Suff. Bishop Faulk's Golden Nuggets
My JESUS is Bon Appétit in the Wilderness
Praise the Lord, Grace & Peace great people of our “Great God”…JESUS!
Many of us in this blessed country, known as North America, have been urbanized to the extent that accessibility to food, clothing, and staple needs, can be obtained readily from various locations. Many times when I have experienced an exquisite cuisine, the menu is usually A’ la carte. When my food comes I usually like to say, “Bon Appétit,” a phrase, originally from the French, meaning “good appetite”, which is said to someone who is about to eat, also meaning “I hope you enjoy your food.” While studying Israel’s majestic journey through the wilderness, I could see figuratively in the (Manna) how Jesus feeds us today! Hence for this Golden Nugget I would like to provoke the thought “My JESUS is Bon Appétit in the Wilderness” My premise scriptures to provoke further gospel provocation are as follows:
Exo. 16:15 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.
Exo. 16:31 And the house of Israel called the name thereof Manna: and it was like coriander seed, white; and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey.
Exo. 16:35 And the children of Israel did eat manna forty years, until they came to a land inhabited; they did eat manna, until they came unto the borders of the land of Canaan.
Joh. 6:55-59 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live forever. These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum.
It is something else when we walk after the flesh! For as soon as Israel felt the pressure of hunger “they murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness.” They were no longer cognizant of the fact, that God had delivered them out of the hand of Pharaoh, because they said, “Ye have brought us forth into this wilderness.” And, again, in Ex. 17, ” the people murmured against Moses and said, Wherefore is this that thou hast brought us up out of Egypt to kill us, and our children, and our cattle with thirst?”
My brother and sisters there is nothing more dishonorable to God, than people who are not appreciative of what He has done for them! This manifests a complaining spirit that eventually rotten one’s core. The apostle Paul points to this Gentile corruption when he referenced it in Romans 1:21 “for when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful, they became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.” You better believe that a heart that ceases to retain a thankful spirit of God’s goodness, will quickly become dark and reprobate.
Thus Israel lost the sense of being in God’s hands; and this led, as might be expected, to thicker darkness. For we find them further on in their history, saying in Num. 14:3 “Wherefore has the Lord brought us into this land, to fall by the sword, that our wives and our children shall be a prey?
Our Lord was very merciful indeed! Regardless of the children of Israel’s melancholy progress in serving God, they still were recipients of His grace, by being provided for. Exo. 16:4 “Then said the Lord to Moses, Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you.”God did this even after they made the statement “Would to God we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the flesh-pots, and when we did eat bread to the full.” But the Lord counteracts that statement concerning their desire for earthly bread and rains down “bread from heaven. “Wow, what a blessed contrast! What an amazing difference between the flesh pots, the leeks, onions, and garlic of Egypt; compared to this heavenly manna…”angel food!” The former belonged to earth, but the latter was from heaven.
This heavenly food was deemed necessary to test Israel’s spiritual condition, for we read, “That I may prove them, whether they will walk in my law or not.” Hence the heart needed to be weaned from Egypt’s influences, and needed to be satisfied with “bread from heaven.” My brother and sisters it’s a fact that the flesh does not want anything prescribed by the Lord! Hence, they were not satisfied from it, and despised the Manna, for they called it “light food” and lusted for flesh! Wow, this is how some of us are today, the Lord delivers from world with a great and mighty hand, but the diet and palatable taste of the world still remains in us, especially when we refuse to walk in the ways of His word. For in Acts 7:39 It states “In their hearts they turned back again into Egypt.”And in Acts 7:43 “But, instead of getting back thither, they were, ultimately, carried away beyond Babylon.”
It is a fact that those who have been redeemed by the blood of Jesus Christ from this present world, and do not walk with God with a thankful heart, will be in danger of falling into the snare of Babylon’s influence in their wilderness experience. Hence, it demands a heavenly appetite that is palatable for the taste of bread from heaven. The natural man will never have an appetite for such food. It will always crave food from the menu of Egypt. It is our privilege, as those who have been baptized into Christ’s death, and “risen again through the faith of the operation of God,” to feed upon Christ as “the bread of life which came down from heaven.” For this is the required food for our wilderness experiences, which Jesus Christ administers, through the Holy Spirit and His Word. I praise God that this is served in such a rare portion, when we are journeying through our wilderness.
Now, it is obvious that, in order to enjoy such a rare portion as this, our hearts must be weaned from this present evil world, and the carnal mindset the natural man desires to maintain. Saints this Manna was so pure and delicate that it could not come in contact with the earth; for the word tells us in Num. 11:9“And when the dew fell upon the camp in the night, the manna fell upon it.”
That’s right my brothers and sisters it fell upon the dew, and had to be gathered early before the sun came up. Each person had to rise early and seek their daily portion. It is the same for us today, we must retrieve our food daily from Christ. Our heavenly Manna must be gathered fresh every morning. Yesterdays Manna will not do for today, nor today’s for tomorrow. GOLDEN NUGGET!
We must feed upon Christ every day, with great expectations in the Holy Spirit, if not, we will never grow. Moreover, we must make Christ our primary objective. We must seek Him “early,” before “other things” can take possession of our poor susceptible heart. Many of us fail in this. We give Christ a secondary place, and the consequences are, we are left feeble and barren. The enemy, who is watchful, takes advantage of our excessive spiritual indolence to rob us of the blessedness and strength which flows from feeding upon Christ. The new man in Christ Jesus, can only be nourished and sustained by Him. John 6:57 “As the living Father has sent me, and I live by the Father; so he that eats me, even he shall live by me.” The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, as the One who came down from heaven, to be His people’s food is ineffably precious to our renewed soul; but, in order to enjoy Him, we have to know beyond a shadow of a doubt, that when we are walking with God through the wilderness, we should be satisfied with the food that He provides.
My brothers and sisters “The old corn of the land of Canaan” after Israel crossed the Jordan river was a type of Christ, who has ascended up on high, and seated in glory. Now Jesus Christ is the proper food for all those who by faith, know that they have been raised up together and seated together with Him in the heavenlies, according to Eph. 2:6 “God hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:”
But this Manna, which is Christ, has come down from heaven for the people of God, to feed them in every dire situation. As we journey down here, we need a Christ who has also journeyed down here; and because He is seated in the heavenlies, so are we!
As a heaven born people, Israel was on their way to their birth place, to be sustained by food sent from heaven. Saints just like us, theirs was an upward and an onward course. It was utterly vain for them to look backwards in the direction of Egypt; because God’s glory was before them and not behind them!“They looked toward the wilderness, and behold the glory of the Lord appeared in the clouds.”
My brothers and sisters this Manna was strange sustenance, and was something that the Egyptians could not understand, appreciate, nor live upon; but those who had been “baptized in the cloud and in the sea,” could, if they walked consistently, knowing the significance of that baptism and the Manna. Hence, it is with all of us who are in Christ Jesus! The world cannot understand how we live. Our lives, which is sustained through Christ, lie entirely beyond the range of the natural man’s comprehension. Christ is our life.We feed, by faith, upon the powerful attractions according to Phil. 2:7,of one who, though being “God over all, blessed forever,” “took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men.” GOLDEN NUGGET!
We can trace Him from the bosom of the Father to the cross, and from the cross to the throne, and we find Him in every stage of His journey, and in every attitude of His life, to be the most precious food for our new man. Hence, that is why Egypt and everything around it morally, was a howling wilderness! Therefore, without the Manna to feed upon, it afforded them nothing to renew their spiritual strength and mind, in effort to progress toward a future in God.
It is truly deplorable to find a child of God solely seeking after the things of this world. It proves, very distinctly, that they are “loathing” the heavenly Manna, and esteeming it as “light food.” It was because of this they began to minister to the flesh, which was the main thing they should of been striving to mortify! Rom. 8:13 “For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.” Col. 3:5 “Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry:”
As in the natural, I love to exercise and workout. The more I exercise, it enhances my desire and appetite to put healthy foods into my body! Such it is in Grace, the more we renew our spiritual man, the more we have an appetite to feed upon Jesus Christ each day. It is one thing to know that we have life in Christ, and another to be in habitual communion with Him as we feed upon Him by faith; as we continue to make Him the exclusive food of our souls. My brothers and sisters many profess to have found pardon and peace in Jesus, but in reality, they are feeding upon a variety of things which have no connection with Him. They feed their minds with an overdose of social media, newspapers, and various frivolous and vapid literature of the day. My question to you is, will they find Christ there? Can Christ perpetually minister to our soul through the Holy Spirit by such instrumentality? Can these instruments be the pure dewdrops on which the heavenly manna descends for the sustenance of God’s people, while enduring our wilderness experiences? My answer is a resounding NO! Because these are the things which the natural man, and the carnal minded delight in.
Now we know by the teaching of God’s word, that we have two natures; and it may be asked, which of the two is it that feeds upon the world’s news and the world’s literature? If we sincerely desire to grow in the things of God, we will, without doubt, perpetually seek the things for nourishment that are designed of God to promote our spiritual growth. Saints this is plain. A person acts are always the truest index of his desires and purposes. Hence, if I find a professing child of God neglecting their Bible, while having an abundance of time; I am sure they cannot be spiritual due to divine malnutrition!
If an Israelite neglected to gather their daily portion of manna early in the morning, which was a divinely appointed food; they would lack strength deemed necessary for the journey.This is the same with us, we cannot perpetually feed upon our feelings and think that we are going to stay connected with Christ, because our feelings fluctuate, hence they cannot be a good source for our divine nourishment. Please note that our mindset should be Christ yesterday, Christ today, and Christ forever more. For He alone sustains us!
It is quite true that, by faith and in spirit and truth, we can feed upon a risen and gloried Christ, who has ascended up to heaven in virtue of accomplished redemption, which is prefigured by “the old corn of the land.” For when we read Joshua 5, we see that when the children of Israel crossed the Jordan, the wilderness food (Manna) ceased. But this will never be the case with Jesus Christ, for we are forever to feast on Him. It’s a fact that Moses brought Israel out of Egypt, Joshua brought Israel into the promise land, but only Jesus Christ can give all of us REST! GOLDEN NUGGET!
There is a great danger of the so called intellectuals’ attempt to outstrip the conscience, and the affections, which yearns for absolute truth. Yet it appears that so many who seem at first, to make such rapid progress up to a certain point; but they stop short and appear to retrograde. They are just like some of the Israelite’s, who gathered up more manna than the required portion of food for the day. They might of appeared to be accumulating the heavenly food far more diligently than others; yet every particle beyond the portion allotted for the day, was not only useless, but far worse than useless, because it “bred worms.” Thus it is with us, the church of the living God. We must use what we get. We must feed upon our Jesus for our actual needs, and these needs are revealed as we render actual service to Him. The character and ways of God, the preciousness and beauty of Christ, and the living depths of His Word, are only unfolded based on our fervent faith and need. For as we use what we receive, more will be given. I truly believe that the path for us as believers is a practical one that has to be walked out; yet, this is where so many of us come short. It has often been found that those who get to their destination rapidly in theory, are the slowest to actually arrive practically and experientially! The reason being is, the former is more intellectual, but the latter entails seeking God with spiritual consciousness with a pure heart. My brothers and sisters we must remain cognizant of the fact that this walk in Jesus Christ, is not a set of opinions, nor a system of dogmas, nor a number of outrageous views. It is preeminently a living reality which is personal, practical, and powerful in Jesus Christ! GOLDEN NUGGET!
This why Israel was never to forget the path which the Lord had afforded them, when they arrived in the land of milk and honey, about the food (Manna) that had sustained them during their forty years in the wilderness. Exo. 16:32-35 And Moses said, This is the thing which the LORD commandeth, Fill an omer of it to be kept for your generations; that they may see the bread wherewith I have fed you in the wilderness, when I brought you forth from the land of Egypt. And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a pot, and put an omer full of manna therein, and lay it up before the LORD, to be kept for your generations. As the LORD commanded Moses, so Aaron laid it up before the Testimony, to be kept. And the children of Israel did eat manna forty years, until they came to a land inhabited; they did eat manna, until they came unto the borders of the land of Canaan.
This memorial was to remind the people of the faithfulness of God! He did not allow them to die of hunger, as their foolish hearts had unbelievably anticipated. He rained bread from heaven for them, fed them with angel’s food, watched over them with all the tenderness of a nurse, carried them on eagle’s wings; and, if they would of continued based on the ground of the grace afforded them, He would have put them in eternal possession of all the promises made to their fathers. The pot of manna, therefore, was a man’s daily portion, and hence was laid up before the Lord, which furnished a serious volume of truth! There were no worms in that pot, nor was it tainted! It was the record of God’s faithfulness, of how He provided for those whom He had redeemed out of the hand of the enemy.
My brothers and sisters, as we feast on Jesus as our daily portion, our flesh and Satan will always strive to convince us that He is not enough! But please remember that when we go to a four or five star restaurant, the size of the portions are not significant! It is the unique preparation, and also the responsibility of the master chef, to make sure that the food is savory and unique to our taste buds! Let us always remember that Jesus is our (Manna) and hence it states in Psa. 23:5 “Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.” Let all of us embrace the fact that dining on Jesus Christ in the wilderness goes beyond any natural four or five star meal, and because many of us have had this experience in Him, let us continue to invite others to dine, by personally letting them know that “My JESUS is Bon Appétit in the Wilderness.” I pray that you stay full, as you have a “Jesus Day”