Daily Devotional – The Beatitudes by Thomas Watson Part XXIX

Image result for Beatitudes
Image Depicting Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount

The Beatitudes

by Thomas Watson

An Exposition of Matthew 5:1-12 

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.”
“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.”
“Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.”
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.”
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.”
“Blessed are those who are persecuted, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven

Spiritual Hunger!

Theme: a duty implied; a promise annexed.

 

Let us put ourselves upon a trial—whether we hunger and thirst after righteousness. I shall give you five signs by which you may judge of this hunger.

1. Hunger is a painful thing. Esau, when he was returning from hunting, was famished with hunger (Genesis 25:32). ‘Hungry and thirsty, their soul fainted in them’ (Psalm 107:5). So a man who hungers after righteousness, is in anguish of soul and ready to faint away for it. He finds a lack of Christ and grace. He is distressed and in pain until he has his spiritual hunger stilled and allayed.

2. Hunger is satisfied with nothing but food. Bring a hungry man flowers or music; tell him pleasant stories—nothing will content him but food. ‘Shall I die for thirst!’ says Samson (Judges 15:18). So a man who hungers and thirsts after righteousness says, ‘Give me Christ or I die! Lord, what will you give me seeing I go Christless? What though I have abilities, wealth, honor and esteem in the world? All is nothing without Christ. Give me Jesus—and it will suffice me. Let me have Christ to clothe me, Christ to feed me, Christ to intercede for me!’ While the soul is Christless, it is restless. Nothing but the water-springs of Christ’s blood, can quench its thirst.

3. Hunger wrestles with difficulties and hunts for food. We say hunger breaks through stone walls (Genesis 42:1, 2). The soul that spiritually hungers is resolved—Christ it must have; grace it must have. And to use Basil’s expression, the hungry soul is almost distracted until it enjoys the thing it hungers after.

4. A hungry man goes to his food with a strong appetite. You need not make an oration to a hungry man and persuade him to eat. So he who hungers after righteousness feeds eagerly on an ordinance. ‘Your words were found, and I did eat them’ (Jeremiah 15:16). In the sacrament he feeds with appetite upon the body and blood of the Lord. God loves to see us feed hungrily on the bread of life.

5. A hungry man tastes sweetness in his food. So he who hungers after righteousness relishes a sweetness in heavenly things. Christ is to him all marrow, yes the quintessence of delights. ‘You have tasted that the Lord is gracious’ (1 Peter 2:3). He who spiritually hungers, tastes the promises sweet—nay tastes a reproof sweet. ‘To the hungry soul, every bitter thing is sweet’ (Proverbs 27:7). A bitter reproof is sweet. He can feed upon the myrrh of the gospel as well as the honey. By these evidences, we may judge of ourselves whether we hunger and thirst after righteousness.

The words may serve to comfort the hearts of those who hunger and thirst after righteousness; I doubt not but it is the grief of many a gracious heart—that he cannot be more holy, that he cannot serve God better. ‘Blessed are those who hunger’. Though you do not have as much righteousness as you would—yet you are blessed because you hunger after it. Desire is the best evidence of a Christian. Actions may be counterfeit. A man may do a good action for a bad end. So did Jehu. Actions may be compulsory. A man may be forced to do that which is good—but not to will that which is good. Therefore we are to nourish good desires and to bless God for them. Oftentimes a child of God has nothing to show for himself, but desires. ‘Your servants, who desire to fear your name’ (Nehemiah 1:11). These hungerings after righteousness proceed from love. A man does not desire that which he does not love. If you did not love Christ, you could not hunger after him.

 

Published by directorfsm

I retired from the Army in 1994 and lost my way in the world. I ended up in prison and it was truly the best thing that could have happened. There Christ rescued me from my depravity (John 3:19) and made me whole again. Since my release in 2006 I have worked in some form of ministry, either prison or construction/disaster relief and sometimes both. My lovely wife Naida and I serve as Missionaries from Pioneer Valley Baptist Church, Chicopee, MA. We are currently headquartered in Jackson, MS. We were sent to the mission field in 2012 to help Rebuild Lakeshore, a ministry of Lakeshore Baptist Church in Lakeshore, MS complete its post Katrina building projects. We had been serving there part time for many years before being called into full time service. While there my wife worked the Mercy House distribution center and I worked as project manager/volunteer coordinator also serving as Sr. Volunteer Chaplain at the local Hancock county jail. Since completing that project in late 2015 we relocated to Jackson MS to assist a church there that had come to help in Lakeshore many times. But due to many circumstances the focus for the ministry has changed some and expanded over the past 24 months. We still help churches in their building projects and do a lot of disaster relief work. For a full list of what we offer please see the SERVICES OFFERED page on our Faith Builders site. Back in 2006 I started Faithful Steward Ministries and FSM Women’s Outreach a Christian outreach ministry; to those with addictions, incarcerated and our veterans we continue to write and mentor these folks. Additionally I am a Chaplain for Mission M25 Network on Run For the Wall and for two military organizations. Between us my wife and I have two beautiful daughters 3 sons and 11 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.