sin of complaining results from discontent in the human heart.
  2. The sin of complaining results in the discouragement of God’s leaders.

Practical Application

  1. Don’t crave the food of Egypt.


  1. What time span does the book of Numbers cover?
  2. Why did the Israelites have to wander in the wilderness for forty years?
  3. Why did God lead Moses to record the Israelites’ sins of the wilderness?
  4. What were the children of Israel complaining about in Numbers 11?
  5. How is manna a spiritual picture of Christ?
  6. Why does Moses complain in Numbers 11?
  7. Why did God’s people get tired of His provision of manna?


  1. Numbers addresses the forty years between the Israelite’s Exodus from Egypt and their Conquest of Canaan.
  2. Because of their sin of unbelief and complaining.
  3. As a warning for us, so we will not commit the same sins. See 1 Corinthians 10:8-12.
  4. They complained about their problems and provisions.
  5. In John 6 the Lord Jesus compares Himself to manna. He is not only the means of our salvation; He is the spiritual food and sustenance for our souls.
  6. Moses complained because he was discouraged. He was burned out from working with complaining people.
  7. Because they craved the foods of Egypt.


  1. When the people complained, the Lord was displeased. The Lord is displeased when we, His children, complain today. Complaining is one of the sins of the wilderness that will keep us from the joy, blessing, and victories of the abundant life. Discuss why we complain about our problems. What do we gain by complaining? Do you also complain about the Lord’s provision for you? How would being content in Christ keep you from complaining?
  2. When the Lord’s people constantly grumble and complain, the spiritual leaders of the flock get very discouraged. Burnout because of discouragement is the number one reason people leave the ministry today. Think about your local church. Are your spiritual leaders discouraged because of your complaining? After you have stopped complaining, what can you do to actively encourage your church leaders?


  1. God redeemed His people from the bondage and slavery of Egypt, just as He has redeemed believers out of the slavery of this world. But too often we crave the spicy foods of this world. When you crave what this world has to offer, your desire for the things of the Lord will diminish. Ask yourself this week if you are desiring the things of this world or being pleased with God’s provisions.

Key Verses

  • “Now when the people complained, it displeased the LORD.” Numbers 11:1
  • “So Moses said to the LORD, ‘Why have You afflicted Your servant?’” Numbers 11:11

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