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Summary: The "First Priority principle", the principle that if we put God FIRST and God will bless us, is found throughout the Bible. This sermons show 3 Bible passages this principle played out, and 3 ways we can put this principle into practice in our lives.

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The First Priority Principle

Series: Stewardship

Chuck Sligh

February 22, 2015

TEXT: Matthew 6:33 – But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

INTRODUCTION

I’m sure you’ve heard sage advice to, Always put first things first. That’s an important principle in every area of life.

Illus. – Several years ago when I was pastoring in Wiesbaden, I was driving home from Frankfurt when my car started heating up. So I pulled over and opened the hood to see what might be the problem—coolant level—check; hoses—check; everything else I could think of—check.

Fortunately, a German pulled over and in broken English said he was a mechanic and proceeded to look at my car to see what was the matter. After checking a few things, he checked the oil—which was bone dry! He looked at me and said, “Da ist no öl in your car. You must FIRST put öl in it.”

Yes, it’s important to make sure you put first things first.

Illus. – Pastor Haddon Robinson points out that one old recipe for rabbit stew started out with this injunction: First catch the rabbit. – Well, yeah, I guess if you want rabbit stew, you’d better get you a rabbit first!

Putting first things first also involves prioritizing.

Illus. – A group of friends went deer hunting and paired off in twos for the day. That night one of the hunters returned alone, staggering under an eight-point buck.

Where’s Harry? he was asked.

“Harry had a stroke of some kind. He’s a couple of miles back up the trail.”

You left Harry laying there, and carried the deer back?

Well, said the hunter, I figured no one was going to steal Harry.

I’ll leave you to decide whether or not this hunter put the right thing first. – I guess it depends on how avid a hunter you are! You know, there are some things that ought to be FIRST in priority. In fact, life is filled with prioritizing our lives. We’re all extremely busy, so we have to make choices. We must choose what is of first priority and do those before lesser things.

In our text this morning, we find Jesus preaching His famous Sermon on the Mount. In the previous verses, he said, Don’t worry about tomorrow. Don’t get all in a kink about where you’re going to get your food and clothing. God will take care of you.

Look at what He said in verses 31-32: Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

Then he adds this in verse 33 – But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Do you see what He’s saying? He’s saying, FIRST seek God and His kingdom, and THEN you can be sure God will take care of your needs.

Several times Jesus begins His teaching of a particular subject with the word, first. The word first, by simple definition, means that which is foremost. This is the very thought Jesus had in mind when He told His followers to Seek FIRST the kingdom of God, and His righteousness.


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