Discover more from Heaven On Wheels
Man Does Not Live By Bread Alone
Deuteronomy 8:3 We need more than physical nourishment to truly live.
“He humbled you and let you be hungry, and fed you with manna which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that He might make you understand that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by everything that proceeds out of the mouth of the Lord.”
Deuteronomy 8:3 NASB1995
Deuteronomy is an Old Testament book recounting a series of speeches given to the Israelites by Moses on the Plains of Moab as they prepared to enter the Promised Land. Early in the book, Moses reminds the people of what happened over the past 40 years of wandering in the wilderness, serving as a refresher course to the Israelites on what has happened when they have strayed from God. Sadly, as we know from most of the books of the Old Testament, this training apparently didn’t make an impact…
In this verse, Moses describes how God tried to educate them. To begin with, God wanted the Israelites to show humility. We see throughout the Bible how God’s lessons usually start by humbling a person or group, and Moses is reminding the people how God did this by letting their food supplies run low.
About the time the grumbling and panic began in earnest, God started supplying the wanderers with manna, something they had never seen before. Moses reminds the people of this miracle in this verse, showing that they needed to depend on God totally for their sustenance without knowing how God created manna or how to make it themselves.
The next lesson is a factual statement from God via Moses — man shall not live by bread alone. Having enough to eat is just existing; we live by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.
Charles H. Spurgeon explained this in his beautiful style:
“You have never received spiritual life by your own feelings. It was when you believed God’s Word that you lived; and you will never get an increase of spiritual life, and grow in grace, by your own feelings or your own doings. It must still be by your believing the promises and feeding on the Word.”
“Oh, keep to the Word, my brothers! Keep to it as God’s Word, and as coming out of his mouth. Suck it down into your soul; you cannot have too much of it. Feed on it day and night, for thus will God make you to live the life that is life indeed.”
Now, you might be thinking that today’s verse sounds familiar, and it certainly is! Jesus used it to rebuke Satan during His time in the wilderness, when the enemy tried to tempt Him:
“Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He then became hungry. And the tempter came and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.’ ””
Matthew 4:1-4 NASB1995
A look around at many of our fellow citizens shows that most people — at least in this country — have more than enough physical nourishment. It is the spiritual sustenance provided by God’s Word that many are lacking.
Heaven On Wheels Daily Prayer:
Lord, thank You for the spiritual nourishment You provide to us through Your Word. It is only through studying Your Word daily that we begin to truly live rather than just exist. We offer our thanks to You not only for our daily bread, but for the sustaining wisdom each word of Scripture gives us. AMEN.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995, 2020 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. lockman.org.
Spurgeon, Charles Haddon "The New Park Street Pulpit" Volumes 1-6 and "The Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit" Volumes 7-63 (Pasadena, Texas: Pilgrim Publications, 1990)