“I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever. This bread is my flesh which I will give for the life of the world.” (John 6:51)
The Word of God… there is nothing more awesome, perfect, powerful, life-giving, transforming, and divine! The Word of God is Truth, the Word of God is freedom, the Word of God is Life, the Word of God is Spirit, and the Word of God is Jesus!
“The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us.” (John 1:14)
I would like for you to consider what the Word of God represents to you. Does the Word of God define who you believe God to be, or would it require a completely different book to more accurately describe the god that you’ve “accepted into your heart?” Where do you go and what do you do when you want to connect to God — feel closer to Him and grow in His knowledge? Do you believe that simply attending church service and performing the rituals and traditions created by man will qualify as “earnestly seeking the Lord?” Do you believe that it is possible to “please the Lord” without earnestly seeking Him? (Heb. 11:6, Ps. 9:10) And do you believe that you can be earnestly seeking the Lord if you do not hunger for the very words that define who He is?
So, again, what does the Word of God represent to you? What I am asking is, regarding what serves as your food, does the Word of God serve as your main course, or does the Word of God simply serve as your dressing on the side? The reality is, what we believe in our heart determines whether or not we are included in Christ. The question is, can we truly believe the One true Gospel message in our heart and fail to hunger for the Word of God — the very source of our healing, peace, comfort, and contentment? I want to discuss how having a hunger for God’s Word, or a lack thereof, reveals what your heart truly believes. I would also like to address how the message being heard predominantly within the church today does not produce a hunger for that which has the power to give Life — the Word of God.
As generations pass, Christians are growing increasingly less and less hungry for the Word of God. Please consider this: There is a direct correlation between believing God and having a hunger for the Word of God. If you hear, accept, and believe the full message of Truth, you will hunger for God’s Word because you believe (and have come to know) that His Word is your Bread, your life-giving water, the source of your healing, freedom, and satisfaction; and living according to His Word is your salvation! However, if you hear, accept, and believe in a deceptive message, that message will not result in a hunger for God’s Word because deception will always claim that you can be included in Christ without wholeheartedly living on His Word.
I always enjoyed studying physics, and one of my favorite laws of nature is that for every force (action) there is an equal and opposite force (reaction). What’s fascinating is, this same law applies regarding the things of the Spirit as it does regarding the things of this world. For example, let us apply this law to Truth and deception. With every ounce of deception that is accepted as “truth” in your heart, an equal amount less of God’s Truth is believed in your heart. Again, with each additional bit of deception that is accepted in your heart as “truth,” some of God’s Truth must be rejected. We cannot believe BOTH to be true, one must take a back seat.
According to Jesus, eternal life is knowing God. (John 17:3) According to Jesus, those who will be included in His family are those who hear God’s Word (Truth) and put it to practice. (Luke 8:19-21) When it comes to being included in Christ, if we believe man’s word (often deception) over God’s Word (always Truth) regarding the cost of following Jesus then what value can God’s Word have to us? As our reliance on the words of man to serve as “truth” increases, our reliance on the Word of God to serve as Truth decreases. Therefore, as deception in the church message increases, a sincere hunger for the Word of God by those who accept that message decreases. As soon as you hear, accept, and believe in an alternate path to His kingdom, then the Way, and the Truth, and the Life (the Word of God — Jesus) can no longer have the same weight, importance, meaning, and value to your life. As a result, our “hunger” or reliance on His Word to serve as our satisfaction decreases.
The biggest challenge facing the church today is the overwhelming amount of deception being delivered from the pulpit. God wants us to live on His Word, and earnestly seek Him from there; the enemy wants to convince us that we have already heard enough of it to “believe” what is necessary to win Life. If we believe that our eternal salvation is secure simply due to a set of beliefs that we claim to hold (or because of something that we did), then we will no longer perceive the need to seek Him in His Word. As Christians grow less and less hungry for God’s Word, we become more and more ignorant of His Word. And as we grow more and more ignorant of God’s Word (Truth), we become more and more susceptible to deception; and where deception is accepted as “truth” in your heart, love for the Truth and obedience to God’s Word will be absent in your walk.
A genuine “love for the Truth” and a sincere hunger for the Word of God go hand in hand. You cannot have one without the other. If you truly believed that the Word of God (Truth) was your satisfaction, if you genuinely believed that the Word of God was the source of your healing, if you really believed that nothing else could bring you the comfort and joy that you desire to have, if you honestly believed that His Word was the instruction manual regarding how you are to live the life that you have committed to living, and if you sincerely believed that His Word provides the strength you need to persevere (keep His Word — remain in Him) till the end… How could you avoid living with an insatiable hunger for His Word? You could not! On the flip, if you did not truly believe all these things in your heart, then you will not hunger for His Word… And why would you?
Thus, if you accept the full message of Truth, then you will indeed hunger for the words of eternal life. (John 6:68) If you truly gave your life to God, and you wholeheartedly committed to living your life according to His will, you will hunger for the words that define how a servant of God must live! If, however, you do not believe that that type of commitment is necessary to receive the Lord’s Spirit, then you will not only lack a hunger for God’s Word, but you will also lack the power (His Spirit) to break the chains that bind as you continue seeking the things of this world for your satisfaction.
If what you have “accepted” in your heart was a deceptive message, then the Word of God will not serve as your Bread, your fuel, your living water. Of course, we may still say that it is, but a lack of hunger for His Word would reveal a disconnect between what we say out of our mouths and what God sees in our hearts. It is completely impossible for you to sincerely love the Truth (Jesus), but suggest that you are simply too busy to spend time with Truth (Jesus) in His Word. Being too busy never serves as an acceptable excuse for our lack of time spent with the things that we claim to love regarding the things of this world (wife, kids, friends, neighbors, the needy), why should we think that it will pass the sniff test regarding the things of the Spirit? You will always find time for that which you truly love, and you would most certainly find time for the One that you claim to be FIRST in your heart!
Why do some Christians hunger for God’s Word, and others do not?
We do not hunger for God’s Word simply because someone tells us that we should. We do not hunger for the Word of God simply because our pastor tells us to, nor do we acquire a sincere hunger for God’s Word due to a powerful motivational speech from someone that we admire. Believing that the Bible serves as a Book of wisdom for you to better live your life, will not result in you attaining a hunger for God’s Word. Believing that your salvation is “secure” simply because of what you believe, will not result in you attaining a hunger for God’s Word. Yes, salvation does indeed boil down to what you believe in your heart, but unless you believe God (believe that you must wholeheartedly live according to God’s Word) then all you “believe” is what the enemy wants you to believe — that there IS a WIDE GATE into God’s kingdom after all!
Keep in mind, any external motivation that serves as the reason for your seeking God in His Word will always feel legalistic to you. Earnestly seeking God in His Word is only defined as a “hunger for the Lord” when the source of your motivation comes intrinsically, from within your own heart. And without believing the Word of God to be THE source of your healing, freedom, comfort, and satisfaction, the only thing that Christians will “hunger” for are the things that the enemy convinces us are pleasing to God (attending church, worshipping according to human traditions rather than from the heart). We only have an insatiable hunger for God’s Word when we believe God — when we believe that His Word has the divine power (through His Spirit) to heal our hearts, break us free from the bondage of sin, and bring Life to our mortal bodies! The child of God hungers for God’s Word because His Spirit living in him/her requires spiritual food to grow/survive. Your hunger for God’s Word, or lack thereof, reveals a lot about what you really believe in your heart, much less whether His Spirit truly dwells in you.
Living in an age where it is socially accepted that we can no longer tell a boy who “identifies” as a girl that he actually is a boy (even when there is physical evidence to prove his true gender), it would be impossible to try and tell someone who identifies as a “Christian” that they have yet to understand the true cost of following Jesus (especially since God’s Spirit — the evidence– cannot be visually seen). So, rather than try and go that route I will suggest this… as our biological sex reveals what our true gender is, our hunger for the Word of God reveals who God’s children are. Is His Word your Bread? Is His Word your life-giving water? Is His Word the oil for your lamp — the source of His Spirit living in you? Or are you one of the many Christians who have zero hunger for His Word — claim that they do not need to eat to survive?
God desires that we live in, on, and through the entirety of His Word; Satan desires that we live in, on, and through a select few verses taken completely out of context. I get called the devil for what I write in my messages; but the interesting thing is, regardless of the particular topic of my messages, the point that I always try and make is that you should earnestly seek the Lord in His Word to find the Truth for yourself, rather than taking anyone else’s word for it. Would the devil want that? No! The devil wants you to believe that you already stand there with the crown of Life on your head regardless of whether you willfully and deliberately reject the commands of God or not.
How do you know what you believe in your heart?
What you believe in your heart should matter to all Christians, for your salvation completely depends upon what you believe from within there! The heart is where our “faith” is measured by God. While I might get most Christians to agree with that position, the sobering reality is that there may be no better way to assess where your heart really is with the Lord than by measuring how reading/studying the Word of God feels to you. Please follow this closely…
We know that what the Spirit desires and what the flesh desires are contrary to each other. “For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other so that you do not do whatever you want.” (Gal. 5:17) So what does that truth suggest for the one who does not crave the Word of God? There can be no better example of any one thing that can more accurately describe both what the Spirit hungers for, and what the flesh hates, more than the Word of God! What does the Spirit long for? The Word of God — Truth. What does the flesh hate? Truth — the Word of God! Thus, the Spirit loves what the flesh hates (Truth); and the flesh loves what the Spirit hates (sin).
If your mind is governed by the Spirit, there can be no doubt that you will hunger for the Word of God — His Word is your bread! If your mind is still governed by the flesh, there can be no doubt that reading/studying the Word of God would be dreadful to you! For the child of God, God’s Word is everything! If you are a child of God then God’s Word is Spirit; God’s Word is Life; God’s Word is your freedom from the bondage of sin; and God’s Word is your peace, joy, comfort, satisfaction, and contentment. If you are a child of God, God’s Word is your food — your Bread of Life! And if you understand God’s Word, then you know that God’s Word is Jesus.
“For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them.” (John 6:55-56)
There is no doubt that Jesus is referring to His Word in this passage of scripture. The point that Jesus is making is that if His Word (the Word of God) serves as our fuel, our lifeblood, our satisfaction, we will live. If we believe that His Word is living water, the only food that satisfies, if we earnestly seek our satisfaction from there then we will find Him, receive forgiveness, and experience the power of His Spirit to break us free from the bondage to sin. And if we continue to live off Him (feed on His Word — grow in His image), then we will remain in Him. If we do not continue to live off Him (feed on the world, lack perseverance), we will not remain in Him. Please read carefully… (John 15:1-11)
Christians: Do you hunger for the Word of God? Do you know the Truth? Do you love the Truth? Do you believe Truth or the gross perversion of the One true Gospel being taught today? If anything other than the Truth — the Word of God — serves as the foundation for the confidence that you have in your salvation, then your confidence is founded in Satan’s deception (myths of man) and your faith is futile.
What sets your heart at rest? His Word, or the beliefs, traditions, works, and rituals of your church/religion? If meeting God’s conditions from your heart serves as your confidence, you will be richly rewarded. If agreeing with the beliefs, and meeting the criteria, of your church serves as your confidence, then your heart will likely condemn you before the Lord. (1 John 3:19-24)
Here is the question that we should each consider: Is the Lord’s Spirit driving you to His Word, or are you allowing the spirit of this world to drive you away from Truth by attempting to bring comfort to your life of sin? Is His Word your Bread? If you went even one day without food, would you not be starved? Yet how many consecutive days can you go without feeding on His Word without experiencing any hunger pains whatsoever? Just as, “for out of the mouth flows what the heart is truly full of,” so too it is true that what we feed our heart reveals what our heart truly desires. What do you feed on, what does your heart crave? I do not ask this from a position of judgment, I ask this to encourage you to allow the Lord’s Spirit to lead you to repentance. Reject deception, be careful of the message you “accept.” Follow Jesus, seek His Truth!
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