By: Scott Adkins, Sling ‘n Stone Ministry
Carter County Times
Sling ‘n Stone Ministry
Last week, we looked at how one might qualify as being amongst “the meek” in Matthew 5:5. This week, we move-on to the fourth Beatitude: “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be filled,” (Matthew 5:6.). But what does it mean to hunger and thirst for righteousness? Noted Bible scholars suggest this fourth Beatitude results naturally when one adheres to the first three Beatitudes. For example, Martyn Lloyd-Jones wrote: “This Beatitude… follows logically from the previous ones; it is a statement to which all the others lead.” But still, what exactly did Jesus mean when He urged us to:
Stay Hungry & Thirsty
In the original Greek, the present participle is used for both hunger and thirst, which signifies a continual longing and seeking – a deep yearning. For what? For right-standing with God; that’s what righteousness means. We can again look to Moses for an example. We all know God spoke directly, personally, and audibly to Moses from a burning bush. (Exodus chapter 3). And we know God parted the Red Sea when Moses raised up his staff. (Exodus 14:21). Then, there’s God using His own divine finger to inscribe the ten commandments onto stone tablets. (Exodus 31:18; 32:16). Given all that, it seems fair to say that Moses knew God well. The Bible tells us, “The Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, just as a man speaks to his friend.” (Exodus 33:11). But even all that still wasn’t enough for Moses; he hungered and thirsted for more from God, which is why even after all that, Moses prayed: “I pray Thee, show[me] Thy glory.” (Exodus 33:18).
Let’s not forget Paul the Apostle who penned most of the New Testament. Even after seeing The Lord Jesus face-to-face more than once, Paul prayed that he “might know Him, and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death.” (Philippians 3:9-10). One who stays hungry and thirsty to be (and increase in) right-standing with God, will devour and guzzle all God gives – not just the parts one finds tasty. Didn’t Jesus say, “man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4) (quoting Deuteronomy 8:3). He also said, “[W]hosever drinks of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst[.]” (John 4:14).
Another perspective might be to recognize what will not satisfy the ones who stay hungry and thirsty; they will never be satisfied with (or depend upon) worldly possessions, power, or prestige. No, those who stay hungry and thirsty long for God, His Word, and to obey His Word continually. (Psalms 119:120) (“My soul is crushed with longing after Thine ordinances at all times.”); (Isaiah 26:9) (“At night my soul longs for Thee, indeed, my spirit within me seeks Thee diligently.”).
So, let us be filled by staying hungry and thirsty for God.
/s/Sling ‘n Stone Ministry