If you read much about nutrition these days, you’re probably witnessing the continual debate over good versus bad carbohydrates and their effects on our physical wellness. I’ve learned that good carbs are natural, are not in processed foods, and have a high fiber content; where as bad carbs usually contain sugar and are often processed.

Man does not live by bread aloneEven though we should choose to eat good carbs to promote good health, the best carbs, when eaten exclusively, will not sustain physical well being. While it is good to consider proper nutrition, what is it that truly sustains us?

In Deuteronomy, Chapter 8, God is reminding His people that He alone is the true source of provision, the true source of life. In verse 3 the Bible points out that God chose to humble His people by allowing them to hunger in the dessert. Through His perfect provision of manna, God satisfied man’s hunger and created a greater dependence on Him.

Just as God provides for our physical needs, we also have spiritual needs that can only be satisfied by Almighty God. This is why the Bible teaches that man cannot live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of God. Even though physical food may satisfy and sustain us for the immediate future, God’s Word will always feed and sustain us. In other words, the power to sustain life does not come from the food we eat, but from a loving God who provided His Word to sustain us in every circumstance and situation (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

It should not be surprising to us that Jesus quoted Deuteronomy 8:3 when He was being tempted by Satan in the dessert (Matthew 4:4, Luke 4:4). We can all learn an important principle from the example He set for us: rather than giving in to the temporal, physical temptation, Jesus was able to stand firm by relying on the eternal truth of Scripture.

Sometimes by merely focusing on that which is important, yet temporal, we can miss the significance of that which is eternal. In the future, may we be reminded each time we eat a carb that “bread alone” cannot sustain us.