September 28, 2021
Scripture: But he answered, “It is written, ‘”Man shall not live on bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.”‘ Matthew 4:4 ESV
Observation: In refuting Satan’s temptation, Jesus quotes a segment from Moses’ exhortation to Israel in preparation for their entrance into the Promise Land. Moses first explains that their 40-year wandering in the desert served to humble and test them so that they would learn to submit to his commandments (Deuteronomy 8:2). He adds that, in particular, the Lord gave them manna as a means of teaching them to rely on his provision and learn that “man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD” (8:3).
The parallels to Jesus testing in preparation for ministry are striking. Luke tells us that young Jesus had to grow in wisdom, stature, and favor with God and man (Luke 2:52). For Jesus, this 40-day test in the wilderness reinforced that the words of his Father would fully satiate him. We later hear him communicate a form of this truth to his disciples when they urge him to eat some food: “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work” (John 4:34).
Takeaway: Holistic self-care. Our temporal bodies are important to our Creator and rightfully should be nourished, but we must never neglect our eternal souls. The good news is that we will one day receive new, glorified bodies like Christ’s (Philippians 3:21-21). And in heaven, we will never be afflicted with hunger pains nor lack awareness of his Word. Meanwhile, we have been provided all that we need in Scripture to feast our souls.
Prayer: Father God, please help us lead a healthy lifestyle that addresses our physical and spiritual needs. Please help us to find satisfaction in your Word that would curb our carnal appetites. Amen.
Rev. Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling