After we left Mitzrayim, the Jews had a strong connection with Hashem: "And the nation believed in God, and in Moshe, His servant." They had complete faith in Hashem. It was beautiful and exciting.
However, over the course of the parsha, the Jewish people repeatedly suffered hunger and thirst, so they started to panic and scream about their unhappiness and misery. The Jews struggle with their belief in Hashem every time something bad happens or when they face even the smallest inconvenience.
So what kind of belief in Hashem is conditional ? Did our ancestors lose their belief in an instant?
Most people have two different relationships with Hashem: first, we see Him as our protector about major aspects of our life and count on Him to protect us from our enemies; second, we see Hashem as active in our lives on a personal level, helping us with our little concerns. In this week’s parsha, we see that the Jews succeeded in the first aspect of their faith but they could never get to the second.
Throughout history, the Jews recall certain stories, for instance, the Golden Calf, rebellion of Korach and his followers and the panic after the spies. Over and over, the people rebelled and screamed at their leaders, not about whether Hashem would fight their enemies and be their guard but whether Hashem was there for them and whether He would truly understand and empathize with their daily life.
By: Miriam Cohen (10th)