We begin to see what happens when you travel together as a family for a long time in somewhat cramped quarters. We find the people of Israel complain to Moses because they did not have meat to eat. They were reminiscing about the good old days in Egypt when they had all the fish they could eat, they had their own gardens, they had anklets and necklets and bracelets around them because they were slaves. They actually left that part out of it. But they remembered the meat and vegetables part and complained to God that they were sick and tired of this thing called manna. It reminds me of this scene in Forest Gump.
For some reason this won’t click on immediately, just paste and copy onto your browser, you’ll see the scene. But how many different ways can you make manna? God responds by saying, I will provide you with so much meat that you will ask how many ways are there to cook meat? Did you miss the bookend in this chapter? It begins with fire and death and it ends with a plague of death for those who complained about not having meat.
As you would expect God provides the quail just as he promised. He also provides some relief for Moses who felt the burden of having to hear the protestations of the people of Israel all by himself. God gave his Holy Spirit to two other people besides Moses who were enabled to lead and to prophesy as Moses was. A lot happens in this chapter and it is a bit of a precursor for the time when Moses sets up other judges who can rule over the people as he rules. That will come in the next few chapters.