“Pass the FoFo Please”

The Parables of Jesus

“Pass the FoFo, please.”

March 6, 2022

Luke 4:1-4; Matthew 4:1-4; Deuteronomy 8:3

When we’re very young, we come up with odd-sounding names for things. When my family gets together, we still laugh about two items in particular that I had odd designations for when I was a toddler.

The first item was my lore-lore. You could probably sit and look at that non-word for ten minutes and not know what I meant when I said, “Lore-lore.” It was my name for a toothbrush. To this day, I have no idea why I called my toothbrush lore-lore, but I did.

The second is even odder than the first. Fo-fo was my word for bread. Again, to this day, I have no idea where the non-word Fo-fo came from, but for me, it meant bread.

I think of my word for bread every once in a while, as I am a bread lover. Sliced bread, bagels, English muffins, biscuits, and especially homemade, I am a lover of bread. (I forgot to mention the bread at Carrabba’s Italian Grill that you dip in oil and spices, OM, to die for ūüėä.

Of course, we know what Jesus said to Satan while he was in the desert is true in life. Man cannot live by bread alone. Our bodies need vegetables, proteins, fruits, fats, and dairy products to keep going.

***********************************************

A portion of the Gospel reading for today, Sunday, March 6, is:

“Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted4:2 The Greek for tempted can also mean tested. by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them, he was hungry.

The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.”

Jesus answered,¬†“It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone.”

Luke4:1-4

Now, let’s compare this passage to a similar one from the Gospel of Matthew.

Matthew 4:1-4, “Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” But he answered, “It is written,

¬†“‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'” Matthew 4:1-4

It’s the same story, just from a slightly different perspective. Jesus had just been baptized by John the Baptist in the Jordan River. As scripture says, “The Holy Spirit came down upon Him like a dove.”

Immediately after this, the Spirit led Him into the desert for 40 days and nights. The passage written by Luke says He ate nothing during those days. Matthew’s passage says, Jesus fasted. So it could be interpreted as the same thing. Either way, Jesus would have been very hungry and very thirsty when Satan started bombarding Him with temptations.

The temptation we’ll talk about today, of course, is, “If you are¬†the Son of God, command¬†these stones to become loaves of bread.”¬†

But he answered,¬†“It is written,

“‘Man shall not live by bread alone,

but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'”

You’ll notice I used the Matthew passage rather than the one from Luke. The reason I did that is that Jesus adds something important to the quote that Luke doesn’t have.

“It is written,

 “‘Man shall not live by bread alone,

but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'”

Matthew’s addition is a direct quote from the book of Deuteronomy.

And he humbled you and let you hunger and fed you with manna, which you did¬†not¬†know, nor did your fathers¬†know, that he might make you¬†know¬†that¬†man¬†does¬†not¬†live¬†by¬†bread¬†alone, but¬†man¬†lives¬†by¬†every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.” Deuteronomy 8:3

Jesus is in prayer and fasting mode for forty days and nights. Then, when Jesus is tired and weak, the devil attacks. The devil said, Hey Jesus, if you’re really the Son of God, then make these rocks sitting on the ground into loaves of bread. But Jesus doesn’t take the bait; he looks Satan right in the eye and says, “Hey Beelzebub, you need to read your Bible. It says right there in Deuteronomy 8:3, “Man doesn’t live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.”

Neither Moses, who spoke the words in Deuteronomy, nor Jesus in the Matthew passage, says we don’t need bread (food). Instead, they both said we need more than bread (food); we need to listen to, learn, and hang on to every word that comes from God.

We all need to eat to keep our bodies healthy. We also need to work. We all need time with friends and family. But most of all, we need time to totally immerse ourselves in God’s Word. We need uninterrupted time to sit and the feet of God for prayer, studying His word, conversation, and adoration.

In reality, bread can be anything from eating to work to recreation. It’s everything the world has to offer. But remember this “bread.” Doesn’t last forever, nor does it satisfy us for a long time.

Let me leave you with this question to ponder today. What’s more important to you? The bread the world has to offer, or “The Bread of Life,” we receive from Jesus?

Dear Jesus. Help us not be seduced by the bread the world has to offer. Instead, help us to feed off the “Bread of Life,” God’s Word, Your redemptive act on the cross, and the Holy Spirit’s guidance and direction. Amen.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s