by Jay O'Toole
The Lord doesn't always speak in an audible voice, but often in nudges, moving the heart.
|Prompt: In Matthew 5:5-6, we have the next two beatitudes.
5 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
What do these mean to you?
I have consistently understood "meekness" to be "strength under restraint." The meek are not weak, getting used badly throughout life as a doormat, but neither are the meek, those who bully others in order to get their own way.
How do the meek inherit the earth? The meek inherit the earth by retraining their great strength, waiting for the Lord to give them their inheritance after a consistent life of faithful service to the Lord Jesus, the Lord of Glory, Who honors those who employ well their gifts and talents, until the Master of the House returns to take account of their service.
Matthew 25:14-30 is the lesson of the talents. There are strong comparisons between the servants, who used well their talents, and the meek, who inherit the Earth.
In Matthew 5:6 we learn about those, "which do hunger and thirst after righteousness." What is the nature of those, who are hungry and thirsty? People, who are hungry and thirsty have a consistently narrow focus until these needs are met. When my daughter finishes a dance rehearsal all she wants is a bottle of water, until she gets to drink that bottle of water.
There is a term, that I first came to know in the part of the world in which I currently reside. However, with the internet, the concept is, no doubt, a bit more ubiquitous these days. What is that term? "Hangry." When an individual is so hungry as to be instantly irritable or angry with very little provocation, then they are called, "Hangry."
We, humans, are used to eating every three to four hours, but those, who go for seven or eight hours are often unable to "think straight," until they eat something, even a candy bar or a handful of nuts. People, who fast (or "go without eating") for an extended time like a week or two for religious or philosophical reasons may find, that they are beginning to function better than those, who have missed eating for only half a day.
"1 Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit
into the wilderness
to be tempted of the devil.
2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights,
he was afterward an hungred.
3 And when the tempter came to him, he said,
If thou be the Son of God,
command that these stones be made bread.
4 But he answered and said,
It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone,
but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God."
(Matthew 4:1-4, KJV)
A forty-day fast is about the limit a human can endure, and still continue to live. The Holy Spirit led Jesus to the wilderness for the purpose of being tempted by the devil, but before the temptations began Jesus was brought to the end of His physical endurance by going without food for 40 days.
The first temptation was about meeting the need, that Jesus had, for food. Jesus' response was telling. Jesus acknowledged, that physical food was (and is) important. "Man shall live by bread, but Man shall not live by bread alone." Instead of giving into Satan's temptation to meet this lesser need, Jesus quoted Scripture, regarding the first need of every human being. "(Humans) must live by every word that proceeds out of God's Mouth." Truth is more needful than food.
Finally, let us focus on the second verse in our prompt, today. Jesus' response to the tempter is directly addressed in Matthew 5:6, "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled." Those, who desire the Precious Word of God with the same level of intensity, that very hungry people desire physical food, "will be filled," completely satisfied, and fully met, regarding their spiritual needs.
Blessed are the meekly strong
for they inherit Earth.
Honored are the ones, whose song
are words of the new birth.
Blessed are the great desires
of hunger, thirst for good.
Honored through the Word, much higher,
and filling more than food.
by Jay O'Toole
on March 2nd, 2021