Are you Hungry?
"Then Jesus called his disciples to him and said, "I have compassion on the crowd because they have been with me now three days and have nothing to eat. And I am unwilling to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way." 33 And the disciples said to him, "Where are we to get enough bread in such a desolate place to feed so great a crowd?" 34 And Jesus said to them, "How many loaves do you have?" They said, "Seven, and a few small fish." 35 And directing the crowd to sit down on the ground, 36 he took the seven loaves and the fish, and having given thanks he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 37 And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up seven baskets full of the broken pieces left over. 38 Those who ate were four thousand men, besides women and children. 39 And after sending away the crowds, he got into the boat and went to the region of Magian."
The people's hunger for the truth was greater than their hunger for food. Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God (Deuteronomy 8:3; Matthew 4:4).
The hunger for food is a known hunger and greedily satisfied. Most people love to eat. The hunger for the word of God is an unknown hunger. It does not gain satisfaction until great need accompanied reluctant taste makes us aware of how hungry we are and how good the word of truth is.
The people were weary and heavy laden (Matthew 11:28) and were attracted by the miracles of Jesus. When the people tasted the word of God, they were willing to forego the physical appetite for three days.
When I am sick and don't want to eat, I eat because I know I need to in order to recover my health and strength. I don't have an appetite and the food doesn't taste so good, but it is necessary I eat it to get healthy.
It is the same with the word of God, the Bible. When I am sick with sin, I have no appetite for the truth and it doesn't taste good. Yet, I know it is the way to overcome the sickness of sin to live an abundant life. I need to eat the word daily.
What happens if I eat the word of God? I get healthy and desire to feast on the word of God daily, just as when I recover from sickness my appetite returns and I feast on food and delight in it. Unlike food, I cannot eat too much of the word of God.
Jesus recognized the people's need for food. He had compassion on them and instructed the disciples to feed the four thousand plus people. Like all of Jesus' instructions, the disciples didn't have the resources to do what Jesus commanded. But, when they brought what they had to Jesus, He made it enough and all the people ate and were satisfied.
We need to be like the disciples. When instructed by Jesus to do His will, we need to take what we have to Jesus and together with Him complete what He assigned us to do (John 15:5; Luke 1:37; Galatians 2:20).
Whether you have an appetite or not, begin to systematically read (eat) the word of God and obey it by faith in Jesus.
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Three key questions to ask as we prayerfully read the scriptures: