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September 19, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.”—Matthew 5:6 (NASB)
When was the last time you got a massive craving? I’m talking about an intense, distracting, unable-to-focus-on-anything craving until you get what your heart—and stomach—is hankering for? I get these types of cravings when I go too long without eating pizza. With that in mind, Jesus paints a picture we can all understand in this verse. He’s saying that those who hunger and thirst for righteousness with the same intensity that I crave pizza will always get their fill!
The Greek words used in this verse demonstrate this concept clearly: hunger (peinōntes) means “to desire earnestly; to crave ardently, to seek with eager desire,” while thirst (dipsōntes) means “to suffer from thirst for; to painfully feel want of, and eagerly long for.” I bolded specific words like ardently, painfully, and suffer because they convey the depth of Jesus’ statement.
The truth is, humans experience this level of craving all the time for different things . . . and no, I’m not talking about food. We often hunger for selfish things (for our desires and wants to be fulfilled), and we thirst for our lusts and sinful vices to be quenched. We crave health, wealth, power, and praise, but eventually we come to realize that not a single one of these things can truly satisfy. Why? Because the only thing in existence that truly satisfies is Jesus! And so, when we boil down His statement to its bare minimum, we see that satisfaction and fullness only come when we eagerly, earnestly, and ardently crave what is deemed right by the Lord.
When we seek to live a life that honors the Lord, that submits to Him and His will; when we love Him with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and love our neighbors as ourselves, then, we will know true satisfaction! Even if we have no earthly health or wealth, no human power or praise, we will experience the fullness of joy. Just look at the apostle Paul’s life as an example. This man, who had lived a life of money, power, and respect became poor, hated, sick, blind, beaten, and imprisoned. And yet he says, “I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ” (Philippians 3:8 NIV).
What are you craving right now?
DIG: Read Philippians 3:1–14.
DISCOVER: What is righteousness? What are the things that please God? What qualities honor Him? What kind of life?
DISPLAY: Do you hunger for the things of God, that which is approved in His eyes? Do you seek to be filled and satisfied by Jesus or by the things of this world? Honestly assess your heart.
Danny Saavedra has served on the staff of Calvary since 2012, managing the Calvary Devotional and digital discipleship resources. He has a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary. His wife Stephanie, son Jude, and daughter Zoe share a love of Star Wars, good food, having friends over for dinner, and studying the Word together as a family.