Whose voice are you listening to? We’re reminded in today’s scripture that only by the words of the Living God can we truly live, for it’s our spiritual bread sustaining us body, soul and spirit. Today’s scripture is in the context of Jesus’ baptism recorded in the previous chapter, when God the Father spoke from Heaven stating “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased” – confirming His identity. However, now, in the time of Jesus’ temptation – the tempter immediately challenges God’s Word and Jesus’ identity. In the same way, when God speaks to us, the enemy challenges what God has said to us, trying to sow seeds of doubt and challenging our identity in Christ.
Jesus instantly defeated the enemy with the Word of God, because He knew who He was, and was not deceived into obeying the enemy by turning the stones into bread. We too, need to know who we are in Christ, and not allow the subtlety of anything that challenges the Word of God to infiltrate our minds and hearts.
Jesus also makes it clear that the bread which feeds our natural man alone is not sufficient for us to live by. God’s word is instantly life-giving, bringing hope, restoration, healing and peace. It’s vibrant, instructional, directional, full of wisdom, and totally trustworthy and dependable. Encased in it is our protection, for if we heed the word of the living God, we remain in safety and instantly disintegrate the plans and strategy of the enemy.
In John 21, Jesus’ words brought hope and restoration to a dejected Peter. Peter was in the depths of despair, having viewed his own heart after so publicly denying his Lord and Saviour. He’d escaped back into his comfort zone of fishing, doing what he knew best. But Jesus had more to teach him, and He displayed God’s grace and love towards Peter. He didn’t gloat over Peter’s mistakes, and He doesn’t gloat over ours. As soon as we return with penitent heart, He covers our mistakes and restores us, and what the enemy means for bad, God means for good. Jesus restored him after asking him three times “Peter, do you love me?” by giving him his next assignment, “Feed my lambs” and “Feed my sheep”.
By nature of the fact that we’re human beings, we won’t get everything right all the time. God, our loving Heavenly Father desires to restore us. Nothing restores like God’s word.
When Jesus said “Feed my sheep” to Peter, He was clearly not referring to physical, but spiritual food, and indicating that Peter’s next assignment was to bring the living word of God to others so they too could be sustained with the word of life.
We live in a day of misinformation – but one word from Jesus stilled the elements and will do so in our own personal lives. This word which is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, is our life source. Jesus Himself declared “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock” (Matthew 7:24).
May I encourage you today to stay in the bible, for it is God’s matchless Word. Read it, listen to it, and more importantly, obey it. For in it is the preservation of our very life.
Prayer: Dear Lord, thank You for Your precious living word which sustains, protects and directs our lives. Help us to listen to it, adhere to it, obey it and live by it for the words You speak to us “are spirit and they are life”.
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