The so-called “Sermon on the mount” contains a fascinating #teaching that many modern‚ fast pace minds simply bypass due to its lack of “practicality”.
But there are powerful truths hidden here for people who are serious about knowing the Lord and serving his purpose.
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness‚ for they shall be satisfied.” Matthew 5:6
What kind of people “hunger and thirst” for “righteousness”?
Sadly‚ the word “righteousness” doesn’t mean much to people who lack understanding of some important fundamental Biblical truths.
We like to “sample” these days. People like to “speed date”‚ I hear. Fair enough when it comes to sampling a song before you buy it or speed-dating someone you know you won’t marry after witnessing them picking their nose 5 times in the first 6 minutes of your first and I’m sure‚ last date.
Come Jesus‚ you and I need to set aside everything else and go through the process of pursing Him and His presence‚ even to a point of an encounter with Him‚ if we are to have the confidence that we actually know him for ourselves.
To hunger and thirst after “righteousness” means you ought to be not only quite clear about what righteousness stands for and what it means‚ it has to be something you have made a choice about and you have developed said “hunger and thirst” for.
Jesus could have easily said “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for God”.
He didn’t. He spoke of hunger‚ thirst‚ mourning‚ being persecuted‚ having a pure heart‚ having a heart of mercy.
You get it?
Almost vaguely sounding‚ these dynamics actually represent the intersection of real life and the Kingdom of God.
His prophetic‚ poetic speech busted the hyper-religious‚ legalistic‚ “do this and you will get that” type of mindset.
He opened a door and invited us to go through it. And there’s no formula to be had here.
Everyone is poor in spirit in their own way. Hunger and thirst manifest in a different way for everyone. Every persecuted person has their own set of particular circumstances.
The variants are too many to follow. The outcomes‚ too.
But righteousness is a real thing and it is what it is. The Holy Spirit makes the Kingdom of God a very real thing to us and in fact so real‚ that it’s the only thing that demands a uniform response from all Christians at all times!
Before we can develop hunger and thirst for [God’s] righteousness‚ the Holy Spirit will lead us through a process of revealing to us own righteousness.
Self-righteousness (our own “righteousness”) is in fact deception because it’s based on our own limited‚ human judgement – of who God is‚ who we are‚ who others are.
Self-righteousness is pride and a form of spiritual “racism”. You view those who have different beliefs or make different choices in life as inferior‚ you despise them and you have contempt for them.
Jesus stated emphatically that his judgments are true because He had no selfish agenda stemming from the fallen human nature.
“I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear‚ I judge; and My judgment is just‚ because I do not seek My own will‚ but the will of Him who sent Me.” John 5:30
Our carnal ego “seeks its own will”‚ i.e. has its own agenda.
To justify our agenda‚ we begin to selectively pick and choose what suits our own narrative. Some call it “reality distortion”. Others call it “denial”. It could be also a form of witchcraft with highly ambitions personalities who make up their mind to achieve something and get others involved as well. They will twist and bend the facts and the figures‚ if need be‚ only to make them fit their agenda.
It’s only a matter of time‚ however‚ before the denial bubble bursts.
Jesus didn’t need to distort reality. He operated out of the ultimate reality of God‚ the Father. The religious spirit of the day kept trying to twist his words and shut him down.
The same happened later on with the apostle Paul.
The same has happened with many voices in history who have heard from God and spoke boldly only to have the religious spirit stonewall them through denial and reality distortion.
JESUS SETS THE PATTERN
Jesus set a patten for us – discover God’s righteousness‚ discover what His will is in a given situation‚ for a given thing – or in principle‚ and begin to hunger and thirst for it.
When we discover God’s patterns for life (righteousness‚ the godly way of being in this world)‚ we choose to saturate our minds and hearts with his truth.
A man who is constantly lusting after other women will eventually have an affair and lose his marriage.
A woman who immerses herself in watching soap-operas on TV and is fantasizing about a romance with someone oh-so-much-better than her husband‚ will eventually have a romance and lose her husband.
A man or a woman lusting after money or recognition or power (political‚ corporate)‚ will twist and bend whatever he or she perceives as an obstacle in their path to “success”‚ as defined by their carnal ambitions.
A godly man or a woman who immerses their mind‚ heart and soul in pursing God’s purpose and patterns for life‚ will develop a hunger and thirst for righteousness‚ a life filled with God’s purpose and will.
- What grips your imagination?
- Who or what do you defer to when you need a reality check?
- How does your “perfect case scenario” look like? Does anyone else know about it? Is anyone else as passionate about it as you?
- What are you hungry and thirsty to see happen in the next 3 months?