Today’s Reading: 1 Kings 17:8-16
Daily Lectionary: Malachi 2:1-3:5; Matthew 4:1-11
The jar of flour was not spent, neither did the jug of oil become empty, according to the word of the Lord that he spoke by Elijah. (1 Kings 17:16)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. When sinners are given an abundance, they become selfish. They want to receive far more than they need. In times of scarcity, things are different. When we have nothing, we become quite grateful when we receive only a little.
Thus, during a great drought, Elijah didn’t come to the widow expecting a great feast. He only asked for a morsel of bread (I Kings 17:11). He asked only for a few bites of food. The drought was so severe that even this was too great a request. The widow said she had enough flour and oil to make a small cake or two to feed herself and her son—their last meal. They planned to eat a few bites and then wait to die.
Our God is able to take something so small and insignificant and do great things with it. Elijah spoke a promise from the Lord. That Word of God attached itself to the flour and oil, thereby multiplying it, albeit in a way that was unseen. The widow saw a little flour and oil in small containers, but as she poured, the flour and oil just kept coming out! Thus, God saved Elijah, this widow, and her son!
We live in a land of plenty and rarely experience physical hunger. Thanks to the Spirit, we recognize that we lack righteousness, and so we hunger for it (Matthew 5:6). We come to God, believing that He can fill us. He puts into our mouths a morsel of bread, not even a mouthful. It seems rather insignificant, doesn’t it? Nevertheless, God can take something so small and insignificant and do great things with it.
The pastor speaks a promise from the Lord. The Word of God attaches itself to the bread. It doesn’t multiply, but it does become something far more than it once was. Although it remains hidden to our eyes, the bread becomes the very Body of our Lord—yes, that same body that was nailed to the Cross. The bread isn’t enough to fill up our bodies, but the Body of our Lord does indeed satisfy the soul. For as we receive the Lord’s Supper, we are given the forgiveness of sins, life, and salvation! In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
O living Bread from heaven, How well You feed Your guest! The gifts that You have given Have filled my heart with rest. Oh, wondrous food of blessing, Oh, cup that heals our woes! My heart, this gift possessing, With praises overflows. (“O Living Bread from Heaven” LSB 642, st.1)
-Pastor Alexander Lange is pastor of Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Albany, Oregon.
Audio Reflections Speaker: Rev. Duane Bamsch
Study Christ’s words on the cross to see how you can show more Christlike grace in your life. Perfect for group or individual study, each chapter has a Q&A at the end, and the back of the book includes a leader guide. Available now from Concordia Publishing House.