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The Sermon on the Mount
Matthew Chapter 6
Charity . . . Matthew 6:1-4
Chapter 6 deals with the external part of religion. In chapter 5, Jesus speaks of the righteousness which His subjects must POSSESS. It must be a righteousness to exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, and that comes only through faith in Christ. Chapter 6 talks about the righteousness that the subjects of the Kingdom are to PRACTICE. Your motive is the important thing in what you do for God in His eyes. No third party can ever enter into this relationship. The things discussed in this chapter are strictly between your soul and God: giving of alms, prayer, fasting, money, and thought and concern for the future . . . are all very personal. All of these have to do with the external side of religion or with the outward display of religion. First, our Lord talks about alms (charity, donations, offerings, gifts, good will).
Matthew 6:1 Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. (KJV) Your alms could easily be translated here as your righteousness. The external rule for both is almost the same, although internal implication is in favor of "righteousness." Before men, to be seen of them means that it is your intention of making sure others see your good deeds.
True, Jesus does require that we let our light so shine before men that they might see their good works, and glorify their Father which is in heaven (Mat.5:16). But this does NOT mean that we should exhibit any of our righteousnesses for SELF glorification. In fact, if we let our light so shine, we will never make a big deal of giving of our alms, otherwise we have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. When all that we do is done for God . . . to glorify HIM, not us, He will take care of any recognition we should have. BUT, if we do alms solely as a big show to impress those around us, God will not have any part of it. He will be greatly displeased with us! God accepts only what is done to glorify Him.
Matthew 6:2 Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. (KJV) This should be taken as an illustration. We should NEVER broadcast or advertise what we do for the poor. Anything that we do, should be never be advertised to the world, be it almsgiving, prayer, or fasting. It is to be done quietly, between you and God. NO one else has any reason to know about it. It is the great object of this sermon to understand that righteousness of which the Lord says, "Except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven" (Mat.5:20). To "do" this righteousness, was an old and well-understood expression. "Blessed is he that doeth righteousness at all times" (Psalm 106:3). It refers to the working of righteousness in our life . . . the outgoings of a gracious nature, of which our Lord said to His disciples, "Herein is My Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be My disciples" (John 15:8).
As the hypocrites do . . . Hypocrites are play actors, someone who acts a part, and means one who either pretends to be what he is not (as here), or conceals what he really is (as in Luke 12:1-2). In the synagogues and in the streets . . . both religious and worldly places. That they may have glory of men . . . me, me, me! See what I did!
Verily I say unto you . . . This is the Lawgiver and Judge Himself that is speaking to us. Are you paying attention? Is it hitting a nerve? They have their reward . . . If all a person wants is human applause and glory when they do something good, they may get it . . . BUT, that’s ALL they will ever get! It shall be nothing from God! Jesus is saying this with biting irony. Our Lord certainly knew how to use the sword of sarcasm!
When the Pharisees wanted to give something to the poor, it was their custom to go down to a busy street corner in Jerusalem and blow a trumpet. Although the purpose behind it was good, to call the poor and needy to receive gifts, it was a great time to let others see their good works. Do you see parallels today in the way some Christians give?
Scripture teaches that entrance into God's Kingdom, whether in its present (in the heart), or future (literal) stage, depends, not on the degree of our excellence in anything, but only on our having the character which God demands. Our righteousness must be in direct contrast with the outward and formal righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees. It must be inward, vital, spiritual . . . from the heart!
Matthew 6:3 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: (KJV) When you help any one in need, do it so that even your closest friend will not know about it. Don’t reach in your pocket with one hand and then wave the other hand in the air to let people know how much you are giving! Our Lord is saying that when you put your hand in your pocket to get something to give, be so secretive about it that the other hand doesn’t know what you are doing. All of this is biting sarcasm. I have heard people say that they live by the Sermon on the Mount. My friend, there is NO one who can do that! NO one! There is so much in this discourse that just blows my mind! It simply reveals to me just how far that we all fall short of our Lord’s teaching. Lord, help me to be the person You want me to be.
Matthew 6:4 That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly. (KJV) Give your gifts in secret, and your Father, who knows all secrets, will reward you. Luke 14:13 But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind: (KJV) How many people ask someone less fortunate to share a meal with them and their family? Not many!
1 Tim. 6:18 That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; (KJV) Those who have money should be generous, but they must not be arrogant just because they have a lot to give. They must never put their hope in their money instead of the living God for their security. Even if a person does not have material wealth, they can be rich in good deeds. No matter how poor a person is in the world’s eyes, they have something to share with someone. We must be ready to communicate . . . ready to tell those around us of Jesus! Witness (Mat.28:19). It’s a COMMAND! So many "Christians" never obey this command!
Hebrews 13:16 But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased. (KJV) There are millions starving spiritually! We must do good and NEVER forget to communicate . . . tell what Jesus has done for you . . . sharing your gifts (Jesus, eternal life) with others.
Prayer . . . Matthew 6:5-15
Matthew 6:5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. (KJV) “Thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are”. . . our Lord used strong language, didn't He! “They have their reward” is what Jesus said in 6:2 about alms. Here it is about prayer. If you pray simply to be seen of men, you have all the reward you will get. Your prayer won’t get past the ceiling.
Matthew 6:6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. (KJV) Our Lord uses the term Father. These are citizens of the Kingdom that Jesus is talking about. How do you become a child of God today? John 1:12 tells us: “But as many as received him, to them gave he power [the authority] to become the sons of God, even to them that [do no more or less than] believe on his name.” Jesus told Nicodemus: “You must be born again” (John 3:3). Until you are born again, you cannot call God your Father. And in the Old Testament you will not find the word Father used in relation to a man with God. We are told that prayer should be: private, secret and sincere. Go in your closet (a private place), and pour out your heart to God.
Matthew 6:7 But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. (KJV) To me, this means we should not memorize and repeat prayers over and over again, like some denominations do. Catholics do this all the time with the rosary. My friend, JESUS says: Don't do it! The pope say do it. Who are you going to listen to??? Jesus shall be your Judge one day! (Rev.20:11-15). That should be enough said! . . . http://www.hisservants.org/catholics_h_s.htm
Matthew 6:8 Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him. (KJV) Prayer should be sincere and simple: #1. Sincere . . . Mat. 6:6. Go in and close the door. Your prayer is between you and God. #2. Simple . . . Mat.6:7. Do NOT use vain repetition. Just tell God what you have on your mind. “Your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him” Even though God already knows what we need, He wants us to come to Him and ask.
Matthew 6:9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. (KJV) There are several petitions in this magnificent model prayer! FIRST: Our Father which art in Heaven . . . we always need to know and acknowledge just WHOM we are speaking to. He is the One sitting upon the throne of the universe, and He has it completely under His control! SECOND: Hallowed be Thy Name . . . we always must know and acknowledge that He is Holy and pure, and worthy of all our praise, honor and glory. We should always think, speak and do all things to make His Name Holy in our lives. This is a tremendous model prayer for believers in all conditions.
This so-called Lord’s Prayer could NOT be the prayer of our Lord Jesus. He couldn’t pray this prayer. He couldn’t join you and say, “Our Father” because the relationship between the Father and the Son is the relationship in deity. It is a position, not a begetting. We become children of God only through faith in Christ; therefore Christ couldn’t join with me in saying, “Our Father.” For the Lord’s Prayer, see John 17.
Matthew 6:10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. (KJV) THIRD: “Thy kingdom come” . . . is acknowledging His coming Kingdom. We pray that Christ will soon return and establish His Earthly Kingdom where we will reign with Him (Rev.20:6). It is a most worthy petition for all of us to pray. FOURTH: “Thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven” . . . when we pray for His will to be done on Earth, we are praying that He be glorified here as He is in Heaven. This is NOT so in today's world, but it isn’t far off. One day this Earth shall be a marvelous place to live for Christ will rule with an iron Hand.
Matthew 6:11 Give us this day our daily bread. (KJV) FIFTH: We should know and acknowledge that God is our Provider. When we pray: Give us this day our daily bread, we are asking our Provider to supply our needs (Phil.4:19). We should use this model prayer as a base, on which our prayers should be established. This example of prayer speaks of our utter dependence upon God. Our bodily wants, our physical necessities, our spiritual desires all are supplied by Him day by day. Give us this day our daily bread . . . Israel gathered manna for the day, they gathered nothing for the next day. This prayer also gathers manna EACH day, “Give us this day our daily bread.” It shows us that we live from hand to mouth. It shows us that all our basic needs come from God. Without faith, it is impossible to please God (Heb.11:6).
Matthew 6:12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. (KJV) SIXTH: Forgive us our debts (sins, transgressions) as we forgive our debtors (those who hurt us). Jesus is speaking about forgiving neighbors, friends, family, loved ones who offend and/or hurt us . . . the way that we hurt God! IF we can’t forgive these people, how can we expect God to forgive us?
Again I say that Jesus could not pray this prayer. He had NO sin to be forgiven. This is NOT the Lord’s prayer, this is the disciples’ prayer. Debts is wrongs we do: evil, wickedness, trespassing of God’s law, it is SIN! HOW do YOU forgive people who have done you wrong? Are you one of those who says:? “I’ll forgive that rascal, but I’ll never forget what he did to me.” If so, you have NOT forgiven him! You will NOT get by with that with God. Eph. 4:32, “And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”
Matthew 6:13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. (KJV) SEVENTH: Lead us not into temptation . . . we are asking God to help us recognize every evil thing, every subtle temptation that comes before us. We must understand the it is the devil trying to set a trap for us, NOT God. The word lead tends to give the wrong impression, because God does NOT tempt any man (Jam.1:13). It does not mean to keep us out of temptation, but when we are confronted with it, help us get out of there! Lord, please don’t LEAVE us there!
EIGHTH: Deliver us from evil . . . this is deliverance from the evil one, the devil. Help us Lord, to stay clear of that deceiving monster.
NINTH: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever . . . what a glorious ending to an impressive prayer! This absolutely should be prayed by us all, for it is God’s will! It is His Kingdom! It is His power! And ALL glory should absolutely be given to Him alone! NO one else!
There are nine petitions in our model (example) prayer, covering every day in our lives.
Matthew 6:14 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: (KJV) IF you forgive others the wrongs they have done to you, your Father in Heaven will also forgive you.
Matthew 6:15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. (KJV) What I see in this verse really scares me! IF we forgive people who do us wrong, God will forgive us. IF we do NOT forgive those who hurt us, God will NOT forgive us. IF, IF, IF! Jesus gives us an awful warning about forgiveness: IF we refuse to forgive others, God will also refuse to forgive us. Why? Because when we don’t forgive others, we deny our common ground as sinners who need God’s forgiveness. God’s forgiving us of our sin is not the direct result of our forgiving others, but it is based on our realizing just what forgiveness really means (Eph. 4:32). It is so easy to ask God for forgiveness, but so hard to give it to others. Any time that we ask God to forgive our sin (1 John 1:8-9), we should ask ourselves, “Have I forgiven those who have wronged me?”
Fasting . . . Matthew 6:16-18
Matthew 6:16 Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. (KJV) Fasting does have a value for believers in our day, I am convinced of that, but only if it is done privately. Fasting, like alms and prayers, should be a personal and extremely private matter between you and God. NO one should know you are fasting!
Matthew 6:17-18 But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face;  That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly. (KJV) Appear as usual, so as not to attract notice. Fasting too is to be done in secret, like alms and prayers. And as with alms, we should fast unto God very privately, in secret, and He will reward us openly. Don’t make fasting a big display in public.
Treasures in Heaven . . . Matthew 6:19-24
Matthew 6:19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: (KJV) We should not lust for or store up short-lived treasures here on Earth. Costly garments can be eaten by moths, things we collect can get rusty, and thieves can break in and steal what you have (Job 27:16; Job 13:28; Isaiah 50:9; 51:8). In James 5:2 there is an obvious reference to our Lord's words. All earthly, temporal treasures are quite uncertain.
Matthew 6:20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: (KJV) When I consider our Lord’s marvelous teaching, I am simply in awe! How utterly wise He is! He NEVER leads us astray! Ever! Spiritual treasures are indestructible and inaccessible to thieves (Col. 3:2). What are spiritual treasures? They are anything that you do for the cause of Christ! (1 Cor.3:10-17). Quite the opposite of what the world considers treasure, riches!
Matthew 6:21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. (KJV) If your money is hoarded in the bank, and you have uncountable possessions that keep mounting . . . where is your heart? With your treasure! There is nothing wrong with having wealth. Many righteous people in Bible were wealthy. It is NOT money that is evil, it is the LOVE of money that is evil (1 Tim.6:10). What a person loves, that is his god.
Matthew 6:22 The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. (KJV) Our eye is a lamp for our body. A pure, sound eye lets sunshine into our soul. If our eye is single, meaning clear, generally sound, not looking two ways but right at an object, our body shall be illuminated. (Pro.4:25-27). When we have a good, sound eye, we walk in the light, see everything clearly, and have a persistent purpose in mind; to serve and please God in everything that we do. This makes our whole character consistent and bright in our daily living.
Matthew 6:23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness! (KJV) An evil eye is the opposite of a good, single eye. It is diseased, sick, degenerate, corrupt, immoral, vicious, full of mischief, malice, and wickedness. If a person’s eye is evil, their whole body is full of darkness. A corrupted eye cannot look straight and full at its object. It sees nothing as it really is. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness. A person’s inward purpose and aim in life really determines his/her character. If these things are not simple and Heaven bound in a person’s eye, but distorted and double (two-faced), all the other abilities and beliefs, makes the whole man and his life nothing but a mass of darkness. Any light that you think you have, really is darkness, and how deep that darkness can get! If a person lives in greed and distrust, their whole body is like a dark, depressing cellar. If you shut the blinds on your windows, it gets mighty dark. What a dark life you will have! An evil eye shuts out any light and plunges you into complete darkness.
Remember this: in the Bible light is always a symbol for God, His goodness, and all good. Dark and darkness on the other hand is completely opposite. Darkness symbolizes evil, wickedness, sin and the devil.
- Darkness, spiritual blindness. Isaiah 9:2; Isaiah 42:16; Isaiah 50:10; Matthew 4:16; Matthew 6:22-23; Matthew 8:12; Luke 1:79; Luke 11:34; John 1:5; John 3:19-21; John 8:12; John 11:9-10; Acts 26:18; Romans 1:21; Romans 13:12-13; 1 Cor. 4:5; 2 Cor. 4:6; 2 Cor. 6:14; Ephes. 5:8; Ephes. 5:11; 1 Thes. 5:4-5; 1 Peter 2:9; 1 John 1:5-7; 1 John 2:8-11
- Light, symbolic. Psalm 27:1; Psalm 119:105; Psalm 119:130; Proverbs 6:23; Eccles. 2:13; Isaiah 8:20; Isaiah 49:6; Isaiah 58:8; Isaiah 60:19-20; Matthew 4:16; Matthew 5:14; Luke 2:32; Luke 11:34; Luke 16:8; John 1:4-5; John 1:7-9; John 3:19-21; John 5:35; John 8:12; John 9:5; John 12:35-36; Acts 26:18; Ephes. 5:8; Ephes. 5:14; Phil. 2:15; 1 Thes. 5:5; 1 Tim. 6:16; James 1:17; 1 Peter 2:9; 2 Peter 1:19; 1 John 1:5; 1 John 1:7; Rev. 21:23
1 Peter 2:9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: (KJV) We ALL were once the devil’s children (1 John 3:10), living in darkness. But God, in His goodness, called us out of that darkness (Eph.1:4). Praise Him for that! Always praise Him for His goodness and His love!
The opposite of the above verse very clearly expresses what pure, beautiful, broad perceptions the clarity of the inward eye imparts. Luke 11:36 If thy whole body therefore be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle doth give thee light. (KJV)
Matthew 6:24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. (KJV) NO one can serve masters. NO one can worship Almighty God and mammon (wealth, riches, money). NO one can worship two gods at once. If you love the one, you will end up hating the other one. If you adore one, you will have nothing but contempt for the other one. NO one can belong completely to and be entirely under the control of two different masters, because the servant must take commands from one OR the other. Even though a person may do what is pleasing to both, he cannot, be a servant to more than one. And if their interests are quite different, even conflicting, it cannot be done.
Ye cannot serve God and mammon . . . the word mammon is a foreign one, whose precise origin cannot be determined, though the most probable explanation might be "what one trusts in." When Jesus spoke the above words, there can be no doubt that He meant it to be used for riches, wealth or money, and He considered it as idolatry, or a god of the heart. It is my humble opinion, that what He is trying to get across to us is that the service to the true God, and this god together is absolutely impossible. Luke 12:15 And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth. (KJV) . . . The Love of money is the root of all evil (1 Tim. 6:10). I feel that this is what our Saviour and Lord, Jesus is trying to get across to us here!
Worry Won’t Help . . . Matthew 6:25-34
Matthew 6:25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? (KJV) Don’t be worried. Being anxious, having unbelieving doubts and misgivings are what is here condemned. In Luke 12:29, Jesus adds, neither be ye of doubtful mind (unsettled, restless).
Philip. 4:6-7 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.  And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (KJV) Careful = anxious, take no thought, don’t worry. In everything . . . pray! Prayer guards both our feelings and our thoughts from unfounded agitation, and keeps us calm. When we commit our whole temporal condition to self, we start getting into that worried state against which our Lord warns. Jesus tells us: don't worry about whether you have enough food, drink, and clothes. Life consists of much more than food and clothing. If our Provider gives us the life, the body. . . why would He withhold food to sustain life and clothing to clothe the body?
Matthew 6:26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? (KJV) Birds cannot sow. Birds cannot reap. Birds cannot gather anything into barns, but you and I can. We are to sow, reap, and gather with the same enthusiasm that a little bird has. The little bird is trusting God to take care of him, and we are to trust God, also. Are ye not much better than they? This does not mean that we shouldn’t exercise judgment, because God has given us this ability. Should a Christian have insurance? Absolutely! Insurance is one way we have to put our minds at ease concerning the care of our families and ourselves. The important thing is that we are not to go through life with material things becoming a burden to us. Behold the fowls of the air . . . watch them well, consider so as to learn from them. For they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? We as God’s children are dearer to God than the little birds.
Matthew 6:27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? (KJV) Can any of us add even one inch to our height, by anxiety, worry, stress? We cannot! Neither can we add even one day to the length of our life. Not all the worries in your entire life can add even a single moment to your life? No way!
Matthew 6:28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: (KJV) Now Jesus asks: Why do you worry about what to wear? “I can’t go tonight, I don’t have anything to wear.” Ever hear that? Jesus says to consider the lilies of the field. They don’t work, or make their clothing. God takes care of it for them. I will say that a Christian should dress as well as he can. To be sloppy in dress or in any action is not honoring God. Our Lord called attention to the beauty of the flowers. I wonder if you have ever taken notice as to how many natural things Jesus uses in His teaching. In this lesson so far, it has been birds, now lilies. I really do think that our Lord was a person who loved nature, and spoke of it often (Mat.8:23-27; 13:31; Mark 4:28; 13:28; John 3:8).
THINGS OF WHICH HE SPOKE
Common things, He spoke of, while on Earth,
This humble Man, of such great worth!
He spoke of birds, barns, lilies and grass, Mt.6:26,28-30
And treasures that most folks do amass. Mt.6:19-21
He spoke of fair weather; also storms, Mt.16:2-3
And lives of evil, we should reform. Mk.7:18-23
He spoke of fig trees, tares and wheat, Lu.13:6-9; Lu.21:29-31; Mt.13:24-30
And He taught meekness, by washing feet. Jn.13:4-15
He spoke of wolves, shepherds and sheep, Mt.10:16; Jn.10:1-16
He told of how He would care and keep. Mt.28:20
He spoke of goats, ravens and sparrows, Mt.25:32-33; Mt.10:29; Lu.12:24
And serpents and doves; as Him we follow. Mt.10:16
He spoke of branches; and a Great Vine, Jn.15:1-6
And of the wind, as us it entwines. Jn.3:8
He spoke of rain God sends in His time, Mt.5:45
And eternal Water, O , so fine! Jn.4:13-14; Jn.7:37-38
He spoke of famines, disease and earthquakes, Mt.24:7
And how God’s children He’d ne’er forsake! Heb.13:5
He spoke of mansions in Heav’n above, Jn.14:2-3
And praise be to God, He spoke of love! Jn.3:16; Jn.14:15,23; Jn.15:12,17; Mt.22:37-40
By: His servant, Connie Kramer Feb.10,1998 # 456
Matthew 6:29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. (KJV) Not even Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as the flowers of the field. For some of Solomon's glory, see: 1 Kings10::14-29.
The teaching of Jesus is absolutely incomparable! NO one can even come close! It is best left in its own transparency and simplicity. I think God wants us to be as presentable as possible. Although some of us don’t have much to work with, we ought to do the best we can with what we’ve got, what He gives us!
Matthew 6:30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?(KJV) Beautiful wild flowers cut with the grass, withered by the heat, were so short lived (James 1:11), cast into the oven.
I remember once in Arizona there was an ugly stick-like cactus just off the patio. Why we didn't chop it out . . . God knows why! He wanted for us to see its amazing beauty! One morning we looked out and there were the most beautiful flowers we'd ever seen! Absolutely breath-taking! It would have put the most gorgeous rose to shame. Before noon, they were gone! Such a short life for such magnificence! How many times I have thanked God for allowing us the privilege of seeing those flowers. Someone said they were night-blooming cyrus.
Shall He not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? So beautiful is the array of the wild flowers that adorn the fields. Think about it! They surpass all artificial human beauty. But . . . it is but for a brief time. Today you admire it, tomorrow it is gone. Jesus does not say that we shall be more beautifully arrayed, but, says: Shall He not much more clothe you? Yes! God shall take care of our needs! NO doubt about that! Ye of little faith really does apply to us all! (Mat.8:26; 14:31; 16:8). We all get lax on our faith at times. Ask God to increase it (Luke 17:5). I think this is Jesus’ way of gently chiding the spirit of unbelief, found even in the best Christians at times.
Matthew 6:31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (KJV) We should not start worrying about: Where will my food come from? Will I have enough? Where will I get money for clothes? God supplies ALL our NEEDS!
Matthew 6:32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. (KJV) For it is all these things that unbelievers do seek. But, your heavenly Father knows what you need and He shall provide them for you. Trust Him.
Matthew 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. (KJV) While I was still the devil’s child, I did not realize the power of this verse. But when I finally came to my senses and opened my heart’s door to Jesus, it became SO clear! What wisdom! What a Friend we have in Jesus! These words mean nothing to an unbeliever! They are foolishness to him. 1 Cor. 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. (KJV) Also see:1 Cor. 1:21; 1 Cor. 2:14. UNLESS we seek first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; God’s blessings and provisions do NOT apply to us. When we do seek first the Kingdom of God, and His righteousness; ALL these things (our needs) shall be added unto us.
The right state of the heart, in the supreme pursuit of which all things needed for the present life will be added to us. The precise sense of every word in this wonderful verse should be carefully weighed. "The kingdom of God" is the primary subject of the Sermon on the Mount . . . that kingdom which the God of Heaven is erecting in this fallen world, within which are all the spiritually recovered.
When our Lord says they shall be "added," it is implied, that the seekers of the Kingdom and its righteousness shall have their needs supplied. What follows is a summary of this great general direction into a practical and ready form for daily use.
Matthew 6:34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. (KJV) Don’t worry about tomorrow. The things that we worry about today, may never materialize tomorrow. So, we worry for nothing! Tomorrow will have enough to keep us busy. Be concerned about today only. One day at a time. Every day brings its own cares; and to predict is only to double them. . . . “Take … no thought for the morrow” means no anxious thought. He takes care of the flowers and the birds, and He will take care of you. But the important thing is to put Him first in our life. As someone has said, Today is the tomorrow that we worried about yesterday. How true that is for many of us! Concern is good, it’s taking care of your problems, asking God to help. Worry is bad, and can do nothing to benefit you. Worry is like a cancer eating away at you.
The Sermon on the Mount
Matthew ch.5 . Matthew ch.6 . Matthew ch.7 . Summary
Gospel of Matthew