Summary: In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus gave clear instructions to His followers to not worry about things God had already promised. Our worry betrays a lack of trust in God and distracts us from doing the work of the kingdom. Four times in the Gospel of Matth
WHO DO YOU TRUST?
25 "Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?
26 Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?
27 Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?
28 "So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin;
29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?
Four times in Matthew’s gospel Jesus accused the disciples of not having enough faith in God. He was actually saying that they had no faith at all. We either have faith or we don’t. The problem with the disciples was that they didn’t have any. The word for faith in the New Testament refers to our confidence and this world being what it is confidence in God is an absolute necessity.
In these four passages the Word reminds us of why faith or confidence in God is so necessary and vital. Look at what faith in God does for us and see if we couldn’t use just a little bit more of it today.
1. CONFIDENCE IN GOD PROVIDES FOR OUR BASIC NECESSITIES (Matthew 6:28-30):
28 "So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; 29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? (“lacking confidence”)
In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus reminded His disciples that since they belonged to God He had assumed responsibility for the basic necessities of their lives. He reminded them that clothing, food, and drink were things God knew they all needed and had provided for in the past. Remember the people of God in the wilderness – how their clothing and shoes did not wear out, how they ate manna from heaven and drank water from a rock?
Worrying about stuff God has already promised to provide does no good. A lack of faith in this area will weaken our testimony and take the joy right out of life and living.
2. CONFIDENCE IN GOD STANDS GUARD AGAINST OUR WORST NIGHTMARES (Matthew 8:23-27):
23 Now when He got into a boat, His disciples followed Him. 24 And suddenly a great tempest arose on the sea, so that the boat was covered with the waves. But He was asleep. 25 Then His disciples came to Him and awoke Him, saying, "Lord, save us! We are perishing!"
26 But He said to them, "Why are you fearful, O you of little faith?" Then He arose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm.
When the disciples got into the boat to cross the Sea of Galilee they were just doing what Jesus had told them to do. This was something no doubt they had done many times. They had no idea that one of the most terrifying events of their lives would overtake them before they could get to the other side. This is the way life is. Life is a mystery and we never know what it holds from one minute to the next. This is why we need someone to go with us every step of the way.
Worrying about the unknown and the potential terrors of this life makes us weak and fearful. Alone and afraid is no way to go through life. God is good for both the known and the unknown – for days that are bright and sunny and even days when things couldn’t get any worse.
During his years as premier of the Soviet Union, Nikita Khrushchev denounced many of the policies and atrocities of Joseph Stalin. Once, as he censured Stalin in a public meeting, Khrushchev was interrupted by a shout from a heckler in the audience. "You were one of Stalin's colleagues. Why didn't you stop him?" "Who said that?" roared Khrushchev. An agonizing silence followed as nobody in the room dared move a muscle. Then Khrushchev replied quietly, "Now you know why."