A LIFE IN THE WILDERNESS
How can we make a living in the wilderness? The answer to this question is found in the case of Jesus’ feeding 5,000 people with five loaves and two fishes (Matt. 14:19-21). John used the same case to indicate that Christ is the bread of life (John 6). Matthew, however, used this case in a different way, showing how the Lord can afford us a living in the wilderness. If you simply follow Him, He can provide you a living. As we preached the gospel in the Far East, sometimes the unbelievers would ask us, "Can Jesus take care of my eating? Will Jesus always afford something for my living?" Many times the unbelievers asked us these questions, and we dared not answer them. But I can tell you, the kingdom people, that the Lord Jesus truly provides us a living.
In Matthew 6:33 the Lord Jesus said that if we seek the kingdom first, everything we need will be added to us. While all the religious and political people are busy earning a living, the kingdom people follow the Lord Jesus in the wilderness. Even the disciples had a natural thought concerning their living. They recognized the need of the people, and advised the Lord Jesus to disperse them into the villages to purchase something to eat. Actually, eating here refers to the entire realm of making a living. The Lord Jesus answered, "They do not need to go away; you give them something to eat" (Matt. 14:16). We are all familiar with what happened. With only five loaves and two fishes the Lord Jesus fed the entire multitude. This case shows us a principle: the kingdom people who are following the Lord Jesus must realize that their living is not based upon their doing or working, but upon His caring. The Lord Jesus cares for their living.
As you read this, you may be asking, "Should we all give up our jobs and simply follow the Lord?" If you could do this, it would be wonderful. But as we discover later in the Epistles, we should still keep our jobs. However, we should not put our trust in our jobs for our living. We should never allow our jobs to frustrate us from following the Lord. Following Him and seeking the kingdom must be first, and all we need will be added to us. Eventually, the thousands of people who followed the Lord Jesus into the wilderness had something to eat. This is living by faith. The kingdom people live by faith, and they live in the wilderness. Today the Lord and His kingdom are still rejected by religion and politics. Therefore, we must follow the Lord Jesus by going to Him in the wilderness. Following Him must be our consuming desire. Don’t be anxious about your education, profession, or job. Do not worry about your living. If you follow Him, He will care for your living.
(The Kingdom, Chapter 24, by Witness Lee)