Jesus knows how to ask questions. He forces us to get clear. What is important?
Perhaps the question is rhetorical but it is worth an answer. So ask yourself. Do you think what you are doing makes much of a difference (in God’s world)?
Jesus knows, directly from God, what is important. It isn’t our fashion sense. It isn’t the kind of car we drive. It isn’t how well our house is decorated. It isn’t how well we eat.
God’s goal: Jesus challenges us to get our priorities in line with God and His government (aka kingdom). Our job is love God above everything else. Our job is to love God with all our heart and with all our soul and with all our mind. That is the main thing about the main thing. We shouldn’t move on to the second commandment until we are straight with the first one.
- Does our heart burn with love for God?
- Do we love everyone, even those who do not like us?
- Do we have a heart for God?
- Are we ecstatic with joy and happiness?
- Do we live for Jesus?
- Do we trust the power of the Holy Spirit?
Everything that isn’t focused on Him, what He wants and loving others is a waste of time and money. Period. We cannot add a single hour to our span of life.
And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 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? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
English Standard Version. (2016). (Mt 6:27–33). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.
Covetousness will not only cheapen our riches, but it will also cheapen us! Uh oh! Warning Will! We will start to become worried and anxious, and this anxiety is unnatural and unspiritual. The person who pursues money thinks that riches will solve his problems, when in reality, riches will create more problems! It is a fact. We can count on it.
Material wealth gives a dangerous, false sense of security, and that feeling ends in tragedy. The birds and lilies do not fret and worry; yet they have God’s wealth in ways that man cannot duplicate. All of nature depends on God, and God never fails. Only mortal man depends on money, and money always fails.
Jesus cautions u that worry is sinful. We may dignify worry by calling it by some other name—concern, burden, a cross to bear—but the results are still the same. Instead of helping us live longer, anxiety only makes life shorter. The Greek word translated take no thought literally means “to be drawn in different directions.”
Worry pulls us apart. Until man interferes, everything in nature works together, because all of nature trusts God. Man, however, is pulled apart because he tries to live his own life by depending on material wealth.
Consider this from Barney Kasdan. (2011). Matthew Presents Yeshua, King Messiah: A Messianic Commentary (pp. 69–70). Clarksville, MD: Messianic Jewish Publishers.
Yeshua now turns his attention to an important part of the human existence—attitudes toward material possessions. He again issues a challenge to evaluate our inner priorities and values in light of the world around us. There is nothing inherently wrong with wealth and property. The Bible is filled with the stories of godly men and women who were people of great means (Abraham, Solomon, etc.).
Yet, assuredly, there is danger in having skewed and worldly attitudes toward our wealth. It is good to have a financial plan, but Messiah reminds us not to put our entire faith in the material world. It is too susceptible to problems like moths, rust and burglars.
It is much better to store our treasures and wealth in heaven where they will reap eternal dividends. It is often said that you can’t take your wealth with you to the next life. This is graphically illustrated in the traditional burial clothes, which purposely have no pockets! The reality is that our checkbook actually reflects our priorities. We will invest our money according to the values of our heart.