Blessed are They who Hunger and Thirst for Righteousness

Hungry-ThirstyDate written: June 11th, 2005

SUBJECT: Attitudes

TITLE: Beatitudes – Blessed Are They That Hunger and Thirst After Righteousness

PROPOSITION: In this beatitude we find 1) A desire. 2) The object of that desire. 3) The satisfying of that desire.

OBJECTIVE: Each one should be able to state what it means to hunger and thirst after righteousness and how that relates to being filled.

AIM: To help all have a better understanding of the beatitudes.


1. Read: Matthew 5:3-10

2. About the Text:

1) This passage begins the famous Sermon On the Mount.

2) This sermon speaks concerning the character of those who will be in the kingdom of God.

3) All who would be citizens of God’s kingdom should study and understand the contents of this great sermon.

3. The beatitudes

1) In this sermon, we are going to focus upon the first part of the sermon, know as the beatitudes.

2) Each beatitude has a particular form. There is in each one…

a. A declaration of blessing.

b. A description of attitude.

c. A disposition of blessing.

3) Each beatitude begins with the declaration of blessing.

a. The word for “blessing” in Greek is MARKARIOS.

b. The word contains idea of blessedness and contentment.

4) There is then the description of the attitude.

a. Here is why these are called the “beatitudes.”

b. We are attitudes that describe who we are to be.

5) Then there is the disposition of blessing.

a. This is the actual blessing itself and the reason for the happiness.

b. This is also what we can expect will result from having the attitude described.

4. Ref. to S, T, P, O, and A.


I.   A Desire – Hunger and Thirst

1. The desire of hunger.

1) We all know what it means to be physically hungry.

a. The desire of hunger is to eat food.

b. Most eat three times a day.

c. Hunger drives us to eat those meals regularly.

d. The body needs fuel or it will starve and die.

e. So there are built in mechanisms to make sure that we physically desire food.

2) But this is a spiritual desire.

a. The desire of this hunger is spiritual food.

b. Do we eat spiritually with the same regularity as we eat physically?

c. Does our spiritual hunger drive us to Jesus?

3) Read John 6:32-58

2. The desire of thirst.

1) We all know what it means to be thirsty.

a. At its most basic level it is to drink water.

b. We’re supposed to drink eight 8 oz glasses of water per day to satisfy our needs.

c. When we’re thirsty, there’s nothing like a good cool glass of water.

d. The body will die within days if it doesn’t have water.

2) This too is a spiritual desire.

a. The desire of this thirst is spiritual drink.

b. Do we drink from the water of life as often as we do physically?

c. Does our spiritual thirst drive us to God?

3) Read John 4:5-15

3. What happens if we don’t eat and drink spiritually?

1) We get weak.

2) We get sick.

3) We die.

a. The prodigal son was dead (Luke 15:24).

b. Those who live in pleasure are dead while they live (1 Timothy 5:6).

II.  The Object of that Desire – Righteousness

1. This righteousness is not of man.

1) Isaiah 64:6 “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.”

2) Matthew 5:20 “For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.”

3) Philippians 3:8-10 “Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death.”

2. This righteousness is from God, by faith, and found in the gospel.

1) Romans 10:1-4 – must submit to the righteousness of God.

2) Philippians 3:9 – this righteousness is by faith.

3) Romans 1:16,17 – this righteousness is in the gospel.

3. This righteousness must be sought first in our lives.

1) Matthew 6:33 – must seek it first.

2) It is something that we must do to be pleasing to God. 1 John 3:7 “Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous.”

4. Hungering and thirsting after righteousness means to satisfy the daily desire that we ought to have as Christians to ….

1) Know God’s word.

2) Live God’s word.

III. The Satisfying of that Desire – to be filled!

1. The Bible has what we need to eat and drink.

1) The Bible contains milk – 1 Peter 2:2 “desire the sincere milk of the word.”

2) The Bible contains meat – Hebrews 5:14 “But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.”

3) We need both to be spiritually strong and healthy.

2. God has given us an “all you can eat” buffet of righteousness in his word.

1) There is enough challenge in this life to constantly desire spiritual food.

a. We’re exhorted to examine and try ourselves – 2 Corinthians 13:5

b. We need to do this on a daily basis – Luke 9:23 “And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.”

2) There is enough teaching in the Bible to last one a lifetime.

a. Lamentations 3:22-24 “The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. ‘The LORD is my portion,’ says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” (ESV)

b. 2 Timothy 3:15 “Study/Give diligence . . . .”

3. Will we eat of that which God has freely given?

1) Here is where we can satisfy our desire.

2) By learning what we need to know to please God.

3) By making application of those things that we learn.

4) We must be doers of the word and not hearers only (James 1:22-25).

4. We can be spiritually healthy, or spiritually anorexic. What is our choice?


1. Let us recognize the need for this great beatitude.

1) The desire to be spiritually hungry and thirsty.

2) The great object of that desire – righteousness.

3) The way we can satisfy that desire – by learning and applying God’s will to our life.

2. Invitation

1) Jesus has the bread of life and the living water.

2) Revelation 22:17 “And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.”