I have a baby who I currently spoon feed. She’s not really capable of feeding herself - I regularly worry that she'll take her own eye out with her spoon. But she’s getting there. I’m slowly trying to teach her - it’s messy and kind of hilarious. But can you imagine how weird it would be if I was STILL spoon feeding her by the time she was 18? We would be that family…
But you know we can actually fall into a habit of doing this spiritually - we rock up to church every Sunday and we watch the preacher unpack the word of God for us. We marvel and say “wow, she really knows her stuff” or “yeah he gave a really great word today”
We happily let the preacher spoon-feed us the word of God on a silver platter
Which is great. But until we go home and actually get intentional about developing the Word of God in our own life, we’re never going to experience the true benefits and rewards of it. If we don't learn to grasp the tools and dig for our own treasure, we're only marvelling at someone else's discoveries. We’ll never be completely transformed. We’ll never walk in the fulness of God’s calling on our lives because:
your calling is won or lost in your devotional life
At the beginning of John 6, Jesus performs the famous miracle of feeding bread and fish to the thousands. It was a miracle to meet their physical need of hunger. Several verses later, he makes the bold declaration: “I AM the bread of life” (For more on this, read WHO'S THE MANNA )
What a grand miracle! Feeding literally thousands of people from one little lunchbox! We love signs and wonders. But don't forget that signs point to something. He met their physical need to point them to the One (the ONLY One) who can also meet the spiritual need.
/// Matthew 4 : 4 ///
"People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God"
Right here, Jesus is quoting the Old Testament (Deuteronomy) - and he draws a link between bread and the Word of God. He's saying: “As important as food is to your physical body, I am to your soul." The manna (bread from heaven) God rained down in the wilderness paints the perfect picture of the way we seek our daily bread in the Word of God.
/// Numbers 11:9 /// When the dew fell on the camp at night, the manna was right there with it.
Do you get it? the manna descended right down into their camp. They didn’t have to search high and low. They didn’t have to save up and pay for it. They didn’t have to strive and struggle for it.
they simply had to go and receive it.
/// Deuteronomy 30 : 11 - 14 ///
“This command I am giving you today is not too difficult for you, and it is not beyond your reach. 12 It is not kept in heaven, so distant that you must ask, ‘Who will go up to heaven and bring it down so we can hear it and obey?’ 13 It is not kept beyond the sea, so far away that you must ask, ‘Who will cross the sea to bring it to us so we can hear it and obey?’ 14 No, the message is very close at hand; it is on your lips and in your heart so that you can obey it.”
God has made his Word totally accessible! It’s not up in heaven. It’s not far away. It’s right here and it lies between the pages of the Book who’s very words are breathed and inspired by the Spirit of God. No one has to go and get it for you - you can get it yourself.
Did you notice that it wasn’t Moses, their leader and pastor at the time, who went and got it for them? Just because he was the preacher, it didn’t mean he was going to go out, gather it for them and then come back and spoon feed it to them. God wanted them to be empowered to go out and get it for themselves!
Do you see it’s a picture of GRACE?! In the context of the complex covenant governed by rules, regulations and sacrifices - to have this provision rain down from heaven completely superseded the covenant they were in. A drop of grace in the midst of the Covenant of Sinai to foretell of Jesus - Grace wrapped up in flesh - who was on his way! No animals needed to be sacrificed, no burning of incense, no blood shed required to receive their precious manna -
All they had to do was get out of their tents, get out of their comfort and convenience and go GET IT!
Lay aside what’s comfortable and convenient for a moment. Get out of your tent. Go on - get off insty, roll out of bed, hop off the couch - and come away with Jesus. Come to the quiet place, open your bible and position yourself to receive - God promises that if you seek, you really will find.
/// Song of Songs 2 : 10 ///
"My beloved speaks and says to me: Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away"
Oh, and don’t forget your spoon.
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