Probably most of us had an abundance of food on our Thanksgiving table and we likely ate more than usual and, like the turkey, were “stuffed.” When there are so many good things to try, it’s hard not to feel like you are “full and running over”–and then, of course, you add some yummy desserts that you can’t resist! About all you can say after that is “uff da!” (A Norwegian expression for almost any occasion when you are a bit overwhelmed by the situation–like eating too much!)
As we sat before an abundance of food with the added blessing of fellowship with Christian friends, I couldn’t help but think of how God is a God of abundance who showers us with blessings beyond measure. Scripture is full of examples and expressions of God’s “fullness” in both character and provision. Paul tells us that “It was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him (Jesus Christ)…For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form, and in Him you have been made complete…” (Col. 1:19; 2:9,10). God “has bless us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ” (Eph. 1:3). When Paul prayed for the believers at Ephesus, he prayed: “That the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe…And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all” (Eph. 1:18-23).
We have many examples in Scripture of how God provides in abundance. When approximately two million Israelites were in need of water, God had Moses strike the rock and enough water poured forth for all of them to drink (and I’m sure for their livestock as well)…Ex. 17:6. NOTE: the rock symbolized Christ…
(I Cor. 10:4). When they complained about the lack of meat, God provided enough quail that each person gathered at least ten homers (Nu. 11:32). One homer is equal to 11 bushels and a bushel is 8 gallons, so each gathered at least 880 gallons of meat!.
David spoke of the LORD (Jehovah) as his shepherd who “anointed my head with oil; my cup overflows” (Psa. 23:5).
When Jesus attended the wedding in Cana of Galilee, the host ran out of wine (weddings would last about a week). When Jesus mother asked Him to do something, He had them fill six twenty-gallon water pots with water. He turned the water into some 120 gallons of wine which was better than what the host had been serving (Jn. 2:1-11).
When Jesus fed the 5,000 men (plus women and children) with the boy’s lunch of 5 barley loaves and two fish, there was plenty for all to eat plus 12 baskets of leftovers (Jn. 6:1-14)!
On one occasion Peter and his fishing partners (Andrew, James and John) had been fishing all night and caught nothing. Jesus told them to go out into the deep part of the Sea of Galilee and cast out their nets. “When they had done this, they enclosed a great quantity of fish; and their nets began to break; and they signaled to their partners in the other boat, for them to come and help them. And they came, and filled both of the boats, so that they began to sink” (Lk. 5:6,7).
The point is, when God supplies He does so abundantly. That applies not only to His material blessings, but to spiritual as well, as we saw in Eph. 1:3. Jesus said, “I came that they might have life, and might have it abundantly (full and overflowing)” (Jn. 10:10). (Abundantly means “beyond measure; superabundant in quantity or superior in quality.”) Jesus said, “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full” (Jn. 15:11). Paul prayed for the Roman believers: “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Ro. 15:13). John, in his gospel, wrote: “For of His fullness we have all received, and grace upon grace” (Jn. 1:16). Paul too spoke of His abundant grace: “For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ…where sin increased, grace abounded all the more” (Ro. 5:17,20).
Praise God for His “fullness” and for blessing us beyond measure to where our “cup is full and running over”!