Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Hungering after righteousness

Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. (Matt 5:6,8)
I love to ask questions about the scriptures I read.

Some questions I have from these verses are “filled with what?” If we hunger and thirst after righteousness, what will we be filled with? I suppose the answer would be righteousness, because we get what we go searching for. Seek and ye shall find, right?

So now I have more questions. Once we are filled with righteousness, does that mean we will no longer be hungry for righteousness? Or will we be hungry for more? Maybe the answer lies in the metaphor that Christ uses, which is eating. Once we eat enough, we feel satisfied and comfortable and happy. Perhaps Christ implies that doing righteous things will satisfy our spirits like food satisfies our bodies, but perhaps like eating, the strongest feelings of satisfaction are temporary and have to be reinforced with more righteousness.

I know this is true, because I have felt this. When I have done something good, I have a very strong feeling of satisfaction for a while, but after a while I begin to want to do something good again. While I remember my previous satisfaction, the memory does not feed, just like memories of good food do not much help new hunger.

So if we go through life feeding our hunger for righteousness, that seems an awful lot like we’d become pure in heart. And Christ’s promise is that the pure in heart will see God. We are left to wonder whether it will happen in this life or the next. I hope it is this life.