Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. – Matthew 5:5

I love to eat. When I crave for something and I don’t know what exactly it is,  I search for it intently. I’m willing to go miles and miles until I find what I want. Sometimes just to realize, what I wanted was nothing more than a plain meal with extra rice.

That is what hunger and thirst can do to you. It can drive you to search for that one thing, hoping it will satisfy your longing. It motivates you to go beyond your norm because the need is so great that you just need it to be filled. Sad to say though, what we usually hunger and thirst for just leaves us still empty and longing. We hunger for power, fame, and money. And then when we reach that point where we already have those things, we want more and we never get satisfied. Or we reach that point where we already have a lot but still feel empty inside. For some, the hunger is for a relationship. They want to be loved and feel appreciated, never realizing that people are not perfect. That at any point, they may disappoint us or fail us. What you hunger for, thirst for and desire will dictate whether you will live a life of being contented (being satisfied) or a life of being unfilled and tired.

Matthew 5:5 tells us, blessed are those who hunger for righteousness. Now when we talk about the hunger and thirst for righteousness, this is not a one-time thing. The hunger and thirst for righteousness should be a daily thing. It is a continuous desire that lives inside your heart – a continuous desire for righteousness. But what is this righteousness that is being talked about here? What is this righteousness that we are to daily desire? The righteousness that is being talked about is God’s righteousness and not righteousness that we can establish on our own like what the Pharisees did. It is a desire and hunger to exemplify the righteousness of God in our lives. This includes the characteristics mentioned in the beatitudes. Righteousness shows mercy to other people. Righteousness always wants to make peace. Righteousness is being pure in heart and motives. This righteousness that we long for should be because we want to please God. We want to live a life that is worthy of what was paid for us. It is not doing righteous acts because we want to be seen as religious, but rather desiring to be righteous in order to be like Him – to want to act Christ-like.

When we hunger for the right kind of righteousness there is a promise. The promise of satisfaction. The promise of being filled. I like what John McArthur said in this bible commentary:

 God’s righteousness will fill those who seek it and will satisfy their hunger and thirst for a right relationship with God.

God will fill those who desire his righteousness. He will continuously work with people who understands their sinfulness and yet, still wants to live a life that pleases Him. If we abide in him and constantly have that desire in our hearts, he will helps us live a life of victory. John Piper said in his sermon regarding blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness:

Satisfaction comes from God to those whose passion in life is to know him in the struggle to be like him in the world

May the Lord Jesus Christ fill you with satisfaction. Don’t look for other things to fill our life. Let it be Jesus and just rest in Him. And when we come to know who he is and how much he loves us – let us desire His righteousness. Let’s pray that He continues to fill us up and work in and through us.

Be blessed with the words of God. If you have anything to share, feel free to drop a comment. I would love to hear from you! God bless you.

Blessed are the meek

Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. – Matthew 5:5

Continuing my series on the beatitudes, I ponder upon the verse above. I like what John MacArthur wrote about what being meek is all about.

Meekness is the opposite of being out of control. It is not weakness, but rather supreme self-control empowered by the Spirit

In some translations the word meek can either be gentle or humble. I look through Psalm 37 because this beatitude is most probably an allusion of verse 11

But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy peace and prosperity. – Psalm 37:11

The theme of this chapter revolves around the wicked and the righteous while centering on the issue of who will inherit the land. Will the wicked, who plot against the righteous, who slay those whose ways are upright, who has wealth or the righteous, who are humble, blameless and upright.

But it doesn’t seem fair if the wicked will inherit their land. That’s why this chapter reassures the righteous, they do not need to feel alarmed when they feel they are being overpowered. They should just be calm and not out of control – they need to be meek. To trust in the Lord and do good where they are. To commit their way to the Lord and be still since He is in control. Because the wicked are like grass, they will soon wither and die away.

As I relate this to my life right now, I begun to think of the land I am in. Am I fretting with what is happening in my life and feeling tired of life again? As a single man, we would normally love to have what the world is showing us. A great job that pays for everything we want, from a car, house, branded clothes and electronics. A career where we are blooming and slowing raising up the career ladder. Or a relationship we will be proud about and feel loved with. But as I think about this verse, I begun to realize that I do not need to fret whether I do not have all of these things. As I trust God, be still and just do well where I am planted – to bloom in my work and ministry. I know someday, God will give me the desires of my heart. It may not necessarily be the “material” things or even a relationship. But just an inheritance in the land and peace that you are contented with where you are. To feel blessed because you know you have a great God with you and that is all you need.

May we find comfort in this verse and learn how to be meek. In that process that we do, may we inherit our land, find peace and be contented where we are.

Have you been able to control your desires, bringing it to Jesus’ feet and learning how to trust Him?

Blessed are those who mourn

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted – Matthew 5:3.

It was privilege to share the gospel in a wake service last Wednesday. This is for a family who just lost the head of their household, their dad or father. He was a retired Baptist preacher. I shared how different it is when real Christians lose someone very dear to them. Yes, there is still sadness and mourning in air but their faith on Jesus Christ is what gives them hope and comfort.  Because they know, that even though they will miss the presence of their loved one here on earth, someday, they will see them again in a much better place and that “much better place” is where their loved is right now – heaven.

That is the promise that we can hold on to in Matthew 5:3. First, there is a current promise. While you are here on earth and with the hard situations you will experience there will be comfort. When we lose someone we love, we mourn. When we fail, we are in pain. When we see the evil that surrounds us, we grieve. There will always be situations that will bring you pain, sadness, sorrow and hardship. But take heart because you will be comforted by God. It can either be through His word, through people He will bring in your life and through situations. One thing is for sure, your source of comfortable will only be from God alone. His word gives us the comfort we need:

2 Corinthians 1:3-5. Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.

Psalm 34:18. The Lord is near to the broken hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Psalm 22:24. For He has not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; Nor has He hidden His face from him; But when he cried to Him for help, He heard.

The second promise is looking forward to what is ahead. Yes trials and tribulations will always come while we are in this earthly body. We will always be pushed to the limit but all of this is temporary. We might experience it within the 60-year average lifespan we have but we have eternity to look forward to with Christ. Revelation 21:4 describes what is ahead – no tear, no death, no morning, no crying and no pain. This helps us realize that the temporary hardship is nothing compare to the eternity in store for us.

2 Corinthians 4:16-18. Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

Let us fix our eyes on what is eternal. Let us refocus our life and energy on Jesus. Do not lose heart. When you mourn, you will be comforted.

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