Recently we took our new kitten to be spayed. In preparation for the surgery she was not supposed to eat or drink from 7 pm the night before until the surgery. Once we brought her back home she was obviously a bit out of it and very hungry. However, we were instructed not to feed her any food until after 7 pm that evening. Once we were able to give her food she devoured it and obviously started to gain back some of her strength.
No doubt many who are reading this have had to wait to eat because of a surgery or for some other reason skipped a meal or two. No doubt very soon you started to feel just how necessary eating is for strength and the sustenance of life. During His Temptation with Satan, Jesus utilized this powerful reality by using it as an analogy. He did this by quoting from Deuteronomy. In Deuteronomy 8:3 we read this:
Deuteronomy 8:3 “He humbled you and let you be hungry, and fed you with manna which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that He might make you understand that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by everything that proceeds out of the mouth of the LORD.
As Jesus alludes to Deuteronomy 8:3 passage He says this in the temptation:
Matthew 4:4 “It is written, ‘MAN SHALL NOT LIVE ON BREAD ALONE, BUT ON EVERY WORD THAT PROCEEDS OUT OF THE MOUTH OF GOD.'”
What a striking image Jesus gives us about the importance of God’s Word in our life. Just as physical food is necessary for sustaining physical life so God’s Word is necessary to sustain spiritual life. We were “brought forth by the word of truth” (James 1:18), we were “born again” through the “living and enduring Word of God” (1 Peter 1:23), we are sanctified by the truth of God (John 17:17), it performs its work in those who believe (1 Thessalonians 2:13), it builds us up (Acts 20:32) and on and on we could go.
No wonder Scripture says “Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.” Do you view the believing intake of God’s Word on this level, as being parallel to the importance of eating physical food? Is there evidence in your daily intake of God’s Word and your desire to be present whenever God’s Word is being preached or studied with God’s people? Have you been starving yourself? I don’t know about you, but when I don’t eat food, very soon my existence is affected. Very easily in that situation the remaining sin in me can start to rear its ugly head. If that is the case with lack of physical food what about lack of spiritual food? Would that the Spirit of God would drive this imagery into our hearts so clearly that we would pursue the Word of God as our spiritual food just as we pursue physical food every day out of necessity. Pursuing spiritual food daily is no less unnecessarily. It a life and death situation.