Thus far in our abbreviated study of the beatitudes, we have noted that the characteristics of the blessed life involve traits that come from within: poverty of spirit, sorrow over sin, and meekness. The next trait in the Lord’s list involves an internal component that necessitates a look outward.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
Hunger and thirst are powerful feelings. They can occupy your mind to such a degree that you can’t focus on anything else. They can be all-consuming. But it’s not a hunger for food or a thirst for water that Jesus sanctifies here. It is a hunger and a thirst for something far more satisfying: righteousness.
How is your spiritual hunger? Do you crave God’s justification? Can you describe your desire for God as did the writers of the Psalms?
O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.
As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for you, O God.
In order to be truly satisfied and experience a life that is blessed beyond measure, one cannot ignore his spiritual needs. To the contrary, he must long for spiritual satisfaction as much as he longs each day for food and drink. Job once said, “I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my necessary food” (Job 23:12).
Can you say the same?