Historically in the Bible Book Club, I have focused on specific passages or couplings of verses rather than entire chapters. This time is different, that being said, I may break this chapter down over the course of future posts, but for the present, we’ll take the arial view of Matthew chapter 6.
This is a chapter of faith and one that I’m adopting as a theme for 2018. I want to look back after this year has ended and say that I lived this year by faith, like we are commanded to do in this chapter of the Bible.
God gives a series of seeming advisements in Matthew 6, for Christians to live by. He tells us how, when, and why to:
And the three share one running theme: they are to be done unto God and for God. The Creator is jealous of His glory and praise. If anyone receives honor and adoration, it should be Him and Him alone. The chapter starts off with these verses:
“Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. Therefore, when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. But when thou doest thine alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: that thine alms may be in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret Himself shall reward thee openly.”
–Matthew 6:1-4 (KJV)
The other two life principles are identical in spirit. They specifically instruct us to do our spiritual deeds unto God, for Him. Tithing, or the giving of an offering, or to a panhandler on the street corner should not be done in a way to draw attention to you. Why? Because when we give to the needy, we are doing it as unto the Lord. When we have done it unto the least of these, we have done it unto Christ Himself.
The same with prayer and fasting, we are not doing that for anyone else. It is not only a command of God to do these things, but He provides the mandate for how to do them in this passage! Not just unto the Lord, but for Him exclusively.
But the chapter goes on to say that we should not worry about this life. Take no care what you will eat, drink, wear, or even where you will sleep. God is saying in this chapter, “If you will obey Me and live for Me, I will provide for you”. Why should we worry if we are trusting in God? There is no reason to give thought to the circumstances or physical desires of our bodies: what we might call needs. If we are living for God, He will take care of us. That is a promise.
It’s not always easy… It’s never easy. But it is always right. And after 21 years of living by faith with my family, I think I’m qualified to say that God keeps His promises. We may never have much, and often not even any excess, but we have always had what we need to get by. For I have never seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread. God loves you immensely more than you can fathom. And if He takes care of the sparrow, how much more will He take care of you.
As always, thanks for reading.
—the anonymous novelist