Summary: This is a study on the Sermon on the Mount. This is the 5th sermon in the series.
Sermon on the Mount
Charitable Deeds Pleasing to God
Matthew 6: 1-4
Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven.  Therefore, when you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory from men. Assuredly, I say to you they have their reward.  But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing,  that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly.
A. Doing Good as Christians
1. If you were able would you give millions to feed the poor?
2. If you were able would you go into the hospitals and heal the sick for no charge?
3. If you were able would you provide shelter and security to the homeless?
4. If you were able would you sacrifice yourself so that others may live?
Depending on how you would answer those questions – would you want anybody to know you were doing these things or would it matter to you?
1. What a man does matters greatly to God.
a. God expects men to be kind and to do good in the world: to help others both through personal involvement and through giving generously and sacrificially.
b. The giving of charitable deeds [alms – KJV] (righteous acts) is in a sense the first act of religion: Love your neighbor as yourself (Matt. 22:39).
2. But there is something else that God expects.
a. God expects man to have the right motive.
b. Just why a man does good and shows kindness matters greatly to God.
i. Many people like being recognized for their efforts. Often the case is when we have done a good deed for another we wish that it be at least recognized by the recipient. If the act is not acknowledged usually our response, what an ingrate – I will not waste my time helping him/her/them anymore.
ii. When this attitude prevails in our heart and minds we must ask: Why are doing what we are doing? What is the motive behind our doing good?
3. This is what Christ here in the text is addressing: the motive of the human heart for giving and doing good.
Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven.
A. Two important lessons in this verse.
1. Take Heed – Man must guard and be alert to the deception of giving and doing good before men. A person’s heart can be deceived – (Jeremiah 17:910). It will keep a person from receiving anything from God.
2. Do Charitable Deeds – A person must do charitable deeds. It is the duty of the Christian.
a. In this passage alone Christ says four times – do charitable deeds.
Therefore, when you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory from men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.
A. When you do a charitable deed
It is a duty to do good.
[W]hoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.
B. Do not sound a trumpet … in the synagogue and in the streets
Two reasons for the wrong motive for doing good.
1. Hypocrites (Gk. means: actor, one who puts on a false front to pretend to be what he is not.)
a. blow one’s own horn – self-praise, self-recognition, self-importance
i. in the synagogue – before religious people
ii. in the streets – before the public
2. Glory of Men
a. Recognition – praise of men during this life and to be remembered in death
b. Prestige – honor, esteem, and glory
c. Applause – admiration, self-satisfaction, fulfillment of duty
NOTE: Men soon fade away from this life. Recognition, prestige, and applause will fade and soon be forgotten by a world that will simply move on to the next person manifesting their glamour and fame.
C. They have their reward
1. The Christian person who does charitable goods for recognition before men has already received their reward.
a. This is an accounting statement meaning: payment has been made in full. God has no reason to reward them any further.