Devotional Readings

The Staff of Life

But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. (Matthew 4:4)

Bread, the staff of life, represents food and everything that man needs for physical life–even the land on which the food grows. Leo Tolstoy tells of a land-hungry man who went to a distant country where, for a thousand rubles, he was offered all the land he could walk around in a day. He was to put his money down on a certain spot and then walk until sunset. When he returned to the money all the land enclosed by his footsteps would be his. So the man started walking fast, then he ran, hurrying with all his strength. After great exertion he returned to the point of departure just as the sun was setting, but the task had been too great for him. He fell dead where he had started. Then all he could claim was a plot of ground six by three feet.

Our heavenly Father knows that we have need of bread. He knows also that we cannot “live by bread alone.” We have a spiritual hunger that can never be satisfied with material things. Jesus said, “A man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth” (Luke 12:15). He also said, “I am the bread of life” (John 6:35). “Give us this day our daily bread” is a prayer to be daily prayed and daily answered. “Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart” (Jeremiah 15:16).

Break Thou the bread of life, dear Lord, to me,
As Thou didst break the loaves beside the sea;
Beyond the sacred page, I seek Thee, Lord;
My spirit pants for Thee,O living Word!”

MEDITATION PRAYER: “Thy word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it.” (Psalm 119:140)


from The Promises of God
H.M.S. Richards | Review & Herald (2004)
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