In the Old Testament the Second through the Sixth book, Exodus through Deuteronomy, tell the story of God leading the Israelites out of Egypt’s slavery, nourishing them through their desert year, and bringing them into the Promised Land.
St. John modeled his Gospel on those five books. His Gospel begins with the Son setting up his tent with the people the way the Father did. In their desert years he is the light that guides them. He is the rock flowing with living water. He is the true bread that comes down from heaven.
When Jesus began his public life, and the Jews began suspecting he could be the Messiah they remembered an old saying according to which when the Messiah came he would bring down bread from heaven the way Moses did, so they asked Jesus if he could do that.
He told them that the manna their fathers ate was not true bread from heaven. In fact, that manna was something like honey. It was white stuff that even today is exuded by aphid feeding on the sparse desert foliage.
I said that John modeled his Gospel on five books of the Torah, but in fact it was the other way around. Those old books were God’s way of preparing people to understand the real story when Jesus came along.