Summary: An 8 Week sermon sermon series on the attitude we are to possess as children of God.
Be-Attitudes January 29, 2006
Hunger and Thirst for Righteousness
Trans: We’re in a series focusing on the (8) attitudes Jesus said in the Sermon on the Mount we’re to have as His disciples. Each of these attitudes determines our altitude. They testify to our disposition and determination in life. Jesus offered these beatitudes to remind us that God isn’t focused on man’s outward performance like going to church, giving, or being good, rather He is concerned w/ what is on the inside.
Verse: For God does not see as man sees. For man looks on the outward appearance, but Jehovah looks on the heart. 1 Sm. 16:7
Note: The first (3) beatitudes we’ve studied had a negative tone to them calling believers to forsake the evils that are contrary to the kingdom. In being poor in spirit we’re to turn from being self-seeking. In mourning we’re to turn from self-satisfaction. In meekness we’re to turn from being self-serving.
Trans: But in this 4th attitude, Jesus uses a positive metaphor we can all relate to b/c the desire for food and water are the strongest cravings we have. Thus, as we turn from sin, self, and smugness, God gives us an insatiable desire for His righteousness.
Verse: Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
Trans: What is Jesus saying? To hunger and thirst embody the necessities of physical life. But Jesus isn’t focusing on the physical He’s focusing on the eternal. His analogy reveals that righteousness is required for spiritual life just as food/water is necessary for physical life – it’s not optional. We can no more live spiritually w/out righteousness than we can live physically w/out food or water.
Insert: Did you know the body is comprised of 70% water. Water is contained in the cells of the body (intracellular fluid), in the arteries and veins (blood plasma), and in the spaces b/w the blood vessels and cells (interstitial fluid). Moreover, the body’s water supply is involved in nearly every bodily function – digestion, absorption, circulation, and excretion. When we eat, breathe, and use our muscles, our body’s water supply is engaged. Thus, to become dehydrated is to lead your body to fail.
• 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated
• 37% of Americans mistake their thirst mechanism for hunger pains
• Mild dehydration can slow down your metabolism as much as 5%
• A lack of water is the number 1 trigger of daytime fatigue
• Just a 2% drop in body water can trigger fuzzy short-term memory and vision
Note: To overcome dehydration, in a day, you should drink a ½ ounce of water for every pound of body weight – 2/3 of an ounce if you’re active.
Point: W/out the proper intake of water, your body will suffer greatly – and the same could be said of your spiritual life if you do not have a proper intake of righteousness.
I The CONDITION
Word: Hunger (peinōntes) Refers to the desperate craving a starving man has for food. He is so famished that he becomes desperate for a meal – willing do anything to eat.
Word: Thirst (dipsao) means to painfully feel the need for water. This is more than just needing a sip, it means to be parched and dehydrated to the point of pain and death.
Word: Righteousness (dikaiosunēn) state of rightness – to be in right relationship w/ God.
Insert: Legal Justification; declared righteous by God and in a right relationship w/ Him
Moral Possessing a righteous character and conduct that pleases God
Social Living responsibly so as to exhibit the character of God
Note: As Christians, we’re not to be like the world, engrossed in the pursuit of pleasure, pride, power, prestige, & possessions – rather we’re to seek first the God’s kingdom.
Note: As we look to make a change for the eternal, it’ll require a hunger and thirst for righteousness – more of Jesus, less of me. – He must increase and I must decrease.
Note: This isn’t easy. We’re the product of our appetites. We are what we eat. The things of the world are intoxicating to the taste buds even while they’re poison to the soul.
Insert: We need the righteousness of God to feed our souls just like we need food to feed our flesh. The problem today is that there is a famine in the church and in the lives of people who call themselves Christians. We have allowed the toxins of the world to dictate the programs of the ministry and we’ve settled for entertainment over discipleship. We think going to church makes us Christian and attending a Beth Moore Bible study makes us a disciple – but they don’t. The measure of a disciple is determined by who is in control. And a disciple is under the influence of Jesus.