Exodus 5:1 And afterward Moses and Aaron went in, and told Pharaoh, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness.
Deuteronomy 29:5 And I have led you forty years in the wilderness: your clothes are not waxen old upon you, and thy shoe is not waxen old upon thy foot.
Using Strong’s Concordance:
Wilderness <04057> midbar from 01696 (dabar – speak) in the sense of driving; a pasture (i.e. open field, whither cattle are driven); by implication, a desert; also speech (including its organs):
Translated in the King James Version -wilderness 255 times, desert 13 times, south 1 time, speech 1 time, wilderness + 0776 1 time.
From this we see that the wilderness, although translated as ‘desert’ on 13 occasions, is not a sandy desert but rather uninhabited land containing pastures suitable for feeding animals; providing that they are moved from place to place. As God was leading Israel in the wilderness we may be confident that he would lead them to places suitable for feeding cattle.
Joseph’s brethren were feeding their flocks in Dothan which is described as a ‘wilderness’ in Genesis 37:22.
Genesis 37:22 And Reuben said unto them, Shed no blood, but cast him into this pit that is in the wilderness <04057>, and lay no hand upon him; that he might rid him out of their hands, to deliver him to his father again.
David protected Nabal’s men whilst they fed his flocks in the wilderness.
1 Samuel 25:2 And there was a man in Maon, whose possessions were in Carmel; and the man was very great, and he had three thousand sheep, and a thousand goats: and he was shearing his sheep in Carmel... 21 Now David had said, Surely in vain have I kept all that this fellow hath in the wilderness <04057>, so that nothing was missed of all that pertained unto him: and he hath requited me evil for good.
Joel’s prophecy shows that there were pastures in the wilderness.
Joel 1:19 O LORD, to thee will I cry: for the fire hath devoured the pastures of the wilderness <04057>, and the flame hath burned all the trees of the field.
God ensured that there was sufficient pasture for Israel’s flocks. This is evident from the lack of complaints from Israel concerning pasture for cattle. Water was a problem in some parts of the wilderness but this God provided miraculously on two recorded occasions. The two occasions are symbolic of the living water to be provided by his son Jesus Christ at his first and second coming.
It was a shepherd’s job to lead his flocks in the wilderness to suitable pasture. This is the spiritual lesson in Psalm 23.
Jesus is the good shepherd who supplies the pasture in the wilderness of this life.
John 10:7... Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep... 9... by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. 10... I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. 11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.
I hope you have found this helpful.
God bless you,