Lessons Of A Lifetime

SUNDAY JULY 28, 2019

Scripture To Consider:
“Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.”

“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” Matthew 6.31-34

Something To Consider:
Again, Jesus reiterated the importance of our not worrying over what we shall eat, drink, or wear. These are all basic necessities of life and He is aware of our need for these things. The fact that He is aware of our daily needs is a good thing. David, the Psalmist, cautioned us not to worry, but rather to trust the Lord and to do good.

In Psalm 37.25, David admonished us to delight in the Lord by his declaring; “I have been young, and now I am old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor His descendants begging bread.” Elsewhere David wrote, “Many sorrows shall be to the wicked; but he who trusts in the LORD, mercy shall surround him.” Trusting in the Lord, according to God’s Word, greatly enhances His blessings in our lives.

Wrongful worry is usually brought about by fear and advertisers taking full advantage of this human tendency in their ad campaigns. Prescription drug advertisers drive home night after night this fear tactic through television and cable advertisements. And yet, if you listen to or read the many adverse side effects of taking many of these so-called wonder drugs, that alone should strike fear into the hearts of many partakers.

The apostle Paul attempting to encourage Timothy, wrote in his second letter to his spiritual son in verse 7 of chapter 1; “For God has not given us a spirit of fear [or wrongful worry], but [a spirit] of power and [a spirit] of love and [a spirit] of a sound [clear thinking] mind.” Paul was a man faithfully seeking God’s kingdom and his letters are filled with messages attempting to encourage others down through the centuries to be found by Jesus faithfully seeking first God’s kingdom.

Something Else To Consider:
Some believe verse 33 of Matthew chapter 6 to be the central thought of the Sermon on the Mount. “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” I too am personally inclined to agree, if the central thought of the Sermon on the Mount means, that by our seeking first God’s kingdom we are no longer seeking our own kingdom. Our seeking first His righteousness rather than our own righteousness means that by God honoring our trusting Him, He then provides our basic daily needs and not always our outlandish and extremely selfish wants!

And yet, along with that thought is the truth found in Ephesians 3.20, which is so often miraculously made real to all who trust Him. “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.” Yes, through faith the power of Jesus Christ dwells within us in the reservoir of our redeemed hearts; if we are to be found by Jesus seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness!

But what does it truly mean for us to seek first God’s kingdom and God’s righteousness? First, it means we do not worry about our basic needs of this life. If truly children of God, then our heavenly Father will not forsake us; for He knows we have need of these things.

What else does it mean to seek first God’s kingdom? Paul followed up his teaching us that God has not given us a spirit of fear by his acknowledging; “Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord Jesus Christ, nor of me [Paul] His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings [plural] for the gospel according to the power of God.” Yes, seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, will involve sharing in its sufferings.

And by all means, do not be deceived by the finely dressed charismatic so-called religious leader’s attempt to convince you or me otherwise as it concerns our suffering for Christ. Suffering, according to the Word of God, is a vital part of true biblical Christianity, and the historical and present-day persecution proves that fact to be true. And the fact remains according to Jesus and other biblical writers, that the future persecution of God’s people will further prove suffering to be attached to true Christianity to the end.

Something More To Consider:
As we surrender ourselves, our ambitions, our desires, and our seeking other things to Christ and His Lordship, our faith grows and we become content in Jesus. As we seek first His kingdom, His righteousness, and His rule in our lives, rather than a world full of less important, less valuable earthly moth eaten and rust decaying things, we find that God meets our needs. And yet, we must realize that our needs may be vastly different than our wants and fleshly desires.

As we no longer yield to the temptation to worry about tomorrow, tomorrow takes care of itself. And yet, we must also keep in mind what Paul wrote in his second letter to the Thessalonians in chapter 3 and verse 10; “If anyone will not work, neither shall he [or she] eat.” While wrongful worry is always wrong, our trusting God while doing our part is always right!

Yes, work is honorable and vital as we daily seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. Paul also proclaimed another reason why we should submit to suffering for the gospel of Christ, because Christ has forgiven us our sin, promised us salvation, and has called each of us with a holy calling. Paul explained in 2 Timothy 1.11, that he was called to be a preacher, an apostle, and a bible teacher to the Gentiles; and for these things Paul said he also suffered.

What is it that we have been called to accomplish through the high calling of Jesus Christ? What is it that we may have been called to also suffer as did Paul, the eleven early disciples of Jesus as well as millions of other Christ honoring and Christ following enduring to the end true Christians since?

A Few Final Words:
We have not all been called as was Paul to be preachers, or apostles, or even bible teachers. If Christians were only called to these kingdom building callings, who would God’s high calling be to for work positions such as; doctors, nurses, educators, carpenters, plumbers, electricians, clerks, accountants, engineers, botanists, pharmacists, and the list could go on a mile long?

There are so many needs within the human race, and who better to be of service to meet those needs than truly born-again enduring to the end Christ believing, Christ witnessing servants of God seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness in their earthly high calling of following Christ?

Therefore, wrongful worry has no place in the believer’s life. In its place our faith in Jesus should shine forth even if we in the future are called by God with the high calling of Christ to suffer for the gospel! Trusting God to meet one’s needs without true biblical faith in Christ for salvation, is like buying a brand-new car without an engine; no matter how much you paid for it, it simply will not take you where you want to go.

Our Father in heaven, teach us to seek first Your kingdom and Your righteousness in and through the person of Your Son Jesus. In Him Always, Amen!

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