This site uses cookies to provide you with more responsive and personalized service and to collect certain information about your use of the site.  You can change your cookie settings through your browser.  If you continue without changing your settings, you agree to our use of cookies.  See our Privacy Policy for more information.

Blessed Hunger Blessed Hunger

Blessed Hunger


Although the world produces enough food to feed the entire population, 815 million people go hungry each year. Famine, poverty, and war are key factors that contribute to world hunger. According to research from the United Nations, hunger kills more people each year than aids, malaria, and tuberculosis combined.

In view of these facts, it seems strange that Jesus would include poverty and hunger in His list of blessings in Matthew 5. Indeed, all the things Jesus says we are to count ourselves blessed to experience seem odd. It may take some of the edge off to consider that He is using figurative language, but even then we may wonder how spiritual poverty or emptiness can be considered good.

These descriptions provide us with a reality check. Jesus employs them to diagnose our true condition. It is a good thing to recognize our emptiness. The New Testament word used in these verses that is often translated “blessed” could be translated “happy,” but Jesus is using the word to speak of something that is more transcendent than what we usually mean by the word happiness. To be blessed means to be visited by God’s favor. This is the language of grace.

Only those who recognize that they bring nothing to God will be prepared to receive from Him. Those who know they are devoid of righteousness will mourn their lack and look to Christ to provide them with a righteousness that is “apart from the law” (Rom. 3:21). Those who hunger or thirst after God will turn to Jesus, so that they can “taste and see that the Lord is good” (Ps. 34:8). The grace of God in Christ not only fills us but also instills within us the desire to be filled.

Pray with Us

Ken Heulitt, chief financial officer, on behalf of everybody at Moody expresses gratitude to our donors for showing us God’s heart of love through their giving to MBI in 2018. He invites you to pray for God to continue His amazing provision in the new year.

BY Dr. John Koessler

John Koessler is Professor Emeritus of Applied Theology and Church Ministries at Moody Bible Institute. John authors the “Practical Theology” column for Today in the Word of which he is also a contributing writer and theological editor. An award-winning author, John’s newest title is When God is Silent: Let the Bible Teach You to Pray (Kirkdale). Prior to joining the Moody faculty, he served as a pastor of Valley Chapel in Green Valley, Illinois, for nine years. He and his wife, Jane, now enjoy living in a lakeside town in Michigan.

Find Daily Devotionals by Month