Thursday, September 27, 2012

Eat and be Satisfied

Luke 9:10-17 (ESV)
On their return the apostles told him all that they had done. And he took them and withdrew apart to a town called Bethsaida. [11] When the crowds learned it, they followed him, and he welcomed them and spoke to them of the kingdom of God and cured those who had need of healing. [12] Now the day began to wear away, and the twelve came and said to him, "Send the crowd away to go into the surrounding villages and countryside to find lodging and get provisions, for we are here in a desolate place." [13] But he said to them, "You give them something to eat." They said, "We have no more than five loaves and two fish—unless we are to go and buy food for all these people." [14] For there were about five thousand men. And he said to his disciples, "Have them sit down in groups of about fifty each." [15] And they did so, and had them all sit down. [16] And taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven and said a blessing over them. Then he broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples to set before the crowd. [17] And they all ate and were satisfied. And what was left over was picked up, twelve baskets of broken pieces.

And they all ate and were satisfied. And what was left over was picked up, twelve baskets of broken pieces. The language surrounding this episode does not accidentally evoke the Lord’s Supper. This is a miracle, more than just some act of wonder and astonishment, it is meant to point to larger things. They all ate and were satisfied, Israel represented by twelve baskets of leftovers was satisfied.
We have a hunger. Sometimes I think the hunger is so common to us we don’t even realize we have it. We are too weak to feel the pains. We don’t even know how insatiable our hunger is. We hunger for righteousness, and in pursuing it we eat a diet of works. They do not satisfy. They just make us more hungry, we constantly try to feed the hunger. But our works are not righteous, so they do not satisfy. Jesus satisfies the hunger. He shows us where to go to eat and be satisfied. The bread of life that has come down from heaven, in eating the bread he gives, we eat his body given for you. There we receive righteousness. There we are forgiven. There we are satisfied.

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