“How sweet are your words to my taste
sweeter than honey to my mouth!”
Psalm 119:103 (NIV)
It’s interesting to notice how often in the Bible the Word of God is likened to food. For example:
“When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight…” (Jeremiah 15:16). “Son of man, eat what is before you, eat this scroll; then go and speak to the people of Israel.” (Ezekiel 3:1). “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.” (1 Peter 2:2-3)
What food is to the physical life, the Bible is to the spiritual life, and from that analogy we can draw a number of simple but important lessons.
- We need regular meals
A person who neglects his food ultimately endangers his physical health, and in extreme cases this can lead to anorexia. Similarly a person who neglects feeding on the Word of God will be malnourished and suffer spiritually. Are you feeding regularly on God’s Word? Is your intake regular and sufficient to keep you spiritually healthy? Job demonstrates the attitude to have in Job 23:12: “I have treasured the words of [God’s] mouth more than my daily bread.”
- We need a balanced diet
We know that vitamins, proteins, carbohydrates, minerals, and other components of food are vital in sustaining and strengthening body tissues, blood, bone and muscle. In spiritual nourishment, the same principle holds true. The Bible contains history, biography, poetry, prophecy, philosophy, theology and practical ways to live. It was written by different people who came from different countries and cultures, lived at different times, spoke different languages, and yet all has divine authority, as all Scripture is ‘God-breathed’ (2Timothy 3:16). The result is a larder full of fascinating food that “is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (Verses 16-17)
- We need good digestion
To benefit fully from food we need not just to eat, but to chew thoroughly allowing a more efficient break down of the food by enzymes, and thereby aiding the digestive process. Many stomach and bowel disorders are the result of poor digestion. The spiritual parallel is just glancing at a Bible passage and then hurriedly rushing on to something else. To avoid indigestion we need to read the Bible to get the facts, study to get the meaning and meditate to slowly get the benefit of it. We should “thrill to God’s Word” and “chew on Scripture day and night”(Psalm 1:2 The Message).
As we allow the Word of God to flow through and strengthen our bodies it will be expressed in the way we live. Bon appétit.
Father, let me taste of you through your Word, let me experience how sweet you are, and may the meditations of my heart be pleasing in your sight.
Study by Barry Robinson
About the Author:
Barry Robinson is an Elder in and pastoral worker in the Greater London area, particularly the Camberwell and North London congregations of the Worldwide Church of God UK.
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