(This message may be used as an individual sermon or as part of the series.)
Matthew 6:24-34 – UPTIGHT OR UP CLOSE?
#19 – SERMON ON THE MOUNT
Most of tend to worry at least some of the time. In fact, I think in our day worry has hit epidemic proportions.
We worry about what people think of us.
We worry over the future.
We worry about what we said or didn’t say.
We worry about image.
We worry about our friends.
We worry about our parents, our children, and other family members.
There seems to be no end to worry. And worry has a twin sister. Her name is fear. Fear and worry go together.
And yet God does not want us to worry, to fear, to be anxious, or to be uptight.
Instead of us being “uptight”, God wants us to be “up close”.
God wants us to walk closely to Him. The closer we walk with God, the less we will worry. When we don’t walk closely to God, chances are we will worry.
WORRY IS CAUSED BY HAVING THE WRONG MASTER – Vs. 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.
Jesus is telling us that you can not serve two masters at the same time.
- If you love one master, you will hate the other.
- If you are loyal to one master, you will despise the other.
- If you serve money, the pursuit of money and the things which money can buy will demand all that you have.
- If you serve any other master, such as sex, or alcohol, or yourself, or another person, that master will demand all that you have.
- If you serve the Lord Jesus as your master, He will demand all that you have.
What right has Jesus to be your master?
If you have trusted Him as your Savior, as the one who died for you, as the one who has given you eternal life, then He is the one who has redeemed you from eternal punishment.
Because Jesus has redeemed you, paid for your sins, He has every right to be your master. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
Out of appreciation for what Jesus has done for you, Jesus should be your Master. John 13:13
Jesus’ standards are high for Christians. Luke 14:26-27
Jesus is telling us that our love for Him is to be so great that our love for anyone else by comparison is hatred.
If it’s a choice between Jesus’ will for my life, and anybody else’s I am to bow to the Lord Jesus and to do His will.
If the Lord Jesus is your Master, He will give you victory over worry and fear. Psalm 27:1, John 14:27
If Jesus is truly your master He will give you victory over worry.
- But if money is your master, you will worry about losing money, having enough money, and getting more money. You will be concerned over your possessions.
- And if you are your own master, you will worry about what people think of you. You will worry about your own comforts. You will worry about the well being of your own little world.
- And if sex, alcohol, sports, hunting, or even fame are your master, that is, if they rule your life, you will find plenty to worry about.
If you have any other master you will worry!
So we need to ask the question, “Who is my master.”
If I am a perpetual worrier, it is someone or something other than the Lord Jesus.
WORRY CHANGES NOTHING – Vss. 25, 27
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?
Jesus is very clear here. He says “Don’t be anxious about the details of life:
What you are going to eat.
What you are going to drink.
What you are going to wear.”
Why does Jesus say this?
Our lives and our bodies are more important than food and clothing. Genesis 2:7
When the body goes, man still lives. He continues on as a living soul. Therefore, life is more than food or clothes.
We are instructed in Proverbs 4:23 – Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.
Man is to keep his heart because the issues, the real important things in life, proceed from the inside, not what we put in our bodies.
Who you are is more important than what you eat or wear.
What you are is more important that what you eat or wear.
Therefore, Jesus tells us that worrying over what we eat, drink or wear changes nothing.
Matthew 6:27 – Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?
Here is another way worry changes nothing.
In other words, all the worry in the world is not going to change the length of your life. You can fret, fuss, and be anxious, but that won’t make your life any longer.
GOD CARES FOR EVERYTHING
God takes care of providing for the needs of everyone.
The rain and the sunshine come on the just and the unjust.
In this passage God gives three examples of God’s care.
Vs. 26 – The birds do not sow or reap, or store food, but their needs are provided for. They must work to find the food, but God provides for them.
And Jesus reminds us that we are much better than they are.
Why are we better than they? Genesis 1:27 – We are made in the image of God.
Next, Jesus talks about the lilies of the field. Vss. 28-30
These flowers are the work of God!
If God takes care of the lilies, how much more is He going to take care of you and I who are far more important than the lilies of the field!
Vs. 32 – The Gentiles, who would be the equivalent of non-Christians, seek after food and clothing.
Those of us who know Christ as Savior need to remember something.
We, in a very special way, are the children of God. Because we are His children, we can be assured that God will take care of us. Just as earthly parents know who to provide for their children, how much more does our Heavenly Father care for His children!
FAITH IS REQUIRED
God has given us two tools in the battle against worry.
These two tools are faith and prayer.
The two go hand in hand, for when I am exercising faith in my heavenly Father, I will be praying. Philippians 4:6-7, Mark 11:24
Vs. 30 – Jesus tells those who would worry that they have little faith. How often do we become anxious instead of praying the prayer of faith?
DEVOTION LEADS TO PROVISION
Matthew 6:33 – But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Most Christians have their priorities mixed up.
They seek their careers and fortunes.
They seek their families.
They seek their pleasures.
Then, if there is any time or energy left, they seek the Kingdom of God and His righteousness!
The secret to seeking first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness is to put the things of God first.
Other things must be neglected or put on hold so that you will:
Study the Bible
Memorize and meditate on the Scriptures
Serve in church.
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
God is telling us to take care of his business, and He will take care of ours.
When serving God righteously is our priority God will provide for our needs.
TROUBLE COMES PROPORTIONED
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.
There is no question that each day will present its share of problems, cares, and sorrow. But please bear in mind that God is in charge.
He does not allow in one day more than you can handle with His help. There’s enough evil in one day, sufficient for that day.
God has proportioned your trials. But God says “Don’t worry about the next day or about what happened yesterday. Just handle today’s problems and leave tomorrow for tomorrow.”
Otherwise, you are taking on more responsibility that God intended you to have.
And remember, 90% or what we worry about never happens.