Friday 10 February 2023


   MATTHEW 6 V. 19/34

        Jesus is still giving his sermon on the Mount, which is the gospel passage for this week. He has told of treasures,  and then turns to the state of anxiety.  He is calling on them not to worry about the things of daily life, the matters of food and drink, or whether they have the proper clothing, for life consists of more than all these items.

       He calls on the people to look how the birds live without care, thy don’t store up food because God provides food for them, and God views people as being more valuable creatures than the birds.

        He asks them to consider not worrying about what they will do about the daily needs, for it will make no benefit nor make life longer

      Clothing is not a matter to worry about, for the flowers  which God has created to make a more beautiful world, grow without problems. He mentions Solomon a great king of Israel who had all ceremonial dress, yet his appearance was not as beautiful as the flowers

      Jesus went on to talk about wild flowers, which are collected and were used by people to enable them to have fires. Whilst unbelievers may worry over the basic necessities of life, they being the people of God will be cared for by God, who will provide all they need.  God calls on them to live righteously and to seek to live as in the Kingdom of God, and to live one day at a time, leaving tomorrow as another day in life.

     Jesus is comparing treasures on earth which are corruptible and insecure, whereas treasures in heaven are incorruptible and secure, and can be kept without desperation.

He lists the things he was forbidding. There is not ban on personal possessions, the Bible does not forbid private possessions, or for saving for times which may not be good. The Bible in fact calls on the man to provide for his family. Jesus is actually referring to the selfish accumulation of goods, seeing hearts being attached to treasures, causing people to seek for yet more.  In the ancient world, as in fact with ours, there are plenty of thieves about.

Jesus explains between the choice there is a case of two masters, God and mammon. Some people think they can serve two, but Jesus denies this. He saw this as not possible, for if a man divides, he has in fact turned to Mammon.

Jesus calls on us to look carefully at the situation, and states we must decide which is more worthy of our devotion. He tells his followers not to be preoccupied with own needs, which is the way of the unbeliever. We  are called upon not to be anxious, which is caused by a collection of cares.  Today television, with its display of attractive goods, food, clothing, and many other luxuries, provides many temptations, which should be dismissed. He states to be engrossed in material comforts is a false occupation. Prudent provision for future is acceptable, but self-tormenting is wrong.

Applying to the world we live in, our world moves at a fast pace. Think of the many people going to town centre offices. I saw the masses of people leaving transport in the City of London of a morning, ready to fill a busy day with all sorts of issues to be met causing strain. In addition to work worries, they have their own personal worries, will they get that promotion they are banking on, the targets to be met. Business owners caring for how long they can exist in to-day’s world.

Life is not as peaceful and secure in relationships, as marriages break up constantly. Health is a concern, mortgages and other house necessities.  Worry is a disturbance of the mind, which all these matters create, causing all kinds of body ailments, hair loss, and heart attacks. 

How should we respond?  A Harley Street doctor once advised, in a manner which many listeners would be aggrieved at, he told a patient to read the Bible. This is a wise advice, for Jesus stated, ‘come unto me all who are heavy laden, and I will give you rest, for I will share your burden. The more we trust Him. the less the worry, a simple way to cure you.

Often  a sense of past failure, or some past occurrences come to haunt us, and little things can hurt much, sometimes added to a sense of guilt. It was to make it possible, for people seeking to face forgiveness, and ease conscience, that God sent Jesus to pay the penalty for all our past errors, when he shed his blood on the Cross. Jesus said he is faithful and just and will forgive us.  What a price Jesus paid, and what pain he endured; what pain for God who sent his Son to suffer that death.

If you have hurt someone, you may suffer continuously until you have faced the person, and sought forgiveness. Then you can leave the past, knowing Jesus has redeemed you.  A trouble with a relationship is an unpleasant matter, and can make life difficult. When two people have been friends for a long time and a break up occurs, that is heart breaking, especially if between a man and a woman,.

So any people rush into marriage, which is madness.  People need to experience time together to find the irritating habits, as well as the romantic. Separation can be painful to both, but one will surely feel it more.

The future is a matter of concern, unless we are well provided for, but no situation is beyond the Lord’s ability to help you deal with it.  If you feel you did not fulfil life’s dream, try and seek help from a close friend, or a helpful Pastor of your local Church may be able to comfort you.

Finally, are you afraid you will be rejected at heaven’s gate?  If you have been faithful to the Lord Jesus and his teaching, he will not leave nor forsake you. So many people who never give a thought to God or his Church, never read a bible or think in a religious way, somehow have come to know there is a passage in John’s gospel where Jesus stated he was going to prepare a place in his Father’s mansion.  Jesus was speaking to his Apostles, and which includes his followers. He was not giving a promise to all and sundry, however much convinced they are that Jesus was. The Bible is of great help to those who have read or been taught it, but so many false teachers have misled others, and people themselves have misread, they are going to be so disappointed one day.

I close with the words of the Apostle Peter, who said, ‘cast all your cares upon Jesus for he cares for you’.  Unto him that is capable to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy. To the only wise God, our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and for ever.

May God bless His Holy Word to us, and may His Holy name be praised

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