Matthew 6

Matthew 6 begins with Christ warning us to live life in humility and not for show.  “Beware of  practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven”.  We certainly don’t need to try and impress God, as He sees and knows our heart, and living in a way we try and project our righteousness to others is prideful and destructive.  God wants us to live honestly and transparently – not putting on a show to try and put ourselves above others in our patch.

The same applies to how we give.  God’s Word has plenty to say about giving and tithing, and in this chapter Jesus addresses the how of giving.  “When you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others….do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret”.  Again Jesus warns us not to be prideful in our giving, but to do it quietly and secretively, not for show or appreciation, but out of humility and gratitude to the giver of that which we can give.

Jesus goes on later in the chapter to warn us about money.  “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money”.  Is money bad?  Not in and of itself.  But how we view and treat money can certainly lead us down the wrong path.  Unfortunately the world puts far too much focus on money.  It’s what so many people chase as their measure of success.  Money itself is not bad, nor is it in any way a measure of success.  All money belongs to God.  At best, He entrusts it to us to use according to His plans.  But we have to keep it in its rightful place – as a tool we are provided to do His good works, not lavish on ourselves.

Christ ends this chapter dealing with the topic of worry.  “Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble”.  We’re told to trust in God – not worry.  When we worry, we are basically admitting we don’t trust God to provide and take care of us.  But Jesus reminds us that He alone can provide our needs, and we need to focus on living today and trust God with the details.  It’s easier said than done, but how we live a life based on His sufficiency!

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