Don't Worry, Trust Jesus | Matthew 6:25-34 (Mville)
Topic: New Testament Passage: Matthew 6:25–6:34
Good Morning! Happy Easter Damascus Road! We regularly preach straight though books of the bible and today is no exception. We are continuing our series in the Book of Matthew, looking at Jesus the promised Savior-King of God’s people. Jesus has begun His public ministry and has drawn a large crowd to hear his preaching of the gospel of repentance meaning turning from sin to the kingdom of God. So we are in the middle of this Message of the King. We spent several weeks looking at how the law to love God and love people, while appearing simple, has deep implications over all aspects of our lives. God is the creator and owner of all that exists, we also seen for several weeks that for those who trust in Jesus, God adopts as His children and we call Him “Father”. Despite knowing God is a good dad we can regularly fall into disbelief as we look at the problems in the world, or pain or lack in our own lives and begin to worry about what the future holds for us. Today we will look at Jesus’ teaching on anxiousness and see how He answers our anxiety with hope through His death on the cross and His resurrection.
Matthew 6:25-34 25 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. 34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
We are very fearful people. I am talking to everyone. We have fears about how we are going to provide for ourselves or others. Fears of loneliness, fears of what others think of us, fears of heath, fears of not living up to others expectations or our own, fear of loss possessions/job/relationships, fear of the unknown. We all have fears and concerns that drive and dominate how we live our lives. We fail to make bold choices or make unwise decisions based on fear. What is your fear? Why do we fear? We fear things we cannot control or easily predict. We fear because we recognize the world we live in is dangerous, bad things do happen, and everything is NOT awesome all the time. We say we hope for the best and prepare for the worst, but really we act with little hope and nearly everything we do is driven by fear.
Don’t be Anxious
He doesn’t say, if you get anxious or when you get anxious. Jesus tells us to not be anxious because he knows we already are. This is the state we are all in. He knows how our chest can tighten up or it can feel like walls are closing in, or the ground we’re standing can become shifting sand. Four times Jesus tells us to not be anxious, to not worry. Don’t worry about your life, don’t worry about your food, don’t worry about your clothes, don’t worry about tomorrow. Jesus is a good teacher because he uses repetition on points that are important. Jesus knows us, He knows we will continually find more and more things to be anxious about so he covers anxiety both broad and deep. What are we doing when we are anxious? We are seeing the problems in the world in our lives as bigger than the God who made the world and gave us life. We are allowing the question “does God really love me?” to sink deeper in our hearts then what God says.
Josh 1:5 I will not leave you or forsake you. And Isaiah 41:10 fear not, for I am with you In tough times Jeremiah 11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
Life is more….
Many of us are consumed with making our ends meet or just keeping our heads above water financially. How much of our time and energy is spent concerned with these things? How much of our life is spent in merely maintaining our lives. Preparing, eating, cleaning up after meals. Laundry, wearing, and more laundry. We rarely if EVER feel “ahead” on anything and so we worry about falling too far behind to where somehow we miss a meal or literally don’t have anything to wear. And yet we’ve got life exponentially more convenient then the crowd Jesus is talking too and Jesus reminds them God has intended for life to be more than mere survival.
Prudent planning, saving, preparing for what may lie ahead is one of the ways God provides for our future need. Jesus isn’t anti-planning and only living for today, but he is saying consuming, wearing, all-encompassing worry about the future is wrong. Work today and plan for tomorrow but don’t be anxious.
Simple answer is Jesus tells us not to be anxious, and it would be great if that was enough. But when we are experience pressure and anxiousness in our lives, worrying about our distant or immediate futures, or when we have legitimate fears and concerns, and are already feeling like we are beginning to fail in some aspect of our lives; it can be less than encouraging to be told we are failing by worrying. Jesus tells us not to be anxious not so we’ll feel more burdened, but because he knows what our anxiousness produces. NOTHING!!! None of our worry or anxiousness ever feed us or clothed us. It will not add an hour to our life, in fact it actually wastes life you’ve been given. God has given us life as a gift to enjoy and to be productive, when we spend it being anxious we are not using our lives in the way God intended. More than being completely unproductive it is also incredibly exhausting. Jesus gives us more than a command to not be anxious for our benefit, he goes further and explains why we don’t need to be.
God is the creator and Author of our lives
He says look at the world God created. He makes the birds of the air. Birds fly, they are active, they search and hunt and don’t wait for God to drop food in their mouths, they work if you will, but they don’t farm and plan, yet they’re provided for all the same. He makes the lilies of the field, who don’t give any concern of their appearance or “strive” at all (they are not active, they are plants) many of which will never be seen by human eyes, and he makes them beautiful to show He is the source of all beauty. Jesus reminds the crowd of a fundamental truth (and something we often need to be reminded of in the NW), we are more valuable to God than birds and flowers! He made us in His image, He has given us life and he will give more care and attention to sustaining our life then the lives of mindless birds or grass clippings. Psalm 139 says God is our maker who knows us in the womb, and goes to say he is also “author” of our lives, meaning He decides the time and place we are born and determines when and how our lives end.
Your father knows, so seek him. V32-33
God is intimately aware of everything in our lives. Jesus says, He cares about the details of our lives. Yes he knows all the hair on your head because he made you. He knows what you need to survive. He also knows every aspect of our lives we are worried about. While you are worrying about the things right in front of you, replaying things that have happened to you, or anxiously concerning yourself with what may or may not come, God is orchestrating a billion details in and around your/our lives that we don’t even think about. The point is not for you to find more things to worry about; but to know God is currently sustaining and providing for you right this moment in ways you are not even aware of and some we can’t even imagine. We don’t have to be consumed with worry like those who think they have been left alone in this world or don’t know there is a God who loves and provides for His children. Jesus tell us to give our worry to him. Matt 11:28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
We are not to be distracted with the things in this world keeping us from understanding the most important things we need to be concerned with is not our survival in this world but our approval in His kingdom. Our relationship with God and His kingdom is to be absolutely primary. Because of our sin our relationship with God is broken. Because of sin and brokenness our world is a place where it is easy to be anxious with worry. The Father knows the world and our relationships are broken, just like He knows we need to eat and need to be clothed. He cares about our bodies AND our souls. He doesn’t leave us alone to worry, he pursues with a purpose. He knows we need much more than just a good teacher, we need a great savior.
Each day has enough to worry about V34
Jesus tells us each day is sufficient for its own trouble so we shouldn’t be concerned with tomorrow when we’re supposed to be dealing with today. Jesus doesn’t just tell us to suck it up and not worry so much. He’s not just a good teacher with some wisdom “don’t worry so much about…”. He is not a distant deity unconcerned with the problems we face. He knows how each day can have its own trouble. While his earthy ministry began with sermons on hillsides that’s not how it finished. Jesus didn’t just come to help us forget our past or focus on our present, and be better people here and now. He came to save us from our sins and the eternal consequences of our rejection of God. There is a day we are to be concerned with. As surely as we are born there will be a day when we die. On that day we will be judged and found lacking “righteousness.” Hebs 9:27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment,
God knows we’re going to be lacking on that day and so he provides for it by sending Jesus to endure all we could ever be anxious about, including punishment for our sin, and come out victorious. We are going to look at 3 significant days in Jesus ministry each with their own trouble, and a 4th day that gives us hope.
The day before the cross, Jesus knowing “his time” to suffer was nearing, had his disciples spend the day not going over an escape plan from Jerusalem, or giving them a church planting strategy, but preparing for the Passover Meal. There was work to be done that day, and a celebration/ceremony to be observed that day, not just worry for tomorrow to be experienced. However, even when there are days of feasting or celebration, trial can come quickly. Halfway through the meal Jesus tells his disciples one of them will betray him. The tone of the day shifts from celebratory, to solemn, to anxious and sorrowful. Judas, Jesus friend and disciple has sold him out to religious opponents for 30 pieces of silver (the price of a slave at that time). Judas flees and Jesus gives his followers a new meal of bread and wine to remember what is going to happen the next day on the cross. When the meal was over and no more delay can be had, Jesus takes some of his guys with him to the garden of Gethsemane to pray knowing trouble is to come quickly.
Matthew 26:38-39 38Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.” 39And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.”
Luke 22 says he was in so much anguish Jesus actually began to sweat blood. Jesus can tell us to not be anxious because he endured unspeakable anguish in our place as he prayed to the Father on our behalf. Judas came to the garden with soldiers, and betrayed Jesus with a kiss. Jesus is taken away, anxious disciples worrying about what is going to happen to Jesus and themselves begin to scatter in fear. Even Jesus right hand man Peter denies he even knows Jesus three times. During a midnight trial Jesus is slandered by several false witnesses. He is charged with the great crime of “blasphemy” claiming to be the very Son of God, the messiah. Jesus affirms this “you rightly say that I am.” Jesus fate in the eyes of the religious leaders is sealed, “He deserves death!” as they spit in his face. Thursday had its own trouble.
The religious leaders didn’t’ have the right to execute their criminals so Friday morning they gave Jesus over to the Roman governor Pilate saying his crime is claiming to be a King in competition to Caesar. Pilate finding no fault in Jesus deserving death has Jesus beaten hoping to appease the Jewish leaders. They are not satisfied they want Jesus dead. The same city that welcomed Jesus the Sunday before with cheers of “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!” is now yelling “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!” Pilate follows their will. Jesus is taken by Roman soldiers, stripped, given tattered robe and crown of thorns mocking Jesus as “King of the Jews” beaten and spit upon again, Jesus was lead to a hill called Golgatha, “Place of a Skull”, and was nailed wrists and feet to a Roman cross the most brutal, drawn out, and painful form of execution the world had known. After hours hanging on the cross slowly suffocating Jesus neared death he declared “It is FINISHED! and the Bible says he gave up His spirit and died at 3 pm. To ensure he was dead romans soldiers took a spear and punctured his heart and lungs. His body was taken down, given to a rich man named Joseph, Jesus was buried in his tomb. Friday had its own trouble. As it happened, Good Friday was not good, but when you consider Jesus endured it in your place, it is great.
Romans 5:6-9 6 For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— 8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.
Jesus didn’t just die sacrificially so good people can be saved. There are no “good people” Jesus endured the cross on our behalf for the worst of who we’ve been and knowing us completely today. He didn’t go to the cross because He was pleased in some future version of us were we have all of our stuff together.
The next day brought tension, hopelessness. For the disciples they had come in a week earlier with Jesus to this same city and heard crowds cheering for Jesus as the king and Messiah/Savior. Everything they had been anticipating when they had given up everything to follow Jesus had seemed so close to fruition. A new day, a new kingdom seemed so close and they would be significant because they were part of Jesus inner circle, in with him on the ground floor, and now Jesus was dead and buried. Fear, anxiety I am sure were at an all-time high for them. Jesus the guy who said “Father knows what you need.” And “seek first the kingdom of God and all these things will be taken care of.” Over the past two days they had seen the Savoir taken and murdered, dead and buried in a tomb now secured, and guarded by Roman soldiers. That seems like the opposite of feed and clothed. Could anything Jesus have said about the Kingdom of God, be trusted, could any of God’s promises to never leave or forsake His people be relied upon when His son Jesus was left and forsaken on the cross? When we are anxious and worry consumes us we are living in Saturday, only knowing and feeding the pain, fear, regret, of terrible things that have happened, worrying about how worse things could become moving forward. We live in a state of defeat, or doom and gloom. Saturday had its own trouble, because they did not know what was going happen on Sunday.
Sunday morning comes. Two women go to Jesus tomb only to find the stone rolled away, an Angel sitting on top of it, and trained disciplined Roman Soldiers paralyzed with fear at what they saw.
Matthew 28:5-6 5 But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. 6 He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay.
The tomb was empty and the women left it says with “fear and joy”, Jesus meets the women on the road telling them to have the disciples meet him in Galilee. He meets them there and yet some doubted.
I Cor 15 1-7 Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand,2 and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures,5 and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. 6 Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles.
When Jesus appears to the disciples everything changes. The Roman government and the religious leaders no longer have the final word over death, the same way your sin and your circumstances don’t have the final word over your life, Jesus does. Good Friday isn’t good without Resurrection Sunday. All hope we have in this life and the next, all reason we have to not worry about today and anxious about tomorrow rest in truth and power of the resurrection of Jesus. It is all we have and it’s everything we need.
I Cor 15:14-19 14 And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain. 15 We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified about God that he raised Christ, whom he did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. 19 If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied
We don’t have to worry about our past because Jesus paid for our past on the cross. We don’t have to worry about our present because Jesus says in the Holy Spirit He is with us always to the end of the age. We don’t have to worry about what is to come because of the resurrection He has secured our future. That means even our death is not our defeat but our new beginning of life in His Kingdom. Jesus experiences defeat on the cross so we could experience victory. The tomb is empty, and Jesus is alive so we have hope!
Today is Sunday, live in the grace, power, and truth of Resurrection Sunday. God is pursuing you now, don’t worry about yesterday and don’t be anxious about tomorrow, Trust Jesus today!
Hebrews 13:8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
More in The King Has Come | Matthew
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