Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread
Matthew 6:26 “Behold the fowls of the air:
for they sow not, neither do they reap,
nor gather into barns;
yet your heavenly Father feedeth them.
Are ye not much better than they?”
God, our heavenly Father, is our provider.
When we say, ‘Give us this day. . .” we are asking for one day’s provision. Not the week, month, or year. Why? First – That’s all that we really need. Second – Because I thnk God was to hear from us and talk to us daily. We should seek His face, His glory, His gifts new every day, as His mercy toward us is new every day. He wants to commune with us as a course of habit. As part of your every day doings. Not as an afterthought or something to be done from time-to-time. It should be part of our very being.
Notice what it says, what we are asking for, “daily bread.” Do you really mean that? Is that really what you want? Or do you really mean fillet mignon, asparagus tips, new potatoes, champagne, and crème brulee. You are asking him to give to you what you need to survive that day. And he will, at the very least, do exactly that.
Exodus 16:9-18 9 “And Moses spake unto Aaron,
Say unto all the congregation of the children of Israel,
Come near before the LORD: for he hath heard your murmurings.
10 And it came to pass, as Aaron spake unto the whole
congregation of the children of Israel,
that they looked toward the wilderness, and, behold,
the glory of the LORD appeared in the cloud.
11 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
12 I have heard the murmurings of the children of Israel:
speak unto them, saying, At even ye shall eat flesh,
and in the morning ye shall be filled with bread;
and ye shall know that I [am] the LORD your God.
13 And it came to pass, that at even the quails came up,
and covered the camp: and in the morning the
dew lay round about the host.
14 And when the dew that lay was gone up, behold,
upon the face of the wilderness [there lay] a small round thing,
[as] small as the hoar frost on the ground.
15 And when the children of Israel saw [it],
they said one to another, It [is] manna: for they wist not what it [was].
And Moses said unto them, This [is] the bread
which the LORD hath given you to eat.
16 This [is] the thing which the LORD hath commanded,
Gather of it every man according to his eating,
an omer for every man, [according to] the number of your persons;
take ye every man for [them] which [are] in his tents.
17 And the children of Israel did so, and gathered,
some more, some less. 18 And when they did mete [it] with an omer,
he that gathered much had nothing over,
and he that gathered little had no lack;
they gathered every man according to his eating.”
God provided for the Children of Israel exactly what they needed day-to-day. He told them not to gather any more than that. They were supposed to trust Him every day to provide for them. He required faith. The only day that they gathered more was the day before the Sabbath, because no work was to be performed on that day. What they gathered for the Sabbath didn’t spoil or rot. God ensured that it was edible and nutritious.
It’s not just food. He provides for all our basic needs. Food, shelter, clothes, and water. Those are the necessities of life. The minimum we require in order to survive. Anything over and above that is a blessing. They are extras that might make life more comfortable, easier, or more enjoyable. But they can also be trappings that lure us away from our relationship with God.
God knows what you need and he knows what you want. He will provide for your necessities and may provide for your desires according to His will, which, as we discussed last time, is what is best for everyone involved and not just you or what you think is best.
Notice, however, that the Jews had to gather the manna and quail. There was some work involved. We know it was work because they were not to do these things on the Sabbath, on which day work was forbidden.
Things didn’t change in the New Testament.y
2 Timothy 3:8-10 “Neither did we eat any man’s bread for nought;
but wrought with labour and travail night and day,
that we might not be chargeable to any of you:
Not because we have not power,
but to make ourselves an ensample unto you to follow us.
For even when we were with you, this we commanded you,
that if any would not work, neither should he eat.
Paul told those under him who visited churches in the region that they were to be an example unto the people they ministered to. They couldn’t sit under a tree all day and watch the sand blow into dunes. They were supposed to be productive and contribute to society.
You can’t sit under a railroad trestle and ask God to drop food on your plate. I don’t believe that God rewards laziness. I do believe that he is merciful, however, and is certainly not beyond dropping a plate of food in front of you, but people seldom learn that way.
Matthew 10:28-31 “28 And fear not them which kill the body,
but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able
to destroy both soul and body in hell.
29 Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing?
and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father.
30 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
31 Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.”
Bad things are going to happen. We live in a fallen world. All of our experiences are not going to be pleasant. But God knows. He’s paying attention. He hasn’t forgotten about you. You, as a person, a very specifically created being, are more important that any other part of His creation. He notices everything.
Matthew 18:7 “7 Woe unto the world because of offences!
for it must needs be that offences come;
but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!”
These things must happen. We can’t prevent them. But God will take care of it. He will see to it that justice is delivered. In all of it, look to the Father. He will guide you through it all and comfort you during the difficult times.
I’ll leave you with this Psalm of David. He recognized God’s role in his life and took solace in God’s promises. Remember these things when life gets hard.
Psalms 121 “1 [[A Song of degrees.]] I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills,
from whence cometh my help. 2 My help [cometh] from the LORD,
which made heaven and earth. 3 He will not suffer thy foot to be moved:
he that keepeth thee will not slumber.
4 Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.
5 The LORD [is] thy keeper: the LORD [is] thy shade upon thy right hand.
6 The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night.
7 The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul.
8 The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth,
and even for evermore.”