“Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied”. – Matthew 5:6
What does it mean to hunger and thirst for righteousness?
Hunger and thirst are recurrent urges. It’s exceedingly satisfying to eat a meal when starving or to drink water when parched. Hunger is often used to convey a consuming desire, like a baseball team who hasn’t won a world series in over 100 years is hungry for the championship, or an individual who is struggling with failure is hungry for success. The Bible often uses hunger and thirst to represent powerful desires:
“Come, all you who are thirsty, Come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and you will delight in the richest of fare.” – Isaiah 55:1-2
Jesus used these references in the Sermon on the Mount to communicate a blessed appetite for righteousness.
By sacrificial death on a cross and resurrection, Christians know that salvation is offered through faith in Jesus Christ alone. Jesus offers us his righteousness like putting a beautiful coat over our sin. Through faith God sees us in Jesus’ righteous coat and not our own old and torn sinful attire. We live in a sinful world where our sinful desires drag us away from all Christ calls us to be, but for all who are in Christ, God gives His Holy Spirit, who renews our hearts and creates within us a new and deep desire to live in a way that is pleasing to Him.
Questions for reflection
We all have longing for God and his design, but we run toward plenty of things to fill the longing and it ultimately isn’t good. Where do you see us doing this as culture? What do you struggle with running towards or hungering after that isn’t God’s design or desire?
What does it mean to be satisfied? What does it look like today and what is it pointing towards?
How can we live out the Fourth Beatitude?
- Participate in a worthy cause.
- Stand up for people persecuted or bullied.
Lord, make me hungry and thirsty for righteousness sake! Grant me a passion for loving, knowing and doing your word! Help me to be wise enough to tell the difference between truth and justice and lies and corruption. Teach me to stop judging others and to begin to worry more about the distance between the life I live and the life you expect and desire of me. This day, Lord, make me hungry and thirsty for righteousness! Through Jesus Christ our Lord we pray. Amen.