Jesus continues with His radical Manifesto (Matthew 5-7). We all know what it is like to be hungry or thirsty. We cannot think of anything else until we take care of the hunger or thirst. It consumes us. Nothing else matters!
What about my spiritual hunger and thirst?
Fortunate (aka Blessed) are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
Matthew 5:6 (ESV)
Am I consumed with Jesus? Jesus is our only way to stand right with God. Jesus is the way. Jesus is clear about this. Am I passionate about it like I am when I am hungry or thirsty? Do I think about nothing else? Am I shunned by others because of my desire for Jesus? Does my family think I am nuts?
Those are huge questions to think about. Jesus is laying out in this Manifesto a completely different way to live. I can ignore him to my peril.
What is the promise? There is good news. There is a promise. If we are passionate in finding right standing with God through Jesus, then we will be satisfied. Our hunger for Jesus will not go unrewarded. That reward is all we should really want.
What is the challenge? Many times when our basic needs like eating and drinking are met, we don’t think about it and just go on our merry way. It is like the lights. I don’t think about it when I walk in a room, turn on the lights and they come on. If they go out, I freak out. When will the power be restored? The challenge is to not get complacent about my right standing just because I have walked down the aisle and been baptized. That was the start, not the end.
Jesus knew about hunger firsthand. Of course, this was physical hunger. Jesus wisely flips this to a spiritual issue. Forget about real hunger. What matters is our spiritual hunger. There is only one way to satisfy that. I must listen to every word that God has for me.
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”
Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’