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#1,397 – God’s Word is Our Sustenance (Deuteronomy 8:3)

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He humbled you and let you hunger and fed you with manna, which you did not know nor did your fathers know that he might make you know that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.
-Deuteronomy 8:3

What a great verse as God recounts, how he fed his people with manna, with bread from heaven, on a daily basis. And you remember the story from the wandering of God’s people how they longed for food, God provided them food from heaven every single day and it was sufficient for that day. They couldn’t keep it over for the next day, it would rot if they did. Instead, they needed to trust God every day to provide their daily bread. And God is recounting here in Deuteronomy chapter eight, verse three, he humbled you, he let you hunger, fed you with manna, which you didn’t know nor did your fathers know that he might make you know.

We find our satisfaction, strength, and sustenance in the Word of God.

So what was the point? What was God doing? He was teaching them that they don’t live by bread alone but that live by every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord. Think about that. God was teaching them. He could have fed them in so many other ways, but he fed them this way to teach them that they need his word to provide for their lives even more than they need food. Every single day, they need his word, it’s their daily bread. That’s what they live on. That’s their sustenance. And the same is true for you and me. Our sustenance is found in the word of God. And do we live like this? Do we wake up in the morning and think more important than breakfast is the word of God? More important than lunch, more important than dinner. Meditating on God’s word day and night, this is my daily bread. This is how we’re intended to live. And if we don’t live this way, if we neglect God’s word, if we look to anything, even the basic daily necessity of food, as more important than God’s word then we will miss the sustenance we need.

And so we pray, oh God, thank you for your word. It’s better than food. It’s more necessary than food. And we know food is necessary. We know our bodies will wither and die if they don’t have food. They will have no strength if we don’t have food. We won’t be able to do anything if we don’t have food to help us along. And yet we pray right now, God help us to realize that your word is far more important than food. That we will have no strength. And what really matters if we don’t meditate on your word, that we will wither and die spiritually in our lives, really in every way, our marriages, our families, our churches, we will wither and die if we don’t have your word, if we don’t feast on your word day and night. So God makes us people who feast on your word day and night. Who meditate on it. Who memorize it. Who study it. Who digest it. Who listened to it or learn from it and teach it and proclaim it.

God, we pray that your word would be the center of our lives. More than food on a daily basis. We pray that we would live day in and day out in total dependence on every word that comes from your mouth. And God, as we pray this we praise you for your word. It is good. It is satisfying. It is better than any meal we will eat today. We say we love your word and we pray that you would help our hunger for it to grow every single day. In Jesus’ name, we pray Deuteronomy chapter eight verse three. Amen.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and chairman of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.
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