Sunday, February 18, 2007

Matthew 6:25-34 - Overcoming Worry

Pray and Read: Matthew 6:25-34

Contextual Notes:

Sermon on the Mount

Matthew 5: Earthly Relationships.

Matthew 6: Heavenly Relationships.

Matthew 7: Application of the Two.

  • Earthly treasures
  • Are Perishable 6:19, (2)
  • Corrupting 6:22-23 (evil eye),
  • Compromise our allegiance 6:24 Jesus says, “Stop treasuring your earthly treasures! Treasure things that will last forever. ” Matthew 6:33

Jesus advises us to make our investments eternal and not temporal ones which will not last (Matthew 6:19-24) In Matthew 6:24, Jesus makes it clear that we must choose between two masters, God or materialism. Part of the cohort of that evil master Mammon is worry.

Worry There is an appropriate concern connected with trusting God. You can tell it is concern and not worry when you are in prayer casting that care on the Lord.

Background check on worry – (6:25) μὴ μεριμνᾶτε - merimnao – “I divide or separate” Matthew 6:25, 27, 28, 31, 34. Anxious, divided, distracted. KJV, NASB: anxious

Exposition:

What is there to worry about?

  • We worry about everyday things 6:26.
  • We worry about things we cannot change 6:27 (NIV good rendering, lit. “add one forearm length to his age/stature”
  • We worry about keeping up with the Jones – things that don’t matter. 6:28
  • We worry about the future 6:34

Worry, however, is misdirected or indicates a lack of trust in God or out of proportion to need.

  • Worry confuses your value system and sucks the joy out of life Matthew 6:25
  • Worry makes you blind to your worth Matthew 6:26. Baby rose-breasted grosbeaks eat 426 times in 11 hours, and He feeds them, but Jesus did not die for one of the 8000 species of birds. He died for us.
  • Worry is completely useless (6:27). There is always something we can choose to worry about. If you stay up all night worrying, in the morning the problems are still there and you’ve lost all that sleep. It’s useless.
  • Worry erases God’s promises from your mind (6:30-31) (read Romans 8:31-32)
  • Gives rise to selfishness (6:31).
  • Blurs your Christian distinctiveness (6:32) (the pagans – ta ethne “the nations”) It is the character of unbelievers, not Christians. (see Hebrews 13:5-6)
  • Takes the joy out of life (6:34). Makes looking forward to tomorrow a dread (James 4:13-15 uses idea)

Application:

The Secret to overcoming worry

  • Keep your mind, your priorities (treasure), and reliance on the Lord (6:33) Isaiah 40:27-31; Philippians 4:4-7; Hebrews 13:8
  • Take one day at a time (6:34) Hang in there. Don’t let anxiety or worry steal your victory (Psalm 27:14)
  • Presence – Claim the presence of God in your life (Isaiah 41:10)
  • Pray – Philippians 4:4-7. for specific needs, not generalities.
  • Promises – Get into the Word and learn His assurances (Psalm 119:14-16)

Invitation: